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Five Steez talks Pantone on ZANJ Radio

As always, DJ Zanj Racc had me as a guest on his show World Music Fusion to talk about my latest project, Pantone. It was a great interview because Zanj really listens to the music and asks some very insightful questions. This one is a must-listen for any Five Steez fan. Not only did we talk about Pantone, but we also discussed my entire catalog, with 11 projects to my name to date over a decade, and the legacy I will leave. The show gets into my section in the second hour and the interview begins at 1:12:00.

Last modified on Sunday, 13 October 2019 20:17

Kingston, Jamaica's Five Steez and French beatmaker J-Zen connect for new EP Pantone

Kingston, Jamaica underground Hip Hop staple Five Steez has teamed up with French beatmaker J-Zen for the new EP Pantone, available on all digital platforms and as a free download on Bandcamp. The project features four songs that will get heads nodding, having fun and even reflecting on life and death, all within 15 minutes.

Pantone opens with the track Spesh FX, featuring Nomad Carlos, a fellow MC of Five Steez in the four-member collective The Council. The party starts with What's Your Vibe? - a funky cut with an infectious groove and melody put together by J-Zen. Steez then takes a couple minutes to assert himself over any competition on No Debate. The final song, We Can Never Know, explores life's uncertainty, with Five Steez opening up in his first verse about friend and collaborator France Nooks, who passed in February 2018.

"J-Zen and I did these songs between late 2017 and early 2018," says Five Steez. "Now, our schedules have given us the time to wrap things up and share it with the world. I'm excited about this project because it's the same true school boom bap Hip Hop people know me for, but it's a very different groove, sound and texture from anything I've ever released."

J-Zen says, "I had been following Five Steez for a while and had heard his EP HeatRockz with Mordecai. I knew he was an artist I wanted to work with so I reached out and we made it happen. I'm proud to now present Pantone to the people and I hope they enjoy the music as much as we enjoyed making it."

Pantone is the second release in 2019 from Five Steez, who dropped the album Love N Art with Mordecai in February. The EP is the first release from J-Zen since the June 2018 beat tape Agave. Five Steez made his debut with his 2012 album War for Peace, following up with 2014’s EP These Kingston Times. HeatRockz was released in 2016, and, in 2017, he featured heavily on The Council's album Nothing Else Matters.

J-Zen, who is signed to French independent label Dooinit Music, made his debut on the beatmaking scene with his first beat tape Breakfast in 2009, and became more known to the public with 2010's Guilty Pleasure, which was distributed internationally by Fatbeats, Jazzy Sport and Pusher. Other notable releases include the 2012 single God Music and the 2015 album Managua.

Last modified on Tuesday, 01 October 2019 02:09

Life Goes On for SpaceAge Rasta and The Council

Life goes on despite struggle and tragedy. This is the message on a new single from SpaceAge Rasta as well as Inztinkz and The Sickest Drama of The Council. The song, appopriately titled Life Goes On, is now available on all digital platforms and is accompanied by a music video also on Youtube. The track, produced by Fada Scur, is translated to the screen with cinematic visuals shot by Robin Chin and edited by Kadean Dunbar.

Life Goes On begins dramatically with speech by His Imperial Majesty Emperor Haile Selassie I, followed by SpaceAge Rasta's wailing chorus. Inztinkz kicks off the first verse, rapping intricately about the ills of Jamaican society and the wider world. The Sickest Drama then carries the baton with the second verse, injecting geo-politics and concerns about modern technology. The song closes with more audio from an interview with the former Ethiopian emperor Haile Selassie I. The music video, which was shot entirely in the Kingston community of Cockburn Gardens, shows snapshots into the daily life within Jamaica's inner cities.

Life Goes On is the first release from an upcoming collaborative project with The Council, NRG and Eeesah. The Council is the Kingston and New York-based Hip Hop supergroup comprising Inztinkz, The Sickest Drama, Nomad Carlos and Five Steez, while NRG (short for New Reggae Generation) consists of Makonnen the SpaceAge Rasta, rapper Iyah Gift and Houston, Texas-based dancehall artist, Rseenal.

SpaceAge Rasta, who shares the executive producer role with Fada Scur, says, “This was just the first song that we did together, but we have more and we are continuing to work. We just wanted to let people know what is happening so they can look forward to all the epic music we have in store.” The ongoing project is currently untitled, but more singles will be released in time, before any release date is announced. The next single fans can look forward to is Streets of Jamaica, which features Eesah, Five Steez, SpaceAge Rasta, Nomad Carlos and The Sickest Drama.

