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The live version I've seen was stomped on( censured) killed the groove IMO.
what I saw live was a bit jolted out of the green room and censored, of course, this is nice because the visuals help get the point across.
 

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Holy hell, I listened to it cranked in headphones, and was thinking how I was going to share it (family all musicians) by the time it was halfway done. Best piece of new music I have heard in a long while. Elements of Hendrix, hard coarse but modernized blues. Gonna go listen again and my first impression was, the bass is keyboard....and I don’t care but am curious.


EDIT yeah no bass guitar, but sonically what makes the song so doomy/dark is a heavy dose of loud clear very low end keyboard, probably using 3(?) different tones. Love the super heavy ‘distorted’ but clear as day bottom end tone in at least the later choruses.

I bet a very high percentage of the membership here would love this, I hope lots check it out. Maybe even add the artist in the thread title.
 

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This is probably what you saw, I’m guessing, and I agree though I still think Gary did an excellent delivery. Bass player was probably on stage just because he’s part of the touring group, I doubt he gets heard much in this tune.

EDIT AGAIN wrong, the bass player plays bottom, that also takes some impact away from the bottom end and the overall song.

 

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I dunno. I like Gary Clark as a musician, I empathize with the point of the song and all, and as many here know, I'm a sucker for anything related to overalls. But it just seems like he was trying too hard. Admittedly not the exact same points to be presented, but I preferred Childish Gambino's "This is America". It addressed some of the same stuff more obliquely, encouraging one to wonder what the lyrics really mean, as opposed to Gary telling you overtly. Just gave TIA a listen without the video (which is what got it the attention). It seems to hold up, and I'm not that big a fan of rap or hip-hop, compared to my appreciation for hard blues. But who knows, it may grow on me.
 

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My brother said it was too 'bro rock' for his taste, I guess but not how I hear it. I don't mind the IN YOUR FACE message, I usually have to have the subtle stuff explained to me by others. Give it to me straight, none of this game playing passive aggressive keep me guessing BS, that I walk away from.
 

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Holy shit, thank you for posting. I'm a decent Gary fan, I've seen him live, have some albums. I've only discussed this song with my friend, and have heard it on 88.5 Ottawa. On a little bathroom radio. Thought, "glad he's saying what he needs to, didn't really like the music." Hadn't seen the vid. So, put on the headphones, and sat back. Amazing. So powerful. The music, the videography... I hope this wins everything it's nominated for. And it had better get nominated for a lot.
 

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I dunno. I like Gary Clark as a musician, I empathize with the point of the song and all, and as many here know, I'm a sucker for anything related to overalls. But it just seems like he was trying too hard. Admittedly not the exact same points to be presented, but I preferred Childish Gambino's "This is America". It addressed some of the same stuff more obliquely, encouraging one to wonder what the lyrics really mean, as opposed to Gary telling you overtly. Just gave TIA a listen without the video (which is what got it the attention). It seems to hold up, and I'm not that big a fan of rap or hip-hop, compared to my appreciation for hard blues. But who knows, it may grow on me.
The first thing that got me about this song was the groove and guitar sound on the lead breaks...dragged me right in.
Then I listened to the lyrics and though,holy crap,he's actually saying something real.
I'm not a rap or hip hop fan either but I didn't really get that vibe from this tune as it is.

It really seems to about his life experience.

Did a little digging and found this Rolling Stone bit about the song,"

I said I wasn’t going to get into this because it makes me emotional,” Gary Clark Jr. said on a recent evening at Austin’s Arlyn Studios. His voice was quavering as he talked about his new song “This Land,” a brutally honest account of the racism he endured growing up in the American South. The emotions behind the track were so raw that Clark had not planned to discuss them at all.

But he did, resulting in a powerful story about what it’s like to be black in America at a time when “we’re sliding backwards,” as Clark puts it. In the first installment of our new How I Wrote This series, Clark speaks for the first time about the reality of his youth, “getting dogshit in the mailbox, people writing ‘nigger’ on my fence outside my parent’s house, riding around in trucks [putting] Confederate flags over my fence. That was a regular occurrence.”

The election of Donald Trump, police shootings, the deadly 2017 Charlottesville rally and more headlines brought those feelings to the surface for Clark — as did a personal encounter with a neighbor at his home outside Austin. Clark remembers being approached by a local near the 50-acre home he recently bought with his wife Nicole Trunfio to raise their two kids. “My neighbor comes to me and says, ‘Who owns this house? There’s no way you can live here – who’s the owner?” says Clark, who responded that he was indeed the owner. “Maybe it wasn’t racial,” Clark says. “But in my mind I was thinking of that. And I’m tired of having to think that way.”

