Rapper S.O. Reconnects With His African Roots With New EP, ‘Larry Ginni Crescent’

Following the success of his last album Augustine’s Legacy, which was dedicated to his late father and his first child and has now accumulated over 16 million streams on Spotify alone, Texas-based international rap artist S.O. releases new EP. ‘Larry Ginni Crescent’, which sees him tracing his footsteps back to his hometown in Nigeria, where he was born and raised. The new project is nostalgically named after the street in Lagos, Nigeria that S.O. lived on as a child called Larry Ginni Crescent.

Written and composed by S.O. and produced by long-time collaborator and Grammy Award nominated producer GP, alongside burgeoning Nigerian producers TBabz (Travis Greene, Faith Child, Aaron Cole) and SteveRawd, the Larry Gini Crescent EP is driven by lead singles ‘Kinda Love’ and the previously released ‘Corner (O Ti De)’ – the former is a summer-ready afropop love song from S.O. dedicated to his wife, where he exudes the virtues of their love, while the latter is an infectious head-bopping track that sees S.O. boasting about who he has in his corner, as he sings “no babalawo in my corner, just God putting things in order”.

Chronologically, the EP opens with the infectious up-tempo ‘Prosper’, which was penned in direct response to S.O. losing his grandmother last December and sees him putting an afrobeats twist to the popular Bible verse “no weapon formed against me shall prosper”. Elsewhere on the EP, S.O. is full of gratitude on the uplifting sing-along number ‘Good To Me’, while the up-tempo dance floor filler ‘That One’ sees S.O. fusing afrobeats, rap and a motivational message together to great effect. The EP then winds down with the sexy R&B driven ‘Want You’ and the afrohouse influenced ‘Wonder’ with its cautionary tale about battling sin and temptation.

Speaking about the inspiration behind his new Larry Ginni Crescent EP, S.O. says: “This is a project that is connected to my African roots – Larry Ginni Crescent is the name of the street I lived on as a child back in Lagos, but it’s also deeply sentimental for me and it is dedicated to my grandmother who passed away from COVID late last year. As a proud Nigerian, I have always loved my heritage, from the food and the language to the music and the culture, and afrobeats is one of the branches on the Nigerian tree that’s rooted in the diaspora.

This project has been something I’ve wanted to do for a while and the lockdown opened the door for that. I got to collaborate with two special Nigerian producers TBabz and SteveRawd, as well as my long-time collaborator GP. Not only am I a Nigerian but I am also a Christian and that comes out in this project. So ‘Larry Ginni Crescent’ can be described as deeply Christian and deeply Nigerian. From the songs about faith, to songs about love, everything connects to this one point – al that we do, all that we experience, can be used for our art. I hope it moves you”.

With over 40 million global streams and sold-out shows across America, Europe and Africa, and having also lived in Lagos, London and now Texas, S.O. is the true definition of an international artist. Since his now classic debut mixtape 5 Solas, S.O. has gone on to chart in the top 10 on the Billboard Heatseekers album chart, in the top 30 on both the Billboard Rap album chart and the Billboard Christian album chart, and in the top 5 on the iTunes Hip-Hop/Rap album chart across his four albums and two EPs. As his new project Larry Ginni Crescent arrives, S.O. is showing no signs of slowing down anytime soon. Check out the blog’s song recommendations below:

Must Listens: Corner (O Ti De), Good To Me, Kinda Love, Want You

Song of the Day: Anna’s Arcade – Ash Shakur

Illustrator and experimental hip hop artist ASH SHAKUR‘s blissfully witty jam, ‘Anna’s Arcade’, takes you on a nostalgic trip down memory lane, via the arcade to play everyone’s favorite video games. Sonically, 8-bit game inspired sounds are woven into a boom bap beat produced by Masked Man, whilst Ash delivers playful bars based around his youth, unrequited love and his video games obsession. Listen out for lots of gamer references, as Ash uses video games as a metaphor for life’s obstacles, as he explains:

“The first verse explains a small part of the music game and how you have to watch out for those bowers! I wanted to draw parallels of life’s challenges to the levels on a video game”. The last verse highlights the theme of, how people play games ie: she’s playing hard to get – or he’s a player. I want Anna’s Arcade to be the place you think about having the most fun. Every time you listen, I want to bring you back to this feeling.”

