Langston Hughes, Layla Mccullough, Heroin discussed on All Things Considered


She set poems by Langston Hughes to her own music since then she's been working hard. She's produced several new human beings as well. As new albums the latest album, the capitalist blues is out now and Layla McCullough is with us from the south by southwest festival. Leyla. Thanks so much for talking with us nice to speak with you again. Thanks for making the time. How has the festival been for you, so far it's very interesting because I've heard about this festival for a long time. And and it's my first time actually being here. So I'm realizing why it has the reputation that it has it's kind of overwhelming. And it's like, wow, how do you break through? All of this noise. You know? But here I am. Well, speaking of breaking through all this noise. And one of the things about your music has always followed its own path. I mean, you've always kind of said what you wanted to say in the way that you wanted to say it, and you have kind of organized your life in such a way that you could do that. And I was reading an interview about this latest album. We're you said how have my previous records not been considered protests albums? Point taken which I feel like you're making a statement with the title capitalist blues, are you? Yeah. I think so I think that it's appropriate. It's been interesting even just being here at south by south west and witnessing the inequality that is so prevalent in our society just walking around the streets here, promoting my music. And yet the words that I'm singing still feel like they ring so true, especially in this sort of context where everyone is literally trying to get ahead and trying to move their careers forward. Trying to move their life forward in some way. And and then we're right next to this huge homeless population. I've been seeing like people nodding out on heroin on the street corners and thinking how did we all end up here at the same time in this moment. It just makes me feel like more sure of my songs. Does it feel a little disorienting in a way? Yeah. It's disorienting because I'm like, I don't want to believe that there is rampant inequality with and that it's difficult to see our way through this as a society. I don't want to believe that we're all so callous in some way, and that we're all just so self interested. I'm not absolving myself of that, you know, when I say that I feel that way about myself sometimes, and I'm like, this is so confusing. Because I'm using to be here. I have I have an incredible amount of freedom in privilege in certain ways. And yet. You know, I'm a black woman in the folk music world jazz world, just seeing all of the layers of my identity sort of juxtaposed.

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