So this morning I see a tweet from @hereisDarren, a videographer/photog. He sent a link to a FOX News story on Freestyle Union circa late 90s. Ironically, Chen Lo and I did our first video shoot of our hip hop workshops yesterday. Freestyle Union Cipher Workshop is being rejuvenated underneath the umbrella of the Lyrical Embassy. This new partnership for the Lyrical Embassy with Chen Lo, a seasoned emcee and artist educator, will serve as a vehicle to promote all of my hip-hop endeavors and the foundation for this global lyrical movement. Chen invited two emcees from his old program. These really young cats love the art of emceeing with such passion that any hip hop head would’ve been inspired. They were so easy to work with for the shoot and had really nice freestyles. They just love to rhyme. Plus, they were really talented, but also really humble and eager to learn. It reminded me so much of the time I spent running the Freestyle Union Cipher Workshop in DC and later on in New York once I relocated. There are so many shifts happening in my life and in our world. I love the expansion and see nothing but possibility for the growth, development and preservation of the art of emceeing. As I travel across the country and around the world I find more and more young people who are willing to listen and learn. Yes, they are heavily influenced by the narrow offerings of mainstream rap, but they are also interested identifying ways to bring both worlds together—being able to be inspired by commercially popular music while being true to themselves and maintaining an authentic voice. It is possible to do both. You may not enjoy this news clip as much as I did just now watching it, but I still thought it was important to share it with you. It is hip hop history and a part of my history too.
Darren’s blog: http://rbadwahandmurray.blogspot.com/