It's 1995 at the Paramount Theatre in New York City. The crowd is melancholy, the musical artistry is obsolete, and the tension is thick. Gone are the days of abstract lyricism and carefree mantras. It is the second annual Source awards and we are witnessing the funeral of Hip Hop as we know her. As we look on, we secretly know in our hearts she will come back with a vengeance but her spirit will never be the same. Flash forward to the present day. The crowd has matured but is eager. The music is infectious and the tension is now non-existent. On stage is Detroit MC, Leaf Erikson. He stands with the mic in his hand ready to manipulate the crowd into a frenzy with his lyrical prowess. He looks to stimulate the minds of his cohorts by painting a picture of Hip Hop's resurrection. Like the Norwegian sailor that shares the same name, Leaf has the intelligence to lead us to the "new world". Growing up in Detroit, this ingenious MC was surrounded by several musical luminaries, from Aretha Franklin, The Clark Sisters and Stevie Wonder. His debut solo album, "The Great Big Nothing," gives us an idea into the life of the everyday modern MC, and his most recent offering, "Hidden Gems", is a further look into the mind of the gifted wordsmith. Although a journalist by day, Erikson brings back humanistic storytelling through his artistic ability. He's also a member of the group, audopilots, where he and his crew represent the struggles that illuminate over a city that suffers at the hands of its corrupt political system. Leaf's had the privilege of working with and/or sharing a stage with many industry veterans and independent heavyweights, such as Allan Barnes (The Blackbyrds, Donald Byrd), The Fabulous Counts, Swifty McVay, Bizarre and Proof (D12, Eminem), Slum Village, Dwele, MC Serch, Prince Whipper Whip, Elzhi, Slum Village (Baatin, J Dilla, and T3), Madlib, Prince Po, Del the Funky Homosapien, Das Efx, Diamond D, Wildchild, Rhettmatic, Redman, Mos Def, Souls of Mischief, T Money Green and Amp Fiddler (Parliament Funkadelic), Blue Raspberry, Raekwon, Cappadonna, Killah Priest and 60 Second Assassin (Wu-Tang Clan), Mr. Cheeks (Lost Boyz), Flo Brown, OneBeLo, Nick Speed (G Unit), Kosha Dillz, Zo! (Gorilla Funk Mob, Foreign Exchange, Little Brother), and many other artists, producers and dj's throughout the industry. You want to be introduced to Leaf because he will raise the bar for so called mc's to speak what is not only "real" but whats right. He will take it back to freestyle ciphers, "Radio Raheem" boom-boxes, and being more than just a gimmick rapper.
Artist: LEAF ERIKSON
Genre/Format: Rap / Hip Hop
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