Ospreyshire Origins: Jo Anderson and The Reaper

Lyrics:

I would never meet my captor’s grandson, but I can only thank him from the beyond as he put my name on the record
Shame on this country for not realizing my brainpower and physical endurance
Robert, Cyrus, you know it’s true
The reaper wouldn’t exist without me
I guess people like me are used to doing all the heavy lifting
1834 saw the birth of this new tool
However, the McCormick’s names were on it
Cyrus II, you did what you could to make things right
I may have been a slave, but I was still an inventor


I’m from the smaller cities and from suburbs, so I don’t have an appreciation for agriculture as much as I should. This has certainly have been changing doing all this research for Dear Innovare. This also goes into my portfolio of “things you didn’t know were invented by African-Americans” that I only knew about fairly recently. Jo Anderson was a slave who invented the reaper which was used to get crops easier and faster. Unfortunately, he could patent because…oh you all should know the reason why after checking out some of my previous installments of Ospreyshire Origins.

File:Robert Hall McCormick.jpg
File:Cyrus McCormick engraving.png

This is Robert and his son Cyrus McCormick respectively. These slavers stole Jo Anderson’s idea and took it as their own for the McCormick business. Even though they are originally from Virginia, they eventually moved to Chicago. What I didn’t realize until recently, they were one of the most powerful families in the Windy City. Have you ever heard of the McCormick Place in Chicago? The same place with the Chicago Auto Show, major conventions, and is the largest convention center in the entire North American continent? Yeah, it’s named after this family! Just think about that when you think about that foundation. I’m glad Cyrus II eventually credited Jo, but the real inventor of the reaper deserved far better.

The image of Jo Anderson is from Mysterious Chicago Tours.

The image of Robert McCormick is from Wikipedia.

The Image of Cyrus McCormick is from Wikipedia.

Ospreyshire Origins: The Tulsa Strike Back Groove

Lyrics:

This is WOSPR Speaking

Foreign shores wanted more in store for stealing funky scores

Saturday night brought the fight to ignite to prevent the plight as we regained our rights

No matter if its Brooklyn, Echo Park, or Tulsa, Oklahoma. We’ll get our song back and clear your pop-coated aroma

The oil capital’s gonna get ya uptown, downtown, any town

Everybody sing like the Originator told ya: We gonna strike back with this groove!


To all of you that like old-school funk, I salute you!

I had a funk phase last year by listening to bands like Cameo, Parliament-Funkadelic, Sly and the Family Stone to name a few. One band that I checked out as well was The GAP Band. I heard a few of their songs thanks to my mom when I was younger and she did like their music. On one day last year, I listened to their song “I Don’t Think You Want to Get Up and Dance” as part of a YouTube playlist. I had to reattach my jaw literally during the first few seconds of the song. Let’s see if you’ll be able to figure out why. Here’s the radio edit version, but the point will still stand.

“Oops upside your head, say oops upside your head…”

The way they say that line must have been replicated by some multi-instrumentalist and a singer who has a habit of retreading older R&B and funk sounds. Hmm…who could they be?

Image result for mark ronson

Image result for bruno mars

I’m sure a good portion of you only recognize the second picture. Here, let me make things a lot clearer with one of the biggest songs of the 10s that both were famous for performing…

“Oops upside your head say oops upside your head…Uptown funk you up, say uptown funk you up…”

Don’t lie, that’s what you were all thinking when you heard the song from The GAP Band. I can’t lie to you, I used to really like “Uptown Funk” as it was one of the few pop songs I thought was actually listenable. Okay, even then I didn’t think it was as good as other funk songs I heard, but at least it sounded different than the typical pop garbage. That must be the case because it sounds like The GAP Band! Those Tulsa funkers managed to sue Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars for stealing their original song. The result, The GAP Band and their co-writers got writing credit and partial royalties of “Uptown Funk”. Did you know that including the updated writing credits, that means “Uptown Funk” had a whopping total of ELEVEN writers after the lawsuit! I can’t make this up. So, Ronson and Mars can credit Trinidad James right away for referencing his “Don’t believe me just watch” lyric from “All Gold Everything”, but not the band that had been making music since both of them were even born? Wow, just wow, guys…

