Tagged with "nation"
Some of the greatest Wrestlers of all time- The Nation of Domination Tags: nation domination word life production new quality entertainment greatest wrestlers all time featured blog

The original Nation of Domination was formed in 1996 in the USWA. The group was led by PG-13, (a tag team consisting of JC Ice and Wolfie D). The group also consisted of Kareem Olajuwon, Sir Mohammad, Akeem Mohammad, Elijah, Shaquille Ali, Randy X, and Queen Moisha. This group never really got off the ground in the USWA but they saw greater success in the WWF.

The heel group was originally formed in the WWF when wrestler Faarooq was joined by manager Clarence Mason. The two men were also accompanied by two unnamed actors, Albert Armstrong and William Beach, who were supposed to represent other members of the Nation. The group was based loosely on the Nation of Islam. The extremism of the group's pro-black theme at times including the 'Nation Salute' and Faarooq's angry tirades on the microphone garnered them an excessive amount of heat from fans in arenas. Other wrestlers joined the Nation over time, including (in order) PG-13, Crush, Savio Vega, and D'Lo Brown. This lineup of the group remained intact until Faarooq became angry with them and fired the entire group with the exception of Brown after Faarooq's loss to The Undertaker at King of the Ring 1997, where Faarooq lost the match (in part) to the distraction caused when Vega and Crush were arguing at ringside.

Faarooq promised that he would deliver a "bigger and blacker" version of the Nation, which led to the induction of Kama Mustafa and Ahmed Johnson into the group. Johnson would be forced out of the group due to injury and replaced by Rocky Maivia (later known as The Rock). Meanwhile, former Nation members Vega and Crush formed their own rival factions, Los Boricuas (made up entirely of Hispanic and Latino wrestlers) and the Disciples of Apocalypse (made up entirely of caucasian biker wrestlers) respectively. This led to a WWF style "gang war" that was heavily criticized for separating each faction by race, eventually turning the "gang war" into an angle based on racism.

In the following months, the Nation feuded with Los Boricuas and the Disciples of Apocalypse with Ahmed Johnson eventually starting feuds with the Nation as well. Toward the end of the year, "The World's Strongest Man" Mark Henry, joined the group in a tag team match by assaulting partner Ken Shamrock, with whom The Rock was feuding with at the time over the Intercontinental title.


UnrightAdded by Unright

In the beginning of 1998, The Rock went on to usurp leadership of the Nation from Faarooq, at which point the group dropped "of Domination" from its name and its militant focus permanently. Instead, The Rock's 'cool' gimmick spread throughout the faction with Nation members taking on considerably more hip characters, the most notable being Kama Mustafa's transformation into The Godfather. The Nation's primary focus by now saw to it that The Rock retained the Intercontinental title at any cost. The group engaged in a memorable rivalry with D-Generation X. At this time, Owen Hart, who had a past rivalry with D-Generation X leader, Triple H, would join the Nation. This was due to frustration Hart felt (kayfabe) towards the fans and his family as he felt they had abandoned him, and he 'snapped' and accepted The Nation as his real 'family' as a result. This highly popular feud saw the infamous parody DX performed in which they spoofed Nation members, The Rock thoroughly humiliating Chyna by alluding to a possible 'romantic' encounter between the two while the rest of DX were held at bay in their locker room by a forklift, a street fight between the two groups that wound up in Triple H being, in particular, singled out by the rest of the group and being beaten down with a ladder, and X-Pac & D'Lo trading back and forth the WWF European Championship.

Fall of The Nation

Toward the end of the year, the group showed signs of dissension as The Rock's mannerisms and swagger began to catch on with fans. The WWF could no longer ignore the cheers and adoration of the live crowds, so The Rock once again turned face. Owen Hart left the group when he believed there wasn't enough room for The Rock's ego and himself. The Rock would later be assaulted by D'Lo Brown and Mark Henry in October 1998 which would ultimately be the end of the Nation.

Shortly after, The Rock decided to run solo, riding his immense rise in popularity. He would be added to Vince McMahon's Corporation stable and would subsequently enjoy several years of success.

Owen Hart would go on to form a successful tag team with Jeff Jarrett, and later revive his Blue Blazer character before his untimely death in May 1999.

D'Lo Brown and Mark Henry would remain a tag team following the dissolution of The Nation, enjoying moderate success. After D'Lo attempted to help Mark Henry lose weight, Henry turned on D'Lo in the summer of 1999, ending the final remnants of the Nation of Domination. D'Lo would eventually hold both the Intercontinental and European titles at the height of his popularity. Mark Henry would form his "Sexual Chocolate" character and be involved in some angles of questionable quality until the development of his "Silverback" gimmick. As of now he and Faarooq (using his real name, Ron Simmons) are the two only former members who are still in the WWE.