Last modified on Tuesday, 09 July 2019 13:04

Five Steez & Mordecai release ‘True Original’ music video

Five Steez & Mordecai have unveiled a music video for True Original from their album Love N Art, released in February on all digital platforms. The mostly black-and-white visual, shot and directed by Scotty Dreamkiller, features colourful illustrations that complement Five Steez in his animated mode of performance.

“Scotty has been working with me and Mordecai since 2016’s HeatRockz and we always try to push the envelope a bit with how we represent the music visually,” says Five Steez. “We did different things with previous videos like Dirty Couch and True School, so we wanted to try something new with True Original as well.” While Five Steez has released a barrage of content on social media recently, True Original is the first official music video. It is also the first single, which was released in September, from Love N Art.

On True Original, Five Steez shares his reality of balancing life and music while pursuing his destiny. Backed by rugged drums and trance-like music laced with female vocals, Steez relays his journey in fulfilling his musical ambitions. The hungry wordsmith also stakes his claim to the game, clearly demonstrating he is in a lane and league of his own.

Love N Art is the second project from Five Steez & Mordecai, with the first being HeatRockz. The two have since operated as a rapper and producer duo. Steez describes Love N Art, which features 9 tracks of jazzy and soulful boom-bap Hip Hop, as his most honest and personal project. “I believe it is my best body of work thus far and the music is very universal because of the sound and the message,” he says.

Since 2010, Five Steez has released a variety of mixtapes, albums and EPs, including the three-volume Momentum mixtape series with DJ Ready Cee, 2012’s War for Peace, 2014’s These Kingston Times and 2016’s HeatRockz. In 2017, he featured heavily on the album Nothing Else Matters as part of the four-member Kingston and New York-based collective, The Council, which also comprises Nomad Carlos, The Sickest Drama and Inztinkz.

Last modified on Friday, 17 May 2019 12:15

Five Steez & Mordecai on Southern Vangard Radio

Me & Mordecai finally got to chop it up with DJ Jon Doe and Eddie Meeks over at Southern Vangard Radio. These guys have been playing our music since we released HeatRockz in 2016 and their podcast has become one of the most respected in the underground scene. We spoke about the new album as well as Jamaica... Eddie had actually went on his honeymoon here and had some funny stories. Hopefully, we can make the connection out here in the future. As well as in Atlanta!

Last modified on Friday, 03 May 2019 01:00

The Apollo Series continues to fuse musical genres, art forms

The artiste showcase and open stage event The Apollo Series is back on Saturday, May 25, at The Haven, 12 Hillcrest Avenue. This sixth staging of the event, which was first held in January 2018, will feature Reggae artistes Giark and Blvk H3ro as well as the rapper and producer duo Five Steez and Mordecai.

Giark, the son of legendary Reggae producer Bobby Digital, has moved from behind the mixing board into the recording booth and onto the stage as he has been releasing his own music, the most recent single being a track called So Facetious. Blvk H3ro has also been riding a wave since the release of his debut album The Immortal Steppa, which has been carving a lane for him as one of Jamaica’s future rockers. Also on his own wave is Five Steez who recently appeared at the Trinity International Hip Hop Festival in Connecticut as part of The Council and will be performing songs from his new album Love N Art with Mordecai.

One of the most unique features of The Apollo Series is that each headlining act performs twice in what is referred to as ‘rotating sets’. Event host and organiser Simon the Writer says, “The rotating sets allow people to catch the act they came to see. It also allows the acts to make two presentations to the audience.”

The open stage is another signature feature of The Apollo Series. In addition to poets, singers, deejays, rappers and musicians of any kind, the event also accommodates dancers and just about any art form. These individuals are given five minutes each to showcase their talent and the persons usually vary from amateurs performing for the first time to seasoned veterans. “We would love to even have live painting on stage one day,” says Simon the Writer. “For now, we have a lot of artistes and poets that show interest.”

The Apollo Series prides itself on exposing, developing and unearthing Jamaica’s freshest talent. In the past, the event has featured acts such as Koro Fyah, The Council, Lila Ike and Aza Lineage. Gates for The Apollo Series open at 7 p.m. and show time is 8 p.m. Admission is only $500.

The Apollo Series is presented by A.C.T.I.O.N. Jamaica and is sponsored by The Haven, Main Event Entertainment Group and Marketing Plus Communications.

Last modified on Friday, 03 May 2019 00:47

The Love N Art Private Show Highlights

It was an incredible feeling being able to perform Love N Art for the first time! Like I said to someone on the night, everyone present gave a fuck. Which is what mattered to me. I wanted my core audience and people that matter the most to me to share in this experience. We achieved our target of 50-60 persons and everyone enjoyed themselves. It was also the first time I've staged an event with myself as the sole performer. Thanks to everyone that came out! Big up to Jik Reuben for the photo coverage, as well as Simon the Writer / A.C.T.I.O.N. Jamaica and Lynky. Check out some highlights!

