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He is "JAHI" (An Interview Session with Jahi of PE 2.0)

March 19th, 2019

 

HE IS JAHI (An Interview Session with Jahi of PE 2.0)

 

In between preparing for upcoming tour dates around the globe, day to day life and studio sessions, Jahi of PE 2.O was gracious enough to sit down and provide insight on what's happenning in his world. 

 

Who is Jahi? 

I am a Hip Hop artist celebrating my 20th Anniversary as an active participant in Hip Hop culture. My primary position is MC, but I also DJ and do lectures in museums around the world on The Intersection between Hip Hop Culture & Education.  I am originally from Cleveland, Ohio but Oakland California AKA Wakanda is where Im based.  Im a world citizen. I started rapping on street corners after hearing Run-DMC in 1981. Facts.    Who are your musical influences?   I grew up in a household where the stereo was more important than the television and there was usually albums stacked on top of the TV.  We listened to gospel like Mahaliah Jackson, Soul like Ray Charles, Aretha Franklin, Marvin Gaye, Earth Wind and Fire, Funk like Lakeside, The Dazz Band, Blues like Bobby Blue Bland and my older sister loved Zapp, Cameo and brought home the first rap record Rappers Delight and played it every morning before school.  I was into Huey Lewis and the News, Phil Collins, then Run-DMC, and everything great in Hip Hop from the 80's.  I was the first one on my block to by KRS first album and Public Enemy's first album.  Music was always normal in our household.  Chaka Khan's voice is like a family member because I heard her all the time.   How did you meet Chuck D and Public Enemy?   1999 at The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland. Fact is I was the first local artist to perform there for an exhibit on Hip Hop hosted by BET called Roots and Rap, I think.  Anyway, Public Enemy was headlining, I got to the venue early, went backstage, and the whole Public Enemy crew was there. Chuck and I connected and the rest is history.  Chuck didn't know me from Adam, but he recognized I was a local artist trying to make an impact and he's always been a supporter of that.    What lessons have you learned from your experiences with Chuck D and PE?   I've learned things about leadership, and how to smash stages.  I've learned so much about music history, the inner mechanics of what it takes to build a movement through music with global impact, and I've been able to see with my own eyes that if you practice your craft in Hip Hop, it can truly take you all over the world.   Tell us about PE 2.0.   Project Experience Millennium has three goals.   1 use songs from the PE Catalog and cover or revisit and add my lyrical twists on them. 2. Write new songs in the same spirit and purpose that Public Enemy did meaning socially conscious, saying something with meaning, and using my voice, pen, and mic to show and prove on a higher vibration. 3. Rock stages and bring it all to life.    PE 2.0 continues the cultural legacy pioneered by Public Enemy. There is no Public Enemy 2.0. There is only ONE.  PE 2.0 is a branch on a strong tree with deep roots.   Tell us about your current and upcoming projects.   The Catalog on VINYL! featuring songs from the 4 PE 2.0 albums I've done since 2012 will be out in May 2019. Features Chuck D, KRS-One, special shout out to Easy Mo Bee, Divided Souls, The Bomb Squad and DJ Pain 1 the heavy handed beat makers of the project.  I'm working on a lyrical book called 100 Rhymes in my Lifetime Volume 1, I have a collaboration project with Phesto Dee of Souls of Mischief coming, and Im always writing.    What legacy is Jahi wanting to leave behind?   I want people to say when my time on earth is done that I made a difference in the lives of others.  I wrote music that stood in my truth that made people think, smile, and appreciate.  Lastly, I want my legacy to be a marker for others to know that all you have to do is decide to make it happen and it can be done, whatever it is.  I am living proof.       Check out Jahi's Music at iamjahi.bandcamp.com.     Jahi is currently featured  on "CELEBRATION OF IGNORANCE" The New Solo Project from Chuck D (Stream it here: https://open.spotify.com/album/6Sl8zWNFXGr3YxkRsFvnLu)     - Interview by Janol MECCA Holmes