Fire This Time: Lynne Procope with Toyin Spellman-Diaz

Fire This Time is a new series from poet and musician Lynne Procope in partnership with National Sawdust inspired by the intellectual and artistic legacy of James Baldwin.

Conceived as a virtual salon, Procope will sit down with musicians, critics, stick fighters, DJs, academics, curators, poets, and music lovers at the ley lines of organizing, activism, and the legacy of perhaps the most influential writer of the last century, James Baldwin.

For this event, Lynne will be joined by Toyin Spellman-Diaz, oboist and activist of Imani Winds, discusses Baldwin's legacy and its potential for profound impact on Western classical music.

Art by Angela Davis Fegan

RSVP on Zoom here.

Sometime in 1962, James Baldwin wrote the words: "Love takes off the masks that we fear we cannot live without and know we cannot live within. I use the word ‘love’ here not merely in the personal sense but as a state of being, or a state of grace - not in the infantile American sense of being made happy, but in the tough and universal sense of quest and daring and growth."

When Baldwin drafted the letters and essays that would become The Fire Next Time, Martin Luther King Jr. had not yet spoken his expansive dream into our collective imagination. Malcolm X was about to depart from the Nation of Islam and adopt Sunni Islam, becoming el-Hajj-Malik el-Shabazz. Dorothy Height and Bayard Rustin were busy planning many of King Jr.'s key Civil Rights actions, including the March on Washington. Like African-Americans across the nation, Bobby Seale and Huey P. Newton would be deepening their radical imaginings toward serving their community. Had he lived, Emmet Till—murdered at 14—would have turned 21 in 1962, and every Black person knew it. For what would not be the last time, the nation slipped its mask and turned its eyes toward justice and the question of race. Baldwin’s voice, then and now, cuts through the noise. No other writer of the 20th century has more cleanly sharpened our focus on this American story's truth through the lens of Blackness. Few have so plainly signaled the path forward for us through love and action.

Love and action are the fuel for National Sawdust's conversation series, Fire This Time. Procope will sit down with musicians, critics, stick fighters, DJs, academics, curators, poets, and music lovers at the ley lines of organizing, activism, and the legacy of perhaps the most influential writer of the last century, James Baldwin. The series will explore Baldwin's influence and his continued impact via the work, experiments, collaborations, and vital futures imagined by the guests; those bearing his flame.

Each week, mixologist Chris Buckley will join in to introduce a cocktail and mocktail combination for viewers to try at home. Buckley invites us behind the bar to discover new cocktail and mocktail ingredients sourced from women, LGBTQIA+ folks, and BIPOC suppliers who only a decade ago would be unlikely in the industry. Elevate your home bartending with Buckley and learn how we can do more than pay lip service to diversity and inclusion, over another round.

RSVP for the latest from Live@NationalSawdust

Performances are free, but we would love to keep in touch. We will provide artist lineups, updates on scheduling, and resources to accompany the performances. We will NOT share your information with anyone else.

Copyright 2020 National Sawdust

June 22, 2021
6:00 pm
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Jun 22

Fire This Time: Lynne Procope with Toyin Spellman-Diaz