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Jasiri X and Rhymefest form supergroup Kill Switch

Written by Scott Mervis on .

 

JasiriJasiri and Rhymefest in Twitter postTwo powerful political voices in hip-hop -- Pittsburgh rapper/activist Jasiri X and Chicago Grammy winner Che “Rhymefest” Smith -- are teaming up to form a supergroup called Kill Switch.

 

Their debut album, “#WarOnUs,” will hit the streets this spring, promising “social and politically charged music that dives headfirst into topics ranging from police violence and black on black crime, to an unequal American judicial system and environmental disasters.”

 

"We've been working together for the last few years. Last summer he came to Pittsburgh for a week and we did seven songs together so we decided to go all out and form the group," Jasiri said.

They are currently touring in Colombia, with support from Open Society Foundations, as part of a team of artists raising awareness around UNGASS (Special Session of the United Nations General Assembly on the World Drug Problem). They will be reporting on how U.S. drug policies impact the global war on drugs, mass incarceration and narcotics proliferation, and will be interviewing the mayor of Bogota and arts and culture experts in Cartagena, as well as visiting the childhood home of the late Pablo Escobar in Medellin.

 

Jasiri, co-founder of the Pittsburgh-based 1Hood Media, has been traveling the country for years as an educator, activist and hip-hop reporter hitting such hotspots as Ferguson, Mo., Occupy Wall Street and, just this week, Flint, Mich. His latest album, “Black Liberation Theology,” is another fiery and outspoken treatise on social justice issues.

 

Rhymefest, a hip-hop ambassador in his own right, is the co-founder of Donda’s House, focusing on arts training of Chicago youth. He has collaborated with the likes of Kanye West, Lil Jon and Ol' Dirty Bastard and just won a Grammy for his part (along with John Legend and Common) on the song “Glory,” from the movie “Selma.” He made news recently tweeting of Kanye, “my brother needs help, in the form of counseling. Spiritual & mental. He should step away from the public & yesmen & heal.”


You can follow them at @jasiri_x and @Rhymfest, with the Hashtag #WarOnUs.

 

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