Clark also describes one of his several trips to the Lorraine Motel, the site of assassination of Martin Luther King Jr., which is now the National Civil Rights Museum. “My people have been through a lot. And I haven’t been through shit compared to them. So if I can do anything with my opportunity and the work that they put in, the least I can do is say thank you for your sacrifice. Thank you Dr. Martin Luther King for sacrificing your life so I can get up and have a microphone. I’m not taking this for granted.”


Sometimes it's good to have to think about the lyrics and likewise, sometimes it's good just to have no doubt as to what the point is,just as it's possible to appreciate Ingmar Bergman films and Wile E Coyote and the Roadrunner.

The whole song just struck me as one of the most honest,real statements I've heard in recent memory,and the video puts it over the top

I just like it .

My brother said it was too 'bro rock' for his taste, I guess but not how I hear it. I don't mind the IN YOUR FACE message, I usually have to have the subtle stuff explained to me by others. Give it to me straight, none of this game playing passive aggressive keep me guessing BS, that I walk away from.
Agree 100%, innuendo and being subtle are perfectly acceptable and have their place,but so does to the point,in your face attitude,especially if it is based on actual experience.
Sometimes you just have to say Shit Stinks .
 

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But it just seems like he was trying too hard. Admittedly not the exact same points to be presented, but I preferred Childish Gambino's "This is America". It addressed some of the same stuff more obliquely, encouraging one to wonder what the lyrics really mean, as opposed to Gary telling you overtly.
Gary’s track is too uppity?
 

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Gary’s track is too uppity?
Nah. Cripes, if you want to talk "uppity", Gambino scores higher in that regard. I just appreciate a song more if the lyrical content makes you think a little bit beyond the lyrics. Clark has every right to be as angry as he clearly is. I just think he needs to up his lyrical game a bit. Sometimes you hit the bullseye, and sometimes you hit the ring around it. And in Clark's case, I think he hit the ring, and not the bullseye. Again, no dispute with the motivation or sentiment of the song, or the musicianship. And nothing especially wrong with the video portion, which is entirely separate from the writing aspects of the song.
 

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I just think he needs to up his lyrical game a bit. Sometimes you hit the bullseye, and sometimes you hit the ring around it. And in Clark's case, I think he hit the ring, and not the bullseye.
I don’t think there’s anything wrong with his lyrical game. Sometimes an artist may choose to be subtle and sometimes an artist may choose to be direct and powerful. He’s clearly chosen the latter for this song, which I think is fantastic (as is the video) even though I really don’t even like blues in general. This one resonates with me in a big way. And to tell a black artist who has expressed anger over racial inequality in a direct, powerful visceral way that he should try to be more subtle in his message is REALLY missing the bullseye. You haven’t even hit the ring with that critique. I can understand that people might not like this song for various reasons, but that particular critique just smacks of calling him an uppity black man.
 
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I don’t think there’s anything wrong with his lyrical game. Sometimes an artist may choose to be subtle and sometimes an artist may choose to be direct and powerful. He’s clearly chosen the latter for this song, which I think is fantastic (as is the video) even though I really don’t even like blues in general. This one resonates with me in a big way. And to tell a black artist who has expressed anger over racial inequality in a direct, powerful visceral way that he should try to be more subtle in his message is REALLY missing the bullseye. You haven’t even hit the ring with that critique. I can understand that people might not like this song for various reasons, but that particular critique just smacks of calling him an uppity black man.
you'll have to forgive hammer, he's just trying to keep his word count up
 

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Oblique and subtle are two different things, as is subtle vs reticent. I'm not asking him to steer clear of the topic. Oblique can be as savage, if not moreso sometimes, than the direct. And sometimes it can get closer to the heart of the matter.

Imagine a love song that simply consists of how appealing the man singing the song finds various parts of a particular woman's body, and not much more than that. I'm sure he likes those things too, and it would be deceitful to say he doesn't, but it doesn't feel much like a love song, more like a banal checklist. And unless one is Beavis or Butthead and relishes a song simply because "he said booby", such a song is unlikely to stick with you.

Similarly, what I find lacking in the lyrics is that it is primarily about how he feels, and what makes him angry, and doesn't really summarize or capture the issues, in the absence of any video support (which is how one assumes the song was originally written). So, for me, as a lyric, it gets a B to B+, rather than an A of any sort. That's all. Even world-class songwriters sometimes feel, years later, that the lyrics to one of their songs needs some "repair". I'm not saying I dislike the song. It just comes up a little short. And Clark's "a little short" can often be better than some other folks' bullseye.
 

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I need someone to write a tune like this but make it about the injustice of white people with dreadlocks
...or a song about middle-aged men suffering from fret sprout on their Tele’s. That shit can hurt, especially if you have dry skin. I think it would really connect with a lot of people.
 
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