A powerhouse of youthful and zealous ideals that pleads for higher moral standards, 18-year-old American musician Raury, born Raury Deshawn Tullis to a single mother in Stone Mountain, Georgia, brings promising new energy to the current world of hip hop. Known for his eclectic musical style borrowed from soul, hip hop, electronica and folk, this Atlanta teen has toured all over the world and already earned studio time with renowned producers such as Paul Epworth (Adele, Florence and the Machine).
The social consciousness that initially drove hip hop was born through the rising need in African American youth to break down racial barriers and give voice to their life experiences that would otherwise not be heard. Its fiery passion, conveying essential messages about justice, political unrest, community and personal empowerment, spread from its modest inception in New York City’s South Bronx ghetto streets in the 1960s to urban and suburban communities throughout the world today.
One could argue that the golden era of hip hop and its power to communicate consciously was in the late 80s and early 90s when bands like Grandmaster Flash, Arrested Development, the Furious Five and a Tribe Called Quest had worldwide attention. But then hip hop turned into a pop mainstream staple and in the process, the honest soulfulness of its roots were diluted, if not lost.
Raury, as self-proclaimed indigo child, sings, plays guitar, and rhymes about the climate crisis, a fellow neighbor in need, and the current day experience for a young black kid in Atlanta Georgia. He voices equal concern for those on streets of his neighbourhood and everyone who shares this planet.
His music revives the sincere, powerful messaging that once was the heart of hip hop. The last time someone as fresh and innovative came on the hip hop scene was when Andre 3000 of Outkast (notably also from Atlanta, Georgia) achieved international success in 2000 with his fourth album “Stankonia”. It is no wonder that hip hop publications are drawing comparisons between these two artists.
Check out his song “Devil’s Whisper”, [https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LoI2C6pW9AQ] a sweeping fusion of folk rock and hip hop, which begins as an unassuming folk tune then rips into passionate rhymes. The track oozes with a vibe of magic, voodoo, Christian teachings and taboo that only a native Southerner could honestly imbibe, and cautions individuals and global powers to not engage harmful energies.
Young boy, trying to rule the world I see Well, young boy, I can give you everything Diamonds, everything you touch can be Golden, but first you gotta listen to me … Oh na na (Be careful) You better run, run from the devil! … Run in some type of direction Cause the people going nowhere are the ones that are flexing I’m not trying to be a preacher, I was never a reverend But I can take your ass to church and show you glimpses of heaven you better
If there is anything missing for Raury as an artist, it is simply that he is 18 years old and suffers perhaps from the same stage a young Ed Sheeran went through: he does not yet quite know himself musically. Though he displays an obvious talent for various musical styles, it seems he has yet to find a voice that weaves them together cohesively.
But just like Parvati Magazine was one of the first outlets to spread the good news about Ed before he became super famous, we share the same excitement about Raury. His debut album “All We Need” was released on October 16th, 2015 and is currently on a promotional tour of this record. He rolls into Toronto on November 7th.
Check out his website for tour dates near you, because he is likely not going to be playing small venues for long. You will be glad you did.
Since 1994, Rishi Deva, founder and CEO of RishiVision and entrepreneurial coach, has empowered thousands of businesses. Rishi has an MBA in marketing and entrepreneurial studies and a BBA in accounting. He has spent nearly twenty years coaching, consulting, managing and supporting thousands of businesses from new startups to active global leaders.