video premiere: soul singer/songwriter and amy león reimagines birmingham church 1963 for impassioned protest anthem “burning in birmingham”

June 16, 2016

It’s incredible how events of the past can linger so deeply within us that erupts. One such eruption for singer/writer/spoken word artist Amy León is the 1963 Birmingham Church bombing that killed Addie Mae Collins, Cynthia Wesley, Carole Robertson and Carol Denise McNair and pushed the Civil Rights Movement into full throttle. In her latest video and single release for her song “Burning in Birmingham,” the Brooklyn-based singer’s performance utterly radiates with blistering emotional honesty, rage, and frustration over the historical and institutional abuse of black people in America. “’Burning in Birmingham’ is a song of protest and reckoning, looking at the cyclical nature of racism in America. This piece was written for an event where I was asked to perform alongside a conversation with Sabryna Fulton, Trayvon Martin’s mother, discussing police brutality in America and the rise of necessary action,” León tells AFROPUNK.

“Burning in Birmingham” is the lead single from Amy’s forthcoming debut album Bleach, out this fall.

By Erin White*, AFROPUNK contributor

*Erin White is an Atlanta-based writer and AFROPUNK’s editorial and social media assistant. You can follow her on Tumblr or friend her on Facebook. Have a pitch or an inquiry? Shoot her an email at