Tag Archives: Humble Beast

J Givens Finally Announces Fly Exam

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I have been waiting all year for J Givens to announce his Humble Beast Records debut. And that announcement finally came today! Fly Exam will hit shelves on September 25th!

Track Listing:
SIDE A:
01. IGNORANTRO
02. BUTTERFLY STANCE
03. FAHRENHEIT 99 (f. Liz Vice)
04. SO FLY (f. Beleaf)
05. 10, 2. GET IN. (f. Odd Thomas)
06. ATTACK OF THE CLONES
(f. John Givez & Jackie Hill-Perry)
07. FLY EXAM

SIDE B:
08. LOST IN SPACE (f. Marz Ferrer)
09. HUMMINGBIRD STANCE
10. SUPER LOWKEY
11. TAKE OFF WITH ME (f. John Givez)
12. MARCH 10TH AND A THIRD (f. Braille)
13. THEY SAID THERE’D BE JETPACKS (f. Propaganda)

In addition, J Givens released a new video for the track 10, 2. Get In with Odd Thomas. Check it out below.

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Humble Beast Scales Back Roster

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For my money, Humble Beast Records puts out the best hip-hop records. And I’ve always wondered about the labels “Freely Given” model. The label heads and artists make their money via shows and merchandise. So it was a little sad, although understandable, to hear that the label has scaled back their roster to Beautiful Eulogy, Jackie Hill Perry, Propaganda, and J Givens.

Below is the statement from the label, as well as their video announcement.

“Humble Beast started 6 years ago with one goal in mind: free and excellent Gospel resources in the context we know best: hip hop. We built with our friends. We invited them to join us. We assembled a team that shared our heart and philosophy of ministry. By God’s grace we continued to grow, yet our unorthodox approach has brought forth many unique challenges. One of the implications of our free model is that we are often short on time and resources. Our daily operations are handled by a handful of men who sacrificially give their talents and energy because they believe in the vision. We have always considered Humble Beast to be a ministry more than a record label and our priorities have been established by that distinction.

In light of our vision, the cost of our free model and the increasing responsibilities associated with our growth – we have determined that the wisest way for us to move forward is to narrow down the size of our roster. There are many factors contributing to this decision, most importantly, it has become a matter of stewardship. We created the video “Past. Present. & Future.” to offer a fuller picture of who we are and what we do. This brief write up is a short summary of the information covered in that video, which we encourage everyone to watch. It has been a privilege to work with so many gifted artists and to play a small role in helping expose their art and message to people within our network. Please continue to follow our friends as we expect nothing but the best from them. Our roster moving forward will consist of Propaganda, Beautiful Eulogy, Jackie Hill Perry and JGivens. We know for some of you, this might leave some questions unanswered. Our desire was to make this announcement in the most clear, yet healthiest way we could out of love for our Lord, for our artists and for everyone who has supported us this far. Please continue to follow Humble Beast as we continue pursuing our mission of freely giving.

Your friends and brothers,
Humble Beast”

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Beautiful Eulogy Announce Mid-West Dates

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Beautiful Eulogy is coming to the Midwest July 18th through the 22nd, and they’re bringing JGivens along! Find the closest city to you and get your tickets below!
(Lakeville) Minneapolis, Minnesota –
http://humblebeast.queueapp.com/events/12836
Des Moines, Iowa –
http://humblebeast.queueapp.com/events/12708
Evansville, Indiana –
http://humblebeast.queueapp.com/events/12723
Indianapolis, Indiana –
http://humblebeast.queueapp.com/events/12712
Chicago, Illinois –
http://hmbl.be/1HQebAv

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Eshon Burgundy – The Fear of God

I have been waiting for Eshon Burgundy’s official Humble Beast Records debut. I liked Blood Rushing To My Head and I thought his For God’s Sake mixtape was on point. And his verse on Jackie Hill Perry’s The Solution was on fire! I just knew when Humble Beast announced his signing that his record was going to be special. I just had that gut feeling. And thankfully my gut was right!

The Fear of God is a blistering hip-hop record! The production teams (Beautiful Eulogy, Daniel Stelle, Wit, Swoop, and Street Orchestra) worked well, creating unique soundtrack that feels cohesive. It’s not like you have a bunch of tracks from producers that you can point to and say they did this one. It helps keep you focused on Burgundy’s lyrics and message, all the while appreciating the beats, but not being distracted by them.

The opening line of the record, “One time for the realist who shows us love even though he could kill us” isn’t holding anything back. It sets a strong tone for the record. Blood Money is a reminder that as believers it’s not money but the blood of Christ that paid for our freedom from sin. Higher Learning addresses hood life and the fact that it is by Jesus that people will be redeemed. Education and programs to get kids off the streets and out of gangs is good but real transformation only comes through Jesus. Control Issues, quite obviously, takes on the things people do in life to show that they are in control and how that doesn’t compare to a life of serving Jesus. Certified Gold, again, talks about those things we want that distract us from God and doing the Father’s work. Retro Sunday features a verse from Braille that just makes my head spin. It sounds like pre-Beautiful Eulogy Braille and I love it!

The Fear Of God is straight forward, gospel centered hip-hop. Where Eshon tackles social or persoanl issues, everything points back to the hope and love of God! Don’t read that and think this is watered down, second rate hip-hop. The production is top notch and Burgundy spits fire on each rhyme! You can tell that the craft of hip-hop is not slacking for the message but both the message and his craft matter! It’s art!

