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Michael Franti & Spearhead: Music and Politics

Michael Franti.
Michael Franti.

Michael Franti first gained notoriety in the late '80s with the industrial group The Beatnigs, which crafted a relentless barrage of noise and political lyrics. Built around innovative samples and Franti's stridently booming voice, Disposable Heroes of Hiphoprisy then attracted attention as a peer of Public Enemy in the early '90s. Franti now leads the San Francisco-based Spearhead, and his ability to provoke debate hasn't waned since his revolutionary beginnings.

Since the release of their first album in 2000, Franti and Spearhead have toured relentlessly, headlining hundreds of shows as well as sharing the stage with acts as diverse as Dave Matthews, Ani DiFranco, Trey Anastasio and KRS-One. Michael Franti & Spearhead's latest album, Yell Fire!, draws on Franti's recent travels to Iraq, Israel and Pakistan.

Copyright 2007 XPN

David Dye is a longtime Philadelphia radio personality whose music enthusiasm has captivated listeners of World Cafe® since 1991. World Cafe is produced by WXPN, the public radio service of the University of Pennsylvania.