Philly rapper JustXSudan released his first track just over two weeks ago. It’s only a minute and a half long, but it sounds like something much greater – a fully-formed slice of philosophical hiphop that has this 18-year-old spitter looking like he’s poised to do great things.
“Away,” produced by New York beatmaker Chuma Osse, launches with a suave guitar line and two layers of interlocked beats. It’s swift and punchy, and JustXSudan raps about, well, rap – performance as a means of connection and socialization, performance as a way of living one’s dreams. A rumbling bass kicks in, and he contines: “Focused my vision / promised my mom that I would never take the prison route.”
His mom, we should note, is Ursula Rucker, poet, activist and longtime collaborator of The Roots, King Britt and more. We came across this track from JustXSudan while reading up on her appearance at Philly Folk Fest a couple weeks ago; at the festival, we got to meet him and talk about how his own musical path emerged.
“I was always in the studio growing up,” he said. “You’d think I’d get tired of it, but I’ve just grown a huge love for it. And I have people like King Britt, all these people around who can help me. I’m just around good people. They all said I should be doing something.”
Sudan says he rapped and kind of kept it to himself for years, until the encouragement from his friends and family pushed him to make the leap. This summer he decided he’d put something out, and hoped people would like it. Continue reading →