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.

Ospreyshire Origins: Larceny By Dirigible series

Larceny By Dirigible I Lyrics:

Do You feel shame stealing melodies? (X2)
The spotlight must feel so nice
You can’t see the enlightened leaving you

Its larceny in your backyard (X2)
Don’t act like you’re so confused
You put ignoramuses in a big daze

You live atop a mountain of theft (X2)
I hope endless water floods your realm
You won’t rise anymore

How many years must you get away? (X2)
I guess your fans became a shield
Protecting you from swift justice

Joan Baez
Anne Bredon
Jake Holmes
Bert Jansch
Howlin’ Wolf

Larceny By Dirigible II Lyrics:

Quit complaining that success was the only reason you got caught
You need reality to set you straight, not a whole lotta fantasies
Your excuses are lemons better suited for lemonade to quench your desires
Watch your step on that killing floor, you band of pirates
Keep trying to bring your subterfuge

Willie Dixon
Howlin’ Wolf
Robert Johnson
Albert King
Bobby Parker
Sonny Boy Williamson

Larceny By Dirigible III Lyrics:

There will be no hats off
To the glorified filchers of rock n’ roll
Raking in millions for their laziness
Resting on instrumental talent
Its time to shake this fake originality down to make way
For real innovators
There will be no more pinching and crediting one’s self in this zone
That will never happen
Since people have been lambasting you

Moby Grape
Bert Jansch
Bukka White

Larceny By Dirigible IV Lyrics:

Did it feel good opening for that band?
Did it excite you when you wanted that heavenly acoustic riff?
Did it arouse you to become rock gods from one song?
Did it please you when their leader drowned saving his son?
Did it heal your soul that the plaintiffs didn’t match your bank accounts?
Did you smile even when that constellation called you on your stolen bull?

Jay Ferguson
Mark Andes
John Locke
Ed Cassidy
Randy California
SPIRIT!!!

Larceny By Dirigible V Lyrics:

You think crediting someone’s mom was good enough?
How pathetic
It shows how much you don’t care
You’re too busy making custard with blues legends’ works
Heads are hurting from your ill-gotten success
Yet the masses continue praising
You when it was undeserved on so many levels

Sleepy John Estes
Bukka White
Blind Boy Fuller
Ritchie Valens

Oh, so now you want to start acknowledging others?


I’m going to tick off some people with this Ospreyshire Origins post especially with classic rock fans and potentially those who are older than me. What annoys me is when people from older generations crap on newer music today by saying it’s all garbage or it steals from others who came before. To be just, a lot of modern mainstream music is trash in my opinion, so I do have some agreements over there in that regard. As far as stealing other people’s music, yes, it does happen and I do talk about it in later songs on Dear Innovare. If I do hear that in real life especially about ripping off people’s music, then I have the right question to ask them.

“Do you listen to Led Zeppelin?”

Image result for led zeppelin

For starters, I was never a fan of their music. It was roughly ten years ago when some musician friends of mine told me that Led Zeppelin had a career full of plagiarizing other people’s music. I thought it was crazy until I listened to some examples which were mind-blowing. There’s one specific one that involves the band picture I used for this post which I’ll describe later on.

Led Zeppelin fans annoy me with how much in denial they are about this mega-selling influential classic rock band ripped off a good portion of their discography from blues artists, folk singers, and other rock bands. In each installment of Larceny By Dirigible, I explicitly name each singer and songwriter Led Zeppelin stole from their albums. The fact I number them in roman numerals is a parody of LZ’s discography and the songs from each album. Here’s a list of songs that were stolen. Funny enough, Led Zeppelin actually LOST against some of those singers in court like Jake Holmes (the real writer of “Dazed and Confused”), Anne Bredon and Joan Baez (“Babe, I’m Gonna Leave You”), and Willie Dixon (“You Need Love”) just to name a few. I hate how Zeppelin fans are saying “Yeah, but they did it better.” That excuses nothing and I know they wouldn’t say that if the situations were reversed. Led Zeppelin would be NOTHING without the several musicians they stole from. I believe it was Howard Stern who called them “The World’s Greatest Cover Band” which I find to be hilarious because there’s truth to it. With those blues musicians, one could make a case that they were guilty of cultural appropriation since them and several other classic rock bands probably think that stealing from black people is alright if the rock stars who steal them are white, but that’s nothing new in history.

From a musical standpoint, it was fun recording and writing since it involved some of the most folksy and bluesy songs I’ve ever written under the Ospreyshire moniker. I wanted the recording to be simple without that many effects even when I busted out the Omnichord in one of the songs. I also had to practice my ukulele lead work to give that acoustic rock and blues vibe for most of the tracks. This was my way of homaging the original artists without coming across as an anachronism even though the Larceny By Dirigible songs are WAY more straightforward compared to most Ospreyshire tracks on this and previous works.

