our huge two-day music festival ShowcaseSTL, we'll be announcing two honorees per weekday on our music blog. For last year's STL 77 picks, go here; for the complete lineup for ShowcaseSTL, go here.
No single line could sum up the righteous and riotous music of Rev. Osagyefo Uhuru Sekou, but this one comes close: "In times like these we need a miracle/Ain't nobody going to save us/We're the ones we've been waiting for.” A preacher, filmmaker, writer, composer, bandleader and activist, Sekou has roots in St. Louis and was an active presence during the Ferguson uprising. He was busted twice there — once for praying in the streets. For Sekou, politics is just spirituality by other means, and vice versa, and his music, notably on last year’s deeply bluesy yet experimental In Times Like These (produced by Luther and Cody Dickinson of the North Mississippi Allstars), always tells it like it is and as it may yet be. Sekou’s revolution doesn’t need to be televised; his relentless touring has taken the gospel of civil rights around the world.
Recommended If You Like: Gil Scott Heron, the Last Poets, the Roots, Mavis Staples