When an individual is protesting society's refusal to acknowledge his dignity as a human being, his very act of protest confers dignity on him. – Bayard Rustin
Police killings of unarmed black men at the hands of police officers has created a new national civil rights movement and inspired musicians to speak out against injustice through the poetry and artistry of music.
Music has always been reflective of the times and music has helped shaped those time. Protest songs from the 1960's and early 1970's supported civil right, spoke out against the Vietnam War and helped moved an entire generation into direct action.
Rap music provided protest rhymes describing conditions and problems in the inner city. Protest songs and protest rap have both re-emerged and seem to be trending upwards as reports increase about police killing unarmed black kids and men. You probably won't hear many of these songs on your local radio stations.
Hopefully some of these new protest song will inspire and encourage a new generator of leaders to implement much needed change.
Black Lives Matter – BeBe Winans
Keedron Bryant – I Just Want to Live
Tee Grizzley – Mr. Officer (feat. Queen Naija & Members of the Detroit Youth Choir)
YG – FTP (Fuck The Police)
H.E.R. – I Can't Breathe
Trey Songz – 2020 Riots: How Many Times
The daughter of Eric Garner, Erica and family member Stephen Flagg recorded "This Ends Today", in his memory.
J. Cole – Be Free (Michael Brown Tribute – Ferguson, Mo.)
J Cole during the first performance of "Be Free" on David Letterman
J Cole Interviewed while in Ferguson, MO
T.I – New National Anthem Feat Sklyar Grey ( RIP Ferguson and Mike Brown )
Mike Brown Don't Shoot Song by Diddy, Rick Ross, 2 Chainz, Fabolous, Wale, and more
John Legend – Glory feat. Common ( Ferguson ) Michael Brown Tribute
Black Rage – Lauryn Hill
Hands Up – Yakki Divioshi
Baltimore – Prince
All Good People – Delta Rae
I Can't Breathe – Pussy Riot, Russian feminist punk rock protest group
Hands UP Don't Shoot, I can't breathe – Walter "Bunny" Sigler
We Gotta Pray – Alicia Keys
I can't breathe protest song
Hell You Talmbout – Janelle Monae & Wondaland