Updated 3/30/2016 at 10:47 am

“I am a full grown woman, what in the hell do I look like listening to some Kendrick Lamar?”

Yes friends, that was my exact response to my dear twenty-something year old son who had tried his absolute best to convince me to check out one of his favorite hip hop artists.

Now let me level with you.  Even though I opted NOT to listen to Mr. Lamar at that specific point in time, I did keep the idea under my cap.  Frankly, I felt comfortable doing so because I happen to know that my son is quite discriminating when it comes to music; best believe I raised him to be that way.  As the mother of a young and beautiful black man, I simply refused to allow him to listen to BS lyrics even if they were attached to a funky track—and you know how much I love a funky track 🙂

Side note:  Never underestimate the level of impact that both lyrics AND music can have on the development of a child’s mind.

Anyway, one random Tuesday, I picked up the TV remote and began ‘flipping’ stations.  I landed on a black and white music video that began with screams and spoken verse.  Intrigued, I decided to continue watching and listening.  Believe it or not, after just a few minutes, I was completely transfixed by what I was seeing.  To say that the video included several profound elements would be an understatement.

Now, in the words of my Corsican twin, Gloria, here comes the killin’ part!

Right before the video ‘faded to black’ I sat alert so that I could note the song title and artist. Wouldn’t you know it; the title of the song was “Alright” and the artist was Kendrick Lamar. Warning, if you decide to watch the video, do know that it includes graphic language and images.

I just be damned!  My baby boy was right!

Okay, let’s get this straight! You need not worry about me, as a middle aged woman, riding around town bumping Kendrick Lamar.  But, having said that, I ain’t mad at him because his lyrics are FAR from being superficial.  In fact, they are quite deep.  Bearing this in mind, the refrain, “We gone be alright” planted itself right into my frontal cortex.  In other words, that thang rented some space up in my head.

But, in light of local, national and global current events, my mind transformed that very statement into a question:  “Are we gone be alright?”

Well, one thing is for sure, if we continue on this trajectory, it would seem that we certainly are NOT going to be alright.   Even the most cursory glance at the nightly news would cause us to conclude that our society is fully mired in a tangled, matted and mangled mess.

Ya’ll we got problems and we need a serious intervention plan.

So, at this point, you might be asking, “What would our ‘intervention plan’ look like?”  While I am not at all sure, I do think that, in our solution finding, we must consider the following:

“We cannot solve our problems with the same level of thinking that created them.”

                        -Albert Einstein


At any rate, I do tend to agree with Kendrick’s optimistic proclamation that “…if God got us then we gone be alright!” Baby I have to if I am going to maintain my maternal sanity.

But, I don’t think that we are going to get to the state of ‘alright’ by diffusion–remember, osmosis refers to liquids 🙂  It is going to take some doing.

Friends, I’m curious, what do you think needs to happen for us to get to “alright?”
























18 thoughts on “Alright?

  1. tunisiajolyn84

    First of all, my dad is way older than you and has spoken super highly of Kendrick Lamar which is amazing because it’s rare he does that as a professional jazz musician so girl, bang that Kendrick loudly and proudly. He’s good.

    Secondly, I think one of the main ways we can be alright is self-love, which sounds so airy fairy but I truly believe that once we truly capture that and become that, we will naturally be able to outthink the system and become more community-oriented with our everyday lives to the point where we begin to create our own structure of living because we would be done following this divide and conquer narrative and start writing our own storyline.


  2. Good point Lady G. I am slowly coming around to today’s music. For ages, I never listened to the radio. I wrote it all off as garbage – I painted with a broad brush. But some of these rappers, like Kendrick Lamar and J. Cole – they are veryyyyyy intelligent and, if we are willing to give them a chance, their music can help us! Glad to see someone else feels the same =D

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ooooh me too Darryl!
      I brushed all that stuff off for a long time!
      But I have heard J. Cole and you are right! He is very intelligent.
      Both of these brothers are deep and it’s so refreshing!
      I thought my only hope was Andre3000!
      Thanks for stopping by D! It’s always a blessing brah 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Reblogged this on seekthebestblog and commented:

    Today’s question:
    Are we gon’ be alright?
    Hats off to my son, to Mr. Kendrick Lamar, and to all my favorite Millenials who are asking this very question 🙂
    Peace, love and light to you all!
    Lady G 😘💋