Just a fantastic hip-hop record start to finish. I’ve listened to this album almost two dozen times according to iTunes. 5 out of 5 Stars!

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Humble Beast Introduces Left Roasters

Hip-hp label Humble Beast Records is getting into the coffee game. Read their statement below.

We love coffee a lot…so we decided to start making it ourselves. That might seem like a cruel joke allowing your imagination to run wild, bringing you to the edge of hope before the disappointing realization left you with “If-only”s and “What-if”s. Well, this is no joke friends. We’re making coffee. Humble Beast proudly presents to you Left Roasters or simply, Left.
You may be confused. Why is a hip-hop label diving into the coffee game? What does coffee have to do with music? Why spend so much time and energy developing an entirely different brand that has nothing to do with hip-hop? Let us give you just two reasons. Keep reading below.
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Reason #1: Beauty and Excellence
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We know that God is good. That might seem obvious or even cliché, but think about the implications of that. Every awe-inspiring sunset, every emotional harmony, every tearful embrace, every steaming cup of delicious coffee were created and given to us by a God who deems these things good and beautiful. We believe that seeing the beauty that God intends for us to see in His creation only leads to a deeper and more intimate understanding of our great God and King. Seeing beauty glorifies God. In this way, a delicious cup of coffee glorifies God in and of itself.
Just creating coffee does not suffice though. We want to do it excellently. We do everything that we possibly can to give you guys our best when it comes to the music. Long hours, weekends, sleepless nights, and an undying passion to hone and study our crafts ensure that you guys receive the best of our efforts. Just as our great God and King sacrificed everything for his people, we too want to model self-sacrifice in our pursuit of excellence. This holds true for our coffee. We have worked to study the art and science of roasting. We have brought an expert roaster, Samuel Nagel onto the team to ensure a high-quality bean. If we are going to make coffee, we want nothing else than the best cup possible. Excellence glorifies God.
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Reason #2: Because it sustains our ministry.
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We thought that this was an incredible opportunity for folks to support us. As a music label who has decided to forego selling our music for the sake of the Gospel more easily going forth, we are always looking for ways in which you guys can support us financially. Up until now, buying merchandise or paying for music were the only ways you guys could help us out. We feel that roasting and selling coffee is a tangible and beneficial way for our supporters to help provide sustainability for the ongoing ministry of Humble Beast. Watch the video above to listen to Propaganda tell the story.
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The Gist
To sum it up, we have decided to take our passions for God’s good gift of coffee and excellence and turn it into a way that you guys can support us to make sure Humble Beast can keep making great music. 
You can order coffee from Left Roasters at http://www.leftroasters.com

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Propaganda – Crimson Cord

It’s no secret that I think Humble Beast is the top of the Christian hip-hop food chain. Each release stabilizes and cements the labels place to go for real, quality hip-hop. Propaganda’s Crimson Cord is another gem in a stacked discography.

I was in love with Prop’s collaboration album with Odd Thomas (Art Ambidextrous) and I was so excited for Excellent… But Excellent was underwhelming. I liked a lot of things about the album, but it just didn’t hit me as this great piece of work the same way Art Ambidextrous did. Yet I was still excited for Crimson Cord. Something felt different in it’s release. There was an air of expectancy surrounding it, and that translated to me being excited for the album.

There was a passion and an intensity about Art Ambidextrous that just seemed lacking on Excellent. But it’s back on Crimson Cord. From the start, the album’s spoken word opener, You Mock Me, is vicious and painful, powerful and honest. There’s an overcoming that’s been birthed in pain that shines through the track. Which carries right into the album’s title track. The beat isn’t complicated and almost hidden in the background as Prop spits vicious verse after vicious verse. There’s a subtle change in tone as the hook hits. It’s not catchy like a pop song, but the theme and repetitive nature of the hook will stick in your ears.

Daywalkers is a bouncy upbeat song that features Lecrae. And when I say upbeat, I mean in tone and for the record. Because there’s a bitterness on all of the tracks on Crimson Cord. Musically the song is upbeat and redemptive. Make has a 90’s vibe that’s extremely compelling and draws you in to what Prop is saying on the track. Bored Of Education is one of those angry, political, change needs to happen songs that I loved so much about Art Ambidextrous.

The hope in the pain within songs like I Ain’t Gave Up On You Yet, Framed Stretch Marks, and Three Cord Bond make you trap for the lyrics to see what Prop is trying to convey. You can hear raw honest pain. Not always a pain in that life has gone wrong for him, but a pain that people don’t always see there beauty. Songs like those, plus the honest questioning in tracks like How Did We Get Here are what make Crimson Cord such an interesting a compelling listen.

Tell Me Yours closes out the record. It’s Prop’s story. Everything from his salvation to his love for hip-hop and dealing with racism. It’s his thank you to all the people who shaped him into who he is today. It’s a beautiful way to close the record.

Crimson Cord is a powerful record. Lyrically heavy, but it;s beautiful and the honesty in Propaganda’s lyrics are compelling to the listener. Musically interesting, at time old school, and overall Crimson Cord is a masterpiece.

You can download Crimson Cord at http://www.humblebeast.com/downloads/propaganda-crimson-cord/

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