Thursday, August 6, 2015


"This cat is a hell of an MC and brilliant anti-racist (based out of Baltimore). Folks who aren't familiar with his work should really check it out." 
--- Alexander Billet, The Ferguson Moment facebookgroup

Sun of Nun reemerged trying to shake off the rust of his creative hiatus when Baltimore exploded all around him following the in-custody death of Freddie Gray earlier this year. “At that point I was working on a song, it wasn’t coming together,” the rapper says. “As the protests happened, then it really came together.” James went out to the marches as a street medic and felt the righteous rage of the people, transforming the experience into “It’s Like That,” an urgent critique of police violence that shows Son of Nun not missing a beat.

“It’s Baltimore and beyond!” James says. “It’s justifying what’s usually not justified, rioting and rebelling.” The single is exemplary of what Firebrand is trying to accomplish. “Something like this should have been in the works a long time ago,” he says. “It means having more opportunities to put the reality of oppressed people on blast.” The rapper believes that the new label will change up the relationship between music and activism, giving it a more organized base.

Firebrand, he hopes, will reinvigorate protest songs now that artists know they have a place to potentially call home. “The label is about giving that aspect of the music a platform,” James says. “Political music is kind of like the black people of music in the sense that they’re the last ones on and the first ones cut.”

Firebrand is on the move, connecting the content of its songs with the urgency of movements across the United States. Police brutality is a key front. Son of Nun is heading to Ferguson, Missouri to do a show in early August with label head Tom Morello and The Coup. Firebrand has also put out a new compilation “A New World in Our Songs,” a riff off the famous quote from Spanish anarchist Buenaventura Durruti.

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