Two years ago, I heard Shableek play at TCB 5400 and I was amazed by his show. Shableek’s show didn’t sound like the traditional jazz that I heard at venues in Uptown Charlotte. His music is a fusion of jazz, R&B, and hip-hop. About half way though the show, I said to myself “this guy doesn’t belong here.” I thought that Shableek should be touring the world with other talented musicians. Later, I learned that Shableek is a Charlotte native who is committed to expanding his brand in his hometown because of his commitment to raising his children. Next I began to wonder why Shableek wasn’t embraced more by his hometown. After we became Facebook friends, I quickly understood why some people had reservations about supporting one of Charlotte’s best saxophonist. Many of Shableek’s Facebook post challenge the current social, political, economic, and religious structure. During the past five years, on numerous occasions, his inner circle asked him to tone down his “radical” Facebook post but Shableek refuses to stop sharing his version of the truth.
Shableek views himself as a musical warrior; his saxophone is weapon to wake up his people. Music is his platform to share his message with his listeners. Shableek says that he is willing to continue to make sacrifices to be true to his music and his message. He is fully aware that his unwillingness to conform to current social norms may reduce his potential earnings and close corporate doors. Below is Shableek’s first in-depth interview about his controversial social media posts, his experience growing up in Charlotte, and the current political climate.
Phillips: Did you always have radical views, if not what events caused you to shift your views?
Shableek: I’ve always had radical views. I believe it’s in our ancestry, some of us have the spirit of conformity and some of us have a run-away slave mentality. Once I figured out that I was on a modern-day plantation, my run-away slave mentality kicked in. When I was born, my mother was 17, so my grandparents raised me in a black neighbourhood during my early childhood. When I was 14 years old, my mother got married and we moved into a white neighbourhood and this was when I noticed the racial divide. I was uprooted from my community into a rich neighbourhood surrounded by mansions. Back then, all I wanted to do was to go back to my old low-income neighbourhood and stay there all day long. I wanted to be back at home with my people. Since my teenage experiences, I haven’t felt comfortable or been able to associate myself with white people. I don’t hate white people but I’ve never been able to go over to their side and live their lifestyle.
My grandparents were products of the Deep South. My grandfather was the son of a share cropper and my grandmother was the daughter of a war veteran. During my childhood, my grandparents were like my parents and they shared a lot of their stories with me. In the early part of my life, I was in the Baptist church and after we moved into the rich neighbourhood, we got into a Pentecostal Holy Apostolic church. From age 14 to 30, I was in their Apostolic religious world but I’ve always listened to ideas and information outside of the church. My shift began when I started to do serious research and started reading more. It took me a long time before I was able to break that last bondage of spiritual enslavement that most people call religion. Once I started to break the chains of my spiritual enslavement, I began to understand the significance of black history. Often times, when people call me a radical or a rebel, they are referring to my knowledge of black history which sounds like a foreign language to most black folks who are unaware of our greatness.
Phillips: Did you play music in the church?
Shableek: Yes, I played music in the church and that’s when I’ve seen first-hand the ingenuity and genius of this European enemy of ours who combined our African spirituality and music into his religion. Early on, when I played the sax at my old Holiness church, my pastor’s wife used to say, ‘music can invoke good or evil spirits’. Music can unlock spirits and this is the reason why so many black people cannot remove themselves from European religion. Most of us connect music, religion, and our emotions together. I’ve seen this first-hand when I play at clubs and people come up to me and say, ‘man you anointed me’. I can be in the middle of an R&B set when people are drinking, hollering at each other, dudes are rapping to women, and before you know it, they are acting like they are in church. Why? Because they heard me play two notes that remind them of what they heard in church. So, now they are in the club shouting like they are in church. That’s the power of music and our oppressor used music to spiritually enslave us.
When my ex-wife and I separated, I started to see things differently. Church was no longer a place where I inspired people with music. Church was a divisive place, it was a tool of oppression and disruption to the black family. I can remember people saying “You know, Jesus doesn’t want me to be around people who aren’t living right”. When I was younger, I didn’t see the division but after I studied history, I learned that the whole purpose of religion was to divide the black family. During my separation, I learned that my church family wasn’t my real family, my real family was my family. Back then, I was so deep into the church that I played for free. I didn’t play outside of the church because I was taught that worldly music was “the devil’s music”. When I finally started playing outside of church, I found out that I could make a living playing my horn.
