The Coup surfaces to serve up the official video premiere of “Long Island Iced Tea, Neat” – a stop-motion social commentary on the epidemic of police brutality and racial profiling in communities of color across the United States. The footage animated by Kelly Gallagher is a crafty homage to Occupy Oakland that celebrates the lives of Oscar Grant and Trayvon Martin and illustrates the social movements ignited by their respective deaths with protest photos, construction paper, skittles and glitter. The Coup tap Brooklyn punk-art squad Japanther for the assist on this track from their Sorry To Bother You LP. The Coup’s frontman Boots Riley commented on the creative process behind the track:
“One night, after a Coup show with Japanther, me, Ian Vanek and Matt Reilly from Japanther all went in the studio with Damion Gallegos and came up with this song. It’s probably the only song on Sorry To Bother You that’s directly related to my experiences with Occupy Oakland. The lyrics are related to the optimism generated by the General Strike in Oakland and the night of drinking that ensued.
Two things that should be known:
1.The title is an inside joke. I would never order a Long Island Iced Tea. I like good Bourbon.
2. We stole the drum pattern from Turf Talk’s ‘It’s A Slumper’.”
Ian of Japanther also chimed in:
“The Coup remain real rebels in a saturated market. It’s important to note that Japanther don’t condone violence against the police and we don’t drink Long Island Iced Tea. We believe in non violent protest through song. Loop a break, ghost it, add a funky bass line and let the rebel hero write something to it. RIP Tupac”
Take a peek at the footage below to view the official video for “Long Island Iced Tea, Neat” from The Coup. Purchase Sorry To Bother You via iTunes. Scroll down for more on the making of the video.
Kelly Gallagher followed Riley’s insights with a little background on her approach to the animation:
“Listening to the lyrics of The Coup’s “Long Island Iced Tea, Neat” really reminded me of the nights I had spent at the bar with fellow radical Occupy Philly friends after a night of a really great action. We’d be discussing the things that worked well strategically as well as the tactics we’d want to explore and work through as we continued to agitate and organize folks to future actions. A lot of our most militant nights of taking over the streets in protest, came out of solidarity in response to what the folks in Oakland were doing and the aggressive perseverance and militant example they set for the rest of the world. In keeping with my thoughts on Oakland, I wanted to include organizing that went on surrounding the racist homicide of Oscar Grant by the Bart police. It was also very important for me to include Trayvon Martin, because the actions and rallying organized around his wrongful and racist murder harkened back to organizing around Oscar Grant. I think it’s incredibly important to use film/video as a tool to visualize histories of resistance because viewing those visualized moments of true rebellion against systemic racism and capitalism, helps connect those of us that are working to fight these horrific systems. Visualized resistance in film also helps to remind us of our own agency, and the ways in which we can take to the streets and put it into action.”