Poetic Justice: Letter from the End of the Twentieth Century
Author: Joy Harjo
Publisher: Mekko Productions (2006)
Poetic Justice is the classic contemporary Native album first released by Silver Wave Records in 1997. This edition was newly released in 2006 by Joy Harjo's Mekko Productions, Inc. The album is a unique blend of poetry, reggae, native musics, jazz, and latin. You can dance to it. You can sing, laugh, and cry to it. It is still one of the most requested contemporary native albums on native radio.
"The opportunity to hear poet Joy Harjo speak her work aloud is the major reason to get this album; hearing her poems and stories gives them a life and dimension beyond what one can glean from the printed word. Harjo is a strong, capable speaker who fits her words to the backing music while at the same time bringing them to the forefront. She is joined on this recording by the other members of the band Poetic Justice, which includes a tantalizing mix of bass, electronic and acoustic guitars, soprano sax, chants and songs, and a variety of percussion instruments including powwow drums and rattles. The music itself draws on several influences, creating a mix of Native American musical traditions along with reggae, jazz, rock, and blues. However, Harjo's poetry remains the focal point here, and in pieces such as 'Creation Story,' 'Fear Poem,' and 'She Had Some Horses,' the strength of her material and of her interpretation of that material shines through."