Phillips: Why do you feel the need to use social media to communicate your truth to your followers, friends, and fans?
Shableek: How can we be in an information age with knowledge about our history, the truth about the origins of religion, and all of this information is accessible on our smart phone but are still believing in fairy tales. We are in the midst of so much truth but we are still going in the direction toward falsehood. We are so indoctrinated that we can’t tell the difference between the truth and a lie. It was real traumatic for me to start digging and uncovering truth. It was painful to learn that I believed in a lie with so much intensity. My enemy indoctrinated me with a false history, a false religion, and false knowledge of myself. So, I use all of my available platforms to wake our people up. I use social media to communicate with my followers because I don’t want people to keep believing all of these lies.
Phillips: Did you vote in 2016, if not, why not?
Shableek: Hell no! You cannot participate in your enemy’s system and expect your enemy to give you any respect. When Obama first ran for President, I was against voting but I bought into the hype like everybody else. Obama’s presidential bid brought all generations of my family together: me, my granddaddy, my son, and my mama. All four generations of my family went to cast our ballot for the first black president. During that time, I was right at the point for coming into full consciousness. Everything unfolded as I suspected, Obama would be a huge let down to black people. Obama’s presidency confirmed everything that I was learning, the United States is not a country, it’s a corporation. We don’t elect a president, one is selected for us and our government gives us the illusion that we are in control of the process.
Phillips: In a Facebook post, you said “Obama was used to look trustworthy to African nations and the black community but he really was a tool for global European dominant racism.” Based on that comment, are you calling former president Obama a racist?
Shableek: I’m not calling Obama a racist but he was an instrument of European white global dominant racism. Obama got all of the black people excited that a black man would occupy the White House. First, they denied us access through their power and later with their permission they acted like they always wanted us to have equal access. So, let’s look at joining the armed service. They told us that they didn’t want us fighting in their war, but then all of a sudden, they changed their minds. They changed their minds when they needed us and put us on the front lines. The same is true about college and professional sports like football, basketball, and baseball. They allowed us to play their games and to sit in their stadiums because it’s in their business interest to profit from our talents. Just like with sports and armed services, they changed their mind about the presidential office. Before Obama, we tried Shirley Chisolm, Dick Gregory, Jessie Jackson, and Al Sharpton as candidates but none of those people fit the bill. So, America tailored the best possible president and then told you his daddy was from Africa, like they tell you everything is from Africa. Then, all of a sudden, they got black people all excited with the idea of “hope and change”. After eight years, we can clearly see the hope and change that Obama brought us. We are hoping that the police will stop killing us, we are hoping to get out of poverty, and we are hoping we can get a job. Now that the president of hope is out of office, how much change do you have in your pockets? If you got some change, he didn’t put it in your pockets. Obama helped a whole bunch of people get rich but look at our community, how much positive change did he help to create?
Phillips: Can you provide some examples of Obama being an instrument of global European domination?
Shableek: When Obama ran for office, he was against gay marriage but when he got into office, the homosexual agenda became a cornerstone of his social policy. If you don’t believe me, look it up. When Obama was in Kenya, at a press conference with Uhuru Kenyatta, Kenya’s president, Obama tried to lecture the people in Kenya on gay rights. Kenyatta told Obama that gay rights weren’t an issue in his country and that his people were concerned about education, jobs, and economic progress. Obama wasn’t pushing homosexuality because it’s a moral issue, he is an agent of European powers who want to reduce the population in Africa so that they will have an easier time taking African resources.
My next example was when Obama supported the assassination of Muammar Gaddafi, president of Libya who was trying to gain African economic independence by moving away from the US Dollar to a gold-based economic system. Just like he did in America, Obama got a lot of African people excited with hope and change. The African people viewed Obama as one of their own and didn’t think his policies would harm them but they were sadly mistaken. Obama has a lot of African blood on his hand from policies that destabilized African countries. Did Obama plan all of this by himself? No, Obama is a tool of global European domination.
Phillips: What do you think of Colin Kaepernick’s position on kneeling or not standing for the National Anthem?
