Golden Globe, GRAMMY, Academy Award winning activist, actor and artist Common, four-time GRAMMY Award winning pianist/producer Robert Glasper, and drummer/producer extraordinaire Karriem Riggins released the second single “Black Kennedy” The band’s self-titled debut album will be released as an Amazon Original on March 9th.
Stream or embed the track via Soundcloud:
“For many people the Kennedy family symbolizes royalty and represents power, style, and influence,” Common says. “And I thought if I’m gonna do it, I’m gonna do it in a black way.”
“The process of creating this song gave me chills,” says Riggins. “It is a theme that represents royalty and brilliance. It also has J Dilla’s influences, and it reminded us of the great times spent with him creating music.”
“‘Black Kennedy’ is a song close to my heart,” Glasper adds. “It is a song of motivation, inspiration, perseverance and black excellence.”
August Greene – Optimistic
The band recently released their video for “Optimistic,” which was filmed in Jackson, Mississippi over Martin Luther King Day weekend. Directed by B+, the video features the Jackson-area activists Hollis Watkins, Frankye Adams Johnson, Dr. Cindy Ayers Elliott, Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba, and the Maddrama Performance Group.
In 2017, Common, Glasper, and Riggins collectively won the Emmy for Outstanding Original Music and Lyrics on the strength of their song “Letter To The Free,” which was recorded for Ava DuVernay’s documentary 13th. The longtime friends and musical collaborators felt the time was right to release music from August Greene, which has themes of optimism and black excellence. They have found a sound that does not solely fit into one genre, but is truly an invigorating hybrid of R&B, hip-hop, and jazz.
August Greene will be available to stream and for digital purchase on Amazon Music starting March 9.