"Told you we ain't dead yet. We been livin' through your internet."
-Erykah Badu, "The Healer"
The Prolegend Movement is back at it again with the release of their Black Diamonds EP. Following on the heels of the success of the mixtape of the same name, the EP is a compilation of the group's best original songs from Black Diamonds. The songs range from the lyrical grittiness of "If I Had 2", to the swagger of "Get it Everyday", to the seductive quality of "Ladies Choice" and "Take Me Home". The EP also showcases the group's collaborations with other local artists, Lyric Raines and Blaundie da Boss Lady, as well as breakout reggae singer Mosiah. Available now on their Reverbnation page, the Black Diamonds EP will be officially released on iTunes on September 3.
The Black Diamonds EP gives credibility to Prolegend's right to call themselves a movement. A movement is defined as "an organized effort to promote or attain an end." The Prolegend Movement is part of a bigger movement, a musical revolution so to speak. Maybe it’s not as serious as civil rights, or womens' rights, or rights for people with disabilities. But it's for a right that music lovers everywhere hold sacred nonetheless: the right to listen to quality songs. This right is being fought for on the battleground of the Internet everyday by bloggers like me, online radio shows and podcasts, and most importantly, the independent music artists who have real talent and a passion for giving their best to their listeners.
I'm with Ms. Badu-hip-hop ain't dead yet, despite what some may say and what we may hear while spinning the dial these days. I think hip-hop is going back to its roots and the movement is being fueled by the Internet, which has leveled the playing field for independent, unsigned groups. The Prolegend Movement is one example of this. They have heart and passion. They're not on the mainstream radio yet, even though they have been getting airplay on Internet radio. But they're not letting that stop them. They're building up their online presence and constantly strategizing about how to improve what they're doing and reach out more to their fan base.
The Black Diamonds EP is one more way for them to stay connected to their fans, which number nearly 5,000 strong, making them number five on the local hip-hop charts according to Reverbnation. While the mixtape let you see what they could do creatively with samples of some of the most popular tunes out there, like Gucci Mane’s “Wasted” and Mary Mary’s “The God in Me”, the EP is strictly about their original music-lyrics and beats included. There’s funk, there’s soul, and most importantly, there’s hip-hop-spit from the mouths of four skilled MC’s who turn a mic into a weapon to slay their opponents on one hand, and a bullhorn to lead the revolution with the other.
Naw, hip-hop ain’t dead. It’s on the Internet and on the Black Diamonds EP. And the revolution might not be televised, but it damn sure will be broadcast over the radio.