Monday, December 14, 2009

The Joy is in the Journey...

Overlooked, under-booked, overwhelmed, underpaid. These are The overs & unders of the "upcoming artist." The joy is in the journey. it must be, cause otherwise a lot of us would have fallen into oblivion yesterday or the day before it. I mean even Lauryn Hill who we've now immortalized got booed at the Apollo - she persisted tho and won them over at the end- as a young teenager. So who are we mere mortals to be discouraged when we meet roadblocks.

Granted I've been very very fortunate to have been very well received since my debut record in '07 and had some really great opportunities come my way ever since... but ladies and gentlemen of the jury, there's lotsa bumps on this road. Brushes with opportunists, janky promoters, bills, false promises, redundant collaborations, snaky middle-men, frustrations with music outlets and media, non-musical businessmen at the helms of power, a lack of capital capital capital! etc. without enjoying the journey many of these factors can be dream-killers and unnerving.

everything in good time tho'... everything. And its amazing how some total strangers become the strongest allies and supporters without asking for a dime eh. i love it.

Reason I'm having this retrospective? I'll be speaking to students of the High School for Recording Artists (HSRA) in Saint Paul this Wednesday about my journey and how I'm utilizing social media in my journey as an artist. Had me thinking of the good, the bad, and the fugly of the journey. to be uncompromising sometimes is necessary on this journey, hence why i made a song like "Pardon me" on the birds and the beats.

woe to them that are picking up this artistic journey for the wrong reasons; ye shall experience shock and awe. But not to worry, everything in good time... everything.

Peace peace
m diggy

PS: i despise the term "upcoming artist" anyway. when does one stop upcoming and just be? when you make your first millie? do tell.

Monday, December 7, 2009

The Burden of Genius...

The idiosyncrasies of a brilliant mind are rarely met with warm embraces. Somehow we've thought it normal to mock the peculiar ways of the gifted amongst us. Its amusing and its human chale. And it should be comforting to the rest of us 'normal' Joe earthlings that its okay when our moments of brilliance are met with giggles. Einstein probably suffered that every day.

Van Gogh died broke, Galileo was prosecuted and convicted for defending Copernicus' challenge of geocentrism when he suggested that the earth goes around the sun (not vice versa), and somehow i bet you the guy that came up with the idea to build a spaceship was more steve urkel than stefan urkool.

Its okay to be brilliant and to do all those little funny things that somehow allow genius to reside in you. If you murmur to yourself on long promenades every day, keep doing it. If you're like my friend kubolor and your bare your soles daily keep doing it. If you're Lauryn Hill and you want to strum your guitar and sing brilliant painful poems unplugged, do it. Hopefully i can medicate myself with this advise in the moments i need it most

the burden of genius? That would be ridicule.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

monkey see monkey do

Imitation is the highest form of flattery, but damn originality should count for much more, no? asked me to participate in something that had me retrospecting with amusement on the many "hot" trends that came and disappeared quicker than vanilla ice's career. remember crunk? remember hyphy? remember the sped-up chip-munk soul sound? remember rims? platinum jewelry? autotune is damn near on its deathbed. the featuring-lil-wayne trend is still booming thanks to dwyane's prolific output and intriguing personality.

the irony in all of it is that, a lot of these trends are intrinsically original, and the locals/natives that organically came up with it deserve mucho kudos. But immediately an idea gets a glimpse of the spotlight and catches fire, a zillion imitators and another zillion so-called devout followers emerge out of the blue. monkey see monkey do.

i can't wait till the "get-an-african-doing-tribal-raps-on-your-tracks" becomes the in-thing. we'll milk that cow for every penny the short-sighted music business folks will offer. amen.

sincererly yours,

africa-man-original - mr tribal raps

i'm blind in the eye so i see with my heart...

brilliant song and well executed video. doesn't hurt that one of the best voices in R&B Stokely Williams of Mint Condition, does some simple but madddd effective back up vocals. Peace to Brother Ali, Peace to Mint Condition, Peace Twin cities! Ali's Album US is out now. go gadget go get it.
peace peace
m diggy

Monday, November 30, 2009

M3nsa = mad nice...get familiar with his music

M3nsa - Suicide in the Disco (Download
M3nsa - Gently Smile(Download)

M3nsa is one of the most talented people i know period. i've seen him work, heard his work, and the brother got work! he raps, he sings -i mean realllly sings good (no autotune or any other digital crutches)- and he also produces some really cutting edge stuff. he produced both tracks i put up above.

