Black Future Month // 2-13-11 // Park Circle, Musicians

Posted on February 13, 2011

I couldn’t let Grammy Sunday go by without including some folks who should be award winning, but won’t cross the stage tonight.

I met some of the folks from Inglewood based Park Circle at the start of my year at my family’s Kwanzaa celebration. One of the emcee-producers, who goes by the name D Smoke, came up to me at the end of the night and handed me a cd. Hater that I am, I sort of ‘lost’ the disc. What an idiot move. Rafael, my smarter, wiser, counterpart in Getback-ery listened immediately. When I finally got on board I was taken by the flawless production, the deft lyricism, and the musical rigor of each track. I’m a little upset that I used my OutKast comparison on Los Rakas a few days ago, though merited by Dun Dun and Filthy Rich for certain, there’s definitely a bit of self-aware Outkast homage going with Park Circle as well. As a duo, D Smoke is joined by vocal partner Chiz, aka CH (no relation). Together they strike the best kind of balance. I never get the “too many emcees, not enough mics” feeling when Chiz and Smoke trade bars. Both feel present, necessary, polished on the tracks. And though I swore not to go all LA on my Bay Area musical fam, these folks are winners, guys.

I’m not going to write very much more, because we’ll feature Smoke’s cousin, T Gouche, in a few days, and I don’t want to dampen her shine.

For now, check out Park Circle’s latest video Black Gold, filmed entirely on location in Inglewood, CA and Salvador Da Bahia, Brasil. Obrigada.

The very first moment I heard Park Circle’s song, I couldn’t help but to be reminded of the work of Rotary Connection, a lesser known psychadelic band of the 70s. They were one of the first integrated groups, with musical direction by the infamous Charles Stepney and fronted by Minnie Riperton. Here’s a version of their tune I am the Black Gold of the Sun. The visuals are good for, you know, watching.

Thickwit celebrates the #blackfuture of the brilliant.

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