Gabriel Kahane – Empire Liquor Mart (9127 S. Figueroa St.) (Apartment Sessions)

Gabriel Kahane – Empire Liquor Mart (9127 S. Figueroa St.) (Apartment Sessions)


When the black and whites arrive I am lifeless on the floor. Crumpled dollars in my hand In my hand, in my hand. The lady in the fishing vest Has dropped the gun. Who wears a fishing vest When they’re working at a liquor store? I float up to the corner Just above the ice cream And the frozen food. I perch beside the surveillance сamera… Only days after the trial You could feel the tension rise. In the streets and in the rhythm Of despair, of despair. It was war after a while In each neighbor’s tired eyes. There was nothing to persuade them To stand down, to stand down. I float higher and higher Friendly with the clouds
that cover Southland… I watch the tender skyline dancing oh the terror – On the long night, on the long fight Blood, glass, burnt hair. These angry armies quick advancing in position: On the rooftops, in the culverts, Stores are sacked while there’s no one there. Now two kinds of light – from fires and fixtures They fill the sky It was never so bright when I was young I was too young to die. On TV sets, in houses Effortlessly done in fancy colors All the righteous, all the newsmen Speak of end times Why should they give a fuck Some angry little black girl took a bullet? Lord have mercy, Lord have mercy On the ones who’ve done the crime Now two kinds of light – from fires and fixtures They fill the sky It was never so bright
when I was young I was too young to die. If I float even higher Pattern and procession are uncovered Flood and fire, flood and earthquake Keep folks unmoored And the occasional celebrity car chase Woo woo woo woo! Just to keep God, just to keep God from getting bored, getting bored Now two kinds of light rom fires and fixtures They fill the sky. It was never so bright when I was young I was too young to die. When my grandma was a young woman in East St. Louis She thought the town was no good to us She took a Greyhound just as far as it could take her Felt her maker in the waves You know, how God moves through us I was six years old when we followed My mother was twenty-two The light was magic, the light was true She thought we’d moved
Beyond a sharecropper’s debt But we were just a pawn in the accuser’s bet Nobody reads from the Book of Job At the church where me and my grandma go Nobody sees the trouble I know But I know that trouble’s gonna find me Three years later on a Thanksgiving The light turned bitter My grandmother didn’t know what hit her We got a chill from the cold white sun Momma found herself staring At the barrel of a gun That weren’t enough, my uncle died too Shot through the chest back in East St. Louis So one fine day my grandma lost two Took me in her arms and said, It’s just me and you Nobody reads from the Book of Job At the church where me and my grandma go Nobody sees the trouble I know But I know that trouble’s gonna find me Nobody reads from the Book of Job At the church where me and my grandma go Nobody sees the trouble I know But I know that trouble’s gonna find me It will find me It will find me It will find me It will find me Find me Find me Find me It will find me It will find me It will find me It will find me It will find me It will find me It will find me It will find me It will find me It will find me Will find me… It will find me It will find me It will find me It will find me So when I say that my untimely death was Something certain What I mean is that these tragedies Are a kind of a family tradition So when I walk into the liquor store that morning Bright and angry In a daydream of a boyfriend I was fifteen Pick up a bottle of orange juice And put it into my backpack Head toward the counter with dollar bills And she accuse me of stealing that She pull my sweater and so I hit her Put down the bottle don’t want no trouble Now two kinds of light From fires and fixtures They fill the sky It was never so bright when I was young I was too young to die. Now two kinds of light – from fires and fixtures They fill the sky. It was never so bright when I was young I was too young to die. I suppose it’s no surprise To find myself about to die But how long that silver moment From the bullet To the floor There, right there was a lifetime

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    Tommy Kelly

    As much as people will dislike it, this video reminds me of a scene from Walk Hard, when Dewey Cox was in the recording studio. This song is about someone shot, yet the message is bloated out by mere novelty.

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    A Huddle of Penguins

    This is just holy. I have listened to this over 20 times now. I swear I'm starting to have perfect pitch for the note E alone. I could listen to this 50 more times and maybe then become bored.

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    Louis Williams Suga Adams Jr. III

    Do you have a spotify playlist for all your sessions? All the sessions are really great. Great job 😊

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    James Van Dyke

    Wow, Gabriel Kahane… You've outdone yourself again. This is the song that first introduced me to you. It's great to hear a fresh version.

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    Aaron Gosper

    I really need to thank you all for making this happen. It's been years since a song has made me bawl like a little kid. That hit at 6:52 is so pure and innocent but melancholy and this is just my new favorite song.

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    Mike Hughes

    You are all sooo talented. Lovely tribute to the death of such a young girl. Thank you Adam Neely for sharing this.

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    guellrich

    This is awsome. Incredibly beautiful. I have to watch it at least two or three times a week, never get tired of it. A bit like Sufjan, only better (I know the two have collaborated hence some similarities). Gabe, will you please keep your promise and come to Germany this year?

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    Christopher Roberson

    a fantastic piece of music for such a sad song for such a pointless murder i cannot believe that no one was charged with murder!

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    hptpbookworm

    I love this. It’s such an adventure through all the different parts of the song. Lots to unwrap and savor. Going to keep listening to many more times!

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    Bragtime

    Is there any way I could buy the full score for this? I see the study score online, but I really want to see the full sheet music.

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    Kevin Lane

    I've listened to this minimum once a day ever since I've found it, and it's perfect every time. Thank you.

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    Jim Harris

    Wonderful. Humans at their best. Demonstrating excellence in themselves (musicianship) and harmony between one another (to create the music) ♥

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    Jerimiah Stephen Otto

    This is amazing every time, but especially after meeting you! Thank
    you everyone involved for creating this beautiful piece of narrative!

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    Hannah W.

    From Great Big Story. Subscribed. You guys make such beautiful and inspiring music. So grateful to have found you all.

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    jdome jd

    Anyone who is trying to criticize this is just lying to themselves. It was a perfect take. This is what music should sound like. Ty for this composition and performance it was beautiful.

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    musicmakelightning

    I accidentally watched this on a bright Saturday morning. I was happily drinking a coffee and wondering if I left the toast in the toaster too long. And I hit "Play" and watched small white clouds brush the tops of the ponderosas on the mountainside beyond the office window glass. And at some point I realized I was on a trip somewhere. A cliche' musical journey. I wanted it to be cliche' and I wanted to make it stop because the dips stole gravity, and the lump rose in my throat and the sky refused to hide the stars anymore and I wondered what possesses people to create this feeling in others. This motion. This immersion. How do they do it? And my head began to pound because the water from my eyes began to occlude my nasal cavities and I couldn't see the computer screen. See – I wanted to shut this off but I couldn't find the mouse and the voice behind my pounding forehead speaking quietly but firmly – "You must honor this. Let it play out. This is a message." When it stopped and my eyes cleared I started to type this, but I'm sad and confused and embarrassed to be sitting here crying. But this must be. This is a reflection of the is that is. I want to say, damn you guys for doing this. But really what I mean when I say that is, I love you for doing this. This fine Saturday morning I enjoy, and others can't. These hands that suffer knowing I could never produce something as beautiful. This pained head of mine, bows. It's like studying astronomy by staring into the sun – said the wise man. This is the same. I must try another way. Another time.

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    lantern

    i didn't get it at first but after the second time i listened to it, i started hearing the lyrics and understanding how the song worked. and here i am having listened to it near nonstop for three days, it's very beautiful

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    Reema Ameer

    This guy needs to sing a song about the douchebags in this Airbnb who are smoking the entire place out with complete disregard it could start with: guy with an unbuttoned shirt and abs exposed why are you standing in the garage striking a pose? Pooooooohse. All is fine except you smoking indohooooors. you whoooore, you been smoking from yesterday evenin till today at fuhour. Fuh-ooo-wor. Am gonna suffocate n I had no sleep. Can you please stop fumigatin me. The windows are open and the fan is on. I'm so mad you got me speaking fake Portuguese. Poh-too-geese. I'd gladly sing bout you in the showa but my voice is gone. Goh-oo-won. You're from Brentwood? Hope you're name isn't Chad or Brad. You fittin into all sorta stereotypes is making me mad. Ma-hoo-wad. 😑✌️Gonna go try to see if there's a way to pull the silver lining from way up my ass right now. 🐸🍵

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    Simon Dobson

    Truly truly beautiful and inspiring. I have an orchestra you can play around with in the UK Gabriel. I don't know how many times i've watched this now!

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    Mike Wild

    Fantastic, beautiful song , kudos to you all, and a shoutout to the soundman/recordist/mixer… great job. Wow 🙂

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    peabnuts123

    This performance is so incredibly beautiful. I have listened to it many times. The subject matter, the composition and just the general vibe in the "studio" all work perfectly together to make a truly moving piece. This is one of the best performances of music i've ever heard.

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    Joe Hertler

    Fucking brilliant. Very Sufjan, very Anathallo, but all it's own. And an arrangement that matches the lyrical depth!

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    damien Smith

    91st and Figueroa is where the store was. 5 yrs probation and 400 hrs community service is what Du received for killing someone. Keep your head up Latasha- Tupac.

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    Raindance 1977

    Do they all go to the same Conservatory? lol — where do they all meet? It's mind-bending the amount of talent in that room. . .

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    Gruff Tor

    This session is a strong and intertwined one on so many levels Theme. Emotions. Playing. Singing. Composition. Lyrics. Commitment of all who took part. And last but by no means least the person at the heart of it all. Gone from this world too early. But remembered here

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    Mark LeMerise

    "Nobody reads from the book of Job at the church where me and my grandma go." There are a lot of powerful lyrics here, but that one just has so many brilliant layers. I didn't understand this song when I first heard it, but then read on genius.com that it was about Latasha Harlins. Once you learn her story and the family she came from, this song takes on a whole new depth.

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    Hans Ohlsén

    This is such an amazing performance and piece of music! I feel every single instrument came together as one. Knowing there are 56 musicians performing this is just baffling!

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    byebyecitybyebye

    My aunt was a deputy probation officer in LA at the time, assigned to interview the defendant and the Harlins family. (She fought for the case, actually, concerned somebody else might not take it seriously. She worked at a juvenile detention center normally, and worked with a lot of kids Latasha's age, so it was very personal for her.) She also reviewed surveillance camera footage.

    Her official report read:

    “[Du] took no action to
    assist the victim, exaggerated her [own] injuries and feigned unconsciousness. This can only be viewed as a deliberate attempt to manipulate public opinion and underscores her unrepentant attitude.”

    “…any guilt or remorse (Du) holds in regard to this offense is related to the prosecution of the case and the possible consequences.”

    Du admitted in the interview that she was "afraid of African Americans and did not respect them."

    My aunt made a recommendation to the judge for the maximum sentence if found guilty. Normally judges take recommendations from investigating officers very seriously, but the judge chose to ignore it completely and gave Du no jail time.

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