“I try. I try to be a righteous man. I try to give love all over the world. But I’m tired of being used!” – Charles Bradley: Ain’t It a Sin
Such passion that you know came from a hard-earned life. The Screaming Eagle of Soul passed away just two years ago and way too early. May he rest in peace.
He continues, “Sometimes this world can do me wrong. Keep to the path, won’t go astray.” Even after life has beaten him down, industry thieves stole from him, as he tried to make his way as Charles Bradley and not some knock-off of James Brown, he’s still trying to be a righteous man! Not easy sometimes, in this world.
As he performs this song, you can see the real anguish on his face. The years of blood, sweat, tears, hard times, tragedy, and taking shit are all pouring out in the lyrics. He’s trying hard to continue to walk a righteous path, but the frustration is coming to a head.
And then … “If you ain’t gonna do me right … I might just do you in. Ain’t it a sin.”
Yep; there it is.
In an interview with Mojo Magazine, Bradley said, “Everybody was thinking I was being very aggressive, but I was saying ‘don’t do me wrong, I won’t do you wrong. We all gotta make things right.”
Most of us have an inherent goodness within us and we want to live a peaceful life, giving love and being loved. But, then there are other humans that seem to go out of their way to make doing that almost impossible.
So, here’s the thing; throwing up an Anjali Mudra (prayer hands) gesture is bullshit, if it doesn’t come from the soul. Namaste, bitch! Right? We don’t need to do that. Peace, forgiveness and seeing past a person’s transgressions is inner strength and understanding. Very yogi-like. But there are times and people who don’t deserve that and neither does our soul.
There comes a point sometimes, where trying to be a righteous, peaceful person and being a fool cross paths. Part of nurturing our soul is keeping it from being a chump. Our soul is our house. Mi casa es su casa, but if you kick my door in, you will not be greeted peacefully.
Ain’t it a sin?
We cannot be righteous towards others, if we’re not righteous to ourselves. Hang on; Mr. Bradley is still singing … “I try to find a certain style, to keep my soul from runnin’ wild.”
Seriously, go to Spotify, iTunes, wherever you get your music and get that song right now.