Shableek: Colin Kaepernick, Jessie Williams’ performance at the Oscars, and Beyoncé’s so-called taking a stand at the Super Bowl were insults to the Black Panther Party, Malcolm X, and all revolutionaries. Kaepernick, Williams, and Beyoncé are bound by contract and whenever somebody signs you to a contract they own you. Because of their contract, they can’t do anything without sharing their plans with their contractual masters. I suspect that Kaepernick might be an agent against our community who was used to create civil unrest. It’s very usual that all of this “radical entertainment” occurred right before the election and probably made Europeans feel like they needed to put black people in check because the greatest fear of the white man is that the black man will wake up and try to regain power through some type of revolution. So around election time, the powers that be provoke this fear and used different people as tools to capitalize on the racial divide in America. This is not a new phenomenon. They do this all the time and political experts run political advertisements that criminalize or put fear in white people about “Super Predators” or use terms like law and order candidate. Now that the election is over, what are Kaepernick, Jessie Williams, and Beyoncé doing now? Who has even heard anything from them? Where is all the press about him kneeling right now? What happened to the boycott that Jessie Williams was supposed to lead? If all of these people were serious, why did it all stop?
Phillips: In light of the recent CMPD shootings, do you think trust can be rebuilt between the black community and the police department?
Shableek: Trust has never been built between the black community and CMPD. You can’t build or rebuild something that never existed. How can trust be built with an organization that historically and currently operates as your enemy? Since the 1960s, the biggest problem with our people is that we don’t understand who is our enemy. The government or any institution of the government is the enemy of the black man and his family. Anyone (including black people) who works for the police department is an enemy and an instrument of the state. Does every police officer view himself as our enemy and an instrument of the state? I doubt it, but that doesn’t change the end result. The origin of the police is rooted in slavery. The job of the police is to protect property and during the time of slavery, their job was to protect the slave master’s property which was his enslaved Africans. When a runaway slave was caught by slave catchers, he or she was beaten or killed. Please tell me the difference between what went on then and what’s going on? Black people fear the police like slaves feared the slave catcher. Some black people with good intentions, think they can then go work in the service of my enemy and bring about change but it doesn’t work. CMPD’s last two police chiefs were black. How much change did they bring about?
Phillips: My next question refers to your Facebook post. Please tell our readers, what’s the biggest disease in the black community?
Shableek: The biggest disease in the black community is the denial of knowledge. The majority of black people suffer from cognitive dissonance and we refuse what contradicts our indoctrination which is why we don’t feel like we have an enemy? Since we aren’t students of history, many of us believe that we played an active role in our enslavement, emancipation, the Reconstruction Era, Jim Crow, Civil Rights Movement, and integration. All of these phases of history took place without our permission. The slave master didn’t ask us if we wanted freedom. The angry southerners who despised the Freedmen’s Bureau didn’t ask us if we want to participate in their new Jim Crow south. Until people get this information into their heads and recognize that nothing we’ve done has influenced these major events, then they will begin to understand that our enemy uses tools such as religion, entertainment, politics, and his educational system to present the illusion of freedom while keeping you enslaved with modern methods.
Phillips: What solutions can you propose to improve conditions in the black community?
Shableek: The first solution is to acknowledge that we have a problem and an enemy. We can’t solve a problem that we believe doesn’t exist. Next, we must accept victim status. We’ve been told to stop playing the victim and we act like the word victim is a negative word that doesn’t apply to us. Based on logic and history, we have been victims of enslavement and institutional racism and there is no statute of limitation on victimization. Once we become aware that we are victims, then we can stop blaming ourselves for being victims and we can easily identify our common victimizer. We didn’t sign up to be victims. Victimhood was forced upon us. After we accept victim status, then like-minded people will be able to organize and try to transition from victims to victors.
Phillips: Where can people find your music, purchase your albums, hear you play, and support your music?
Shableek: My album and contact information is available online at www.shableek.com. Your readers can connect with me on Facebook or Instagram. Also, the title of my album The Sensitivity of Shableek is available on iTunes, Amazon.com, and other place where music is sold. This year, I plan to release another album called Deliberation. I would rather your readers purchase my music from my website or by contacting me. For your readers who haven’t heard me play before, I invite them to check me out every Thursday at TCB 5400 located at 5400 Nevin Road, Charlotte, NC 28269.