"Loyal To The Soil"
Named after the original God MC, Rakim Al-Jabbar is, in his own words, "the heartbeat of Dallas Hip-Hop" and the consciousness of true MCs who are looking to reclaim the throne of their legendary forefathers. Note to the reader; please don't get "Big Baby Thanos" (Al-Jabbar's alter ego) confused as a rapper that doesn't know his birth roots. This 5'8 lyrical master can "swang & bang", "talk smoke," and take the listener on a verbal tour of the streets of South Dallas and Oak Cliff with the best of his fellow rappers from the Big D, which is what these southerners have come to be known for. However, with consciousness and self-awareness calling him to lyrical excellence, he showcases his mastery of metaphor in ways that relate to the newly indoctrinated and seasoned Hip-Hop aficionados alike. In this down-to-earth and cumulatively musically exotic package, Rakim Al-Jabbar sends a message that lands dead smack in the middle of the cerebral cortex and reminds you that Hip-Hop is a culture that is geographically boundless. One of the biggest of the current class of MCs on the planet resides in Dallas, Texas, and as they say, everything is BIGGER in Texas.
The "Big Baby Thanos" project, composed of 9 new tracks, is Al-Jabbar's first offering from a series (more volumes coming quarterly) of topical lyrical hymns paying tribute to southern culture, family struggle, survival in the streets, and hope for the future, all in a seamless 35-minute voyage of the mind. Rakim's flow rings of something familiar, reminiscent of Bun B, Big Boy, and Notorious B.I.G but distinctively and uniquely his own. The project starts with a Yoruba blessing tribute to deceased legends, including Bob Marley, Tupac Shakur, Prince, and Rakim's father, who inspired his journey and motivated him to make his own mark in Hip-Hop music. Moving through the narrated embodiment of funk, jazz, R&B, and classic Hip-Hop rhythms, songs like 'Reasonable Doubt", "Don't Let Me Down," and "Hrtbrk Htl" showcase a simplistic yet deeply elevated perspective on the rapper's past, present and future. The back half of "BBT" showcases freestyle-like flows and storytelling showcased best on "Infinite," "Elementary Dreams," and "Anahata," culminating in a befitting and uplifting dance floor vibration "Can't Bring Me Down." In the current Hip-Hop lexicon of all things good, "Big Baby Thanos" is a vibe, period! The subsequent volumes will surely echo these themes, but until then, let the eargasms begin as the lore of a future legend begins to take shape.
Hip-hop was ingrained in Rakim’s genetic code at birth as his late father, Big Al, is Dallas rap royalty from the legendary group NEMESIS. Rakim credits his natural-born talent to his father and has vowed to continue contributing to his legacy by taking the Hip-Hop baton and running it to the finish line. The independent artist who first hit the scene with "No Penn Theory" in 2017 was awarded “Best Songwriter” at the 31st Dallas Observer Music Awards in 2019 and “Indy Rapper of the Year” at the 2019 Central Track Music Honors. Rakim is an accomplished commander on the stage and a staple on the underground scene. His presence is fingerprinted in the halls of Hip-Hop venues all over Dallas, Ft Worth, and the mid-cities of Arlington and Grand Prairie, Texas. No stranger to the mainstream circuit, after releasing his second studio album, "Underground GOD" (2019), Rakim hit the road with Wu-Tang Clan during their Texas leg of the 25th Anniversary 36 Chambers Tour. Now post-pandemic ready, armed with an arsenal of new material and laser-like focus, the national stage is next for this motivated once-in-a-millennium MC!
- Azim Rashid
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