Brother Ali

Brother Ali

Over the past 17 years, Brother Ali has earned wide critical acclaim for his deeply personal, socially conscious, and inspiring brand of hip-hop. Under Rhymesayers Entertainment, he’s unleashed a series of lauded projects, establishing himself as one of the most respected independent voices in music. The latest chapter in that celebrated journey is All the Beauty in This Whole Life, a 15-track collection produced entirely by Atmosphere’s Anthony “Ant” Davis.

"This entire album is based on the reality that beauty is the splendor of truth" says the Minneapolis MC. "Beauty in all of its forms is the outward manifestation of love and virtue. It soothes the soul and pulls it gently toward the truth it communicates. Every word and note of this album is intended to either reflect beauty, or expose the ugliness that blocks us from living lives of meaning."

All the Beauty in This Whole Life is Ali’s first official release in five years and represents the newest and most refined chapter of his life's journey. "Each of my albums are the result of the pain, growth and eventual healing that I experience. Articulating the pain and navigating the healing allows the people who really feel my music to travel with me. It's not only that we hurt together, we heal together as well."

Contrasting intensely heavy moments with joyous and grateful ones, All the Beauty in This Whole Life arrives right on time, to help heal a divided nation through the power of music. Ali wouldn’t have it any other way. "In times of great suffering in the outside world, the most important battles start from within."

Bambu is a father, MC and community organizer. Raised in Los Angeles, as a young boy he experienced a life that other rappers have glorified, but rarely experienced. As he navigated through a turbulent youth, Bambu turned around the destructive energy that surrounded him and poured it into making music. Bambu has been lauded by his fans and contemporaries for his lyrical storytelling abilities. Whether fictional or autobiographical, his vividly-detailed narratives are characterized by an honesty that is equal parts brutal, thought-provoking and liberating. Bambu music is not for mere performance – he utilizes his music as a tool for a larger goal – to reach, support and ultimately organize youth to work toward social and systemic change. Bambu has reached audiences across the country and internationally with his explosive and engaging live performance -- especially significant are his sold out headline shows at notable venues in New York City (SOB's), San Francisco (Brick & Mortar) and Los Angeles (Viper Room, Knitting Factory, The Roxy and The Echo). Being paired on concert billings with such acts as Immortal Technique, Blue Scholars, Zion I, Psycho Realm, dead prez, Evidence, Atmosphere and Brother Ali, to name a few, has afforded Bambu the opportunity to garner fans from varying demographics. With a catalog of music stretching the span of ten-years, the Los Angeles emcee has allowed his fans to witness the growth of a gracefully honest artist, who truly embodies the sentiment of the people.

DJ Last Word

DJ LAST WORD may not be a household name, but he's earned respect for his work producing and live mixing for local rappers like Dialogue Elevators, Ernie Rhodes, and more. He's been spinning since 2000, getting his start at former Dinkytown sandwich shop/music venue Bon Appetit.

Decider: What was the first record you bought?
Last Word: Soul Sides' record with DJ Shadow, I think.
D: What's the best thing you've ever mixed?
LW: For a couple years I've been doing this mix of Punjabi MC's "Beware Of The Boys" into TI's "Bring Em Out." I'll do a long mix with the instrumental version of the Punjabi MC track. The first 32 bars are just a loop of the sample they use, and then when it breaks down the bass line, it sounds like the Knight Rider theme song. And when it breaks down, I drop the TI. It always works really well.
D: Is there anything you won't ever play?
LW: I don't think so, necessarily. I think it comes down to the show that you're playing—low-key night or a party. If it's a low-key night and someone requests a weird party song, I'll probably say, "Sorry, not tonight." I would never say no, but I'm sure there's records I've heard that I'm like, "nah, I'll never play that." It happens more than you think, but I don't think I'd ever say no. More often someone will request something I've never even heard of.

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