New Orleans MC Truth Universal Releases Bonus Single + Video, “Serve & Protect”


Born in Trinidad and raised in New Orleans, Truth represents that “other side” of Big Easy Hip Hop. Differing by leaps and bounds from his hometown counterparts, Lil Wayne, Juvenile, Birdman, and the rest of the Hot Boys / Cash Money phenomenon now ruling the airwaves and riding Grammy territory, he remains militant in his calling to expose and discuss relevant social issues of today. No newbie to this game, Truth began publishing music in 2000, followed by “The Naked Truth” EP in 2001, and released a string of singles between 2000 – 2005. 2006 saw the “Move the Crowd” mixtape, and after 2 years in the kitchen, Truth unleashed the full Self Determination on Dragons Breath Records.

Highly political, Truth does not waste a beat using his talent, and music in general, as a tool for social awareness and change. He believes firmly in the traditions of grassroots Hip Hop culture and continues to be a true leader in the underground New Orleans scene. Yet, his music and his messages are universal topics that people from all corners of the Earth can relate to in their own way, making him a solid collaborator with an array of MCs and producers you already know. An advocate of peaceful resistance through education, Truth Universal is an important link in the chain of the conscious Hip Hop movement.

Truth Universal is leading a movement from the Crescent City side of things, and with all eyes on New Orleans in the wake of Katrina and since the seemingly overnight stardom of the Lil Wayne cadre, it is refreshing and inspiring to see the flipside of the NOLA coin. Just as every city gets blanketed and stereotyped in light of its few celebrities, so too is New Orleans experiencing what Truth Universal is here to balance out. Like anything, there are two sides to any story, and many ways to tell it.

Recently, Truth was able to put forth his “Angola 3” song in a context with open ears when Mos Def and the MXGM / Black August movement organized shows in several cities to raise awareness about the 3 Louisiana men incarcerated at Angola Prison in solitary confinement without proper conviction since the early 1970s, and 1 of their releases in 2008.

This season, as part of his police brutality and corruption awareness project, Truth drops his Self Determination bonus track, “Serve & Protect,” along with his latest video for the 2nd single off the Self Determination LP, “Work.” After spending the month of August touring as part of the Black August collective (now also a commemoration project for Katrina victims –, opening shows for Mos Def, and appearing for cameos in several cities, including Rock the Bells weekend in San Francisco, Truth Universal has been back in the lab already working on his next album, due out in spring 2009. He is also working on a youth education and music workshop program in New Orleans.

Watch: | “Work / Black Culture”

SELF DETERMINATION: worth your support.
12 powerful, independently produced tracks featuring stic man of Dead Prez, Doodlebug of Digable Planets, Wise Intelligent, Sula of Zion Trinity, and rising New Orleans Soul/Funk artist, Tondrae Kemp. With guest production from Strange Fruit Project and more.
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