Music On, World Off: Wakanda (And Killmonger) Forever

Shuri and T’Challa know what’s up, folks.

Yesterday I (and millions of my warm, close friends around the world) had the immense pleasure of traveling to Wakanda and – man – what a joy. Marvel’s Black Panther was lit AF. An outright, outsized, out of this world but wholly of this earth joy. An exercise in intelligent storytelling, multi-faceted representation, AfroFuturism, comic book fun, and glorious costume design plus damned if Michael B. Johnson didn’t make me feel all kinds of things for his Killmonger: he’s the bad guy, people. THE BAD GUY!!! I’m guessing I’m not the only one who just wanted to give Killmonger a hug to make it all better…

©Marvel Studios 2018

So, yes, a second viewing is absolutely in order (just take my money, Ryan Coogler), but damned if it didn’t get off to “Really?” kind of start. How so? Just that I got to the theater, had my strategically butter-layered popcorn and beverage at the ready and was emotionally primed to see the blackity blackest movie EVER…and there was a white lady in my assigned seat. Really?!?

All good. Plus it’s New Music Friday which means 13 new songs have entered my Music On, World Off Spotify playlist. From Kendrick Lamar’s Black Panther The Album comes the earthy swagger of “All The Stars (with SZA)” while Scottish gent, ONR, channels his inner 80s synth in something of an ode to American iconography with “American Gods.” Slinging her soulful rock and roll, I recommend that you crank the volume on Hannah Wicklund & The Steppin Stones‘ “Bomb Through the Breeze” and Awolnation’s “Cannonball.”

Plus, something from two of my favorite Los Angeles-based bunches of guys: Mainland with “Hometown” and not just the new song “Way With Words” from the Wrecks, but a new EP: Panic Vertigo.

Some piano play from Jukebox the Ghost, the sensory groove of UK’s The King’s Parade (get familiar with those guys, folks), MONA (video of the week, anyone?) and more? Yep. So dive on in and give my Spotify playlist a follow…maybe even find your new favorite song or band. It could happen.

And remember: Wakanda Forever.