Saturday, February 22, 2014

Correctional Facility For The Arts

Ralph and Me
It will soon be March.  This time of year I think about my late brother, because his birthday is March 26th. There is ten years between us in age. I was 60 last year, and Ralph would be 71 next month. Once March arrives, I know June is soon to follow and I'll be another year older too, and I'll have caught up to him, with our ten years between us.

Today, for what ever reason, Joe Mendelson, or Mendelson Joe came into my mind. Ralph, always greatly admired Joe as an exceptionally gifted blues musician, and as a person. The fact that he was a  very humourous, quirky kind of artist and personality, was why my brother loved him so much; that and because he was the kind of individual who didn't care about people's opinions of him either. He spoke his mind, and would shoot straight from the hip, is how Ralph would often describe people like Joe. My brother knew that Joe had many similar kinds of struggles that he could relate to, and they both spent many years living and growing up in Toronto. I have no doubt if they'd ever known one another, they'd be great friends. Maybe cause they both for a while lost their marbles.

Although Joe is very much recognized within the art community internationally as a musician, artist and outspoken political activist, I do suspect many folks, especially younger people today, are not likely familiar with his music, or his art work.

I love this painting below that Joe did. I speaks loud and clear to me, and it's not hard to figure out what his  message is in the subject matter.

Harper's Social Program

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