Struggle the Love the Glory
The genesis of genius began in November of 1978 in the, small, town of Petersburg, VA. This was the time Jah-I-Witness Emcee, born Genesis Osagboro Ridley, entered this world. Born the son of, musician/activist, Olamina of Awareness Art Ensemble (A.A.E.), a very influential force in introducing African culture and reggae music to the Mid-Atlantic region, Jah-I's musical roots run long and deep. Traveling on the road alongside his father, young, Genesis gained a lifetime of experiences and was exposed to a multi-cultural worldview, which the young Scorpio absorbed like a sponge. This and growing up in a stable family structure gave him a foundation and experiences, rare amongst youth that grow up in the tough streets of Petersburg, where he learned of struggle and perseverance. In 1996, Genesis left the streets of Petersburg to further his education at Virginia Tech, in Blacksburg, VA. While studying engineering at VA Tech, he began to perform at local venues and functions as part of Barefoot, a hip hop group composed of his then roommate and himself. He quickly earned the respect of the campus and surrounding music scene as a vicious battle emcee and talented lyricist. Also while attending VA Tech; he acquired the skills of music production and audio engineering. In 2001, in the wake of the September 11th tragedy, Jah-I and a handful of live musicians formed the live hip hop unit called True Sound. True Sound captivated audiences with there funky blend of hip hop, ghetto rock, reggae and soul, which began to be described as "The True Sound Experience." With Jah-I-Witness as front man, True Sound blends the energy of a rock-n-roll show, with street savvy and politically charged lyrics, soulful vocals, and masterful musicianship. Alongside the brothers of True Sound, Jah-I has played many, notable venues in the mid-Atlantic region and has shared the stage with a number of nationally and internationally recognized acts and music legends; such as Busta Rhymes & The Flipmode Squad, The Wailers, Sugar Hill Gang, and Fishbone. As a solo artist, Jah-I has created a colorful sound that truly stands out from the grayness of the music industry. With the mic as his brush and beats as his canvas, Jah-I dips into his life experiences, emotions, and soul to paint sonic masterpieces. One such masterpiece, Stranger, was unveiled in 2005. Stranger, an eclectic mix of politically conscious rhymes, love ballads, and odes to hip hop proved to be an excellent showcase of Jah-I's singing, rhyming, and production abilities. Stranger effectively blurred the lines between music genres, while simultaneously embodying the spirit of hip hop music and culture. Currently, Jah-I is busy promoting his second solo effort The Struggle, The Love, The Glory, which is a collection of new songs and collaborations with various producers from around the world. He is also actively working on the completion of an album for his new group, The Remnant Project, which is comprised of emcee/vocalist Range Da Messenga, lyrical mastermind Kinetic, and Philly-based producer St. Paul. Both releases should prove to be solid works of art and positive steps on the path of Jah-I's musical journey.