“Ranky Tanky is an ancestral funk band. Their members are variously jazz and gospel trained, but as a collective, ancestral funk is their genre. I know because they start Ranky Tanky, their first album, with horns on the three and four, but Good Time, their second one, released in July, with bass on the one.”
In the wake of the 50th anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin L. King, Jr. in Memphis, essayist and scholar Zandria F. Robinson wonders what has changed in the city in the intervening years and sheds a light on what hasn’t.
When writer and scholar Zandria F. Robinson tries to understand what makes “southernness” a distinct quality in music, food, language, or attitudes about race, she realizes that borders and categories are porous.