Wednesday, February 25, 2009


A house drum and harp arpeggios introduce you to a baritone rapper who enters his rap on the one, like a bass line. A calm fusion of body rockin' and slow grinding will occur in the shoulders upon impact. Like a connoisseur, he invites all to a dreamy setting of beautiful bodies unifying through the Soul Banger, a masterpiece composed and produced by the ever soaring Jah C. The looping drum line is constantly enlivened throughout the track by sonic and scenic chords bursting from the hip. In perfect Jah C aesthetic, the saxophone, application by Jesse W. takes the fusion from house to hip hop to afrobeat, an only natural progression from this Ghanian descendant.

As magical and seductive as the rhythm is, the lyrical discussion of Soul Banger is also appealing and productive. Both MC's, Jah C and later, his feature Cavalier of The Dugout express their physical attraction and motivation to connect to another 'soul banger', a confident lady creator and innovator memorized by the music. There are no overt comments about taking the feeling beyond the dance, which welcomes all to participate. Cavalier goes so far as to express how savage and open all can feel in the very moment because the soul is what is supposed to be- exposed, not just the flesh. That is not to say these are self conscious, natural black righteous lyrics; Jah C early on makes clear "I sight boo's sky blue sun dress, that's what I wanna get her out of". But the choice to explain his desire and not his actions in bed offered a more mature and attractive point of view that makes a dancer like me want to dance harder to respond to such a call. Cav reiterates the carnal feeling within the hand claps with his lines like, " hands all in her mane and he got the tangles combed out". Through vocal dynamics and syncopation he brings the image of a ferocious dance and intensive blast between souls.

Throughout the song, Jah C's deep authoritative voice repeats the incantation "just let your soul be free". The control and clarity of his voice create colors and movement that allow the fun-filled song to also find appreciation as a spiritual and functional music, beyond its entertainment value. The music video further supports this. Beautiful women and girls, casually and elegantly dressed, smile and dance hard, not to impress but to share their self image with the world, rather than to turn everyone on. Grown hard core rappers, educators and businessmen are also seen dancing just as hard if not harder. So easily any man or woman could close their eyes and just allow the body to take the advice of the lyrics to release themselves from any pretension. There isn't a right or wrong way to feel a Soul Banger. A call on spirits is a call on everyone. And in this new day we need less music for markets and more music for spirits. The video again prepares you for the new philosophy and communities within today's Diaspora music genres.

Everyone featured in the video was there because they too are Soul Bangers and world changers, no extras for the camera to enjoy, just a real beautiful family of friends. A quotable from Jah C that truly represents the intent of the song was, " You and I unify through a vibe that grew as the music thrived". This is the responsibility and commonality we mustn't forget in this divine 2009. The days of being the glorified aristocrat rapper with money and naked bodies as power tools are tired and done for. Gentlemen with an endurance to provide more than gold for themselves will create wealth in this new day. As a man and an artist, Jah C strives to cultivate and facilitate a society of many leaders, something that is made apparent in the music and the music video. Being so developed musically after 7 years of production progress and a lifetime of rhyming, Jah C's music is and has been ahead of most people, most of the time, but humbly he hasn't had to leave any aspects of himself, his hood or his heart behind.

So why is it necessary to discuss Jah C and his rock-hop as historical diaspora music? To start, the instrumentation clearly reflects jazz, afro beat, break beat, ambient instrumental, and Caribbean influences. Plus in true Diaspora nature, his years of dedicated production and rhyming have led him to his own evolved music. Jah C and his avant-garde sound, demonstrates graceful synchronization of world influences, a necessary value for diaspora culture continuity. The ability to fuse and make a new force out of so many powerful ideas and points of view; not only satisfies me as a listener, but prepares me for the many beautifully melodic, hip shaking, cool skool songs Jah will have to share.

check out the video here:

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