Here’s some musical trivia for The Tulsa Strike Back Groove. I freestyled half of the spoken word elements that aren’t mentioned in the lyrics while referencing Charlie Wilson’s dialogue in their song. I also parody lyrics from “Uptown Funk”. See if you can spot them. Also, Charlie Wilson from The GAP Band is cousins to another famous funk musician…Bootsy Collins!

The picture of The GAP Band is from The Mississippi Link.

The picture of Mark Ronson is from PopCrush.

The picture of Bruno Mars is from Billboard.

Ospreyshire Origins: Albert Holly

Lyrics:

Abington-on-Thames and Lake Placid are fighting about what never belonged to them
Covering their tracks from a real cover song
Too busy calling Pablo or lusting for life
Ignoring the vital air around them
Too selfish to notice they aren’t free
From an originator
At least the first cover knew it’s dues
It knew it’s dues

You won’t get hitched by following ladies
Even when they end up at your shows
Same with stalking melodies you didn’t write
Absinthe won’t make your song better nor will those dead notes
They’re so desperate
They’re so freaking desperate

Just let the air in…


Here’s another song about music plagiarism! Hooray! This one’s going to be multi-layered since it deals with a bunch of people.

We’ll start with the original song “The Air That I Breathe” by Albert Hammond.

That song isn’t too shabby even though it’s not my cup of tea. This song got more popular a few decades ago when the band The Hollies covered it. As with anyone with a shred of decency, they gave full credit to Albert Hammond for creating the song to begin with. They give it more of a rock feel as opposed to the mostly acoustic original.
Chances are you probably heard of their version of the song in various movies or TV shows.

Image result for the hollies

This particular quintet would eventually fight alongside Albert Hammond when they took on a certain critically-acclaimed band that so many people suck up to and make their standards of music entirely based on this band.

Image result for radiohead

OOH! I’m going to take on the biggest music snob band of all time! Oh baby, I’m going to get a ton of hate for this particular story. That’s right. Radiohead was involved in a plagiarism case and it is for their most famous song ever: “Creep”. Yes, one of the biggest college rock songs of the 90s bore some eerie similarities to the verses of “The Air That I Breathe”. The Hollies actually took them to court and WON! Nowadays, “Creep” mentions Albert Hammond and The Hollies in the writing credits while also giving royalties to them. Isn’t it ironic that a band who has been hailed for their creativity and originality would steal? What gets even crazier is that they accused a certain pop singer for ripping off “Creep”.

Image result for lana del rey

This is a thievery chain going on! Lana Del Rey was bashed for her song “Get Free” for ripping off “Creep”, the same song that lost a copyright infringement case against the song “The Air That I Breathe”. I heard her song and the vocal line is pretty similar. Here’s a video containing excerpts of The Hollies’ cover of Albert Hammond’s song, “Creep”, and “Get Free”. You be the judge of this.

Sounds like an easy mashup to make at best, right? I didn’t realize how insane this case was. Granted, I was most familiar with “Creep” by the Radiohead mainly because that was a big song that came out during my childhood and later when I talked with some music fans I was friends with who were big into that band.

For my song Albert Holly, I decided a basic piano ballad would suffice. I make a TON of Radiohead and Lana Del Rey references in the lyrics as one might guess. Yes, the “They’re so desperate” part of the song parodies the pre-chorus of “Creep” including the random ghost notes by hitting the keyboard instead of chucking an electric guitar.

Hope you all appreciate this story behind the song.

The picture of Albert Hammond is from BBC.

The picture of The Hollies is from Britannica.

