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Okayplayer is premiering “Soldiers,” the first single from J. Period‘s The RISE UP Project. The song features dead prez, Sa-Roc, and Maimouna Youssef.
“We’re marching in Compton. We’re marching in Oakland. We’re marching in Ferguson. We’re marching in Flint.”
On Friday (March 1s) DJ, producer, and longtime Okayplayer fam J. Period released his new single “Soldiers.” We are proud to premiere the song, which features legendary duo dead prez, sharpshooting MC Sa-Roc, and singer Maimouna Youssef.
There’s a special meaning behind the song. The song samples The Isley Brothers iconic track “Ohio,” which fuses with a cover of Jimi Hendrix’s “Machine Gun.” The Isley Brothers made the track after a string of violent acts against activists occurred in 1970. National Guardsmen shot and killed four Kent State students who were protesting the Vietnam War. Just days later, two Jackson State students, who were also protesters, were killed by Mississippi police.
With that in the air, The Isley Brother made a masterpiece. And, nearly 50 years later, J. Period flipped that masterpiece.
“Soldiers” is about the modern-day oppression felt like by people of color. It’s a powerful return to form from dead prez. Over J. Period’s militant production, stic.man wraps:
Shots fired, police getting away with it. Even when the camera’s dead on em
While Sa Roc raps:
From the students of Soweto to the ghettos and the projects. We gon keep pushing the needle til we progress.
“Soldiers” is the first release from J. Period’s The RISE UP Project. The compilation, which will be executive produced by J, Young Guru, DJ Khalil, and DJ Jazzy Jeff, will feature a super diverse collection of creatives: from Black Thought, Posdnuos, Pharoahe Monch, Jesse Williams, Aloe Blacc, Andra Day, Joss Stone, and Rhymefest.
The RISE UP Project, which is made possible because of a grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, comes out on March 15, 2019.
Stream “Soldiers,” the first single, below.