Spoken word and rap collide in poet J. Ivy’s world, but the Grammy-winning artist’s unique fusion of the two has not only earned him guests spots on a bevy of albums, commercials and television shows, it’s also solidified his title as the poetic voice of the hip-hop generation.
“Music is the universal language and hip-hop is the number one music in the world,” Ivy said in a statement. “I am focused on the genre of hip-hop because that’s what I grew up on. I am a hip-hop baby. I wholly embrace it.”
Hailing from Chicago, Ivy burst on the scene when he garnered a guest spot on the Russell Simmons HBO show “Def Poetry.” Shortly thereafter, rapper Kanye West invited him to appear on his debut album College Dropout on the track “Never Let Me Down,” which also featured Jay-Z. Ivy later went on to make guest appearances on “HBO Boxing,” ABC’s “Monday Night Football” and the FedEx Orange Bowl.
Ivy’s currently gearing up for the release of his debut album Here I Am, which arrived in stores Oct. 26. The 18-track project tackles topics of life, love, war and spirituality with a few feel-good poetic party tracks sprinkled in between. The album also features numerous guest appearances including The Last Poets, Jessica Care Moore, Jesse Boykins II, Mikkey Halsted and Blitz the Ambassador.
“I definitely put a lot of love into this record,” Ivy said in a statement. “The words and music make me feel empowered. It inspires and motivates me as much as it moves my mind and body.”
He performed selections from Here I Am at two special back-to-back concerts in Washington D.C., on Oct. 26 and 27 at Howard University and Jin Lounge. respectively.
For more information on J. Ivy, visit www.j-ivy.com.