4:44:40 PMThe making of " Free Jahar Tsar" song
So Wesley Autrey, or the Subway Superman, as he was later dubbed, jumps into the gutter of a subway after a man who had some sort of health condition, epilepsy if my memory serves me correctly, falls onto the rails of an oncoming train, to save him. He succeeded. While that was an incredibly heroic act, one of the elements in that story that perhaps makes it still so memorable to me was that split second decision when Autrey battled with himself on what to do. He said at first he thought, "oh no, someone's gotta save this man" and no second sooner, he was telling himself, "that's you, stupid. You’ve gotta save him."
Ellen DeGeneres found it funny he mentally referred to himself as "stupid." Now, I'm no Subway Superman but I'm in the kitchen, trying to dish my meal, and this was just days after the Boston Marathon bombing. I'm however, more heated than the microwave after being subsequently convinced that Jahar was innocent and all we, the FreeJahar team, had going on at the time was a hashtag movement. Supporters had just begun flirting with the idea of a mass protest but because I knew, it was physically impossible for me to attend, I felt helpless. I kept thinking though there must be something I could do. Then I had my Autreyan epiphany, "You's a rapper, fool... Rap about it." Lol.
It probably took a mere nanosecond considering what sample track to use. "Ain't No Love in the Heart of the City" was a no-brainer. The minute I got the chance to write the lyrics a few days later, the words, through disgust with the whole situation, just poured out of my brain onto that keyboard. The music melded together so effortlessly, I regarded it as a sign from God to follow it through to its logical conclusion.
Bobby "Blue" Bland, the Blues singer and original performer of "Ain't No Love in the Heart of the City," whom Jay Z sampled that same track from to later become one of Jahar's favorite Rap songs at the least, aged 83, died in his Memphis home on the 23rd of June this year. Ironically, I found out about his passing in the tribute section of the same Rolling Stone issue featuring the one and only Jahar on its coveted and prestigious front cover. See how things just align? If I had backed out on 'Free Jahar Tsar,' my superstitious side would have forced me to sorely regret my inaction after reading that Rolling Stone article. I would be kicking myself for ignoring all those green-lights and turning on my own gut.
Well, again, my gut feeling spoke to me and said we'd need a celebratory song for when Jahar pleads 'Not Guilty.' Per usual, I had my reservations as we always do with every significant step in our lives. But more noticeably is that on those last crucial seconds before you take that irredeemable action, the devil will give it his best shot, which he's saved for last, and throw at you the scariest, most draconian consequence imaginable. But you know what? If you weren't stupid in the beginning, you sure aren't stupid now. Nothing has changed, it's all an illusion. And nothing WILL change until you push that hot damn button anyway. So just go ahead and Press Play.
By Krishna Beacorn
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