McKinley Dixon - "The Importance of Self-Belief"
(Citrus City Records)
Like a flower rising from a crack in the concrete, The Importance of Self Belief, the latest release from Richmond, VA rapper McKinley Dixon is a smooth, elegant musical offering made in the midst of a hostile, unforgiving environment.
Against a musical backdrop of soul and jazz, McKinley Dixon is the bard of the bodega, spinning tales of the corner with all of its bittersweetness. The sweetness of familial love and friendship put to incredible strains by the bitterness of gunshots, black-on-black violence and police brutality.
McKinley is a socially-conscious rapper who infuses his tales of street life with the realities of racial inequality and injustice, while stridently calling for social justice. But his deft rhymes are completely devoid of any pretense or affectation. Indeed, his words and poetic voice have all the authenticity of lived experience rather than the cheap slogans and chants of a fair-weather friend to the movement.
Soulful, sophisticated and poetic. The Importance of Self Belief will keep your head bobbing with its incredibly grooving music and catchy lyrics but will also impart to you a message that will stick with you long after the music fades.
Cassette + digital release: