Today, Motown Records and Black Forum have reissued Elaine Brown’s seminal album, Elaine Brown/Until We’re Free. For the first time, the album is now available on all digital streaming platforms and as a special reissue vinyl.
Ms. Elaine Brown stands out as a prison reform advocate, activist, writer, singer, and former Black Panther Party chairwoman who still actively affects cultural, social, and political change with her wisdom and wit. During 1973, Black Panther Party Founder and Minister of Defense Huey P. Newton personally enlisted Brown to record a handful of his songs, yielding Until We’re Free. As a piece of history, the nine-track opus consists of fiery spoken word, incisive poetry, and powerful music brought to life by her distinct and dynamic voice.
The album was produced by Fonce Mizell and Freddie Perren (whose credits included Edwin Starr, The Miracles, and Jackson 5) and even included a lead single, despite its more radical content. Brown would also go on to write the Black Panther Party’s national anthem, according to the University of California at Berkeley Library Social Activism Sound Recording Project.
The groundbreaking Black Forum label – founded by Mr. Berry Gordy and Motown in 1971―recently relaunched in 2021, providing a platform to a new generation of writers, thinkers, and poets. Elaine Brown/Until We’re Free is the latest in a series of six historic albums responsible for cementing the legacy of Black Forum label, including Elaine, MLK Jr., Stokely Carmichael, Langston Hughes & Margaret Danner, Ossie Davis, and more.
Mr. Gordy’s vision for Black Forum was sparked by his work with Dr. King, who recorded several speeches, including The Great March to Freedom, on Gordy Records, a Motown subsidiary label. Black Forum’s first release was Dr. Martin Luther King, JR’s, Why I Oppose The War In Vietnam, Released in 1970, it won a Grammy Award for Best Spoken Word Album the following year. The landmark speech was recorded in April 1967 at the Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta.
Elaine Brown’s Elaine Brown/Until We’re Free can be bought here.
Elaine Brown/Until We’re Free Track List:
Can’t Go Back
All The Young and Fine Men
Until We’re Free
I Know Who You Are
Child In The World
A Little Baby
And We Shall Meet Again