Ain't Never Been Easy is a play with music about an important chapter in the history of the African American community and our country as a whole. Over many decades, Black America has searched for paths to liberation, freedom and equality. That search has led in many directions, and to this day it remains unfinished.
During the 1930's, a significant number of Black leaders, from W.E.B. Du Bois to Harry Haywood to Paul Robeson, turned to communism to solve the triple issues of social, racial and economic injustice. Ordinary African Americans in places like Birmingham, Alabama followed suit, and Ain't Never Been Easy tells their story.
The play reveals a piece of American history that's rarely taught in schools and universities. It's of particular interest to the playwright, Dan Friedman, whose father was a union organizer and who has devoted his adult life to progressive political activism.