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June 26, 2019

Regina Hall Brings Go-Go Music to Us on the BET Awards '19 #DontMuteDC

On Sunday evening at the BET Awards '19, host and D.C. native Regina Hall told the audience, “I want to give you a piece of the Washington, D.C., I grew up in. When I grew up, D.C. was Chocolate City,” she said. “Now with gentrification, it’s White Chocolate City.”

At the end of the performance the #DontMuteDC hashtag appeared on the screen. It refers to a recent local dispute in which an electronics store, long known for playing go-go music outside, had to remove its speakers after a complaint from a resident in a luxury apartment nearby. The hashtag was created with more than 80,000 people signing a petition called “Don’t Mute DC’s Go-Go Music and Culture.” Protests took place and the decision was reversed. Another example of the "sensitive topic" of gentrification.

Needless to say, a majority of African Americans have no knowledge of Go-Go music, much in the same way Juneteenth is not a widely recognize celebration in many African American communities. But Go-Go is a Black American Musical Art Form that is only really known and heard around the DMV. Should more people know about it? Probably, but it some way maybe the uniqueness of Go-Go would suffer if other communities began to embrace it nationally. It's definitely a D.C. thing.

The Godfather of Go-Go music is/was and will always be Chuck Brown. He was known nationally for commercially successful songs as 'Bustin Loose" and "We Need Some Money" that played on Urban Adult stations throughout the 80's and 90's. He passed away in 2012.

Image result for capital city gogo The Washington Wizards' G-League Team is called the Capital City Go Go. They wanted a name that would connect with the city of Washington and those who don't just live here, but are from here.

Fortunately for radio listeners Go-Go Music still thrives on Washington, D.C. area radio stations (WHUR, Majic 102.3, WPGC 95.5 and 93.9 WKYS). However Go-Go music is music that is played in the clubs, originating in the Southeast D.C. area. Often going on until 4-5 a.m. in the morning. It's never going to be a radio-friendly style of music. It was never meant to be.

Hopefully Regina Hall bringing light to the gentrification problem in Washington, D.C. will help to end the mindset of the new Washingtonians as Charlamagne tha god addressed on his 'Donkey of the Day' segment on The Breakfast Club. Yet another story on the "sensitive topic" of gentrification at Howard University.


Here's a Go-Go Playlist for your listening pleasure.

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