Rock and roll singer Little Richard, RIP

This music video from the USA is called Little Richard – “Long Tall Sally” – from “Don’t Knock The Rock” – HQ 1956.

Translated from Dutch NOS radio today:

Rock and roll legend Little Richard (87) passed away

US American singer Little Richard passed away at the age of 87. His son has confirmed this to the American music magazine Rolling Stone. The cause of death is unknown.

Little Richard is considered one of the most important founders of rock ‘n’ roll. He is often mentioned in the same breath with greats like Chuck Berry, Elvis Presley and Buddy Holly.

In the mid-fifties, he had great success with songs like Tutti Frutti, Long Tall Sally, Lucille and Good Golly Miss Molly. …

With his exciting way of singing and performances with many show elements, he left his own mark on rock and roll. He influenced many other musicians, including Prince, Michael Jackson and The Beatles. …


Richard Penniman grew up in a very religious family. His father was a clergyman, and his mother was also very active in the church. At home he was called Little Richard because he was small and thin. Later he chose this nickname as the stage name.

At a young age he sang in the church choir and learned to play the piano. He was influenced musically by gospel singers like Joe May, Rosetta Tharpe and Marion Williams. When Tharpe heard him sing two of her songs before a concert, she was so impressed that she invited him to the stage. Since then, Little Richard wanted nothing more than to be on stage. …

In 1955 he released Tutti Frutti, which was an immediate success in both the United States and Great Britain. The successor Long Tall Sally (1956) did even better. With that he reached the first place in the US R&B list. Millions of copies of both singles were sold.

In three years he scored 18 hits …

Obscene lyrics

The surprise was great when he announced at a concert in Sydney in 1957 that he was quitting to become a preacher. He made that decision based on some ‘omens’, such as a red fireball that he had seen flying through the sky during the Sydney concert. He saw that as a warning from God to do penance for making music with obscene lyrics and his rock ‘n’ roll lifestyle. Later, the red fireball turned out to come from the launch of the Sputnik 1 satellite.

Back in the US, he went on to study theology and then travelled the country as a preacher. He also recorded gospel songs again. …

In 1962 he was persuaded by his tour manager to perform again in Europe. The newly started band The Beatles played as a support act several times and he gave Paul McCartney vocal advice. …


In 1995 he told in an interview that he was gay. A sensitive subject for the deeply religious singer. He was married once, but that marriage didn’t last long. He had no children of his own. However, he did adopt a baby through his church, Danny Jones, who often acted as his bodyguard when he got older.

He continued to perform in the new millennium, although it became physically more difficult because he had problems with his leg and hip.

In 2012, Rolling Stone magazine wrote of his concert in Washington, D.C. “still full of fire, still a master showman, his voice still loaded with deep gospel and raunchy power.”

Heavy metal music in Syrian war

This music video says about itself:

Band: Maysaloon
Single: Warsphere
Genre: Syrian Death Metal
Country: Syria
Year: 2017

Translated from Dutch NOS TV today:

How loud music helps to forget the war

About 150 people gather in a small, black-painted hall in Aleppo. They wear dark clothing and do head banging to the sound of rough guitars. The concert is called ‘live under siege’, but also ‘living under siege’. Outside, the civil war in Syria is going on.

The concert is a scene in the documentary Syrian Metal is War. Filmmaker Monzer Darwish, a refugee from Syria and now ended up in Dutch Noord-Holland province, followed people from the Syrian metal scene in 2013 and 2014. At the risk of their own lives, they organized concerts during bombing and traveled along routes full of snipers and paramilitary gangs. …

This video is called Syrian Metal Is War – Extended Trailer.

Even before the civil war, metalheads in Syria did not have an easy time, says Nasrah: “With long hair and a black shirt, you were a suspect quickly. Police were watching us and sometimes people were arrested after performances.” Even people in his own environment did not understand his lifestyle, the musician says. “Do you slaughter cats ritually, people often asked, or do you worship the devil?”

Things became different in the war. Metalheads no longer had to deal with the threat of police, but with the threat of war. “During a concert, we feared not only warfare, but also suicide bombers”, says documentary maker Monzer Darwish. Every meeting was a target for ISIS fighters, especially when music was being played. “Yet often 100, 150 people were together. Metal was the last bit of pleasure for them. They were literally willing to die for the music.”