The picture of Radiohead is from the Irish Times.

The picture of Lana Del Rey is from Discogs.

Ospreyshire Origins: I, Axum

Lyrics:

Were the invaders fascinated by my beauty?
I stood tall in this living city
My creators took care of me every step of the way
Its a shame they never foretold of my destruction and abduction
While my homeland was never colonized, I was taken defiled, and cloned
I’m disgusted by my inferior leaning tall north of me
My people…rescue and reconstruct me
The world must know I exist
May the originator give me renown despite my obscure state


I got something for the architects and for those that respect African culture. This is going to be something I guarantee you never learned about in school.

This is the Obelisk of Axum in the Ethiopian town of the same name. This tower has been around in one of the oldest nation’s in the world since the 4th century AD. For centuries, this obelisk has been in the Horn of Africa, but unfortunately it became damaged and stolen. Even though Ethiopia is the only country in Africa never to have been colonized, Italy tried to claim that nation through warfare after they got Eritrea no thanks to the Berlin conference.

I didn’t know about this obelisk until I watched the documentary Unjust Perceptions: Ethiopia where they go to a museum and see a picture of it. Think about what I said about Ethiopia and Italy. Phil (the American who’s visiting Ethiopia) looks at the picture and the first thing he says is “That looks like the Leaning Tower of Pisa.” and the tour guide gives him a lesson…

Image result for leaning tower of pisa

Long story short:  Italy stole a bunch of things including the design of the Obelisk of Axum. The Ethiopian government did their best for years to sue the Italian government to get their culture back and they eventually got the parts of the Obelisk to bring it back home and they’re reconstructing it as we speak. This was jaw-dropping for me and I never realized how that famous building ripped off something from Africa. In the song, I speak in a feminine voice and I use metaphors of the colonizers raping and assaulting the original culture to drive the point home as uncomfortable as it is. The percussion is even based on Ethiopian and Eritrean drum patterns that I’ve noticed in both traditional and pop music from that part of the world. Much like my Art Theft pieces, this is just a sickening display of colonization even though Italy didn’t take over the Abyssinian nation.

Just think twice whenever you see that tower.

The picture of the Obelisk of Axum is from International Travel News.

The picture of the Leaning Tower of Pisa is from Britannica.

Unjust Perceptions: Ethiopia is property of African Diaspora News Channel.

Ospreyshire Origins: Of Laurels, Weapons, and Bird Icons

Lyrics:

Disposable generations mandated by unseen authorities
The young are on the front lines across TV screens
Abductions from schools to teach them to be gladiators or assassins
What kind of government would copy this tournament of death?
Its all sanitized keeping it PG-13 despite the dystopian realms where people starve
How foolish to volunteer to kill
The guise of arrows and secret lands were paltry
The governance claims to be originators, but that’s a bloody ruse
The first mandate only involved killing, but this one stole from it
Stealing and killing as they disguise themselves as angels of light, yet soar with blood-drenched wings
They fly mocking at these conscripted warriors as their tournament is an expensive sham
You think you’re so royal(e)


Whenever mainstream media isn’t ripping off stuff from the African diaspora, they rip off things from Japan. This song deals with something that has become one of the biggest go-to references when it comes to book and film plagiarism. For this edition of Ospreyshire Origins when it comes to Dear Innovare, we’re dealing with Koushun Takami’s 1999 novel that got adapted into a movie a year later called Battle Royale.

If you haven’t heard of this book or movie adaptation, the plot goes a little like this. In a dystopian Japan, juvenile delinquency skyrockets in the schools nationwide. The government came up with a horrific solution to whom they consider to be worthless youth: Project BR AKA Battle Royale. This mandate involves the government selecting various teens from across the country against their will to take part in a sanctioned death match in a remote location. The contestants get a randomly assigned weapon and shock collars. If anyone decides to escape the Battle Royale game, then the collar will explode on contact. Even though people are forced against their will to take part in this sci-fi gladiator sport, some students can even volunteer as an option, too.

