Free download of E.G. Bailey’s ‘Oracles of Equiano (Starskie’s Pushing Mix)’

More than any other performance art, spoken-word is subject to stereotypes.  Everyone knows that spoken-word is read only in dark clubs, only by beret-wearing neo-beatniks who rant and rave about the revolution with pre-programmed flows and unoriginal deliveries.  Everyone knows that spoken-word can be austere and preachy or screamingly emphatic…but never funky.

Enter e.g. bailey.  Over a fun, stuttering house beat produced by Germany’s Starskie, the Twin Cities poet and educator proves that you can indeed dance to spoken-word.  The piece itself refers to Olaudah Equiano, a former slave whose autobiography became a major piece of the abolitionist struggle, and touches on the continuing struggle for justice, the importance of the arts and what “freedom” means in the age of Obama and beyond, for both African-Americans and Africans.  It’s neither a typical club song nor a typical spoken-word track, but bailey has never been a typical artist.

The free download is available at these links : truruts.bandcamp.com

The original version of ‘Oracles of Equiano’, featuring a group of Igbo nuns, will be released on e.g. bailey’s debut album, AMERICAN AFRIKAN, in 2010 on Tru Ruts/Speakeasy Records.

E.G. Bailey features at University of Wyoming

Spoken Word artist, E.G. Bailey, will feature at University of Wyoming’s Days of Dialogue, honoring the legacy and spirit of Martin Luther King Jr, and centered on the themes of poverty, politics and race.

Called ‘the ultimate collaborator’, Bailey has cofounded a number of essential organizations and projects, including the MN Spoken Word Association, the Urban Griots Spoken Word Awards, the Verve Spoken Word Grant, hip hop and spoken word label Tru Ruts/Speakeasy Records, and a number of spoken word radio shows. He has developed curriculum, worked in k-12 schools and will be teaching a new course at the University of MN this spring. His work and performance has taken him all across the U.S., and abroad to England, South Africa, United Arab Emirates, Bosnia, and more.

Bailey’s work centers on African and African American historical and cultural heritage. These  theme are explored  in his upcoming spoken word concept album, American Afrikan, infused with the music of jazz, Afrobeat, hip hop and more. Collaborating with musician Dameun Strange, he will perform selections from this project, in addition to other works. The performance will be followed by an open mic allowing students to showcase works.

Performance begins at 9PM  • Free • 1000 E. University Ave, Wyoming Union Lower Level, Rm 12.  (The Building is located at 13th Street and University Ave).

Tru Ruts secures distribution with IDC

Fresh off their partnership with Strange Famous Records, Tru Ruts/Speakeasy Records has secured a national distribution deal with Independent Distribution Collective (IDC). IDC, based in the Bay Area, is the distribution home to dozens of labels and artists. They strive to create ‘a whole new avenue for current and next generation artists who are trying to bring their music to the public.’ They have distributed titles for artists such as Lee Scratch Perry, Toots and the Maytals, Bill Ortiz (of Santana), The Future Sound of Breaks, singer songwriters Kim Garrison and Katie Garibaldi, SonicBloom Hip Hop Collective (Bay Area), producer DNAE Beats (Gift of Gab, Mr. Lif, Pigeon John, Universal Records), King Tubby, Bad Brains and others. IDC will begin distributing Tru Ruts titles in January 2010.

Rising indie label, Tru Ruts, recently released Guante + Big Cats! album An Unwelcome Guest, in addition to Start A Fire (Guante + Big Cats!) and The Good Company EP (Chantz Erolin + Cory Grindberg), both of which were chosen as one of the ‘Best of the Midwest: EPs’ (Midwest Broadcast). In genres ranging from hip hop to spoken word to reggaeton, world music and more, Tru Ruts has released a number of critically acclaimed albums and compilations, with a roster of rising artists in their respective fields. For more information, contact Tru Ruts at info@truruts.com.

Guante + Big Cats on 3-Minute Egg

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Guante (better known to those closest to him as Kyle Myhre) has made big splashes in the Twin Cities both as a slam poet and rapper. His new full-length disc of music is the concept album, An Unwelcome Guest, created in collaboration with Big Cats, a local producer who has served up beats for Sage Francis, Jolie Holland and Haley Bonar, among many others. 3-Minute Egg went to a rehearsal on the eve of the CD release show and spoke with Guante and Cats about their joint effort. [Courtesy of 3-Minute Egg]

Free download of E.G. Bailey’s ‘Blues People’

E.G. BAILEY’S ‘BLUES PEOPLE’
Surprising + Refreshing

blue black and beautiful
are we
many colors
the sun.  god’s breath
whispering through song
through wombs, pregnant
with freedom

‘He makes language live.’ – Amiri Baraka

Tru Ruts/Speakeasy Records presents a free download of  spoken word artist E.G. BAILEY’s ‘Blues People’, from his upcoming album, AMERICAN AFRIKAN. The free download is available at these links:

egbailey.bandcamp.commyspace.com/trurutsmyspace.com/egbaileyZshareDirect Download to Computer

‘Blues People’, a call to peoples across the diaspora, looks towards hope for those still struggling in this new world. Bailey utilizes imagery in a skillful and refreshing way in speaking about the multiplicity of the Black experience in America. Marrying it against a jazz-inspired musical backdrop couldn’t have been a smarter choice. It allows the poetry to have a grandeur and resonance. Recorded live in Minneapolis’ nationally recognized spoken word scene, and performed alongside saxophonist Andy Shaffer, of ‘New Orleans Swamp Pop’ outfit, Skinny Longfeet, there is a raw guttural tonality informing the relationship between the music and words. Evoking a call and response, reminiscent of early gospel and blues, the piece allows each to maintain it’s own identity while carefully courting the space between one another.

Bailey’s astute relationship with the rhythm of language, coupled with his academic background as both a student and teacher of poetry, is prevalent in his musical and metaphorical choices. As Bailey has stated, the poem, winner of the  Hughes Knight Diop Poetry Award from the Gwendolyn Brooks Writers Conference, strives to tell the history of Africans in America through the craft of writing. It provokes you to connect with the pain of that struggle. A well crafted piece of spoken word, it continues to show why e.g. bailey can be found at the forefront of the art form.

Bailey’s spoken word opus, American Afrikan, will be released in early 2010. Recent spotlights on e.g. bailey:

‘Twin Towers’‘Home at Last’‘From Chains to Change’

For more information: Tru RutsE.G. BaileyAndy Shaffer