The south Londoner is known for his leftfield take on hip hop, mixing witty storytelling with smooth melodies and catchy choruses his unorthodox style and flow has won fans across the globe. ‘Anna’s Arcade’ follows previous single Horror Flick’ which was supported by Adidas on Spotify and Indie Shuffle, whilst other tracks. ‘Lead The Way’ (released on Kitsuné Hot Stream), ‘Never Alone’, ‘Nokia’ and ‘Shine’ have courted wide spread media support from BBC 1Xtra, Noisey, Complex UK and Notion.

Ash is also the co-founder of Art Life Central, a collective that expresses creativity and freedom through music and fashion. He aims to inspire people through his vibrant visuals and incorporates this art direction across all of his musical content.

Check out Ash’s vibrant track below…may I take this opportunity to wish all of you a very Merry Christmas.

Song of the Day: Past The Evening – Michael Baker

Following singles ‘One God Damn’ and ‘Baby Books’, the Bright-based artist MICHAEL BAKER reveals another piece of empathic songwriting in ‘Past The Evening’ from his forthcoming album, ‘Salt’ out next year.

This time around, not only are we treated to the Anglo-French musician’s serene soundscape, but also his authentic performance style which shows Baker as someone deeply connected to his craft. Sonically rich throughout, ‘Past The Evening’ is connected to one of Baker’s personal life moments.

Speaking of the intimate release, Baker says: “I remember that feeling of listening to vinyl records and how an album can fill a room. In this song I talk about listening to ‘Ring Of Fire’ by Johnny Cash in my university days as it was one of the first vinyls I got at an old charity shop. The music industry can feel like an uphill struggle, but this track is about remembering why I got into music in the first place, a reminder to sow down enough to keep enjoying the process. This song is my realisation that I don’t think I’ll ever stop making music. Maybe not for everyone else, but just for me.”

Check out the lyric video below and sing along to Baker’s nostalgic single…

Song of the Day: Hurdy Gurdy – Eazyman

EAZYMAN teleports us back to the 90s with the nostalgic 8bit ringtone inspired, trapped out, 808 skanker ‘Hurdy Gurdy’.

To those who grew up on the classic Nokia mobiles of the 90ʼs, you may find this ‘tongue in cheekʼ hood anthem familiar to the ear. The sound of those 8bit ringtones bleeping away in your pockets were unforgettable and now EAZYMAN has reinvented the unusual classic, giving us an infectious melody and sub rich track that is set to give your system a serious workout. EAZYMAN delivers his catchy, witty, laid back, roadside bars that gel with the beat, creating a certified banger, built for the streets, clubs and all the Go Getters worldwide.

Renowned for his profound work rate, EAZYMAN’s commitment to music is unquestionable and has earned him support from DJ Target (BBC Radio One & 1Xtra), Morgan Keyz (Rinse FM), Toddla T (BBC Radio One), as well as huge online support. 2017 marked a monumental year for the Croydon native who released his weighty twelve track mixtape ‘Eazy Street’ making for a notable stamp on the scene, whilst his recent video for ‘They Donʼt Knowʼ premiered via Link Up TV. He kicked off this year by featuring on Komoʼs ‘Pull Up Remixʼ featuring Double S, Six4 and Klayz and has promised a stellar release schedule for his label Go Getter Music in 2018 and beyond. With Hurdy Gurdy being the first of those and delivering on his promises, EAZYMAN is ensuring his future success in the rap scene.

Song of the Day: The Gift & The Wound – Matthew De Ver

Serving as a centerpiece of his forthcoming album, ‘Surface Tension (A Tincture for Integrating Shadow)’ MATTHEW DE VER delivers the second R&B track of the day entitled ‘The Gift & The Wound’.

The nostalgic piece gives a snapshot into his teenage years, before the passing of his father – the iconic poet and author Shel Silverstein – over a delicately textured combination of R&B and soul with a boombap vibe.

The video captures Matthew’s Madison, Wisconsin world with an overlay of deeper meaning through urban imagery with nature imagery, offering deep symbolism around such elemental substances as water, stone, wood, and fire.

While you’re here, check out ‘The Gift & The Wound’ – because this guy has some serious talent in him…