Similar stables and tag teams in promotions outside of the WWF have used the 'militant minority' gimmick that The Nation was well known for. The Latino World Order in WCW was an nWo parody led by Eddie Guerrero consisted of almost every Hispanic wrestler on the roster and sought to 'take over' the promotion. Latino wrestlers Homicide and Kane D. partnered together as The Nation of Immigration in Jersey All Pro Wrestling. The Latin American Exchange (LAX), also co-formed by and including Homicide, were just as, if not more, militant than The Nation because of their street thug gang mentality and use of a particularly brutal style of violence as they pushed their political agenda. Theodore Long managed a loose stable of black wrestlers (including former Nation members Mark Henry and D'Lo Brown) known as Thuggin & Buggin Enterprises on WWE Raw from 2002-2004, whom he claimed were held back from main event success by WWE management because they were African-American.

Source: Pro-Wrestler Wiki

Abba: an international phenomenon Tags: international phenomenon abba ultimate rock classic word life production feature

Agnetha Fältskog (vocals; born April 5, 1950); Benny Andersson (keyboards; born December 16, 1946); Björn Ulvaeus (guitar; born April 24, 1945); Anni-Frid Lyngstad (vocals; born November 15, 1945)

ABBA rose out of Sweden in the Seventies to become one of the most successful and beloved pop groups in music history. Their success gave a more international flavor to popular music, broadening it beyond the English-speaking countries of origin. ABBA truly was an international phenomenon, topping charts and breaking records in England, France, Italy, Germany, Holland and Scandinavia. For a few years, ABBA ranked second only to automaker Volvo as Sweden’s biggest money-making export.

According to the RIAA, ABBA has sold more than 10 million records in the U.S. Estimates of worldwide sales range as high as 350 million. In the U.K. alone, these Swedish superstars charted 19 Top 10 singles (including nine that went to Number One) from 1974 to 1982. America proved somewhat more impervious to ABBA mania, as the group cracked the U.S. Top 10 only four times and hit Number One exactly once (with "Dancing Queen," in 1977). However, America got belatedly on board when the "jukebox musical" Mamma Mia!, based on the songs of ABBA, became a Broadway sensation. In December 2009, it became the 12th-longest-running Broadway show in history as it closed in on its 3,400th performance. Mamma Mia!, which premiered in London in 1999, has played around the world to an estimated 40 million people. A film version and accompanying soundtrack were released in 2008. All of this further fueled ABBA mania, which remains in high throttle three decades after the group’s breakup in 1982.

The seeds for ABBA’s decade of infectious, effervescent pop were sewn in 1966, when Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus met. The two were already rock stars in Sweden, where Björn played guitar with the Hootenanny Singers and Benny was keyboardist with the Hep Stars (referred to in their homeland as "the Swedish Beatles"), They made some records as a duo, using the name Björn and Benny. In 1972, they recorded one of their songs using Björn’s wife, Agnetha Fältskog, and Benny’s wife-to-be, Anni-Frid Lyngstad ("Frida," for short), as backing vocalists. Cut in a studio in Stockholm in March 1972, "People Need Love" was credited to "Björn and Benny, Agnetha and Anni-Frid," as the ABBA acronym had not yet been devised. (Technically, the first "B" in ABBA is backward, according to the band’s copyrighted logo.) "People Need Love" became a Swedish hit and was issued in America on Playboy Records (an offshoot of the magazine), which peculiarly amended the credit to "Björn and Benny (with Svenska Flicka)" – meaning "Swedish girl."

ABBA’s breakthrough came in 1974, when their song "Waterloo" won the Eurovision Song Contest. It topped the charts in many countries, including Britain, and even hit Number Six in the U.S. With its ringing harmonies and surging melody, "Waterloo" recalled the tuneful, high-energy songs of the girl-group era and the British Invasion at a time when infectious pop songcraft was in short supply. There was much more to come from ABBA in this vein. A year after the success of "Waterloo," they scored again with "SOS," reaching Number Six in the U.K. and Number 15 in the U.S. ABBA became a fixture on the world charts.

Their mounting success resulted in sustained chart feats of Beatles-like proportions. Over a six-year period, from late 1975 through early 1982, ABBA released 15 consecutive singles that placed in the U.K. Top Five. Eight of those were Number One hits: "Mamma Mia," "Fernando," "Dancing Queen," "Knowing Me Knowing You," "The Name of the Game," "Take a Chance on Me," "The Winner Takes It All" and "Super Trouper." The singles "Does Your Mother Know" and "I Have a Dream" just fell short, reaching Number Two. Four others stopped at Number Three: "Money, Money, Money," "Angeleyes/ Voulez-Vous," "Gimme Gimme Gimme (A Man after Midnight)" and "One of Us." All are driven by the soaring, harmonized lead vocals of Agnetha and Anna-Frid and the songwriting and production of Björn and Benny.

