Words As Weapons
Inarhyme Records is pleased to announce the October 16, 2012 release of "Words as Weapons", the extraordinary new neo rap-soul CD by acclaimed rapper and poet D-Priest and featuring alto saxophonist Dane Bays. With an additional supportive lineup of Mark Cooper, Frontpayg, JMac, JSoulonfire, KX, Nomercy, Dena Pruitt, and Wax, the record shows how hip hop and rap has grown up, both in musicality and in message. Veteran producer JSoulonfire produced the hard-hitting set. "Words As Weapons" is quite a departure from his jazz-based work as leader with the American Music Project, but still shows the type of deep rhythmic artistry and hard auto-biographical reflection for which D-Priest has become known. On the acclaimed rapper's latest outing, the selections range in style from exuberant and hard-hitting to elegant and sophisticated, yet never sacrifice D-Priest's patently honest and convicted presentation. He states, "I don't try to be who I'm not. I write only what I feel at that moment, I don't copy or follow anyone, I make my own footsteps so my truth is my originality." His latest recording is full of hard-hitting jams such as They Say, which takes on the music industry in a sax-soaring anthem for the wisdom that comes with age and I Know, a sarcastic critique on the overplayed braggadocio in much modern rap. There are also emotionally-riveting dedications such as Queen and My Burning Torch, an inspiration to strong women and mothers/grandmothers everywhere. Even with the wide variety of moods and themes, the common denominator is an empowering message and D-Priest's real-world encouragement to stay open, think, and relate. He claims, "The music needs more respect of each other, less rap about who has the most money, better car and bigger diamonds; more of rapping to the people then bragging to each other." Continuing, he says, "I think rap is becoming more of what the average person can't relate to, because believe me, most of us don't shop at Prada. Born and raised in Saginaw, Michigan, D-Priest was one of the founders of Reckdaphunck, a four-member group that produced innovative original music and would first cast him into the limelight. Later, he would come full circle to become the Emcee for the American Music Project, a jazz-based ensemble similarly lauded for it's soul and originality. Always on the edge of "current", D-Priest has been signed to various underground labels over the years and his experience and longevity make him a true veteran. One of his most cherished memories is sharing the stage with legendary rapper Tupac Shukar prior to his untimely death. Priest is of a special ilk of wordsmiths; a true poet. His words can be dissected infinitely for their artistic substance, if one cares to go that far. But for many it is enough to simply hear and feel the vibe of this powerful music. If there is a universality of message in "Words as Weapons", it is to live with conviction and purpose, to move forward through obstacles with both truth and perseverance, always respecting the innate power in words. On his latest release, Priest's powerful prose is as potent as weapons and delivered eloquently from beginning to finish.