Title: The Legend of Chinn Dynasty
Artist: Jarod the Sixth
Release Date: 2015 Jan 30
Genre: Rap / Hip-Hop
License: CC BY-SA
There is something about Jarod the Sixth: The Legend of Chinn Dynasty that is undeniable. It wasn’t a release that grabbed me at first. But, part of that might have been the overwhelming twenty one tracks on this release. But as I listened to it several times I came to understand some things that make it worth a listen.
Jarod the Sixth: The Legend of Chinn Dynasty
In the notes about this release (on the BandCamp page), Jarod reveals:
The creation of this tape brought forth pain, hardships, struggles and loads of patience and perseverance. At the beginning of 2014, I was depressed. lost. with no reason or goal to keep living. Even though people thought I had everything, I felt like I had nothing even though I did have existence . I never really knew why people would ever look up to a skinny. lazy. forgetful kid with glasses but now I realize my friends and family saw so much in me that I didn’t recognize in myself.
There is something universal in this statement. It seems that many younger people feel this way these days. It’s not specific to race, social or economic status. This is probably one of the biggest problems we are facing as a society today.
So, this recording serves as a document of a young man from Atlanta, GA finding a sense of purpose. Documenting all of the things that he has come to understand over the period of a a year in his life. It’s not all specifically about him, this isn’t a confessional work, but it is a “coming of age” or “rite of passage” in it’s own right.
There are some really powerful tracks on this release. Take “Nobody Wants To Listen” about how there are always people that have an opinion, and they always feel the need to assert their ideas as a substitute for your own goals and ambitions. It’s a sign of the communication breakdown that is happening in this country, it’s something that can be found all the way down to how we communicate with each other as individuals, all the way up to national level debates.
Another track that struck me is ‘Guide My Way” which reminded me a lot of Michael Franti. This piece lays out the desperation that surrounds Jarod early on, but eventually he turns all of the negative things around him into positives. He finds a way to turn all these negatives into things that eventually guide him along the path the becoming the person he seeks to be.
The other thing that is really ground breaking on this release is the range of styles music that becomes the backdrop for all these pieces. From African Kalimba on (the appropriately named) Kalimba, to lounge jazz on Life, Yes, there is plenty of standard Hip-Hop beats on this release, but Jarod’s ability to build on a wide range of styles is one of the elements that takes this release to the next level.
While this tape does a lot to ascend to another level, I do have to mention that there is some places for improvements. Some of the tracks have vocals that were recorded way too hot, to the point that they sound as if they over-saturated the tape (or maybe just the gain was too high on the microphone). But that’s about the only thing that I could find that needs improvement.
It’s not often that you hear a release that stops and makes you think and feel, that brings the perspective of the reality that this generation is struggling with. Jarod the Sixth: The Legend of Chinn Dynasty doesn’t just do it, it takes the whole “rite of passage” to a new level. And it’s really excellent to hear a release that isn’t completely obsessed with booty calls, drugs, and money. Really there needs to be more releaes like this. Hopefully Jarod moves forward from this release and builds on it, continuing with his positive outlook on life.