Lately ive been been feeling the ghanaian diaspora is having a resurgence, a really powerful musical renaissance with some real powerful artists and personalities: what up kubolor, what up sena, what up sway, what up blitz. M3nsa defintely is a big part of it. he's been a bonafide muscian since we were all in high school; producing, rapping, and singing hit records for regggie rockstone wayy before most of us ever recorded a single joint. if there was a high school yearbook of my ghanaian musicians peers, he'd have had most likely to succeed under his picture.

but off course with mucho talent comes lots of pressure and the burden of perfectionism. so its been a long time coming for my brother to put out his brilliant music. but don't fret, finally he's got 2 or 3 records in the bag just about ready to be let out. i'll keep you posted.

peace peace
m diggy dot

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Baggage claim...

just got back to the twin cities last night. found out Northwest merged (or perhaps ate up) Delta airlines - gotta love capitalism. they lost my bags in transit off course and i was mucho peeved. bad enough i had to transit through Chicago to get to mpls for what should have been a very short direct flight. gotta love capitalism: cutting costs triumphs over convenience.

being the writer i am though, i woke up with a two word motif hanging over my heard - comic strip style. all i could think of was "baggage claim" x20. makes for a good metaphor for a song. out of misfortune come good songs. who woulda thunk.

and oh, here's the immem stream for "the birds and the beats." you can always post it up on your blog if it tickles ya fancy.

peace peace
m diggy dot

Ps: on the picture above: huh? Louis vitton? or Ghana-Must-go?

The Birds And The Beats

Monday, November 23, 2009

Liner Notes: to Enhance Listening...

M.anifest - the Birds and the Beats Liner Notes

1. Born Free ft. Sarah White (Prod. Budo)
how this eventually came out is a tribute to patience and the competence of my co-conspirators. Wrote this intro in 2005 to my favorite P funk song. I let it marinate till '09. Sent Budo my vocals and he crafted a beast of a beat around it. I re-recorded, Sarah did some amazing backups which i loved so much i used as the main vocals. My voice and hers blend so well together especially on the lows- at times u don't know who's singing the low melody. Look out for our S&M project.

2.How I Used to be (prod. Budo)
If you listened to my first record, manifestations, you can easily tell I'm heavily inspired by Fela Kuti. As famous as this sample of his is, Budo definitely killed it with the additional horns he layered. Plus the groove bumps like acne! It also happens to be the first song i did with ultra-talented Budo since i met him - circa March '08. Mandi is a great co-conspirator. She's always so patient with me as i create quirky hooks, and she eventually adds her own sultry creativity to it. Much love sistren.

3.Golly Gosh (Prod. G Mo)
G Mo is the best producer you only just heard of! 17 years old he produced a 1/3 of my first album when he was between the ages of 13 and 14! he's the lebron of this art form. He made this beat live @ at a big quarters cd release so effortlessly. His talent is scary and exciting to watch evolve! He's in Atlanta competing @ the Red Bull Big Tune National finals as i write this. This track is basically me lyrically stunting on fools to elicit a response such as the title. Just cause i have meaningful content doesn't mean my skills ain't unfuckwittable chale.

4.Get Away (Shafiq-Husayn Re-fix)

O-D put me onto Sa-Ra. Them dudes are dope and dope chale. Check for them. A friend recently hipped me to the Shafiq Husayn(part of Sa-Ra) solo album, Shafiq En' A-Free-Ka, which absolutely affected me deeply. Spiritual Soul! I got onto pro-tools and committed a sacrilegious act: looped different parts of one of his songs to make a beat so i could vent. A friend had just called me in the custody of immigration too so i needed this for catharsis.

