October 24, 2012

The Rhythm Road - Vice Verse All Stars

video

How you doing? I'm Chris Rel. I'm actually MCing for Vice Verse All Stars and we're going to West Africa.

Hello, my name is Denny Jackson and I am the vocalist, the only female, in the Vice Verse All Stars.

How you doing? My name is OMNI Blaize and I'm an MC, keyboardist, guitarist for Vice Verse All Stars and I'm very excited to be going to West Africa.

I'm the last one. I'm Pierre Aime, also known as DJ PrettyNYCE. I'm the DJ for Vice Verse All Stars. I'm just excited to go. I'm ready to go now, like right now. If you wanted to send me now, I'd go.

Chris Rel:

We're struggling musicians. You know, we've got two and three part-time jobs to try and put music out there. But with this actual program, we're able to get paid for the art that we love and that we love to create.

Me and Denny, we went a year and a half ago, we went to Asia, to Burma. The experience was so great because it wasn't only, like, a musical exchange. We also were able to see the actual cities and meet with the people.

And when we went to India, how we were able to incorporate that as they were singing Amazing Grace and then from Amazing Grace, we were actually able to rap over that and you know we just did a cool exchange.
I never though I'd be able to rap over Amazing Grace.

Denny Jackson:

The pastor actually asked him to come up and rap. The pastor played the guitar, he asked me to sing a blues-y version of Amazing Grace. He's like Chris, come up and rap. And we're looking around like, OK, how is this going to come together?
But it was perfect. It was perfect.

Chris Rel:

If you're being true to the music - this would be one facet of the United States because I think that's what hip hop is all about. It's all about showing all the degrees of life experiences. And this just is what we've been through.

OMNI Blaize:

In the media, hip hop doesn't always get a good rap. I think that the music that we create will kind of shed a different light on it. There is hip hop that is good and exciting.

Denny:

That's my favorite part about this group, because us going to - like when we were in Burma and Malaysia - I guess because they look at the hip hop in the US and they automatically think that, you know, everyone carries guns or we all grew up in the hood.
I can stand behind everybody in the group and say that we make good music. We're breaking all these stereotypes so that they can see that, you know, there is positive hip hop.

OMNI Blaize:

I was mentioning that they have a lot of musicians and I really want to share with them, go with them, take some of what they do and, you know, share some of what I do. And again, just kind of take some of their experiences and kind of put some of that into some of my music.
Entwine their stories with my stories and create new stuff.

Denny:

I'm excited to represent as an African-American, as a female, as a US citizen. I'm just, I'm excited. I may be a little more excited than [him], I don't know.

DJ PrettyNYCE:

I'm just really excited, that's all.