I’m personally of the belief that we don’t have to wait for a certain month to celebrate the creative gifts of Black artists and musicians. But since it is Black History Month, and I also firmly believe that we should never give up the chance at a celebration, celebrate we shall! In that spirit, for this New Music Friday I wanted to share the work of some incredible Black artists that have new music out, or coming out soon.
I first discovered Haviah when she was part of The Sorority, a group of female MCs that blew minds and broke hearts every time they took the stage. Now breaking out on her own, Haviah s Toronto’s rising hip hop star, continuously making waves and putting out bangers. “Obeah”, her latest single is no exception. Says Haviah, “Being of Caribbean descent, I’ve heard many stories throughout my life of ‘Obeah man’ and ‘Obeah woman’ from family and friends, ‘Obeah’ being an occult power and celebrated secret religion which disturbs the natural flow of events by way of spells, spirituality and hidden practices. Though difficult to define, it is a religion of resistance, a belief that you can manipulate yours or other peoples’ destinies – often used in the context of those people that are close to you, but aspire to cause you harm by thought or action. This song, using this Jamaican reference, speaks directly to the idea that the energy around you can bring you down, and that sometimes it’s those that are closest to you that you need to be aware of.”
I got the chance to moonlight briefly with another publication to interview Charmaine, an up and coming hip hop artist with huge Meg Thee Stallion meets Kardi B energy. Charmaine’s come up is an incredibly inspiring story, and her whole vibe and energy just brought me life in our conversation. Read about our chat here and check out her single “Bold” here. Warning: you won’t be able to resist moving to this track (one positive of working from home is you won’t have to!)
Born and raised in South-Central Trinidad, John Orpheus is a multi-cultural and multi-disciplinarian artist. Along with being a musician, John Orpheus, or Antonio Michael Downing as he was born, is now published author. He released his memoir Saga Boy in January, and will be showcasing both sides of his artistry with the release of the album of the same name. Saga Boy will be the sonic companion to the memoir, and will come out on May 21st. Check out the first single from Saga Boy, “Fela Awoke (I miss you)” here:
I discovered Mobley at my first SXSW music festival. I was blown away that a single person on a stage could make such incredible music. Now Mobley has a new EP on the way, and I can’t wait for the world to hear it. For now, check out his single “James Crow” from the upcoming Young and Dying in the Occident Supreme
Run the Jewels
Run the Jewels have countless tunes you can crank in their discography, but their latest release is a totally new vibe. Run The Jewels have shared a remix of their acclaimed RTJ4 single “ooh la la” by Mexican Institute of Sound with an added verse by Santa Fe Klan(aka Ángel Quezada). The hip hop tune is reinvigorated with Cumbia and Mariachi influences, and this animated video is just the thing to break up your pandemic news doom scrolling.