New York based Director, Designer & DJ Vashtie used her platform to shed light on the recent tragic happenings in the black community. The frustration with this past week’s incidents motivated Vashtie to create THIS MACHINE KILLS RACISM, a mixtape featuring a collection of music from all “genres, decades and countries.” Though each song and audio clip is from a different time, it shows that the black community has been experiencing the same issues today as we were 50+ years ago.
Following the recent police killings of two unarmed black men, #AltonSterling and #PhilandroCastille, celebrities from the A-list to the D-list took to social media to express their anger and disgust of an ongoing unjust crime that continues to plague our community. Though Vashtie has been tight-lipped about the happenings on social media, she chose to go a different route in expressing her feelings. She wrote:
I didn’t post much on social media in regards to this because I needed to sit with my feelings. I understand the power in showing solidarity on social media, but I think sometimes it can give the false sense of accomplishing something for the cause. And, as an artist – I really wanted to create something for people in a more meaningful manner than in a few passionate, 140 character Tweets.
In sitting with my feelings, I found myself asking “When will our beloved musicians and celebrities DO SOMETHING?” Maybe that something could be to make music, cancel tour dates or even hold a sit-in at Hollywood Studios. But then, I wondered why I was waiting on others or forcing responsibility in their hands? I had to ask myself, “What was I going to do?”
I decided to make a mixtape.
Earlier tonight, she premiered visuals for the mixtape on Periscope, and it was so powerful. I was immediately captivated and touched by her musical selection. Each song was diverse in genre but parallel in the message. LISTEN UP:
More on Vashtie’s THIS MACHINE KILLS RACISM.