5.2nd Coming PSA (Prod. Katrah-Quey)
Katrah-Quey - another Ultra talented part of the 4shades production collective. They are the backbone of the music I've been pumping to y'all. He's the most likely to make a beat that makes you wide-eyed wondering how he thought to try that! His beat making style is daring, organically unique, and I'm always sure he won't conform to whatever bullshit is poppin' @ the moment. He's G Mo's uncle as well. Runs in the family! The way he flipped this Manu Di..(well nevermind) bangs so hard! First used it @ a show at which i opened up for K'naan. worked

6.Hubris (Prod. M. & Budo)
Donny Hathaway loop meets live horns and synths by Budo, meets stream of consciousness from yours truly. We did this on Halloween, a day or so after the mpls A.R.M. Listening party which was very well received. Inspiration and Jack Daniels get recognition for being part of the process. I do tribal soulful music. Songs like this with congas, horns, and synths – i could live on. Shouts to Budo and all those Africans @ Kilimanjaro partying it up below the studio.

7.Still Hungry (Prod. G Mo)
when i. You're low on resources, ii. your last album was released 2 years ago, iii. you're self employed, however i. you're rich in ideas ii. and music - u end up writing a song like this. G Mo is like a one-man-band with some of his beats. He does non-sampled beats just as good as sampled ones. Kid is a beast. Boom bam.

8.Walk Away ft. Sarah White (Prod. Dee)

Every time i go to Ghana there are some folks i make sure to get up with cause I'm inspired by their boundless creativity. Dee is one of them. We sat in Reggie Rockstone's studio whiles he and M.A (2 of the best prod in Ghana) hit me with dope beat after dope beat. This one tickled my fancy and i ended up writing one of the hooks I'm most proud of. Song's also extra special cause 'twas the first time Sarah and i had a creative collision ... and it was magic. She's extra talented and sultry... and oh don't sleep on her emceeing skills.

9.My Lady Oh (Prod. G Mo)
In high school chemistry, we were taught all these mind-numbing and complex formulas and derivations, but none can aptly help us figure out the chemistry between women and men. Bet. If you've ever been in a serious relationship, not just casual “situationships,” this song will register. Dodi Phy is easily top 5 emcees in MN without a doubt – his parents are from Sierra Leone. He's made me re-write verses on a couple of occasions. The hook is loosely in pidgin english - my west Africans should dig it.

10.I love it PSA (Prod. G Mo)
Another G Mo gem! I begun this joint and never really got to finishing it tho i had a second verse to it. Budo helped me executive produce this project and he suggested that we make this a second short song/PSA on the album. It's a very self-explanatory joint: sh*t's not rosy and the struggle is tasking... but i'd have it no other way! pow.

11.just like a lion (Prod. Budo)
stadium status right here! one of those songs that made me knock myself in the head and ask if i was really giving this out free! Budo and I work well with rudiments. He's a dope instrumentalist, and his playing ability stunts on most of the producers out there. Hooks are one of my strongest musical attributes. I go full throttle, soul first, with hooks and Budo always ups the ante on how epic sounding it all is after we are finished with it! Boom bam chale.

12.Pardon Me (Prod. O-D)
i can make joints like this all day. Introspection mixed with splashes of social commentary is my bread and butter. O-D has been a very good friend since college. He is responsible for a good amount of my musical growth (and vice versa) cause we've been on this journey together since day 1! He's a quiet assassin on the beats! He makes some of the most soulful and monstrous beats on the planet. We were roommates for a minute and this is one of those joints where i was writing as he was banging on the mpc and doing his thug thizzle in logic. My half-frican brother with roots in the Seychelles – an African country most know nada about. Google it! He's the final part of 4shades collective.

