Rosa Parks

Album: Aquemini (1998)
Charted: 55
  • songfacts ®
  • Artistfacts ®
  • Lyrics
  • Rosa Parks is a black civil rights activist from Alabama famous for refusing to give up her seat on a bus. In 1955, while riding the bus home from work, the driver ordered her to move to the back of the bus so a white man could have her seat. She refused and was arrested. This led to outrage in the black community, who boycotted public transportation in the city of Montgomery. It was a turning point in the US civil rights movement, as after a year of boycotts, segregation on busses was ruled unconstitutional. During the boycotts, Martin Luther King Jr. emerged as a leader in the black community, and was praised for his tactics of peaceful civil disobedience.
  • The song is about the entertainment industry. Parks is not actually mentioned in the lyrics and has nothing to do with the song, but she is referred to in the chorus of "Move to the back of the bus."
  • Parks sued Outkast over this, claiming it exploited her image. The case was settled in 2005, with Outkast and their record company agreeing "To enlighten today's youth about the significant role Rosa Parks played in making America a better place for all races." Parks was 92 when the case was settled.
  • The harmonica solo is by Andre's stepfather, Pastor Robert Hodo.
Please sign in or register to post comments.

Comments: 3

  • Tiaunna from Perris, Carosa parks didnt sue them...it was her publicist or something that did! she didnt have nothing against them
  • Nicole from Los Angeles, Carosa parks name is actually mentioned in the song!
  • Ryan from San Francisco, Carosa parks is sort of a punk. she came and spoke at my college once and all she was interested in talking about was her book that she was pushing. every question anyone had she was all, 'yeah, just read my book.' then, lo and behold after we walked out of the auditorium, there was a table set up with dudes selling her book. whatever. i mean, huh?
see more comments

John Lee HookerSongwriter Interviews

Into the vaults for Bruce Pollock's 1984 conversation with the esteemed bluesman. Hooker talks about transforming a Tony Bennett classic and why you don't have to be sad and lonely to write the blues.

Cheerleaders In Music VideosSong Writing

It started with a bouncy MTV classic. Nirvana and MCR made them scary, then Gwen, Avril and Madonna put on the pom poms.

Martin PageSongwriter Interviews

With Bernie Taupin, Martin co-wrote the #1 hits "We Built This City" and "These Dreams." After writing the Pretty Woman song for Go West, he had his own hit with "In the House of Stone and Light."

Steve Morse of Deep PurpleSongwriter Interviews

Deep Purple's guitarist since 1994, Steve talks about writing songs with the band and how he puts his own spin on "Smoke On The Water."

Taylor DayneSongwriter Interviews

Taylor talks about "The Machine" - the hits, the videos and Clive Davis.

Thomas DolbySongwriter Interviews

He wrote "She Blinded Me With Science" so he could direct a video about a home for deranged scientists.