DOES THIS REMIND YOU OF A CERTAIN OTHER BOOK/MOVIE SERIES?!

Image result for hunger games

The Hunger Games is nothing more than a PG-13 American Battle Royale with crappy YA drama and romance. Yes, I’ve seen the first movie and I know what happens in the story. Susanne Collins is nothing but a literary thief. I don’t buy that she didn’t know about this. Sure, the Battle Royale movie didn’t get licensed until literally the same year the first Hunger Games movie came out, but the book and manga adaptations have been around in America since the early 00s. People can’t be this ignorant that she came up with the idea of teens being forced to slaughter each other because of a government sanctioned death match in a dystopian environment by herself. There’s a reason why Battle Royale always gets mentioned when it comes to film plagiarism controversies especially when it comes to Japanese works. Say what you will about Quentin Tarantino, but at least he acknowledges the existence of that Japanese movie and got one of the actresses to play Gogo Yubari from the Kill Bill series. He even considers Battle Royale to be one of his favorite movies. Besides that issue, this Japanese series spawned influenced several anime like Juuni Taisen, Future Diary, and even a subgenre of survival games is called Battle Royale, too!

Here are some funny memes I found about this issue. 🙂

Related image

Image result for battle royale hunger games

Image result for battle royale hunger games

Hahaha! I needed some humor there.

Making the song was quite insane. I did some noisy electronic programming, distorted hand drums, acousmatics, keyboards, and I get to use some death metal and hardcore vocals much like how I did on Nonet #2 in Pathos Formula Wave if one remembers that. I wanted to go straight up digital hardcore for this to represent the ultraviolence of Battle Royale.

May the odds be in the favor of those who are original.

The Battle Royale DVD cover is from Honolulu Pulse and is property of Anchor Bay.

The Hunger Games picture is from The Independent and is property of Lionsgate.

All memes belong to their respective websites.

Ospreyshire Origins: Halstead’s Trophy

Lyrics:

I no longer wanted to be down
After you took my crown and cashed it in for millions of pounds
So shamelessly

I had to strengthen my heart
To withstand all your darts that multiplied from the start
Of your thievery

Originator be my guide
May justice be on my side
Halstead will be filled with pride with the trophy that’s rightfully mine

You think you can do what you will
I made you admit your guilt
How does it make you feel that you’re forced to know my name?

Take a picture now (X6)
To immortalize your shame


Do you want to know what can really suck about plagiarism cases? It can force me to actually defend mainstream pop stars on certain occasions when I would never do so otherwise.

This is one of those times.

Meet Matt Cardle. He’s an acoustic pop singer/songwriter hailing from Halstead, Essex, England. Yes, the name of the song refers to his hometown. Cardle has been quite popular in the UK even though he’s unknown in America. He got his big break after winning on X Factor, so he certainly has several ears throughout Good Ol’ Blighty. He had a song on his first album called “Amazing” which was a minor hit in the UK back in 2011. Wouldn’t it be crazy if another Brit were to steal his song? Whoever could it be?

THIS GUY!

Image result for ed sheeran

That’s right. Ed Sheeran stole someone else’s song! That is just annoying since his fanbase defended him and called Matt Cardle some nobody. Sure, Matt Cardle doesn’t have as much of a worldwide popularity as the Ipswitch-based pop star, but I wouldn’t call him obscure especially when it comes to English music. Matt Cardle has sold over 2 million records, has been on major labels even to this day, and like I said earlier: he’s an X Factor winner and I know that show is popular in the United Kingdom. Here’s some more context. Do you want to know who Matt Cardle beat out in the finals of X Factor in the same season he won it? Cher Lloyd and this one boy band that no one’s heard of called ONE DIRECTION! Yeah, think about that for a minute.

