Archive for January, 2015

FTV 455 Reies Lopez Tijerina – Land Rights Crusader

Posted in Update on January 30th, 2015

This week on From the Vault, guest producer and host Gabriel San Roman pays tribute to“El Tigre,” the late Chicano movement leader and land rights activist Reies Lopez Tijerina.

Born to Mexican cotton farming parents in Fall City, Texas, Reies Lopez Tijerina spent much of his adult life in New Mexico. Together with José Angel Gutiérrez and Rodolfo “Corky” Gonzáles, Tijerina would later help form a formidable triumvirate of the Chicano Movement. Before that he studied at a seminary school becoming a charismatic Pentecostal preacher giving him a fiery, prophetic edge that proved to be pivotal the realm of activism. An early leader of the emerging push for civil rights, Tijerina founded La Alianza Federal de las Mercedes in 1963 and focused his attention on land recovery in New Mexico.

The organization fought to reclaim Spanish and Mexican land grants that were supposed to be honored under the terms of the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo following the U.S. war of aggression against Mexico in 1848. Tijerina, who possessed an encyclopedic knowledge of land ownership history, came to dominate headlines and history after he lead an armed raid on a county courthouse in Tierra Amarilla, New Mexico on June 5, 1967. The action brought widespread attention to the issues he and others struggled for while echoing the ‘Tierra y Libertad’ (Land and Liberty) slogan of Mexican revolutionary Emiliano Zapata.

Authorities arrested Tijerina after the daring raid but all charges were eventually dropped. He did spend about two years in prison for federal destruction of property in an unrelated case. Dubbed by the press as “El Tigre” or the Tiger, Tijerina took his experience networking with Indigenous and Black activists in Northern New Mexico while meeting with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. for the inclusive Poor People’s Campaign of 1968. Tijerina moved back to Texas and lived in El Paso since 2006. In failing health over his final years, the longtime activist died of natural causes at the age of 88 on January 19, 2015.

Looking back at the life of Reies Lopez Tijerina, “El Tigre” was interviewed in-studio on KPFA Radio in Berkely by Elsa Knight Thompson. The program preserved by the Pacifica Radio Archives was recorded on April 5th, 1968 the day after the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. During the discussion, Tijerina talks about his childhood, the Tierra Amarilla raid and Poor People’s Campaign.

From the Vault is presented through the Pacifica Radio Archives Preservation and Access Project, funded in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts, past grants from the Grammy Foundation, the Ford Foundation, and the American Archive funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, along with the generous support of Pacifica Radio Listeners.

PURCHASE a copy of this program or learn more about the historic archival recordings used within this episode. To purchase a CD copy of this program by phone, please call Pacifica Radio Archives at 800.735.0230 x 262.

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FTV 454 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in London, 1964

Posted in Update on January 19th, 2015

This week on From the Vault we proudly feature a recently discovered and previously unknown recording of a speech by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The recording has been verified as the only known recording of the 62-minute speech made in London on December 7, 1964, and is thought to be the only known record of a comprehensive public statement by King on apartheid in South Africa.

The speech was recorded at City Temple Hall in central London where King had been invited to speak on South Africa. When King was chosen to receive the 1964 Nobel Peace Prize, he went to London on the way to accepting that prize in Oslo, Norway. Speaking to an overflowing audience, he added the topics of the history of slavery, Supreme Court rulings, Greek philosophy, nonviolent resistance, misunderstandings about the doctrine of loving ones’ enemies, the legislative process of desegregation in America, registration of black voters, and ending bigotry throughout the planet. When speaking about South Africa, he read a prepared written statement that called for sanctions to end apartheid.

The recording on tape was made by Saul Bernstein, identified as a “Pacifica European Correspondent.” In order to not lose any of the speech while changing tapes, he used a “half-track format” with half of the speech recorded in one direction on half of the tape and the rest of the speech recorded on the other half of the tape going the opposite direction. The entire speech was converted to digital format by the Pacifica Radio Archives staff, who corrected sound distortions.

This recording was discovered in December 2014 by Pacifica Radio Archives Director Brian DeShazor, who, while working on an unrelated project, found this tape contained within unopened boxes of tape reels stored in the Archives’ climate-controlled vault in Los Angeles.

