A lot of young blacks in America didn't know this, and everybody may not agree here, but although we called this style the afro, it never really was a true style for modern Africa, especially the men. I want to focus on the large afro, the bush as we called it back in the day. I came to this conclusion when I sat down one day and realized that back when it came out in the late 60's, most brothers couldn't grow the Jackson 5 bush very fast, the group that made the hair style popular on their Ed Sullivan debut...Michael in particular. You were lucky to get a Marlon. You had to have that perfect combination of natural hair and some admixture in your hair texture for it to grow fast and stand up bushy without doing much to it. When I think back, I only knew a handful of brothers who had it like that, and I wasn't one of them. The rest of us had to platt or cornrow our hair every night, then blow dry it right after taking them out in the morning. My bush would wound up lopsided by the time I got home from school. I guess this was my version of the Afro-Sheen Blowout Kit. I never did buy that product from the store, or understood how that was suppose to work. But I knew it wasn't going to blow out in one minute, the way that bomb made it sound on that Soul Train commercial. So being a brother with hair long enough to platt didn't necessarily mean you could wear a bush that easy. Again, that was why you platted it...so you could get it to stand up straight enough to wear the bush. Then you had some brothers who had the Richard Roundtree length, however that wasn't really a bush...but keeping it like that was enough maintenance by itself with all that Afro-Sheen. Then you had some brothers who couldn't grow long hair fast enough at all. You may have seen them try to wear the bush once or twice. Their bush would get no larger than a half inch. These were the brothers who made it look worst trying to get a bush, and probably did better by not wearing a bush at all, including the Richard Roundtree afro. So when I thought about all the maintenance that came with keeping a bush, we worked on our hair almost like women. Something don't sound right about that. Today, imagining a man wearing his bush as big as his woman beside him, wouldn't look quite as manly as it did to me in the past. Back then, it seemed like the bigger your bush was, the more man you were, or the more black you were, or the more women liked you. When I look at all the damage we use to do to our hair, I feel sorry for the young brothers if that style ever comes back and stay, like it did in the late 60's. I think they learned something from us however, and kept it low or bald. Then when you think about Africans, West Africans who we come from in particular, this couldn't have been a popular hair style, if at all. If so many African-American men with their already mixed hair texture, could barely wear a bush without doing things to it like the Afro-Sheen Blowout Kit, then how could those African men with even less admixture in their hair texture easily worn a bush, or even have wanted to. Now I'm not saying nobody there could grow one, but I think if they did, the style most likely came from African-Americans. The only African men I could see wearing a bush, especially a curly bush easily, would be East or North Africans...that would be if the men ever wanted to grow hair that long in the first place. I think if any Africans grew bushes at all, it were mostly the women, and it would be various styles of the bush more likely, although they probably didn't call it a bush, and definitely not an afro. So why did we ever chose the name Afro in the first place, when most of them probably looked at us like we were crazy when they first seen us wearing them, especially the Billy Preston type bush or the Angela Davis style large afro in particular. This makes me think a little about that controversial video in the seventies with Louis Farrakhan saying African-Americans didn't need to be wearing their hair all wild and crazy, and piercing their bodies, then going on to say that we were not the same Africans that came on the middle passage, and that we've evolved. I can understand the body piercing part, but my common sense tells me that the wild hair in which I assume he was referring to the large afro or bush, wasn't necessarily a popular hair style with Africa. Maybe he was directing the comment more to the African-American women, especially after he mentioned the body piercing. The wild hair part may have been something to get everybodies attention.