From 1975 to 1980, ABBA spent 43 weeks atop Britain’s album charts – a feat equaled by no one. By contrast, the group only topped the American album and singles charts once: in April 1977, when "Dancing Queen" hit Number One for a week. For this reason, as Billboard wrote, "the members of ABBA consider America to be their only failure." Even so, they placed 20 songs in the Hot 100 and have seen eight of their albums certified gold or platinum by the RIAA.

In fact, much of ABBA’s American success came belatedly, after their 1982 breakup. Internal tensions stemming from the divorces of the two couples recalled similar turbulence within Fleetwood Mac during the making of that band’s Rumours. Agnetha and Björn separated in late 1978, and Benny and Anni-Frid split up in early 1981. They recorded their final album, The Visitors, before disbanding in 1982. Benny and Björn thereupon set about working on the musical Chess with Tim Rice, while Agnetha and Anni-Frid embarked on solo careers. ABBA has never regrouped.

An ABBA revival in the Nineties was sparked by the incredible success of Gold – Greatest Hits, which has sold 26 million copies worldwide, including six million in America. The comprehensive box set, Thank You for the Music, was released in 1994. The musical Mamma Mia! came at the end of the decade and carried the ABBA revival into the new millennium. In 2002, Universal Music remastered and reissued ABBA’s eight studio albums in expanded versions. An even more exhaustive box set, The Complete Studio Recordings, appeared in 2005. With ABBA’s 2010 induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, ABBA mania will continue for years to come.

BOB and Ziggy Marley and Black Internationalism Tags: bob ziggy marley black internationalism word life production music hall of fame

During the 1970’s and 1980’s, many African Americans relished the music of Bob Marley of Jamaica (1945-1981), embraced his Rastafarian beliefs, and grew dreadlocks like those he wore.  Today, Marley enjoys virtually the same heroic stature in the black Diaspora as Martin Luther King Jr. and Nelson Mandela.  All three men dedicated their lives to the cause of racial and social justice.  King’s murder in 1968 occurred when he was most engaged in the struggle to forge workers, the poor and African Americans in a coalition against racism, poverty and war.  In the decade and a half after King’s death, Marley shaped reggae music to liberate the minds of his people from neocolonial oppression.  Across the Atlantic, Nelson Mandela survived twenty six years in prison before ending racial apartheid in South Africa.  Marley and Mandela attracted international audiences and followers at a time when issues affecting black Americans aroused little outside interest.  Moreover, Marley’s music also deepens our understanding of the birth of Hip-Hop or Rap music that emerged from the inner city neighborhoods of New York.  Hip-Hop’s subsequent spread around the world signaled the internationalization of African American and helped to unite the black Diaspora.

Marley was a son of the Urban Ghetto of Trench town in Kingston, Jamaica’s capital city.  As a young man he became a Rastafarian, the Jamaican culture and religious movement that held the black Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethiopia (1930-1974) to be divine and sought to win converts through reason and dialogue.  By 1968 Marley was fully engage in writing and performing music that merged culture, religion, and politics in a way that invited dance, but also challenged and excited its listeners’ intellect.  Especially noteworthy were Marley’s three concept albums: Survival, Uprising, and Confrontations, which brought together the themes that, framed his life and work celebrating black survival, challenging mental slavery, and constructing new visions for the future through defiance and hope.  According to scholar Anthony Bogues, “one not only dances to Marley, but one has to both LISTEN to Marley since he is both singing and engaging in social criticism.”  The lyrics, combined with Marley’s conversational style and use of poetry, chants, biblical imagery, and hypnotic offbeat reach across boundaries of class, race, gender, and region.  In “Trench Town” on the confrontation album, Marley sang:

Up a cane to wash my dread

Upon a rock I rest my head

There I vision through the sea of oppression

Don’t make my life a prison

We came from Trench Town…

Can we free our people with music

Lord we free the people with music

We free the people with music, sweet music


After Marley’s untimely death in 1981, his musical mission was taken up to the next step by his son Ziggy Marley.  Born in 1968, David Marley, nicknamed “Ziggy” by his father, grew up in Jamaica and the United States.  He began playing music at an early age and formed the band Melody Makers with his three siblings shortly after his father’s death.  Ziggy Marley carried on the reggae tradition but incorporated other sounds from African Diaspora, including blues rock and hip-hop.  In doing so, he continues his father’s tradition of international engagement and politically informed music.


Works cited:  Anthony Bogues, Black Heretics, and Black Prophets: Radical Political Intellectuals (New York: Routledge, 2003)

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