Episode 25 - Who Hurt R&B?

R&B music has changed. It was once the soundtrack of love, but is now more like a journal of pain. Through this music, George tracks the breakdown of the African American family since the 1970s. He discovers that higher poverty and incarceration rates among African Americans left a generation of children to fend for themselves. By the 1990s Gangsta rappers were displaying disrespect to women - and the market loved it and rewarded it. At the same time, Black women were pushing back through songs calling out immature men, and celebrating financial independence.

Warning: This episode contains very strong language and language which may offend, as well as some adult themes.

Credits:

Written by George the Poet
Produced by Benbrick and George the Poet
Mixing, recording and editing by Benbrick.

With music from:

Ginuwine - Differences
Jhené Aiko - P*$$Y Fairy (OTW)
Kaash Paige - Love Songs
George The Poet - Baby Father
Cardi B - WAP (feat. Megan Thee Stallion)
Megan Thee Stallion - Cash Shit (feat. DaBaby)
Rick Ross - Sanctified (feat. Kanye West & Big Sean)
Drake & GIVĒON - Chicago Freestyle
Chris Brown - Loyal (Instrumental)
Candi Staton - Young Hearts Run Free
Lauryn Hill - Doo Wop (That Thing)
Whitney Houston - It’s Not Right But It’s Okay
Dr Dre - Bi*****s Ain’t S**t
Destiny’s Child - Bills, Bills, Bills
Sunshine Anderson - Heard It All Before
TLC - No Scrubs
Jazmine Sullivan - Pick Up Your Feelings

All original music is written by Benbrick and recorded by the BBC Concert Orchestra.

Thank you to:

My team: Sandra, Vidhu, and Birungi. Dylan Haskins and the team at BBC Sounds, BBC Concert Orchestra. Torrie Maas. My Common Ground team: Anne Whitehead, Darshan Sanghrajka, and Benbrick.

Archive:

The clips of Candi Staton used at 07:31, 08:05, 08:28 and 08:59 are taken from her interview with Paul Morley on Guardian Music.

The clips of Jay-z used at 11:06 are taken from his interview on the Scandinavian talk show Skavlan, and his interview with Sway for MTV.

The clip of Tupac used at 11:32 is taken from his BET Networks interview with Ed Gordon.

The clip of 50 Cent used at 12:23 is taken from his interview with Larry King for Ora TV.

The clip of Barack Obama used at 13:01 is taken from CBS News.

The clip of Lauryn Hill used at 14:26 is taken from her 1998 BET Rap City interview.

The clip talking about crack used at 20:05 is taken from the Glide Memorial Church conference “The Race Against Crack”.


Have You Heard George’s Podcast? is a George the Poet production for BBC Sounds.

Commissioning Assistant Producer: Adam Eland
Commissioning Senior Producer: Alex Entwistle
Commissioning Executive for BBC: Dylan Haskins