Author Archives: nicholaspayton

Another Shot in the Arm for Jazz

“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.” — Martin Luther King Jr. Let me start by offering my condolences to the family of Mr. Philip Seymour Hoffman. I pray that they find peace … Continue reading

Album Review: Can Beyoncé’s Eponymous Apolcalyptic Album Bring Melody Back To The Mainstream?

The world must be about to end because Beyoncé just made a great album. And I don’t mean that as a slight, but if you’re like me, this is the album you’ve been waiting for Beyoncé to make since her … Continue reading

Duking It Out with Teachout and Other Racist Assailants

Has anyone ever noticed that “biographers” like Terry Teachout always attempt to tear down great Black legends in the spirit of “making the subject more human”? This actually comes closer to dehumanizing them. They always go after the guys for … Continue reading

Negromancing The Stone: A Tale of Mainstream Morbidity

The American Negro glorifies everyone else’s struggle over his or her own. I hesitate to write this in the wake of the departure of Nelson Mandela for being misunderstood as being disrespectful of such an icon, but perhaps now is … Continue reading

On Art, Community, and the Culture of Commerce

The world is sick and art is the only thing that can heal it. The problem is that mankind has eschewed the discipline of artistry in favor of private pursuits. The current trend is to elevate the ideals of the … Continue reading

A Nigga Tired: Why Non-Blacks Shouldn’t Say Nigga

It’s baffling that in 2013 we’re still having this conversation, but here we are. Repetition is the key to life. And as frustrating as it may be to repeat oneself over and over again, it is often necessary. Malcolm X … Continue reading

Martin/Incognito: An Open Letter to Jason Whitlock

Jonathan Martin walked into a twisted world led by Incognito Mr. Whitlock, I read the above piece on the Martin/Incognito situation and you had me until this moment: …what makes me want to check into a mental hospital is Miami’s … Continue reading

Why Jazz Still Isn’t Cool: The 2nd #BAMiversary in Review

It’s been almost 2 years since my legendary post On Why Jazz Isn’t Cool Anymore and many followup posts explaining exactly why in great detail, international conferences, videos, etc., and most folks still don’t get it. The great irony here … Continue reading

On Truth and Beauty in the Age of Bullshit

Does anything meaningful even matter anymore? Mediocrity has reached such a peak that genius is more of a liability than an advantage. Dumbing down is the new enlightening. No one has the patience to dig deep anymore. If something doesn’t reveal … Continue reading

On Why There’s Still No Hope For U.S.

“I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.” To have hope for America is to be a fool. It … Continue reading