HARVARD LAW GRAD TURNED RAPPER A.D. “THE VOICE” CONTINUES TO STAND FOR POSITIVE CHANGE IN THE HIP HOP COMMUNITY WITH RELEASE OF NEW MP3 “OBAMA”
A.D. TAPPED TO STAR IN POLITICAL DOCUMENTARY “HIP-HOP FOR PRESIDENT” AND PERFORM AT NACA NATIONAL CONVENTION
DEBUT ALBUM PAINFULLY FREE SET FOR MARCH 25TH RELEASE ON STATIK ENTERTAINMENT
Conscious rapper, A.D. The Voice has committed his life to Hip Hop culture and its potential for social transformation. He has done so in spite of the six-figure offers he received from three different law firms upon graduating from the most elite academic institutions in the world–Oxford University, where he was a Rhodes Scholar, and Harvard Law.
He furthers his quest to strengthen the hip hop community with the release of his new song “Obama,” which he hopes gives people the confidence to look beyond the physical differences in candidates, on to the core issues at hand and get behind those they feel strongly represent positive change for our community.
A.D. The Voice was recently chosen to be the on-camera correspondent of the independent documentary, Hip-Hop For President: Power, Politics and the Race for the White House. The film will follow the 2008 presidential election from the lens and voice of Hip-Hop culture. “Hip Hop allows more people to have a voice and a chance to challenge government,” A.D. says. “I believe it has the most potential to make something happen when it comes to youth culture. Some churches are corrupted just like politics now so Hip-Hop is the only thing that the youth can cling to. Barack Obama is a perfect example. We both went to Harvard and graduated. He got into law and made some money. He went to politics and is in a good position to become president. However, he’s very limited with what he can say and do. I didn’t want to be limited.”
A.D. is one of a select few hip-hop acts chosen by the National Association of Campus Activities (NACA) to perform at their 2008 National Convention. The convention will take place February 16th-20th in St. Louis, MO and will allow students and campus activity leaders to meet artists and secure campus bookings.
With the March 25th, release of his debut album, Painfully Free, an independent recording from the Los Angeles-based label, STATiK Entertainment, a new narrative in Hip Hop emerges–one rooted in black intellectual excellence and the human struggle for peace and truth. Free is less about any one particular sound, and more about a universal sound that speaks to the human condition. “I believe the natural state of man is painfully free, and to get there we must be prepared to face up to the truth,” A.D. says. “They say the truth hurts. But it can also set you free. And I would rather be painfully free than remain in painless captivity.”
is also about A.D.’s belief that Hip Hop culture has greater potential for bringing about social change than our flawed legal system. “Pursuing my passion toward music and hip hop culture was a non-traditional method for pursuing social justice. I tried the sensible path toward making change but it was clear after my first year at Harvard Law, that our system of laws might not be capable of facilitating the sort of change I had in mind. However, through music I found a method to illustrate my vehicle for social change–the power of an education.”
“Hip Hop culture, like the Church during the Civil Rights Movement, has the potential to function as an informal educational system, and a political space for radical social change. It speaks for the outcasts of society–the single mother, incarcerated father, and abandoned child–those the elite use as a scapegoat when the American dream fails for poor and lower middle class people.”
A.D.’s commitment to positive social change is not only demonstrated through his words and music but also through his actions. He has worked with youth focused programs including “A Better Chance” and “The Oliver Program” to help students from underprivileged backgrounds receive an education at the best high school programs in the country. He has also worked with kids in public schools and boys and girls clubs to teach them about their 4 th Amendment Rights in an effort to mitigate the pitfalls of the “School to Prison Pipeline” that so many minority youths fall victim to.
A.D. was recently presented with The Heineken Independent Achiever Award for music excellence at a special event featuring a performance by one of his inspirations, Grammy award winner Common. The award recognizes individuals who demonstrate the hustle, integrity and drive necessary to “make it,” while making an impact and inspiring others. A.D., is one of eight artists across the country handpicked by a committee of industry leaders.