A musician/drummer, 32-years-old Corey Jones was coming home from a performance when his car broke down. While he waited on the side of the road, an off-duty police officer approached Jones. Minutes later, Jones was dead. Bullets riddled his back as he lay on the side of I-95 in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. The cop, Nouman K. Raja, was convicted of murder. Five years after Corey’s needless death, the pain still lingers for the Jones family and all those who knew Corey. On February 3rd, what will be Corey Jones’s 37th birthday, writer/producer, Jeff Mustard, under his media banner, Equal Justice Studios, releases “Keeping the Beat Alive,” a mini-documentary (9:53) in which the Jones family shares intimate details of the beautiful soul of a rising (drummer/artist/musician), a son, brother, uncle, nephew and friend to so many.
THE YEAR – 2020 – “UNPRECEDENTED”
The year 2020 was, as many have said over and over, in one descriptive word – unprecedented. “Unprecedented” is an appropriate adjective for many reasons, and not in the wonderful sense. Make of it what you will of the Trump Administration and the absolute chaos that washed over America and its exhausted, weary, anxiety-ridden, and brow-beaten citizens. Then, there was the George Floyd Murder. Mr. Floyd’s death triggered and revitalized what would become one of the most significant civil rights movements in the past fifty years.
“ENOUGH” – THE GEORGE FLOYD/COREY JONES/BLM ANTHEM
The George Floyd Murder inspired tv writer/producer, music writer/producer Jeff Mustard to write lyrics to a song that would become an honest, full-on reflection of historical racism in the country. The two-part song, “Enough,” opens with a “400 years review of the African American enslavement experience.” Part 2 of the song, “Arrest, Death, Revolution,” is an in-the-face, unflinching assault on the systemic racism that lurks just beneath the veneer of American culture and society at large. “This song was an expression of my outrage of the George Floyd Murder,” says Mustard.
THE COREY JONES CONNECTION
When Mustard went to produce the song in Delray Beach, Florida, where Mustard lives and where Corey Jones worked for the City of Delray Beach, he needed a rapper. By cosmic coincidence, Mustard was introduced to Ethan Dangerwing. Dangerwing, known in music circles as The Vulture, is Corey Jones’s cousin. “It seemed not only remarkable,” says Mustard, “That the universe put Ethan and me together, but it made total sense to also dedicate this song to Corey, who, like George, was a black man killed needlessly by a police officer.”
AND THEN – A MUSIC VIDEO
While shooting the music video in August for Enough, on a Jones Family 16-acre farm in West Lantana, the production was covered by local South Florida television news; wearing his “producer hat,” Mustard had the idea to take the project one step further. Working closely with the Jones family, Mustard initiated the notion that as October 18th (2020) was approaching, the day Corey was shot, it would be the 5th anniversary of Corey’s death. “I didn’t want this date to come and go without acknowledgment,” says Mustard.
“I approached the city of Delray Beach, and in rapid time, less than two months, working with the City Commissioners, sought to have October 18th of every year dedicated as Corey Jones Tribute day.” The city agreed. On October 16th, there was a significant press conference where the Jones family was presented with an Official Proclamation. National Civil Rights attorney and activist, who was also Corey Jones Attorney, Benjamin Crump, provided a moving 3-minute video shown during the press conference. Crump eulogized Corey’s life, recognized the cultural and ethnic challenges facing the country today, and lauded the overarching value and purpose of the mini-doc in today’s environment of racial injustice.
Listen to the Music, Watch the Music Video: www.EqualJusticeStudios.com
“KEEPING THE BEAT ALIVE” – THE COREY JONES MINI-DOCUMENTARY
“As we were shooting the music video,” says Mustard, “various members of the Jones family were present. Recognizing that this was a precious but highly sensitive moment, and a unique opportunity, Mustard broached the idea of interviewing key family members and acquaintances. “They agreed,” says Mustard, who points out that “this was a way to not only pay tribute to Corey, but to get these extraordinary insights into the life, soul, and spirit of this exceptional young man.”
BLACK HISTORY MONTH + COREY JONES BIRTHDAY = MINI-DOC RELEASE
Mustard points out the other divine, a cosmic coincidence that has propelled so much of this entire George Floyd/Corey Jones Project from the very beginning, which leads to the timing for the release of “Keeping the Beat Alive.” “Putting Corey’s mini-doc out there now, at this time, could not be more appropriate than on Corey’s birthday, which also coincides with Black History Month,” says Mustard. 736
ABOUT EQUAL JUSTICE STUDIOS | JEFF MUSTARD
Compelled into action by the George Floyd murder, Equal Justice Studios [EJS] launched its mission of “Bringing Stories That Matter, To Life” with a powerful signature soundtrack — “Enough.” The two-part song, inspired by George Floyd’s death, expresses the pain, sorrow, injustice, and inequality in America today. It is also an in-the-face, full-on reflection of the country’s horrible truths–past and present. EJS is dedicated to writing, producing, and creating – music, tv, and media projects that amplify a host of social justice causes, including environmental issues facing the country.
EJS is in the middle of producing a powerful social justice album. “American Carnage” is a soon to be released six-song LP. All the songs are written, two are produced. The first to be released, titled, “Insurrection” is a “cultural, political and social song reflecting the great crises facing the country. “Insurrection was titled differently,” says Mustard, “but the events of January 6th inspired a new title and rewrite of an opening verse. The song will be released, in tandem in the coming weeks simultaneous with the Second Impeachment of the President.” As the liner notes state, “American Carnage” is “An Album Four Years in the Making”… “100 Alternate Facts Free.”