The BBC Comes to Harlem

This was a tip left courtesy of Around Harlem. Look for them well…around Harlem.

On Wed. March 21st, the BBC show “World Have Your Say” will be trotting around the globe to Harlem. The live broadcast will be taking place at:

Sylvia’s Soul Food Restaurant
328 Lenox Avenue,
between 126th and 127th Street,
1 pm Wednesday, March 21st

People in the audience and around the world will be discussing the news of the day, as well as the issues that are most important to them. If you would like to join the audience email

Log onto the Official BBC Link [BBC]

NYOIL, the artist responsible for the controversial song and video “Y’all Should All Get Lynched” is co-hosting “World Have Your Say”, BBC World Service radio’s global discussion program live in New York on Wednesday March 21st.

NYOIL is the voice of change in hip hop and the African-American Community, so don’t miss this opportunity to see him in action!

If you would like to participate in the discussion, but can’t make it to Sylvia’s you can still participate:
Telephone: (212) 501-1547
To learn more about NY Oil go to his official myspace page [myspace]


7 thoughts on “The BBC Comes to Harlem

  1. Thank you for taking the time to post this event.

    I belive that dialogue is a good starting point.

    Let’s start the process and hopefully people such as the poster above can work from where they are to make the changes that are necessary.

    it is true that there are much more significant problems that need adressing.. in fact.. truthfully the usupation of Americans Civil and Constitutional rights thru fear tactics and partisan politics is more a pressing matter than anything posted as yet in my opinion..
    but that isn’t the forum we have to build from .. nor is it a time of our choosing. Let’s work WITH what we have and make it work FOR us.

    Anyone can point out what isn’t going to work.. show me how to make it work.. and that will be impressive.



  2. Hi,
    Many thanks for your comments, I’m a producer on the program and thought I’d try to respond to some of your points.

    Firstly, as Alyse says, we are a live show and unfortunately have no choice but to broadcast during the day because of our time slot of 5pm – 7pm UK time. I totally agree we would reach more people in the evening, in fact, one of my most difficult jobs has been asking people to come along at the time we air, but there really is no way around it. We discuss various issues on the show, but are primarily a news programe, and must react to news stories if they break.
    I do hope some people can come down on their lunchbreak, though I would find it laughable if someone suggested that to me in London – lunch is generally a sandwich in front of the computer!

    I was purposely vague when asked what topics we will be discussing as I really don’t know. We never fail to be surprised by the outcome of our programes when on the road. We recently spent a week in India, the global media was saturated by the story of Bollywood star Shilpa Shetty being subject to racist bullying in the UK Big Brother house. We spoke to people in four cities over five days, the topic didn’t come up once. Seems it was only an issue in the media!
    All your suggestions very welcome, please e-mail me directly with any other ideas, I will certainly look into the NAACP, and make sure your other comments are read out on air. You can also contribute directly to our program blog if you like, I’ll be putting up a new post about the Harlem show later:

    NY Oil’s role as co-host doesn’t mean we will be discussing the use of the N word. In fact, we’ve talked about it on the show a couple of times already so are kind of hoping we won’t again. But maybe the people at Sylvia’s, or our audience who call, text and e-mail the show want to. NY Oil was a guest back in January, it was one of our best shows and we got an incredible response from listeners. We really wanted to get him back on one day, and when better than during a visit to New York?

    As for the event taking place at Sylvia’s, one of the main reasons is actually technical. We are reliant on ISDN phone lines so we can broadcast around the world, and Syvlia’s has had them put in before. Unfortunately, I found out yesterday this doesn’t ensure an easy ride, and I still don’t know as I type this how it’s going to be fixed….but I won’t bore you with all that! The room is perfect size, it is central, and open during the day, so I thought it might encourage people grabbing lunch to come through and join in.

