Brother Ali was born Jason Newman in 1978 in Madison, Wisconsin, and is a hip-hop artist signed to Rhymesayers Entertainment. Ali spent most of his early childhood moving from city to city in the Midwest. Ali's family settled in Minneapolis, Minnesota, in 1992 and Ali attended high-school there where he began rapping and writing his own rhymes.
Ali's first release was a demo tape titled, “Rites of Passage,” which Ali self-produced, recorded and arranged. He sent the demo to a local independent hip-hop label Rhymesayers Entertainment, who put out his “Rites of Passage” recording in 2000.
2003 marked Ali's first studio project, “Shadows on the Sun,” which garnered praise from und...
I see my dad in Robin Williams and my son in Michael Brown.
Thursday 14th of August 2014 02:48:49 AM
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Not sure if folks have noticed but I've been using social media less, especially to communicate world views. I'm focussing on the revolutionary work of self purification and removal of dictator qualities within my own foul self. I've received a lot of questions about Palestine and I don't think anyone would be surprised about my sentiments. I'm against all forms of domination, anywhere, at any time and by anyone.
I have very real companions in the Jewish community who are horrified by what Israel does in their name in Gaza, just like I as a American Male of European descent am disgusted by what's done in my name in Florida, South Side of Chicago and North Minneapolis.
People with massive material power, money, weapons, propaganda and influence are tortured by what they've done to others. They rot from within, drowning in fear of what might happen to them if their victims ever get on their feet. Oppressors' guilt drives them to use every tool in their wretched arsenal to erase entirely the human proof of their own frail and unloving hearts.
Even a semi obscure, indépendant rapper like me saying something against oppression and injustice draws hateful and ignorant comments from folks who assumedly follow me on social media because they consider themselves fans. Membership in a privileged group has a way of making people side with power, usually against their own interest. I'm going on tour this fall and sometime soon I hope to make another album and the more I speak from my heart, the more people leave my listenership. Alhamdulillah, I'm working to position myself in such a way where that can't hurt my business reality anymore.
So yes, my heart moans for the people being brutalized in Gaza. Israel should listen to it's courageous Jewish humanitarians who are protesting their actions around the world. Anyone doing anything in sincere solidarity with oppressed people have my complete support.
Muslims shouldn't have to repeat this over and over again, but Islam doesn't condone terrorism or killing of innocent people. Human despair on the other hand makes powerless, humiliated, suffering people do anything in their limited reality to grab some semblance of action. As a Muslim, our religion teaches us to be patient and faithful in the face of oppression, but I've never been in those people's shoes, I've never even been to visit them. I'm not in a position to judge them.
If you're compelled to send money, send it. If you're called to protesting, do it well. If you're praying for peace, keep praying. If you're studying and raising awareness in your own sphere of influence, be eloquent and direct. I'm rockin with you.
Saturday 2nd of August 2014 02:31:21 AM