Rhetoric Just Like Frederick

from by Baba Bomani

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lyrics

CHORUS

Rhetoric just like Frederick (8x)
What you talking 'bout? Typing on your keyboard or out your mouth
What you talking 'bout? Words are power make them count
What you talking 'bout? Typing on your keyboard or out your mouth

VERSE ONE (autobiography)

He was many things, including a biographer
America was on trial, he’s the stenographer
Key witness and prosecuting attorney
He took the whole world on his slavery journey
became a voice for the voiceless
enslaved Africans faced with hard choices
back when they thought a former slave couldn’t be literate
Destroyed the myths that masters were considerate
Blew you away with vocabulary
above ordinary, distinguished dignitary
emissary, representing for black pain
deep and philosophical or simple and plain
You know you got a story are you telling it?
Don’t ever think your story isn’t relevant
like Douglass tell your own narrative
So you can have rhetoric just like Frederick

VERSE TWO (journalism)

1847 he started the North Star
At the time black newspapers were bizarre
he felt he had to use his freedom of the press
“Those who suffer injustice are those who must demand redress”
he appreciated white abolitionist
But thought former slaves should tell what the mission is
They pushed forward their efforts
Sold copies through networks, turned readers to experts
then he teamed up with Martin Delaney
Who was astute (that’s another word for brainy)
He thought the publication should be named for its creator
So the name became “The Frederick Douglass Papers”
What’s the story in your world, are you telling it?
Don’t ever think your story isn’t relevant
Telling your story is imperative
So you can have rhetoric just like Frederick

VERSE THREE (orator)

He used his skills to write and perform speeches
That’s readings out loud that inspires and teaches
Before the Civil War few had seen before
a black orator on nationwide tour
When it comes to speeches he might be the GOAT
From slave abolition to women’s rights to vote
Good speeches are the art of story telling
Presenting arguments in a way that’s compelling
Look at the titles, they tell you no lie
Like “What to the slave is the fourth of July”
“The hypocrisy of American slavery”
Giving these speeches showed poise and bravery
What’s your message to the world, are you telling it?
Don’t ever think your message isn’t relevant
Write your words down and then start yelling it
You can have rhetoric just like Frederick

credits

from Baba Got BARS, released August 3, 2019
Written, performed, produced, recorded and mixed by Bomani Armah. Contains a portion of "What to the Slave is the 4th of July" by Frederick Douglass.

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Baba Bomani Washington, D.C.

Baba Bomani, aka the Watermelon man has been using hip-hop, poetry and multi-media disciplines to teach fun and informative workshops with all ages from kindergarteners to graduate students for well over 15 years Bomani . Here you can find his hip-hop music for kids as well as teaching materials showing students the writing process through hip-hop! ... more

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