This episode features the rise and fall of Johnny Eng, one of the most notorious drug traffickers in the history of Manhattan's Chinatown. A one-time informant for the DEA, "Machine Gun Johnny" thought he could snitch on all his rivals to monopolize the heroin trade on the eastern seaboard. The special task force set up by the DEA would chase Eng all the way to Hong Kong. Eventually extradited to the U.S., Eng would hire John Gotti's lawyer to defend him against a prosecutor known as "The Dragon Lady."
This episode explores the case of Luis Felipe, also known as "King Blood." From a prison cell, Felipe founded the New York chapter of the Latin Kings street gang. Felipe's own writings would incriminate him as the orchestrator of murders and crimes against his own members. He is now serving a life sentence in solitary confinement.
A short biography of Billie "Lady Day" Holiday.
After a troubled childhood, Billie Holiday discovered the Harlem jazz scene. Though she had no formal training, and her voice was limited in range, it was poignant, expressive and displayed a unique phrasing.
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After the Civil War, many of the country's best and brightest black advocates, artists, entrepreneurs and intellectuals moved to the New York City neighborhood of Harlem. Thanks largely to the efforts of these residents, Harlem became both the cradle of a cultural revolution and the heart of the civil rights movement. Meet some of the many people who gave—and continue to give—this neighborhood a voice, simply by calling it home.
Famous Harlem Residents
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Many African-Americans made their name performing at the Apollo Theater in Harlem, including Ella Fitzgerald, James Brown and Jimi Hendrix. The roster of talented artists who made their careers after a successful amateur night at the Apollo grew so large, that the venue earned a reputation as the place to jump-start the career of an ambitious hopeful. Other performers, like Aretha Franklin and Michael Jackson, came to the theater after experiencing big professional success, adding further credibility to the historic New York concert hall. Explore the biographies of some of the more notable African-Americans who stepped out onto the Apollo stage, making entertainment history.
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In the 1920s, women like Ma Rainey and Bessie Smith were the first—and for a while, the only—artists to record the blues. American women of this era made great strides toward gaining equality and basic human rights for themselves and others in society, including attaining the right to vote and working toward social justice. The 20th century was a wide-open opportunity for women to embrace the modern world, outside of the traditional bounds of the home.
Foremothers of Rock
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