By Barry Michael Cooper
Prolific author, prescient cultural critic and American historian, visionary filmmaker, director, and television producer. For over thirty years, Nelson has not only established himself as a preeminent composer of American Literature (from the Amsterdam News, to Billboard, to the Village Voice, to the New York Times, Playboy, best selling books, including his latest masterpiece, a novel titled "The Plot Against Hip Hop"), but he has also inspired a generation of African American writers to literary excellence.
As one of the most sought-after commentators on television and various panels around the country, Nelson has the uncanny ability to contextualize even the most complex subject matter, and frame it in a tableau that is mesmerizing, informative, and in the case of this particular clip--from the spirited panel I moderated at the Paley Center, after the screening of VH-1's powerful Rock Doc, "Planet Rock: The Story of Hip Hop and the Crack Generation," produced and narrated by Ice T--truly poignant, especially when Nelson describes in vivid detail, how the crack cocaine epidemic impacted his family. The audience hung on to his every word. After viewing this clip several times, I almost think Nelson can add another dash to the ever-expanding hyphenation of his storied career; a one man, Off Broadway show about his remarkable and dynamic life. A post-mod Samuel Beckett from Do or Die Bed Stuy.
Check out Nelson's unforgettable segment right here:
A big shout-out to the producers of the documentary "Planet Rock: The Story of Hip Hop and the Crack Generation"; Ice T, Martin Torgoff, and Richard Lowe (who also directed the film), and VH-1's executive producers Brad Abramson and Stephen Mintz. This is one of the best VH-1 "Rock Docs" ever made, and I am honored to have been a part of such compelling television history.
Be sure to pick up my new anthology, "Hooked On The American Dream-Vol.1: New Jack City Eats Its Young," available exclusively on Kindle/Amazon. Amazon/Kindle has a free, downloadable app for all computers and mobile devices. Click here to go to the "Hooked On The American Dream-Vol.1:New Jack City Eats Its Young" Kindle store site.