13.Ghana, 52 (Prod. Budo)
March 6th 1957, Osagyefo Dr Nkrumah, Ghana's first president, ushered us into a new era of self-government. Bye-bye queen, bye-bye absentee British landlords. Every year we make merry on this day back home. Truth is, we have little to celebrate and a lot more to reflect on since our leaders have failed us since '57 and keep throwing dirt in our eyes. This is one of those joints where i show my ambivalent feelings towards such celebrations. On one hand its good to remember those that fought for us to be free, on the other its harmful to act as if everything is heavenly now that the British packed up and left. Budo does his thug thizzle on the instrumentation for this beat!

14.The birds and the beats (Prod. Weedy of 40 winks)
I have to credit weedy of 40 Winks cause he titled this beat “the birds and the beats” and sparked the idea for the album. 40 winks is a dope instrumental group from Belgium: consisting of Padmo' and Weedy. I love their sound so much! We have a free EP out there - Google it!. My musical approach is on some global-express-crossing-borders type thang. And my work with 40 winks, is a reflection of that.

15.Slow Your Roll (Prod. O-D)
Krukid and I are here to carry on tradition. Hes one of my favorite rappers easily – no jokes! Together with Budo, we have a frightfully potent triage called A.R.M. that I'm deeply enchanted with. It begun with this song which was prophetically the first song i ever did with Krukid. In his verse he prophetically and unknowingly proclaimed “This is the African Rebel Movement.” In the beginning was the word right? O-D is killing it with this beat too! Whoa. He lost the original session files :( when someone stole his laptop. Mr thief thief, we see you oh. Thumbs down to crack heads breaking into cars in broad day light.

16.D'angelo Said (Africa Re-fix)
The weight of having talent and meaningful songs in a world sometimes so cold and superficial can torment a tortured soul. D'angelo remains one of the most inspiring musicians of our generation, and hopefully he forgives me for this eh. But i couldn't find a more fitting way to cap off this album. Every time i listen to voodoo i can't wait till when i can say “Africa is my descent!” I'm unapologetically Ghanaian, and so African that at the slightest provocation i burst into vocal mannerisms – eish chale!. I had to loop parts of “Africa” and commit one final sacrilegious act.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Artistic Panic and Insecurities Plus "Cold Feet" Mp3 (Miike Snow re-fix)

"Cold Feet" mp3 - Download Here.

This was inspired by a moment of panic i had 2 weeks before the release of "the Birds and the Beats" which will be out for free Nov 20th. Truthfully it's hard to ever feel like a project is finished or great enough. that's how come some of your favorite musicians take forever to put out music. artistic insecurities are real...and necessary if you ask me. I've accepted it to be a great safeguard against mediocrity and complacency.

On the song itself and its origins:
I've enjoyed the Miike Snow record alot ever since Budo put me onto it. check em out. I looped parts of the last track, "faker," on their self-titled record and committed another sacriligious act of looping.ha. its not going to be on any project, but i liberated it cause u my facebook sistren and bredren asked me to :). hope you enjoy it for what its worth. let me know your thoughts

Friday, November 6, 2009

"The Birds & the Beats" - Nov 20th - FREE

More Details soon! in the meanwhile. enjoy what i did with a Shafiq Husayn track i was inspired by on 2dopeboyz Peace

and the tracklisting...

G Mo Vs. Boon Doc Beat Battle (Red Bull Big Tune)

Both these producers are dope in my opinion, and i suspect are fans of each other. i came across a message board with fascinating commentary and a few sycophants disparaging one of the producers cause they were obviously fans/msg board homies with the other. hilarity. i'll say more on what i think under the vid. but peep the extra round below. G Mo plays a beat that i've had a song to for a while now. called "my life is a motion picture." Producer battles >>>>>>> rap battles.

first off. i think all the producers were prolly dope and deserve credit for making it there. props. Second, beat battles are not a reflection of how dope a producer is, but how dope of a "battle beat" they can create. granted you have to be past a certain level of dope to make a dope beat period. but beat battles have an uncanny semblance to rap battles in that what works in a battle, and @ that moment, is not necessarily timeless material or stuff that can soulfully move the masses of people

did folks see the faces of Jake one and vitamin when the beats were played? yeah. point exactly.

