The Brooklyn Philharmonic has teamed up with a rapper to perform “Blues For Black Hoodies,” an original song about the perils of being young and black.
Composer Randy Woolf wrote the music for the 15-minute song and six string players from the Philharmonic will team up with a DJ and emcee Kevin Estwick — who goes by the stage name Wordisbon — to perform under the Brooklyn Bridge.
The lyrics of the traditional chamber piece with springs of modern hip-hop and a strong dash of social commentary evoke the despair felt by kids who are constantly looked at suspiciously.
“Too weak to smile, too strong to cry, too tired to laugh, too young to die, grey clouds in a dark blue sky, this a blues for black hoodies, just trying to get by,” Wordisbon’s lyrics go.
Woolf, who has long been the Brooklyn Philharmonic’s head composer and mentor, said he has been trying to expand the reach of the organization. When he met Wordisbon at an open mic a few years ago, he jumped on the opportunity to bring another element to Brooklyn’s classical scene.
“I told him he was one of my favorite artists and we started working together,” said Woolf. “He had written this beautiful piece, so I wrote music to it.”
For the record, the piece was written well before the shooting of Trayvon Martin.
“It’s universal,” said Woolf.
Brooklyn Philharmonic under the Brooklyn Bridge at Brooklyn Bridge Park [334 Furman St. at Old Fulton Street in Brooklyn Heights, (718) 222–9939, BroooklynB
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