 

Last modified on Wednesday, 24 April 2019 00:29

Love N Art Merchandise

CDs & T-Shirts for Love N Art are finally here! Orders within Jamaica may be placed by making contact with me or Mordecai while international orders are handled online. CDs ship worldwide via Bandcamp and T-Shirts also ship worldwide via Big Cartel. Get yours now!

Last modified on Monday, 08 April 2019 02:30

The Council to represent at Trinity International Hip Hop Festival

The Kingston and New York-based Hip Hop collective The Council is slated to perform at the 14th Annual Trinity International Hip Hop Festival in Hartford, Connecticut, from March 28 – 31, 2019. The four-member group, comprising Five Steez, Nomad Carlos, The Sickest Drama and Inztinkz, will grace the stage for a 30-minute set at the festival’s main show on Saturday, March 30, at Trinity College.

In addition to performing, The Council will also present at Trinity College on Friday, March 29, their panel titled ‘First Coast: The Jamaican and wider Caribbean involvement in Hip Hop’. The Council will discuss the role of the Jamaican sound system culture in the development of Hip Hop, DJ Kool Herc and the larger Caribbean contribution to the culture up to today.

Hip Hop acts from around the world and the United States will converge at the Trinity International Hip Hop Festival where The Council will be the sole representatives from Jamaica and the Caribbean. It was a similar situation in 2018 when Five Steez of The Council became the first Jamaican act to appear at the festival in its then 13-year history.

“It was an amazing experience performing last year and connecting with everyone there,” says Five Steez. “I’m happy I’m able to repeat it and even more grateful that the entire crew was selected because we’ll be able to have a stronger impact.”

The Trinity International Hip Hop Festival has been held annually at Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut, since 2006 and has featured the likes of K’Naan, Talib Kweli, MC Lyte and Rakim.

“It’s an honour to be recognised for the work we’ve put in over the years and to be able to share the same stage as legends and our peers around the globe,” says Inztinkz, producer and rapper in The Council.

The Council has been championing the Hip Hop culture in Jamaica by independently releasing music as solo artists and staging events together for years. In 2012, The Council created the city’s premier event for the genre, Pay Attention, before shifting its energy towards a crew album in 2015 when the four members took on the name The Council. In 2017, the group released its debut album Nothing Else Matters, with features from underground rap cult favourite Tha God Fahim and Reggae lyricist Kabaka Pyramid.

Last modified on Sunday, 17 March 2019 00:48

  

Available on all platforms

Five Steez & Mordecai release Love N Art album

After releasing four singles, the album Love N Art by emcee and producer duo Five Steez & Mordecai is now available for purchase and streaming on all digital platforms. The project features 9 tracks of jazzy and soulful boom-bap Hip Hop meant to inspire hope.

“This is my most honest and personal project yet,” says Five Steez. “I believe it is my best body of work thus far and the music is very universal because of the sound and the message.”

Mordecai, who produced the entire album, says, “Five Steez has easily been one of the most consistent Hip Hop acts in Jamaica and it was a joy to help in adding on to the discography. This is an album for Hip Hop heads, but also anyone that appreciates good music with meaning and substance.”

Love N Art opens up with the song Give Thanks followed by the Shaq the MC-assisted Dreamer, which was released as the third single. Steez then speaks to some ladies he encounters on All I Need and gets back to business after on Work.

The song which began the album campaign in September, True Original, appears fifth on the project, and Shaq the MC returns as a guest on The Message, a powerful song about redemption and being one’s best self.

The theme of hope continues as the album progresses to Some Day and Days N Times, the last single released in January. Love N Art then closes with the title track – Love N Art (What I Feel) – where Five Steez emphasises the importance of knowing one’s purpose and worth.

With the album now available, fans can look forward to the upcoming True Original music video in March as well as more content online. A physical roll-out of limited edition CDs will also occur in April. All of the visuals and all Five Steez branding are handled by Jome Anderson aka Scotty Dreamkiller.

Since 2010, Five Steez has released mixtapes, albums and EPs, including the three-volume Momentum mixtape series with DJ Ready Cee, 2012’s War for Peace, 2014’s These Kingston Times and 2016’s HeatRockz, which was also produced by Mordecai. In 2017, he featured heavily on the album Nothing Else Matters as part of the four-member Kingston and New York-based collective, The Council, which also comprises Nomad Carlos, The Sickest Drama and Inztinkz.

Last modified on Tuesday, 12 February 2019 05:18
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