words by CHARLENE WIGGINS
Brooklyn artist Jidenna, signed to Janelle Monae’s Woodland Records, put a Cab Calloway effect over the entire beat. The visual to “Classic Man” was refreshing to the eyes, in terms of opposing how black men are portrayed by the media. In his three piece suit, Jidenna peacefully resolves a “Stop and Frisk” encounter.
‘I’m a Classic man
You can be mean when you look this clean
I’m a Classic man
Calling on me like a young OG
I’m Classic Man
Your needs get met by the street, elegant old fashioned man
Yeah baby I’m a Classic Man”
With a Jacob Miller swag, Brooklyn artists Ily Culcha and Isaac Faith, (Youth Black Faith Label) put a “Lion of Judah” stamp for “Rastafari” over the production in “Rastaman Refix.” Waving the banner red, gold and green they discuss Nyabinghi chants over firewood, health and nutrition and overcoming Babylon’s systemic oppression.
“I’m a Rastaman
You can be mean
When you live this clean
I’m a Rastaman
Collard green, beans, I don’t want no meat
I’m a Rastaman
Really Natty Bongo, INI not no Fashion Dread
Nah, I’m a Rastaman”
The visual features Empress Black Pearl and children in cultural fashion. Most symbolic is the little boy with a Kente cloth cape, representing the power in the Pan African view. Scenic natural images of Brooklyn’s Prospect Park and of Haile Selassie I the First, flow well with the lyrics of the song.
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No stranger to the concept of hard work, Bucky Ital (Mr. Do A Ting For Di Poor) returns to the scene with a strong single, “WORK HARD”
On this offering, Bucky makes it no secret that he doesn’t work for free as reggae music is his “job”.
Produced by Vision House Record, cover art by King Knotti.