  4. Jet

    “You have your way. I have my way. As for the right way, the correct way, and the only way, it does not exist.” ~Friedrich Nietzsche
    You are indeed correct in your statement that we (older heads, as you call us) miss out on so much because we look at certain people as being ” politically incorrect” simply because they don’t act or say things “our way.” It is an absolute necessity that we learn to appreciate the benefit of living in a society with many different people with many ideas and understanding of how things should be done.
    After reading your post, I decided to listen to Kendrick Lamar’s “Alright.” I discovered that he had the unique ability to get his message over to people (like me) that ordinarily had no interest in listening to a message delivered in a way some of us would call “politically incorrect.” In opposition to some opinions that I read about, I found that it had the possible propensity to bring solace or comfort to an oppressed group of people. Think about a society that had just one way of doing things, or the music industry with just one genre of music, or one type of performer, or an informational highway with just one way of getting the message out to the masses. How much would we learn? Is this how we want to live our lives, mundane and uninformed? We must adapt and accept the uniqueness of each individual. IJS

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Ricky Sto

    I truly think that many people overlook the beauty of this song. Not only is it a catchy head-nodder with a tight beat; it also serves as a declaration of happiness and prosperity no matter the predicament. I find it interesting how Kendrick’s message is simple, yet complex, as many folks truly struggle with being “alright.” I for one can relate. This song was DEFINITELY my theme song this past summer when I was pretty broke and going through stressing emotional issues. I was bumping this track everyday on my way home from a long day at work with only stovetop stuffing and pinto beans in my refrigerator to look forward to. 😂
    Even though my money was tight, I believed that everything was going to be alright. And so I not only survived, but I thrived. I’d like to see your son write a post one of these days. He sounds like quite the insightful fellow!

    I always enjoy reading your posts. Keep it up, Gwin!

    – Rick

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Ok the jig is up Rick! LOL!!
      I love this response!
      I think that a lot of old heads, like myself, have a hard time getting to the message of the song due to the graphic delivery. I am convinced that we miss a lot of good and valuable information simply because we can’t get past the way in which it is delivered.
      Anyway, I love you man ! Get back to your studies 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Gwin, I agree with your sentiment that, “WITH GOD” is the only way that EVERYTHING will be alright. A “lawyer” of the Pharisees class once asked Jesus, “‘Master, which is the GREAT commandment in the law?’ Jesus not only gave him the answer to the GREATEST commandment but threw in the NEXT GREATEST as a bonus. Jesus said to him, “‘Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind’.This is the first and great commandment and the second is like unto it, “‘Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself’. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.”‘

    Unless and/or until the human species learn to live their lives in accordance with these commandments, things will NEVER be alright.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. And with that, he dropped the mic and walked off stage!

      Haaay Ronnie….
      I totally agree with your summation.
      But how do we manifest/apply our love for God and brother on a day to day basis? In other words, what are some tangible steps that we can take to be’alright’ with God and man?

      Any thoughts?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’ll take a stab at that one Gwin; and will endeavor not to sound TOO “preachy lol. Of course, I speak from the position of a Christian (Baptist), but I’ve found that most religions and philosophies dealing with the topic share the same concepts. In other words, I believe that the concepts of “love thy neighbor” are universal.

        As with any other “problem” we must identify the problem. In identifying, it is helpful to define the “problem”. I find these verses from 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 does as good a job as any other source in defining LOVE. In the following verses, I’ve used “The Message” interpretation of the Bible:

        “Love never gives up.
        Love cares more for others than for self.
        Love doesn’t want what it doesn’t have.
        Love doesn’t strut,
        Doesn’t have a swelled head,
        Doesn’t force itself on others,
        Isn’t always “me first,”
        Doesn’t fly off the handle,
        Doesn’t keep score of the sins of others,
        Doesn’t revel when others grovel,
        Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth,
        Puts up with anything,
        Trusts God always,
        Always looks for the best,
        Never looks back,
        But keeps going to the end.”

        We must also recognize that LOVE is an action verb. It requires that the practitioner take some action that has as an object, one or more of his/her fellow humans. This action must, in some way, fall within the parameters of what LOVE is. There are numerous actions that fit the bill.

        Jesus gave his life because of his LOVE for mankind. We, hopefully don’t have to go that far! Our action could be something as simple as giving a homeless person some of our old clothes. The examples of LOVE actions are too numerous to count.

        Another step that should be taken is reading and studying our Bibles, Qurans, Toras, Vinaya Piṭaka, Vedas etc. Reading these texts will keep us grounded and serve as a self-assessment tool to ensure that we continue our LOVE actions. The Bible says, “Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that need not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.”

        If everyone were to busy themselves with these ACTIONS, we could possibly, one day, be alright!

        Liked by 3 people

        1. Yass! Preach Rev. A Jordan Smith, I meant-say Deacon Ron.
          I really love your message here. I especially appreciate the fact that you illustrated how this truth applies to many theologies.
          But I wasn’t expecting anything less from my erudite cuz!!!

          Liked by 1 person

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