Ernie Paniccioli - Remembering who we are
Brother Ernie Paniccioli is a legendary hip hop & culture historian, humanitarian, and self-taught photographer who has been ‘documenting the culture since the start.' My first meeting with Brother Ernie was in Vancouver where he said the feeling of being seen—truly seen and known—was more alive because Indigenous people are "everywhere." Unlike in Brooklyn where he grew up eight blocks away from Biggie Smalls. In this conversation, we track the history of hip hop as a global voice—a global power—and how it can teach us to inhabit a consciousness that promotes our collective wellbeing over a collective violence that he says, knowingly, only leads to the perpetuation of more violence. Here's a quote to kick us off, "If you're gonna love Tupac, if you're gonna love Biggie, then you have to look at it through a different lens—and that lens is how do we not hurt each other? How do we not expand on that violence? How do we not relive it? They say, History's best qualified to teach you, whether it's Germany and the Holocaust or the American Native situation. Unless you know your history, you're condemned to repeat it. So, my thing is very simple: let Tupac and Biggie rest in peace, but more importantly, learn from that and learn that violence creates more violence. What you eat, what you see, and what you absorb is what you become," he says before leading us into a list of recommendations to enlighten the mind and lighten the heart. Also, special side note, if you're catching this at the time of air, Brother Ernie's work is currently being displayed at the GRAMMY Museum Experience, at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey. The feature exhibit is called, “A Hip-Hop Life: Five Decades of Hip-Hop Music, Art and Culture" and displays early & exclusive, behind-the-scenes photos of Hip-Hop legends: Tupac, Biggie Smalls, Naughty By Nature, Lauryn Hill, the Fugees, Ice T, Chuck D, Queen Latifah, and many many more.