In case you’re wondering, the song that ripped off “Amazing” is “Photograph”. Sure, it wasn’t as big of a hit in America compared to “Sing” or “Thinking Out Loud” which were on the same album, but I know I heard that song playing on the radio whenever I was shopping or eating at some restaurants. To be just, the verses themselves are independent, but those choruses…WOW, Ed didn’t even try besides having different lyrics. Here’s a video of both song’s choruses and tell me he didn’t listen to this Essex crooner’s song!

Matt Cardle’s co-writers/producers actually sued Ed Sheeran and the beat him down in court! Sheeran was forced to give writing credits and royalties to everyone involved who made “Amazing”. Good on them for doing that. I never thought I would have to defend someone who won a freaking music reality show, but that was the day.

Much like both songs, I decided to do a light acoustic ballad, but with my ukulele as a main instrument and I got to use my “pop star” voice which is a rarity as Ospreyshire for obvious reasons. I hope you also appreciate the stealth puns with both songs in Halstead’s Trophy.

You’re welcome, Essex!

The album cover of Matt Cardle is from Wikipedia and is property of Syco music.

The photo of Ed Sheeran is from The Independent.

Ospreyshire Origins: Soshi-sha Ja Nai. Anata Wa Akumu Da!

Lyrics:

Stop believing that you own all the dreams
2010 degrees of lies aren’t fooling us
You don’t need a DC Mini or an appealing alter-ego
To shatter deception or the world around you
We’re not ghosts though we can float in hotel hallways
We made the spice to delve into dreams within dreams or converging reality
Years before you had a thought
The mass’s perception is flawed
Because they see your take on caped crusaders
We’ll keep the real dreams alive though our creator passed on
Awards won’t save you, deluded thief
You’re another soul in the demented parade

[Japanese]
Soshi-sha ja nai. Anata wa akumu da.
Soshi-sha ja nai. Anata wa akuma da!


To all my otaku friends and followers, REJOICE!

I, Ospreyshire made a song about an anime movie! [M. Bison Voice] YES! YES!

For those of you know know about my tastes in Japanese animation, this probably shouldn’t surprise you, but having a song about Paprika made way too much sense given the concept of the album even though I didn’t want to make an anime-based song so soon. I hope I did it justice with the dream-like aesthetics how it feels hazy and otherworldly with the effects on the instruments and my voice for this one. Also, Satoshi Kon, FTW!

If you don’t know anything about Paprika, let me give you a brief synopsis. Paprika takes place sometime in the near future. The main character Dr. Atsuko Chiba is a psychiatrist who is typically cold and has a lot of deadpan snark. In her industry, there’s a brand new machine called the DC Mini used for patients to try and understand their mental health issues. The DC Mini is a machine that people put on their head which allows them to go into the dream world of sorts. Dr. Chiba does this and crafts a bubbly an extroverted alter-ego in this dream world called Paprika. Unfortunately, the DC Mini is stolen and it is used for heinous crimes, so it’s up to Dr. Chiba/Paprika to save the day in both the dream world and real world. Also, the concept of dreams converging in reality comes up including the ability of dreams happening inside dreams happens.

DOES ANY OF THIS REMIND YOU OF A CERTAIN MAINSTREAM MOVIE?!?!

Image result for inception

Christopher Nolan, you are a freaking hack! There is no way he made this movie without watching the final film from one of the most innovative animators in Japan, dare I say the world. The concept of it being Kon-sensei’s final film is important because Paprika came out in 2006 and Inception came out in 2010…the same year that Kon died of cancer. To this day, Nolan has never ever owned up to plagiarizing major concepts from Paprika. Okay, he didn’t rip off any characters like a certain other anime that got plagiarized by Hollywood (Don’t worry…we’ll talk about that series in a future post when it comes to Dear Innovare), but he couldn’t possibly steal scenes from Kon’s last movie and…

Oh, who am I kidding?

https://i2.wp.com/thumbpress.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/funny-gif-Paprika-Inception-movie-scenes1.gif

Does anyone else think this is some fluke that Nolan would do this? This blatant thievery needs to be called out. I saw Paprika first and I then saw Inception, so the similarities were blatantly obvious when I was in that movie theater. Stop giving this guy a free pass just because he made The Dark Knight trilogy or Memento. How would you feel if the situation was reversed and if Kon stole from Nolan? Yeah…that’s what I thought.

