Jabee made waves eight years ago in 2008 making URB Magazine’s Next 1000 list on a DJ Vadim backed mixtape entitled Blood Is The New Black. After graduating from the pre social media enthralled age of the the media-sphere, he made his way through collaborations with some of hip hops best and brightest, such as Mick Boogie, DJ Green Lantern, 9th Wonder, Blu and Oddisee, and an appearance on the Boondocks Season 3 mixtape.
While navigating through the ever evolving landscape of hip hop and the intricacies of media and messages, Jabee found the time to release to link up with legends such as Chuck D, Brother Ali, and Killer Mike to drop Black Future this year.
His most recent drop, Tried So Hard, was accompanied with the music video linked above. A dive into self-examination, Jabee had this to say about the track, “[this is] me dealing with my insecurities, my faults and how people will kick you not knowing that you are already beating yourself up inside. The video is a picture of that and how you still need to be able to smile through it all.”
It made our playlist because of how it stays with you upon listens and viewings. There is a certain type of weight that plays between the Todd Beats directed visuals and Jabee’s lyrics that stick around after viewing. Phen, from Jivin Scientists fame, sample flipping and sequencing, help to dance the line between the Jabee’s delivery and the sample drops (still trying to find this one) that elicit enough of golden era nostalgia while remaining in the current era.
It’s both haunting and emotive while maintaining a sense of ‘hardness’ that grounds its message and sound.
Peep it a few times to see what we mean…. and peep the break for more info: