The All Star Tutu Mash-Upby Brandon Edmonds, image by Bruce Mackay / 15.02.2010
Some people embody whatever it is we mean when we say, “I’m proudly South African”. Mahala opens the roster of genuine nation-builders, in an ongoing series, with the one and only, D-Tutu
Here he is out in the cold in Copenhagen, surrounded by children, on a vigil for climate justice, in a transcript taken verbatim from DemocracyNow.org – his ribald syntax, the pure rush of his ideas, his open-hearted goodwill takes us deep into the best of who we are as South Africans.
Try to hear his voice as you read this slamming All-Star Mash-Up!
“…I want to say a big thank you to all of you, especially you beautiful young ones. We oldies have made something of a mess of the world. And we want to say to the leaders who are meeting, look in the eyes of your grandchildren.”
All-girl back-up singers go, “oooh…the eyes of your grandchildren.”
The beat kicks in, nice and phat, all Bone Thugs & Harmony meets Talib Kweli, with Marvin Gaye’s ‘What’s Goin’ On?’ samples in the background. As the Bish gets real on our planet-befouling asses!
“Climate change is already a serious crisis today. But we can do something about it. If we don’t – if we don’t, hoohoo! – there’s no world which we leave to you. You won’t have a world. You will be drowning. (Ominous guitars, Black Sabbath samples slam home). You will be burning in drought. There will be no food. There will be floods. We have only one world. (Back up ladies: “only one world yeah!”). If we mess it up, there’s no other world. And for those who think that the rich are going to escape: Ha! Ha! Ha! (Heath Ledger Joker cackles here). We either swim or sink together. We have one world. And we want to leave a beautiful world for all of these beautiful, wonderful young generation. We, the oldies, want to leave you a beautiful world.”
Ten Harlem youth choirs chant “a beautiful world” as Jay-Z gives mad props to the Bishop.
Bring it down. Just a rim tap and a solo Masekela trumpet now.
“And it is a matter of morality. It is a question justice. Hahaha! Hahahaha! Isn’t it? Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah! If-if-if-if you are responsible for most of the mess, then you are responsible for getting rid of that mess. That’s justice. That’s justice. Whoa! Whoa-ho!”
Mister James Brown, supreme soul funk provider, himself says, “Word, Tootie, word!”
“So, you, wonderful rich people, you are wonderful! You are wonderful! You really are wonderful But-but remember, if-if you are responsible for most of the emissions-it’s not ‘if’; we know it is the case-then you are going to have to be responsible for any adjustments. (Beyonce whispers meltingly, “you know its true!”). We, too, who are poor, want to become rich. And if you are able to bail out the banks-they gave billions and billions and billions and billions and billions! They just throw billions! (The mighty Chuck D of Public Enemy sneers “Take from the poor/give to the rich… pimping the people like they a motherfuckin’ bitch!”). Now please just give us a few billions to enable the poor to use alternative fuels. They can’t do it if you ask them to pay for it. For your own sakes, rich people, please, for your own sakes, your children’s sakes, for the sake of our world, be nice. (Inevitably soaring Slash guitar solo here as Aretha Franklin and Mariah Carey both yell in glass-shattering falsetto: “Be nice, be nice, be nice!”). Be nice, and pay up. Pay up, please. Please, for your own sake.”
Take it down again. Abdullah Ibrahim is at the piano.
“The world, the world, we, the world, expect a real deal. Eh? Now, let us say that all of us – we, the world, expect a real deal. One. Two.”
Crowd: We, the world,expect a real deal.
D to the T: Again!
Crowd: We, the world, expect a real deal.
Arhcbishop T: Woohooo!