Fun Facts: The title and lyric translates to “You’re not an originator. You’re a nightmare!” from Japanese. The final lyric is switched from “akumu” to “akuma” which means “devil” or “demon”.

Also, if you want my full thoughts on this experimental/sci-fi anime flick, then you can check out my review on Iridium Eye.

The Paprika poster is from Minitokyo and is property of Satoshi Kon, Madhouse, and Sony Pictures Classics.

The Inception poster is from CBS news and is property of Christopher Nolan and Warner Brothers.

The Inception and Paprika GIFs are from thumbpress and are property of Warner Brothers and Sony Pictures Classes respectively.

Ospreyshire Origins: One True Mayor

Lyrics:

Our island was the only one of its kind until you copycatted our geography
I am the mayor, yet you made a clone with a big head just like me
You think you made some edible paradise, but everyone is bloated and sick of your world

I thought you’d credit us for our existence
That certainly wasn’t the case
I’m not the Originator, but I’m the one true mayor
And I’ll put your million dollar fraud in its place

My island’s filled with puppets, but there’s no strings attached
With our living justice
I’ve dealt with witches and I’m going to deal with you and your high-calorie junk food of a haven

Your land wouldn’t exist without mine, but at least our island is healthy and theft-free


Researching things is super fun for me.

When I was researching several forms of art, movie, and TV plagiarism, I happened to stumble upon this puppet show that I had never heard of or seen in my life. This was the 1969 show H. R. Pufnstuf. The title character is the mayor of a place called the Living Island which has all these anthropomorphic animals, plants, and objects all around. I saw some clips and it certainly was a bit wacky and had some 60s cheese, but the puppetry and costumes were interesting. What I didn’t realize was that the H. R. Pufnstuf character was a victim of plagiarism.

One could say it was a certain Hamburglar who kidnapped this big head puppet mayor with a cartoonish Southern drawl, spliced his DNA and crafted a big head mayor of their own.

Yes, there was some McThievery [patent pending] going on.

McDonald’s created their own series called McDonald land which some of you might be familiar with Ronald McDonald, Grimace, and an assortment of other characters to hype up their Happy Meals. There was a character Mayor McCheese who was the mayor of McDonaldland who had a giant cheeseburger for a head. Sid and Marty Krofft (the creators of H. R. Pufnstuff) took the fast food chain to court and actually WON their case! This was mind-blowing that they won against a giant corporation. Not only were the two mayors considered similar, but both environments. The court noticed that both the Living Island and McDonaldland are fictional places with several anthropomorphic characters, talking tree forests, a pond, castle, enforcer keystone cops as right-hand characters to the mayors, and similar villains to name a few. Here’s more information on that matter.

I never knew about this, but I’m often sympathetic to those who were ripped off, so I just had to make a song about this. I even busted out my Peruvian panflute which is an Ospreyshire first. Yes, I did my best to imitate some of Pufnstuf’s vocal inflections even though that wasn’t the only song where I talked in a Southern accent though. One of my favorite things I did was add distortion to one of the ukulele tracks where it sounded like a psychedelic guitar solo which was awesome and I loved how it turned out.

Fun fact: H. R. Pufnstuf’s voice actor was the late Lennie Weinrib. He’s played Gomez Addams in the 1973 animated version of The Addams Family, King Leonidas in Bedknobs and Broomsticks, Grimace in McDonaldland (yes, the irony is strong), and to all you anime fans out there he did the dub voice of both Hunk and Prince Lotor in Voltron.