Despite the passion of fans, the Syrian metal scene has had a hard time. Many bands have lost sight of each other in the stream of refugees. Guitar player Khodor Nashrah also said: “Our bass player is still in Syria, the drummer is in Austria and I am in Lebanon.” Despite the distance, the group is still active, he says: “Through WhatsApp we send pieces of music to each other. Our drummer then tries to make songs of it. But it is very difficult.”

New music

Documentary maker Monzer Darwish still plays the guitar in the Netherlands, although less often than before. “First find a house in the Netherlands, then a job. It is difficult to spend a lot of time with music”, he says.

His hope lies mainly with the metalheads in Syria itself, which he wants to bring more attention to with his film. “They still release new music, despite everything.” Darwish follows the bands closely: in the Netherlands he listens to music that appears in Syria. “I can’t live without it,” he says. “Without that music I would never have survived the war.”

Lebanese Christian leaders, in an bid to resurrect their influence, have entered into a Faustian pact with reactionary forces, anointing the indie pop band Mashrou’ Leila as its sacrificial lamb. Mashrou’ Leila, led by an openly gay frontman, has for years pushed the limits of social commentary in the Arab world. But never before had the four-man group faced censure in their home country, until now: here.

Indonesian Muslim girls play heavy metal rock

This video says about itself:

Heavy Metal Hijabis

25 July 2018

The town of Garut in Western Java, Indonesia is a quiet place—that is, until Voice of Baceprot takes the stage. While most people in the town live tranquil, pastoral lives, teenagers Firdda, Widia and Euis thrash out and rock hard. The band has shot to fame for playing heavy metal in the religiously conservative country. After gaining popularity, VoB began to face criticism for performing while wearing hijabs. Still, they continue to shred—an inspiration for everyone with a little bit of music and a little bit of hardcore rebellion in their souls.

Guatemalan rock band against racism

This video says about itself:

A Rock Band Fights Back Against Racism and Xenophobia

23 July 2018

The Guatemalan rock band Alux Nahual is fighting against recent attacks against Latinos simply for speaking Spanish in the United States with the song “I speak Spanish, y qué?!”. They hope they will raise awareness on racism and xenophobia.

96-year-old Holocaust survivor sings heavy metal rock

This music video says about itself:

93-year-old Metal Grandma Holocaust Survivor Spy! “Totenköpfchen” (Laugh at Death) -Swiss Eurovision 2015

31 October 2014

Inge & the TritoneKings “Totenköpfchen”

Inge Ginsberg survived the Holocaust and became a spy for the Americans during WWII, smuggling arms to fight the Nazis. She married a composer and they wrote songs together in the 1940’s and 50’s that were sung by Nat King Cole, Dean Martin, Doris Day, and Rosemary Clooney, among others. 60 years later, she got back into music and fell in love with Heavy Metal, which she now performs with world-renowned classical musicians Lucia Caruso and Pedro da Silva – a.k.a. the TritoneKings.

By Haley Cohen in the USA:

WATCH: Holocaust Survivor Known As ‘Death Metal Grandma’ Rocks The Stage

18 July 2018

Many decades after fleeing the Holocaust, a 96-year-old grandmother found her passion in fronting a death metal band, The New York Times reported.

Inge Ginsberg, originally from Austria, and her husband Otto Kollman ended up in Hollywood after spending some time in a Swiss refugee camp. Their new life included composing for some of the most well-known singers of their generation, including Nat King Cole and Doris Day.

As she continued to write song lyrics over the years, Ginsberg felt she had to make a change to stand out in a society where older women are silenced — which brought her to death metal, a genre in which you can shout your lyrics instead of sing them.

At age 93, Ginsberg formed the band TritoneKings, and continues to sing — or scream— about her own struggles and experiences.

Ms Ginsberg reminds me of another Holocaust survivor: Ms Esther Béjarano. She is one of two surviving members of the women’s’ orchestra at Auschwitz death camp; playing accordion and recorder. Now 93 years old, with both German and Israeli nationality, she is an active anti-fascist, chair of the International Auschwitz Committee, honorary chair of the German association of people persecuted by the nazis and member of the German communist party. She sings Jewish and anti-fascist songs; and she also sings rap.

This 2013 music video is Esther Béjarano and Turkish German rappers Microphone Mafia singing the Italian anti-fascist song Bella Ciao.