Singled Out: "When I Put It Out, Nobody Knew Who J. Cole Or Jay Electronica Were"

Tuesday, Apr 23, 2013 1:15AM

Written by SOHH for Talib Kweli

[SOHH highlights a hot record each Tuesday and offers a unique look at the track in Singled Out. After Nature broke down his "Rock Like This" track, New York rapper Talib Kweli decodes his Curren$y and Kendrick Lamar-assisted "Push Thru" anthem.]

"Push Thru" was produced by Symbolyc One who is a wondeful producer but is most known for working with artists like Kanye on "Power" and I really enjoy his sound. He's got about three beats on this new album.

Originally, it was mostly him. When I first started putting together Prisoner of Conscious it was mostly Symbolyc One but that gave me an opportunity to work with a bunch of different producers.

I worked with Kendrick and Curren$y early on with this project. They were some of the first people I came to when I started putting this album together. I have always liked to have an artist on my album that shows where hip-hop is going. It's like a passing of the torch movement.

The last time I did that was with "Just Begun" and I did that with J. Cole and Jay Electronica. But the lesson that I learned from "Just Begun" is when I put it out, nobody knew who J. Cole or Jay Electronica were, the mainstream hip-hop fans weren't aware of them. It was really the people on the underground who knew about them.

So with "Just Begun," I waited for the right time. I waited for Kendrick to release a new song before I put it out.

The Brooklyn-based rapper earned his stripes as one of the most lyrically-gifted, socially aware and politically insightful rappers to emerge in the last 20 years. His travels around the globe as one of rap's most in-demand performers combined with his conversations with political activists and his genre-straddling work with Idle Warship and others caused Kweli to realize that he was limited in a sense, a prisoner of sorts of his own success as one of the world's best rappers with something significant to say.

Check out Talib Kweli's "Push Thru":

For the latest gadgets, gear and giveaways, check out

blog comments powered by Disqus