The splitscreen picture is from Wikipedia and is property of McDonalds and the Krofft Brothers.

Ospreyshire Origins: Annie Minerva Turnbo Malone

Lyrics:
Madame CJ Walker, you weren’t the first lady of that honor
You were a former client of her
From Metropolis, Illinois to St. Louis, then to the Second City was the first beauty expert of her time
Hair, face, hands
All became better with Malone’s expertise for those with melanin
She built a college just for cosmetology
Despite $14 million in her prime, you stole those formulas
Women of all colors benefited from the Poro Brand
CJ…or is it Sarah?
You’d be nothing without Annie
She lost her business, but she won’t be lost in history anymore

No woman can be attractive
Without a beautiful complexion and an innovative mind


That’s right, everyone. Madame CJ Walker was NOT the first African-American female millionaire!

The first was none other than Annie Malone hailing from the tiny Southern Illinois town of Metropolis. She was an entrepreneur who started her own beauty and personal care business with the Poro company. Malone made so many products for different uses and she eventually opened her own cosmetology which also made her the first black owner and founder of a beauty school in America. She was charitable, opened a community center for the youth, and helped out her neighborhoods when she lived in Chicago. Unfortunately, Walker literally stole Poro formulas and made her own business, became rich, and more popular than Malone which is so tragic. I doubt they’re going to talk about that in that upcoming CJ Walker movie with Octavia Spencer.

Annie, even though I could care less about the beauty industry (the fact I have a Y chromosome is certainly the biggest reason why), but I respect you for doing for self and for giving back to the community. You deserved so much better.

I would like to give major props to Kreb for introducing me to this beauty pioneer on one of his blog posts. Dude, you’re great and I learned a ton from this post and others from you.

Fun fact about her birthplace: Metropolis is the only town of that namesake in America and it became the “official” hometown of the Superman character. There’s a museum of Superman in that town and the real life Metropolis, IL was even featured in a comic issue where Supes actually has to save it from danger. Also, this would make me second only to Sufjan Stevens who namedropped that town in a song. Hahaha!

The picture of Annie Malone is from The Freeman Institute.

Ospreyshire Origins: About A Benjamin III: Boardley, not Bradley

Lyrics:
I didn’t care anymore how my last name was spelled after my time on earth
Just know that I was an innovator people haven’t heard of
My family and I were in bondage in the Old Line State
Whenever I could, I’d learn from the children of my captors
That education would come to use
Printer offices and the Naval Academy would see my intellect
Too bad my captors got most of my pay
My greatest achievement involved gun barrels, pewter, steel, and random junk
With this mechanical trash came the first steam engine
My patent was denied even when my brainchild bought my family’s freedom
Don’t deny my innovations

By the way, steampunks. You’re ever so welcome.


This concludes my About A Benjamin trilogy on my Dear Innovare album. This final entry involves Benjamin Bradley. Excuse me…Benjamin Boardley. I will address him as such because his name was misspelled on the various texts and history books, so I want to get his name right. Mr. Boardley over here was a former slave from Maryland who would eventually help in that state’s naval academy while inventing things. His biggest invention was the steam engine. That was a MASSIVE innovation at the time which made so many vehicles and machinery more powerful for decades until petroleum would take over. Think about it, so many inventions spun out of just one engine that he created. Much like other tracks, he wasn’t allowed to patent his innovative engine due to the color of his skin (while others tried to steal his invention in the process), but he was able to use the sales of his engine to buy the rest of the Boardleys away from slavery which is very admirable. Benjamin Boardley is a man worth respecting.

That last line of the track is totally a dig against that subculture. How ironic that so many stories utilizing that aesthetic involve a majority or totally of white characters, but their environments were built around the inventions of a black man. Let that sink in, people. Know your roots even when it comes to fiction.

The picture of Benjamin Boardley (not Bradley) is from Recovery Team.