The choice was between music and track. Fortunately for all of us, this Charlotte-based hip-hop R&B singer chose music.
For the cover of the April 20, 2018, issue of Creative Loading in Charlotte, we recreated an iconic Village Voice hip-hop cover. The idea was to prop up the Charlotte hip-hop scene and to acknowledge 420 — the international annual Weed Day celebration. We had a blast doing the cover shoot.
Kevin “Mercury” Carter released a homemade six-song EP that reveals a vocalist of uncommon abilities. Not only does his extraordinary range rival those of Prince, Mariah Carey, and Queen’s Freddie Mercury, but Carter’s nuanced sense of tone and dynamics, the melodic creativity of his arrangements, and his mature lyrical abilities are as remarkable as his voice.
In 2012, within the span of two months, North Carolina lost two of its most famous and most loved musical voices, Doc Watson and Earl Scruggs. This was my tribute to them.
I was talking to a friend recently about police violence against people of color. It hasn’t stopped. According to January 2023 data from Mapping Police Violence, Black people are still three times more likely to die at the hands of police than white people, even though they were 1.3 times less likely to be armed.
A talented and energetic young singer-songwriter named Le Anna Eden decided that Charlotte, North Carolina, needed a Black alternative music festival. So she gathered her tribe and made it happen.
This Oakland outfit continues to create danceable manifestos for the masses: “I got scars on my back, the truth on my tongue,” front man Boots Riley raps. “Tell Homeland Security we are the bomb.”
By 2012, Erykah Badu had undergone a beautiful evolution from pioneer of late-’90s neosoul to hard-hitting, politically inspired, space-funk godchild of George Clinton. I needed to talk to her. And so I did.
The old grey Jack Kerouac sweatshirt that dated back to my college years in the early ’80s was nowhere to be found. But today it’s in good hands.
With the recent election of Barack Obama as president of the United States, TV on the Radio may have been the most American band making music in 2008. Little did we know then that the country would face a vicious and sustained backlash that continues to threaten our democracy.