Bruce

My name is Bruce, but most people call me Big Bro. I’m from Camden, NJ and music has been my life since day one. I grew up ‘onna South Side of Camden, aka Parkside, and found my love of hip-hop through poetry and playing trumpet. The first rap group I ever listened to was Run-DMC and remember when I decided the coolest rapper was LL. After that, I found myself transitioning to hardcore gangsta rap like Scarface & Ghetto Boyz. Where I’m from made Ghetto Boy stories’ more relatable overtime than what came out in the 80’s. That said, hip-hop is life and I’m open to hearing all different kinds of rap. If an artist’s music resonates with me, their music makes it into my day-to-day.

When I’m not listening to other great artists, I’m perfecting my own craft in the industry. Trazsh Man is another part of who I am: a gritty rap truther who isn’t pc in modern America. I won’t speak too much on this emcee, and would rather you check him out and give your own opinions on his music—good, bad, or ugly. Aside from all that, I’ve produced, directed, and edited films, created cartoons, and designed graphic covers for various artists throughout the tri-state area.

For me, hip-hop culture is more than a mic, it’s truly a way of life. I hope you enjoy what I do, who I am, and my honest views on hip-hop music, past, present, and future. One thing is fasure, I will always give you what exactly what’s on my mind – as should you.

Chris Williams portrait Christopher ‘Knehmo’ Williams

My name is Christopher Williams. I like to go by Knehmo. Its a spin on nemo, a Latin word that translates to something like, “no-one” or “no-man,” and I get a kick introducing myself to people as nobody. I like long walks to thrift stores, appreciate Hennessy, and plan to make a more deliberate effort to show the people I care about that I care about them. But enough about me, onto the music.

Oldheads mention the greats: Jay-Z, Rakim, Nas, Big Pun, Big Daddy Kane, NWA, Biggie, and the like. Since I was born in ‘94, all these artists feel like they’re from the stone ages of rap. <Some transition to a list of personal embrace of hiphop> The summers I remember in Camden were thick with the sounds of Reggaeton, Lil John, and the Eastside Boys. I found and fell for Jersey Club and Chopped and Screwed Music remixes early in my twenties. Dj Noir’s remix of No Feelings by PARTYNEXTDOOR and Travis Scott got me through hard times. If you can really hear DJ Blazee B’s mix of Trey Songz’ Still Scratching Me Up and not dance, you’re probably the FEDs.

Hip-hop has been a big part of my life and I look forward to digging through songs I would have had on my playlists either way.

Damilola Adedeji portrait Damilola Adedeji

My name is Damilola Adedeji and I am from Africa – that’s a continent, not a country by the way. I grew in Nigeria and spent the most of my life there. I prefer to be called by my first name and like anything outdoors, especially soccer.

And then there’s music. I love music: African music, EDM, pretty much anything. I’ll give everything a chance… except for Metal, don’t have any patience for it. Music influences me—it inspires me. Multiple people, including some of my friends, have told me they don’t really listen to music and every time I hear that I can’t imagine how much of a void must be in their lives. Since the dawn of time, music has been more than an art form. It’s a way of of life and an escape during tough times. Music can define, inspire, separate, and bring people together. Nietzsche said it best: “Without music, life would be a mistake.”

George Hernandez portrait George Hernandez

What’s up?! My name is George and first off, I just want to say I’m extremely thankful for this opportunity to use my voice and creativity in a positive way. Even though this is the first time I’ve professionally reviewed anything, I feel right at home doing so because I’m an aspiring artist who understand how important it is to give every album the time it deserves. Once you’ve been behind the scenes and a part of the magic of creating, it’s impossible to ignore how much effort and talent go into producing art.

As far back as I can remember, music has always been a huge part of my life. I can recall being in a booster seat, in the back of a minivan – probably 4 or 5 years old – reciting “My Name Is” and thinking Slim Shady was the guy’s real name. Around the same time, my cousin asked how I could remember all types of songs’ lyrics, and that was way before I was even allowed to go outside on my own. When mp3 players came out, just a little later, Santa knew instantly it was my must-have present. Before I got one, I remember having 50 artists (and counting) I’d discovered written down so I’d be able to download and listen to them all on day one (crazy to think back on that now, cause it’s kinda hard to even think of 25 artists off the top of my head now without checking my phone for reference). Anyway, my love of music has always been strong and is only developing the older I grow.

In high school school I bought an interface and a MacBook , but was too busy turning up with the homies to use it productively, but after graduating in ‘12, I started to record. Encouraged by my dad saying I had a way with words and loving listening to other people’s music, I got serious into making music instead of getting a job or going to college. All summer, I plugged up in the garage, started, and ended my days “in the stu.” I left my garage door open the whole time and this led many of my peers in to check out what the noise was all about. Before long, a few select people came consistently, ready to work on songs of their own or collaborate on beats I created. We all became pretty tight, but it was apparent time waits for no one and I knew I needed to get a job or go to school. I decided to do both. It wasn’t hard to find a routine that accommodated all my responsibilities: record when the sun came up, do class full-time from 9 – 5, and work part-time from 6 – 11. After that, I’d still do the studio ‘till the break of dawn (and made a song off the concept). Because of that schedule, we started to call ourselves ‘urlyburd.’ That community is still growing.

Today, everyone has their own home studio, and it’s easy to get things done self-sufficiently and collab through email. I’m also proud to say I’m six classes away from obtaining my Bachelor’s in Music Business. I’m also excited to be on a writing team with The Muse Collaborative so I can get back to my roots and focus on how music makes me feel and what I learn from clever and witty lyric delivery. Now’s the time to stop worrying about the clock and get to the business of music.

Skye Horbrook portrait Skye Horbrook

Hello, my name is Skye! I am a music lover who still buys CDs. I enjoy the tangible album art and turning through the booklet to learn all the details behind the music. Before Spotify made its debut, I saved all my favorite songs & covers to Youtube playlists. I was DJ Ideology on turntable.fm (similar to plug.dj) where I played the best songs to match the vibe of a room of internet listeners. While on constant road trips with my AmeriCorps team, I created playlists for each of my four teammates so we could both enjoy the music while driving or navigating in the front of the van.

A common thread with the music I enjoy is the soul. I define soul as a collective feeling of honesty & truth. I believe soul can be found in any genre of music. With hip hop, I gravitate towards old school and conscious rap. I love a good crate digging sample and a solid production. Some of my favorite producers are 9th Wonder, Salaam Remi, and J Dilla.

I see music as a pathway to connect with others. As a techie, I appreciate how technology can connect people to songs they want to hear and discover. I see the Muse Collaborative as a great way to utilize the hip-hop arts as a connection for the Camden community. I am looking forward to listening to Hip Hop I have not heard before. Being a research assistant is a cool way to place focus back on the album as an experience, not just songs as separate moments in time.