Brian James combines his love for hip-hop and his culture in his music

This album is a must listen; Freedom Summer is the 12-track album release from Compton raised rapper, Brian James. He offers a rare musical product and by combining his love for hip-hop and his culture, has crafted this soulful, hip-hop sound of his own.

Brian James - Freedom Summer (Album Cover)It took less than an hour for four Freedom Summer tracks to become my firm favourites. There is a victorious sound purveyed on Get Up and the uplifting lyrics on Not Today! never get boring, as Brian raps ‘power, strength, faith, grace, so when I think of quitting, I say not today’. Title track Freedom Summer is as beautiful as its real life potential, featuring the melodic vocals of J.Sing and Portia and the range of featured vocals compliments the album’s ability to seamlessly change tempo, as in The Sky Is Falling, featuring Alesha Ashley & Agallah the Don.

Soul Vintage presents Freedom Summer, produced by @ChrisReed_SV. He’s been making R&B, gospel, jazz, hip-hop, and trap music for five years and his Twitter page states he’s only 20 – impressive.

Speaking about the story behind the album, Brian James says ‘”Freedom Summer” is more than just the title of my album. Freedom Summer was a campaign launched in June 1964 to attempt to register as many, African American voters as possible in Mississippi which had historically excluded most blacks from voting.’ So in addition to the release of his album, Brian James is running a Voter Registration Drive with Rock The Vote.

I enjoyed this album from the very first listen. There’s a consistency intertwined with reality-inspired lyrics, complemented by occasional changes in pace that make for an easy-listening, motivational and overall beautifully refreshing album. If you’re a fan of The Foreign Exchange, I most definitely recommend Brian James.

He cites Tupac, Talib Kweli, Most Def and DMX and musical influences has already released a number of mixtapes. December 2011 saw his EP, Life On Mute received over 65,000 downloads. Find out more information on

‘It’s way more than music…’

Follow Brian James on Twitter.

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