Future Classics

Future Classic: Ian Kamau “One Day Soon”

Hip-Hop Soul

I’ve been steering clear of lyrics recently and letting my ears revel in the beauty of instrumentals and beats. It’s been a wonderful experience so far but I must admit, it was a deliberate and bitter decision I made for myself so I wouldn’t end up hating music, or more specifically Hip Hop. Too many of my favorite artists seem to have lost sight of the weight of words. I’ve seen them get too comfortable with recycling verses, chain words together just for the sake of rhymes, adhere to vulgarity just to peak people’s interest and worst of all, serve us verses without the least bit of substance in them. I haven’t felt the urge to Google a topic or word after hearing a piece in months which in my opinion means that lyrical artists aren’t holding their weight in Art’s mandate. Thankfully, Howl! Arts Collective served us an amazing show in Montreal a few weeks back where I was reacquainted with the eloquent and poignant Ian Kamau who’s powerful words atoned for the entire community.

The energy that night was type that you only feel when you know you’re in a room full of like-minded brothers and you can truly let your guard down. The band was on Sala Rossa’s dance floor at the same level as the audience which was so perfect because that night we weren’t just spectators, our souls were conversing. Ian stepped up to Mic in his modest manner but when he opened his mouth is was just unfiltered soul slicing truth that came out. The type of lines that resonate in your mind for weeks and make you question your purpose. No, not in a preachy sense not even in an uplifting sense really just crystal clear reality that rolled off his lips. He is one of the only artists I know who manages to tell a personal story without its message being flooded with bias. Needless to say I had to cop myself his latest album One Day Soon and it’s been my main study material since. His lyrics are so intricate and full history that I’m learning a new chapter of this world with every listen.

His words are what caught my attention but I have to mention that Ian Kamau also produces all of his pieces and had he decided to strip all of tracks of lyrics this album would still be a future classic. His production perfectly highlights the emotion of each piece and lets you live music rather than just listen to it. Set a side some time when you decided to play this album, it’s a journey you’ll want your mind awake for.

MF Gold

MF Gold

Music Journalist, Videographer and adamant Independent-Art Patron. She also cameos as a Personal Trainer/Kinesiologist and Massage Therapist in the daytime.