Natural Soul Brother is the story of a forgotten cultural icon, the black radio DJ. By realizing the potential of radio- as a medium for preaching black empowerment as well as breaking color lines through the airwaves- they dazzled audiences with their charismatic rapping and mixing skills, becoming the most powerful and recognizable black men in America. In the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, the original DJs "articulated the language of Soul." True social pioneers, they gave voice to the disenfranchised, loudening the new youth movement who demanded to be heard. The result was deafening.
Key to spreading the word of the Civil Rights Movement, the DJs became engaged in the turbulent political milieu of the 1960s, as the nascent Black Power Movement sought to gain control of the burgeoning R&B industry. Record labels, marketing agencies, and militant members of the underworld vied for the attention of the black listening audience, who were finally being recognized as a powerful demographic with disposable income in their pocketbooks.
This is the story of the black dj as catalyst to a revolution. Through their stories, a profound meditation on culture and commercialism emerges. Drawing from a patchwork of archival materials, personal stories, and the incendiary music of the time, Natural Soul Brother chronicles the rise and fall of the black radio DJ, the death of Soul Radio, and the resurrection of the DJ in the South Bronx, which gave birth to the ubiquitous music genre of today- Hip-Hop.