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Banned music

July 12, 1979, disco sucks

The Parents Music Resource Center

The Parents Music Resource Center (PMRC) was a committee formed in 1985 by the wives of several congressmen. They included Tipper Gore (wife of Senator and later Vice President Al Gore); Susan Baker, wife of Treasury Secretary James Baker; and Nancy Thurmond, wife of Senator Strom Thurmond. Their mission was to educate parents about "alarming trends" in popular music. They claimed that rock music encouraged/glorified violence, drug use, suicide, criminal activity, etc. and sought the censorship and/or rating of music. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parents_Music_Resource_Center [Aug 2005]

Disco Demolition Night

Disco Demolition Night occurred on July 12, 1979 at Comiskey Park during a doubleheader between the Chicago White Sox and Detroit Tigers. Steve Dahl and Garry Meier, two DJs for the radio station WLUP in Chicago, Illinois came up with a promotion that involved people bringing unwanted disco records to the game for a discount on admission. Most of the records ended up sailing through the stands during the game, nearly inciting a riot. After the first game, Dahl came out along with the records in a box rigged with a bomb. When the bomb was set off, thousands of fans ran onto the field. Some started their own fires and mini-riots. There was so much commotion and damage to the field that the teams could not play the last game of the doubleheader; the White Sox forfeited. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Disco_Demolition_Night [Feb 2005]

Explicit lyrics

Logo of the Prelude record label

In the bush (1978) is the A-side of this twelve inch

In the Summer of 1977, I remember being on the highway and hearing "Shake Your Booty" for the first time. I turned to my girlfriend and said,

"I don't believe they got away with that!" Here we were way past the dawning of the aquarian age and Woodstock and free love, yet it seemed that a big taboo was being broken. The 'line' had been crossed. We songwriters still believed that suggestive lyric but not explicit lyric was the order of the day. We spent endless hours crafting new ways of eluding to sex without crossing that magic line. Suddenly the pressure was on to test for a new 'magic line.' Between "Deep Throat" in the cinema and George Carlins' "Seven words you can't say on television" the world was ready for the test.

I did not sit down and invent the phrase "Push Push In The Bush" in a moment of meditative genius. I was in the recording studio ... --http://www.papmus.com/push.html [Feb 2005]

As Nasty As They Wanna Be (1989) - 2 Live Crew

As Nasty As They Wanna Be (1989) - 2 Live Crew [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

2 Live Crew is one of the most controversial rap groups ever, largely due to the sexual themes of one album, As Nasty As They Wanna Be (1989).

As Nasty As They Wanna Be (1989) became the group's biggest hit, largely because of the single Me So Horny, which was popular in spite of little radio play. The song was based on a quote from a Vietnamese prostitute in Kubrick's Full Metal Jacket.

The American Family Association, a conservative group, did not think the presence of a "Parental Advisory" sticker was enough to adequately warn listeners of what was inside the case. A lawyer affiliated with the AFA, Jack Thompson, met with Florida Governor Bob Martinez and convinced him to look in the album to see if it met the legal classification of "obscene." It was decided in 1990 that action should be taken at the local level and Nick Navarro, Broward County sheriff received a ruling from Judge Mel Grossman that probable cause for obscenity violations existed. Navarro warned record store owners that selling the album may be prosecutable. 2 Live Crew filed a suit against Navarro. That June, Judge Jose Gonzalez ruled against the album, declaring it obscene and illegal to sell. Charles Freeman, a local retailer, was arrested two days later after selling a copy to an undercover police officers, followed by the arrest of three members of 2 Live Crew after they performed some material from the album at a performance. They were acquitted soon after.

As a result of the controversy, As Nasty As They Wanna Be sold over two million copies. A few other retailers were later arrested for selling it as well. The publicity then continued when George Lucas, owner of the Star Wars universe, sued Luke Skyywalker for appropriating the name from his franchise. Skyywalker changed his name to Luke and then released an extremely political solo album Banned in the USA, legally securing the rights to Bruce Springsteen's Born in the USA.

In 1991, 2 Live Crew released the very first live rap album, Live in Concert, and Sports Weekend, a full-length studio original. Neither lived up to the sales that they experienced with As Nasty As They Wanna Be. The 2 Live Crew members went their own ways after this.

In 1992, a Court of Appeals overturned the obscenity ruling from Jose Gonzales, and the decision was then upheld by the Supreme Court of the United States. Fresh Kid Ice and Mr. Mixx released unreleased tracks from pre-Luke 2 Live Crew Deal With This under the name Rock on Crew, while Luke and Ice also released new solo albums, I Got Shit on My Mind and The Chinaman, respectively. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2_Live_Crew [Feb 2005]

Censorship issues
Hip hop has probably encountered more problems with censorship than any other form of popular music in recent years, due to the use of sexually and violently explicit lyrics. The pervasive use of curse words in many songs has created challenges in the broadcast of such material both on television stations such as MTV, in music video form, and on radio. As a result, many hip hop recordings are broadcast in censored form, with offending language blanked out of the soundtrack (though usually leaving the backing music intact). The result - which quite often renders the remaining lyrics unintelligible - has become almost as widely identified with the genre as any other aspect of the music, and has been parodied in films such as Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me, in which a character - performing in a parody of a rap music video - performs an entire verse that is blanked out. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hip_Hop_music#Censorship_issues [Feb 2005]

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