Diamond Sharp

DiamondSharp

Diamond Sharp

Diamond Janese Sharp is a poet and writer from Chicago. She is an alumna of Wellesley College. She has performed at Chicago’s Stage 773 and her work has been featured on Chicago Public Radio and published in PANK, JoINT Literary, Wellesley Review, Beltway Poetry Quarterly, Say What Magazine, GirlSpeak Webzine, BLACKBERRY, Women in Red [a publication of the University of Wisconsin-Madison], AREA Chicago and Bop, Strut, and Dance: A Post-Blues Form for New Generations, a forthcoming anthology edited by Tara Betts and Afaa Weaver.

Rhymes: The Roots ft. Erykah Badu, “You Got Me,” Kanye West, “Through the Wire, ” and Noname Gypsy.

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@Diamonde

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J. Davis

JDavis

J. Davis

Julio Davis heads The J. Davis Trio. Following their musical heart, The J. Davis Trio continues to thrive. They thrive not only because of their connection to real hip hop and jazz music, but also because of their ability to grow and change. Starting as trio, they now have as many as 8-10 people on stage, utilizing many types of instrumentation and styles. Their independence has allowed them to explore and incorporate from unexpected sources, resulting in a sound uniquely their own. Began as an actual trio, the band is now Julio Davis, Dave Smith, Dave Winer, Sam Sharp, Ryan Murphy and Chris Greene.  The J.Davis Trio arrived on the Chicago scene with their debut eponymous album, The J.Davis Trio, in 1999 where they created national buzz with a North American tour that included famous Chicago venues like The Metro, The House of Blues, the historic Green Mill Jazz club, and many colleges in the midwest. Tours to the east coast, the CMJ Music Fest in New York, down to the SXSW Music Fest in Austin, TX., to L.A. soon followed.
Their next album “The New No. 2” released in 2002 reflected a leap in their development and saw them working with many great Chicago artists. Rappers like Cap D from All Natural and Juice made an appearance, as well as musicians like Jeff Parker from Tortoise and Paul Mertens of The Brian Wilson Group.
The band released their next album, “These Things Happen” in 2007. This project saw them reunite with Julio Davis’ original rap crew, Chicago legends Stony Island, as well as vocal and musical cameos by Poi Dog Pondering front man Frank Orrall. In 2011, they returned with their most ambitious recording to date, “Vintage”.
They’re upcoming new full length album “Fire & Math”, will be released in 2016.

Rhymes: Boogie Down Productions “The Bridge is Over,” Young-Holt Unlimited “Soulful Strut,” and A Tribe Called Quest “Luck of Lucien”

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Danielle Belton

Danielle Belton

Danielle Belton

Born and raised St. Louis, Mo. on a healthy diet of news programming, pop culture, black history and “snark,” Danielle Belton, daughter of loving “regular folk” and wife of no one, examines the irreverent side of American life.

With two million readers in less than two years, Belton is best known as the editor/writer of the pop culture-meets-politics blog The Black Snob.

Currently Belton is an Associate Editor for The Root. Previously she was Editor-At-Large for Clutch Magazine Online, and in 2012 was the head writer for the late night television show Don’t Sleep hosted by T. J. Holmes on BET.

As an advocate for mental illness, Belton has also blogged about Bipolar Disorder for BP Magazine’s online site. She penned her own profile in BP Magazine summer 2011 and recently wrote about her battle with mental illness for the January 2012 edition of Essence Magazine.

Blacksnob.com has a readership spanning political junkies, journalists, fellow bloggers, political pundits, authors, academics, legislators and political strategists.

Belton currently splits her time between the East Coast and her hometown of St. Louis, Mo. where she maintains her site and works as a social networking/media consultant.

Rhymes: Neneh Cherry “Buffalo Stance,” Lil’ Kim “No Time,” and Princess Superstar “You Get Mad at Napster”

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The Black Snob

The Root

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J. PERIOD

jperiod

J. PERIOD

Hailed as a “music guru” by Rolling Stone and cited among the “world’s Top DJ’s” by The New York Times, J.PERIOD is a master of his craft: a musical storyteller whose work bridges cultures, generations and styles.

J.PERIOD’S resume boasts collaborations with Grammy winners Common, John Legend, Joss Stone & Mary J. Blige. He has been called, “The most creative mixtape producer of all-time” by music icon Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson of The Roots.

For years, J.PERIOD’s “musical documentary” projects have redefined the hip hop landscape, merging music with narrative to tell stories in a powerful and unprecedented way. His work with hip hop and R&B titans including Nas, Kanye West, Lauryn Hill, and Q-Tip has received countless awards and earned millions of listeners. This legacy of groundbreaking work was recently celebrated in the exclusive J.PERIOD X 10 Collection.