    Of course we are subject to many restrictions when putting out this show, and are the first to hold out hands up and say we got it wrong. But you are the only ones who can tell us why, which is why your comments are very welcome and I will be passing them on to the rest of the team when they arrive in Harlem this evening. They broadcast from Columbus later today, having done the first show of the week from Cleveland yesterday. Here’s a blog I just found about that programe, which I hope gives a better idea of what we try and do:

    Thanks again,

  3. 4, First of all by simply holding the event at Sylvia’s in the first place says a lot about how out of touch you are to current Harlem. Your event will basically be guest who are preaching to the converted.

    It’s a total waste and absurd to have this N-Word guy as a guest. Why? at the end of the day it’s insignificant, he’s simply drawing attention to himself, that’s all. However you don’t care about meaningful content, you basically want “trigger” content to cause a little ruckus.

    A far far more significant matter within Black culture is the demise of the NAACP and Bruce Gordon resigning and noting it’s impossible to answer to a board of 46 people of old timers, the average age of a member is 46, and very very very few Black people under 45 care to be bothered with what is largely today a dysfunctional organization.

    Now the demise of the NAACP is significant. But addressing it, its problems, etc. is nuanced, slightly complex, etc. whereas talking about censoring the N-Word is a simlple sound bite and easy to comprehend, but unfortunately insignificant.

    You’re engaging in insignificant consumption while neglecting significant subject matter. Have fun tossing raw meat to the crowd. The Blunt truth? Half of your crowd will be on fixed income, 25% unemployed, and the remaining 25% will make less than $50K/year.

    Unfortunately in our country the demographics of your crowd carry no weight or influence in the shaping of Harlem going forward. Are you ready to start your radio show by declaring that truth?

    I could easily sit on your panel and wack Bailey, the N Word guy, etc. present the “other side” from an economic reality standpoint. Eerrrrr, but I’ll be busy, _working_. Tell your audience to try it some time.

  4. The reason it is taking place in the afternoon is because it is a live talk show that airs at 6pm in the UK or 1pm EDT. This is not a community organized event or a town hall meeting it is a radio program from the UK, heard all over the world on BBC World Service Radio, coming to do their show for a day in Harlem and discuss topics affecting the local community.

  5. I agree with your comments. I think the event would have been more valuable and authentic if it had been held in the evening.

    However, I think it will still be interesting to see what issues are raised by the members of the community who are able to attend. Are their opinions and concerns not valid because they can’t afford a million dollar condo?

    Also, an invitation has been extended to those who are influential in shaping the Harlem of today (Empowerment Zone and Harlem Business Alliance representatives, representatives from local cultural institutions, and other members of the media.)

    Finally, it’s not my event. I was asked to help spread the word. See below to contact one of the producers of the event.

    “As always, we will talk about what the audience wants to talk about – if you live in the area and would like to come along, please e-mail me directly and I will be in touch.

  6. These events generally draw and attract “loudmouths”. The hardcore truth is Bailey represents yesterday, the Harlem that’s dying. The N-word guy? Give me a break, laughable. The state of the NAACP is of far more pressing concern, total disarray, Gordon says “to hell with you and this wacked NAACP board of too many damn directors”.

    The people that are significant and shaping Harlem going forward will be too busy working, grinding, being productive and making money to bother with your radio event. That’s real talk, can you hang with it? You’re event will comprise the insignificant at the end of the day. No one who’s bought a $2M+ condo at 111 CPN or a $1M condo at Loft 124 will be at your event. They will be making money.

    Can you dig that? Black folks and white folks that are Harlem’s future will be working and clocking dollars, while you all are bickering, complaining, blah blah blah’ing etc. The next day will come and your event will be insignificant compared to the money those working made that day and how they influence Harlem. That’s life, can you deal with it?

  7. More Info from The Producer:

    “It [the topic] does very much depend what the audience wants to talk about, though one common topic that keeps coming up is gentrification. There may also be a big breaking news story that cuts into that too. I tend to emphasize the point of our show is the audience and their issues.

    There will be people from the local community, Nellie Bailey from the tenants association, some local Republican representatives, and the producer who’s been helping me from New York has invited Leroy Comrie, who proposed the N word ban, we’re pretty sure he’s coming along.”


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