From the Vault is presented as part of the Pacifica Radio Archives Preservation and Access Project, funded in part by an award from the GRAMMY Foundation and the National Historical Publications and Records Commission at the National Archives and Records Administration, and past grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Ford Foundation, and the American Archive funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, along with the generous support of Pacifica Radio Listeners. We also thank our partners and collaborators at the Pop-Up Archive, Amara, Other Minds Archives, George Blood Audio, and the California Audio Visual Preservation Project.

PURCHASE a copy of this program or learn more about the historic archival recordings used within this episode. To purchase a CD copy of this program by phone, please call Pacifica Radio Archives at 800.735.0230 x 262.

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FTV 453 The Second Battle of Selma

Posted in Update on January 16th, 2015

This week on From the Vault, we go back nearly half a century and immerse ourselves in a radio documentary on the confrontation over Civil Rights in Selma, Alabama. The Second Battle of Selma, produced by legendary newsman Dale Minor in 1965 during his time at Pacifica station WBAI, includes rare audio of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and actuality of the march on Selma. This program, a fine example of early Pacifica Radio editing and storytelling style, remains as relevant today as it did almost fifty years ago when it was first broadcast.

From the Vault is presented through the Pacifica Radio Archives Preservation and Access Project, funded in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts, past grants from the Grammy Foundation, the Ford Foundation, and the American Archive funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, along with the generous support of Pacifica Radio Listeners.

PURCHASE a copy of this program or learn more about the historic archival recordings used within this episode. To purchase a CD copy of this program by phone, please call Pacifica Radio Archives at 800.735.0230 x 262.

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FTV 452 Fanny – the All-female Rock ‘n’ Roll Band, Part 2

Posted in Update on January 10th, 2015

This week on From the Vault we have a second look of the rock and roll group Fanny, the all-female quartet in the late 60’s and early 70’s, whose incredible and unlikely story is not nearly as well known as the bands that have benefited from their work, such as The Runaways, Joan Jett, The Bangles, the Go Go’s. In a previous episode of From the Vault (#435), we presented a 1971 interview with the band members, who at the time were in their twenties, and just starting on their life journeys. In this episode we’ll speak with the band members over forty years later: June Millington, Jean Millington, Alice de Buhr, and Brie Howard Darling. Mixed with their music, these contemporary interviews weave an amazing story, on the origins of one of the first all-female rock and roll bands to be signed by a major label, and their influence on music for generations to come.

From the Vault is presented as part of the Pacifica Radio Archives Preservation and Access Project, funded in part by an award from the GRAMMY Foundation and the National Historical Publications and Records Commission at the National Archives and Records Administration, and past grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Ford Foundation, and the American Archive funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, along with the generous support of Pacifica Radio Listeners. We also thank our partners and collaborators at the Pop-Up Archive, Amara, Other Minds Archives, George Blood Audio, and the California Audio Visual Preservation Project.

PURCHASE a copy of this program or learn more about the historic archival recordings used within this episode. To purchase a CD copy of this program by phone, please call Pacifica Radio Archives at 800.735.0230 x 262.

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FTV 451 Across the Western Ocean – Free Music Store, 1972

Posted in Update on January 2nd, 2015

This week on From the Vault, we feature British traditional singers John Roberts and Tony Barrand, along with Jeff Warner, Susan Warner and Davey Jones, who sing sea shanties and tell stories of the Atlantic sailing packets of the late nineteenth century at WBAI’s Free Music Store in Prospect Park, Brooklyn. From the first hour of a ninety-minute recording we hear performances of Across the Western Ocean, New York Girls, Eliza Lee, The Black Ball Line, The Crayfish, The Dreadnaught, The Lowlands Low, The Flying Cloud, Spanish Ladies, The Black Cook, and Rolling Home. This concert was produced and recorded in stereo by WBAI’s Music Department on July 9, 1972.

From the Vault is presented as part of the Pacifica Radio Archives Preservation and Access Project, funded in part by an award from the GRAMMY Foundation and the National Historical Publications and Records Commission at the National Archives and Records Administration, and past grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Ford Foundation, and the American Archive funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, along with the generous support of Pacifica Radio Listeners. We also thank our partners and collaborators at the Pop-Up Archive, Amara, Other Minds Archives, George Blood Audio, and the California Audio Visual Preservation Project.

PURCHASE a copy of this program or learn more about the historic archival recordings used within this episode. To purchase a CD copy of this program by phone, please call Pacifica Radio Archives at 800.735.0230 x 262.

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