[junkie-dropcap]T[/junkie-dropcap]here’s a place for us all. Ideally, that’s the promise of the land we live in. Unfortunately, this promise is far from realized for blacks. While the experience of being melanin born is beautiful. America seems to want to wash away the identity of blacks just as much as our color and contributions to this nation. Yet enslaving, extorting and plagiarising black cultural ideals. To gain change, the method of delivery must change. The memorandum must be unapologetic yet nurturing. Naturally, the conversation of the mistreatment of blacks in the United States is uncomfortable. Unmasking this conversation in all its forms will be a cornerstone to progress which without, we cannot truly understand the soul of the black man. Adrian Younge brings out these thoughts, values and emotions in a soulful excursion through the true black experience.
This latest opus “The American Negro” will naturally be fraught with many. That’s the intention. To be as brutally honest as necessary, regardless of the interpretation. Yet it never appears insensitive, Younge delivers a powerful message as if he’s speaking through you, never above you. It’s transcendent and carries a grace of passage that’s humbling to the listener. Harkening back reminders of our greatness as melanin endowed souls. Reflecting on our accomplishments and restoring the color to our incarnations. One would have to consider this a generational defining body of work solely on its timing and social relevance. Yet make no mistake, the trials of blacks in America will always hold relevance until we address them.
Hailing from Fontana, California. Younge followed in his father’s footsteps as a lawyer. He attended the American College of Law in Orange County, where he earned a Juris Doctor degree. He’s also taught entertainment law at his alma mater. This is likely where his art of instruction stems from. Younge’s ability to read, write and score music makes him a true renaissance man and master collaborator. Pulling up his work and credit sheet is absolutely incredible. He’s worked with artists from Kendrick Lamar to frequent collaborator and friend Ali Shaheed Muhammad of A Tribe Called Quest.
Adrian Younge’s greatest gift is his ability to bring out the best in those he collaborates with. This skill is just as vital as knowing how to pull the foremost out of yourself. Pushing himself to his most profound limits. Yet creating contemplative music that hits your core. So for reference, listen to The Midnight Hour in records such as “Feel Alive” and “Questions”. In 2020, the two released “Jazz is Dead 001” enlisting the talents of musicians such as Roy Ayers, Brian Jackson, Marcos Valle, Gary Bartz, and more. What stands true throughout these musical efforts is the scrutiny behind each detail, though this requires attentive listening its essential for the human condition.
I’ve listened to “The American Negro” roughly 12 times, and in each listen there’s something new to discover. You experience the joy’s of our blackness, the chaos behind the frustrations of our emotions and words gone unrecognized, but what holds fast is the truth. One can find no fallacies in his art. It’s expressive, it’s honest, and its blackness personified. Considered a classic by us here at WAVYPACK. Adrian Younge’s “The American Negro” is the black experience in 26 tracks. You can listen to the full album in the player below. Lastly, for more music spotlights, Westside Boogie Teams Up With Joey Bada$$ in Opulent Visual For “Outside”.