“Tanya Morgan, the loveable hip-hop trio hailing from Brooklyn and Cincinnati, have announced the release of “The Bridge” EP. Serving as a “bridge” between their previous works and their upcoming full-length release “Brooklynati”, the album (EP) is a re-introduction to the group that received industry props in 2006 with their critically acclaimed debut LP, “Moonlighting”. The Bridge EP is available now on Bay Area record label Interdependent Media.
For those that don’t know yet, Tanya Morgan is not your typical female. Rather she is actually a rap group comprised of three members. Donwill and Ilyas hail from Cincinnati, while Von Pea reps Brooklyn. Comprised of eight solid tracks plus one bonus cut, “The Bridge” provides a succinct sampling of the Tanya Morgan sound. Steering clear of hip-hop cliches, Tanya Morgan have succeeded in crafting a unique brand of hip-hop. As Donwill explains: “We go to great lengths to make sure we don’t sound like everyone else. Instead of jam-packing our releases with different producers and guest emcees for attention, we carefully choose who we work with because we make it a priority to cultivate our own sound and identity.” The title track opens the record with Donwill rhyming: “Long time comin’ so its gotta be priority / record dealings / label woes left a bunch of bitter foes / band aid the band and we givin’ it another go.” The song bounces over a looped piano line and the chorus brings it full circle as the three members chant in staccato succession, “The bridge!” “Hip Hop is Dead II” showcases the unique lyrical ability of each member. Although criticizing what is currently going on in hip-hop, the group never sounds preachy and instead acts as a source of inspiration for the future of hip-hop. Ilyas rhymes: “We all got knowledge on the block but we won’t apply it / I give you food for thought and you decide to diet.” On “Be You” the group breaks down their approach to the rap game by realizing that the best thing to do in the rap industry is to stay positive and to avoid being something you are not.
Tanya Morgan’s debut full-length album, “Moonlighting”, built an underground buzz after receiving kudos from both critics and their peers. “Moonlighting” made ?uestlove’s (The Roots) list of Top 10 albums of 2006, received praise in XXL’s Chairman’s Choice, and got a 3.5 mic rating from The Source. Tanya Morgan will be touring extensively in support of The Bridge EP, as well as finishing their second full-length album, which will be released in the fall.
Peep “How Low”
Shaya preps the release of “Fallen Awake”
The Song: “Thinking Cap” (click to preview) is the latest single from Shaya’s debut album “Fallen Awake”. Under the manifesto of resurrecting “thinking man’s music,” Shaya’s track is an open palm to his listeners; a chance to lay rest the pains of his own life and come to terms with a new mentality that is rooted in clarity and honesty. Discussing his recent record deal, Shaya writes about his anxieties about releasing his first album and the simultaneous recognition that he has something intelligent to offer to the hip-hop game. He rhymes: “They say this is my best sh!t / But I don’t really know / Maybe writing what I feel / Gave me character to grow.” His lyrics are set over a relaxed beat that is a throwback to the underground gems of classic 90′s hip-hop from the Bay Area. It’s evident when listening to Shaya that he is not trying to project a certain image or conform to a specific niche; he just lets his words and life story speak for themselves.
Prior to signing with Interdependent Media, Shaya spent nearly ten years hitting the pavement in his native Bay Area slanging handmade CD’s and mixtapes at shows and on street corners. Shaya’s lyricism, determination, and charismatic personality caught the attention of many industry leaders but personal obstacles often prevented him from taking his craft to the next level. He did, however, perform regularly and opened up for Bay Area luminaries such as the Hieroglyphics and the Living Legends. Shaya is currently under the mentorship of iD, the same A&R guru who introduced the world to Little Brother. Now, backed with the support of Interdependent Media, home to Canibus, K’naan, Tanya Morgan, Eyezon, J*Davey, and other artists, Shaya and iD are proud to finally release the fulfillment of the potential that others in the industry have always seen in Shaya with “Fallen Awake”. The album features production from Jake One (50 Cent, Freeway) and The ARE (Lords of the Underground, K-Otix). Under the manifesto of resurrecting “thinking man’s music”, Shaya considers “Fallen Awake” to be not only an open-palm to his listeners, but a chance to lay to rest the pains of his own life.
“Fall Back” (click to preview)