If there was an example of something that really got my gears grinding, it involves the topic of Larceny By Dirigible IV. That was the angriest song of the bunch despite being a mostly acoustic ballad with some subtle keyboards in the background. The song in question is “Taurus” by the band Spirit. My jaw dropped when I heard that guitar riff and I thought “OH MY GOD! ZEPPELIN STOLE THIS TO MAKE STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN!”. This was the musical equivalent of watching a certain Osamu Tezuka anime and realizing that a certain American animation company shamelessly stole from it (you should know what I’m talking about at this point). Zeppelin even opened up for Spirit for some of their first American tours, so they totally knew that song. Seriously, check out this video and tell me no one from that famous band stole from Spirit.

This was maddening and I’m sick of people defending that band even when they lost some of their lawsuits. At the time of this post, Randy California’s (from Spirit) family is appealing the plagiarism lawsuit against Led Zeppelin. His story is so tragic and I referenced part of it in IV. Randy California just waned his band to get credit for “Stairway to Heaven”, but Led Zeppelin refused. Not only that, but he died saving his son from drowning in the ocean after that. Randy California and Spirit didn’t deserve this.

Wouldn’t it also be funny if one of the members admitted to stealing? Oh, wait…

Seriously, shame on this overrated band of thieves and especially that pedophile Jimmy Page. How is it that R. Kelly is locked up and not him for sleeping with minors?

The image of Spirit is from Ultimate Classic Rock.

The image of Led Zeppelin is from Variety.

Ospreyshire Origins: Sincerest Form of Laziness

Lyrics:

Falling from the empyrean
They managed to ascend on the earth
Their names were in lights with infinitesimal points
The innovators pushed to the side from the emulations with their ways and mores of supine larceny
Denials echo as earworm choruses worldwide with tunes, moving pictures, and museums
The masses become allured now knowing or caring that these were imitations
Originator, suffer not the true catalysts of Innovare
Penniless and undermined
The descendants want to demand restitution
Some emulations were honest, yet it was worse with excuses for the trendiest prints of ignored canvases


Imitation isn’t the sincerest form of flattery. It’s only the sincerest form of laziness.

You want to get on my bad side quickly? Try ripping someone off so shamelessly. I think that explains this track and my real life feelings in a nutshell. Sincerest Form of Laziness is a steel drum interlude of sorts that transitions from one section of Dear Innovare to the next. The first several tracks were about so many pioneers, but from here on out this is going to involve several people who had their works shamelessly copied whether it was attempted or sadly involving cases where the clones become more popular than the originals. Expect several truth bombs in musical and/or poetic form.

This meme is from some e cards.

Ospreyshire Origins: Boyd Bedsteads

Lyrics:

An unmarked grave is where my mortal frame rests, yet my inventions let people sleep in style
Wooden frames and canopies were built for luxury and durability where commoners can sleep like kings and queens even to this day
While Ohio and Kentucky weren’t always kind to me, I knew I had to have a twin set of endurance
My ethic, diligence, and carpentry had to see me through and spring into action
Brothers, sister, your freedom was paid for from my classy beds patent or not
They saw my name on every frame
I wish my company would’ve withstood the flames of envious arsonists
I would free those who were like me
My life has been used for the greater good
Let me rest


Here’s another case of a former slave doing for self. This is Henry Boyd. The Kentucky-born and later Ohio-based man would become a carpenter/furniture maker in his own right. He crafted some of the fanciest beds around that nowadays are worth a pretty penny in antique form. However, he deserved better. His businesses went ablaze by jealous racists. I would bet you those same people would be the ones to tell black people to pick themselves up by their bootstraps (how ironic and fallacious).

Here’s a fact about the acousmatics of this piece. I used a pair of drumsticks to hit different parts of my own bed and mattress to create the percussive soundscapes before multitracking them.

The photo of Henry Boyd is from the Northern Kentucky Tribune.

Ospreyshire Origins: T. Jennings: Cleaning Up the Patent Competition

Lyrics:

America, you needed to be cleaned up in so many ways
I was only one man, but I had to make things right on a twofold account
I started with your laundry
There would be a new kind of care for your clothes and I did it in a dry fashion like you’ve never seen before
Millions of businesses would be created because of me

Next came real freedom fighters
The bread I got from my invention
Went towards those who wanted every man, woman, and child
To be free and equal
Its more than what a piece of paper could say
I hope they keep on fighting

How does it feel seeing a man like me being the first of his community to own a patent?


Dry cleaning isn’t the most exciting thing to talk about which we can all agree on. What did get fascinating was who invented that form of laundry maintenance and how the funds were used afterwards. This is Thomas Jennings. He was a freeman who mainly worked as a tailor. He created a method called dry scouring which is the archetype for dry cleaning. He actually used the money to buy the freedom of other slaves in America which I massively respect on so many levels. Imagine how many businesses were and still are created today. Also, Thomas Jennings is the first African-American to receive a patent which is even more important in hindsight because he did this before it became illegal for black people to get patents (we’ll talk about that in other posts) before it was reinstated that anyone can make a patent regardless of ethnic stock.

Think about these things the next time you have to get your fancy suits or dresses to the dry cleaning shop.

The image of Thomas Jennings is from Post News Group.