Human Rights Watch Slams Louisiana for Providing Inadequate Music Recording Facilities to Inmates

On the heels of castigating the state for failing to provide inmates with essential HIV services, the national advocacy group Human Rights Watch excoriated Louisiana for not offering modern recording facilities for incarcerated musicians.

HRW’s second round of criticism stems from a report this week about Corey Miller, better known as the rapper C-Murder, recently releasing a video for a new single titled “Dear Supreme Court/Under Pressure” while serving a life sentence in the Louisiana State Penitentiary at Angola for killing a teenage fan in a Harvey nightclub in 2002.

“Just listen to that sorry excuse for a rap song,” said Reed Brody, counsel and spokesman for HRW. “It’s nothing short of a tragedy, an outrageous, needless travesty that could have easily been avoided had the state of Louisiana ensured inmates have access to up-to-date recording studio equipment.”

While the video features an actor in a red baseball cap and sunglasses portraying him, the voice is reportedly Miller’s. Although Miller’s production team would not reveal how he recorded this particular song — or the rest of the album Penitentiary Chances, set to be released in April — Brody believes he knows how it was done.

“All of those albums he dropped while in jail are atrocious,” Brody claimed. “They’re like the prison tattoos of hip-hop.”

“They likely had to smuggle in a small digital recorder, possibly in someone’s rectum, so he could record the album in his cell,” Brody speculated. “No headphones. No playback. No feedback from a producer. Just an isolated prisoner muttering clumsily composed lyrics into a cheap, fecal-covered recorder you can buy for $10. And we have the nerve to call ourselves the greatest nation on Earth.”

Miller has released at least four albums while incarcerated, according to his Wikipedia page, and Brody says all of them stand as a testament to the need to provide prisoners with access to sound studios equipped with industry-standard technology.

“All of those albums he dropped while in jail are atrocious,” Brody claimed. “They’re like the prison tattoos of hip-hop.”

He continued, “How can the American people expect a rapper to sell enough albums to fund his legal appeals without the necessary facilities to record halfway decent songs? What kind of example does this set for our children when we allow this sorry excuse for music to permeate their ears simply because we failed to furnish inmates with decent recording equipment?”RedShtick-Top-ColumnStop

About Tony Swartz

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