In the past year, J.PERIOD has produced the original score for the EMMY® award-winning The Doctor, the original theme song for the relaunch of NBA TV’s flagship Inside Stuff, plus critically-acclaimed remix tributes to James Brown, 2Pac and The Notorious B.I.G.. For his efforts, J.PERIOD was nominated for DJ/Remixer of The Year at the Global Spin Awards and featured on Okayplayer’s annual Best List.

As Music Supervisor for the Brooklyn Nets’ at Barclays Center, J.PERIOD’s custom-curated soundtrack won rave reviews and was praised as the new standard for music in the NBA arena (ESPN). J.PERIOD is also credited with producing the Brooklyn Nets’ opening theme song in both of its first two seasons at Barclays Center.

Outside the studio, J.PERIOD is equally adept onstage, whether providing the soundtrack for Norman Lear or performing as Tour DJ for artists including Black Thought, The Roots, Lauryn Hill, Q-Tip & Kanye West at venues ranging from Summer Jam 2014 to Johannesburg’s Coca-Cola Dome.

Rhymes: Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five “The Message,” Grandmaster Melle Mel & The Furious Five, “Beat Street Breakdown,” Nas “N.Y. State of Mind,” A Tribe Called Quest “Midnight Marauders,” De La Soul “De La Soul is Dead” and Ice Cube “Death Certificate”

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JPERIOD.com

@JPeriodBK

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Nitty Scott, MC

Nitty Scott

Nitty Scott

Nitzia Scott, better known by her stage name Nitty Scott, MC, is an emcee via Brooklyn, New York. Her breakthrough came in 2010, when the video for her freestyle over Kanye West’s “Monster” went viral. She has performed at the BET Hip Hop Awards and has been featured in Billboard Magazine and The New York Times. Scott released her debut street album The Cassette Chronicles in 2011, followed by her critically acclaimed EP The Boombox Diaries, Vol. 1 in 2012 and her latest offering The Art Of Chill. She headlined her own national tour in 2014. Always known to bring both substance and lyricism, Nitty’s message is about spreading peace, empowering women and progressing culture.

Rhymes: Sam Cooke, “Summertime,” Blue Oyster Cult, “Don’t Fear the Reaper” TLC ft. Andre3000, “Sumthin Wicked This Way Comes,” and India.Arie, “Back to the Middle”

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Naledge Evans

Naledge

Jabari “Naledge” Evans

The MCing half of progressive rap duo Kidz in the Hall, Naledge was born Jabari Evans in Cincinnati, OH, but grew up on Chicago’s South Side since he was two years old. Raised by two Ph.D.-educated parents, the high-school valedictorian academically had an easy time in school and found his niche in poetry and writing. However, it was cousin Memo, one-third of Chicago production outfit the Molemen, who convinced him to transform his writing prowess into hip-hop rhymes. He first met his DJ/producer partner, Double O, in 2000 on a recruiting visit to the University of Pennsylvania, and the two became good friends and musical collaborators. While still attending Penn, Naledge acquired a solo deal with Rawkus Records, but ended up bringing the Kidz in the Hall brand under Rawkus management as well, once he and Double O finally decided to start the group. Soon after Naledge graduated from Penn in 2004, he released The College Graduate mixtape, which was a nod to Kanye West’s breakout debut album, The College Dropout. After a few Kidz in the Hall mixtapes and an aggressive Internet-promoting campaign, Naledge and Double O dropped their debut, School Was My Hustle, in 2006. Naledge’s solo debut, tentatively titled Naledge Is Power, was intended to come out not long after the Kidz in the Hall LP, but the two wound up severing ties with Rawkus and signed on with Boot Camp Clik imprint Duck Down in 2007. Kidz in the Hall’s fourth studio album, Occasion was released November of 2011. Naledge has created his company, The Brainiac Project Inc., with hope of helping local artists have a creative outlet to have their work heard. Jabari is graduate of the University of Southern California’s School of Social Work. Aside from music, Jabari frequently speaks as guest lecturer at high schools, colleges and universities in the Chicagoland area and he is committed to doing community service within around the South Side area where he was raised. In 2009, Chicago Magazine named him one of the city’s “Most Interesting Single Men” and he currently resides in South Shore and enjoys playing sports with his son Caleb.

Rhymes: Twista “Overdose,” Nas ft. Lauryn Hill “If I Ruled the World (Imagine That),” and Common ft. Kanye West and The Last Poets “The Corner”

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BrainiacProject.org

@NaledgeEvans

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Aamer Rahman

AamerRahman

Aamer Rahman

After years of performing as half of the critically acclaimed duo Fear of a Brown Planet, Aamer Rahman finally appears in his long-awaited debut solo show.

Rhymes: Public Enemy, “Give It Up”, Dead Prez, “Hip Hop”, and Black Star, “Definition”

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