G Mo is a phenom. 17years old and definitely top percentile of producers. bet. he produced a third of my first record when he was 14 and i was in awe then. he gets better too. on monday, i'll release a song with a beat i think he had in the stash for the battle but didn't get a chance to play. Boon doc is dope. definitely checking to see what he does in the future.

A toast to good music. And Red Bull Big Tune for putting the musicians in the limelight. congrats to Frank Dukes, the eventual winner.

i'm no expert. so i'll shut up already.

peace peace
m diggy dot

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Ghanaian movie posters - mmmm... nostalgia

Justin schell sent me this link to this blog post about Ghanaian movie posters. wow the memories these trigger cause i've seen many similar ones in my younger life growing up in madina, accra. the author of the blog post says "Most of these posters come from the book Extreme Canvas: Movie Poster Paintings from Ghana." curious to peep the book. i jacked one of his flicks and reposted it below. check out more film paintings here

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Losing Rhythm: Strange Story Behind the Making of “Life Dey Jom”

"Life Dey Jom" - M.anifest, Wanlov the Kubolor & Kwabena Jones (Play/download)

First off,
i was surprised at how popular this song is back home in Ghana when i last touched down this past January. It actually plays in clubs - whoa! shoutouts to DJ black (Joy FM) and Dj Edu (BBC 1xtra) who have kept it on rotation.

Second off, and getting to the point of this piece, the weirdest thing happened to me recording this song, "life dey jom." And by weird i mean a deeply surreal occurrence i hadn't experienced prior to writing this song, and thankfully i haven't ever experienced in the aftermath!

The Scene
'Twas October of 2007, both Wanlov and myself had just released our debut records “green card” and “manifestations” respectively. In celebration of Wanlov's release, we did a show @ the Shrine, in Harlem NY. Kwabena Jones (aka Bosco when he's on the beats) was kind enough to let us stay at his jersey city abode afterwards where he has his studio.

After shooting the breeze and being shocked and awed by Kubolor's hooping abilities, we thought it'd be a good idea to write some songs. Bosco (kwabena Jones) went through a whole bunch of dope beats he had crafted and we eventually settled on this one: the bassline stuck out to me and the Rhythm was distinctly hip-life. Fast forward. After i was done writing my verse - and quite ready like freddy to record it - i couldn't for the world of me hear the beat the same way i heard it when i wrote it!!?!?! it was surreal, frustrating, and i damn near thought my sense of rhythm had been infiltrated by some martians. The clever little verse i had just written all of a sudden sounded off-beat! It happened so suddenly and that's what perhaps made it terrifying. Twas as if i had slid into a well of confusion and couldn't see anything in this particular rhythmic universe that surrounded me – with regards to the song that is. All i could think was “Dayum, why on earth? my mind is playing tricks on me” © scarface. And no we weren't puffing herb u doubting thomas u.

as we proceed.
I told Bosco about it, and very reluctantly recorded my verse. It just didnt sound right. But since my collaborators were not perturbed, i thought i would sleep over it and maybe like Jesus on the third day i would be back to normal. About 4months or so later, Bosco gives me a call with excitement reeking from his voice talking about how well folks were receiving the song. All good. He sends me the finished the track and oh goodness, i still couldn't hear it the way it was supposed to sound. I actually begged him a number of times to take me off the track cause i thought i sounded offbeat! What worse than to ruin a yet to be solidified reputation with an underwhelming performance. Yep, i was that desparate.

Lazarus Moment,
Fast forward a few days later, a friend of mine came to visit after she just returned from a trip to Ghana (What up Susie). Chopped it up a bit and slid into the topic of highlife. Decided to get an unbiased opinion of the song to shake off my paranoia. Song comes on, and i hear it exactly as its supposed to be heard. Makes absolutely no sense and i can't even fathom hearing it any other way. Nwayz, i filed it under “never-shd-happen-again” and kept it moving. Weird, i know.

I decided to liberate the joint – Bosco, chale i beg mek u know kill me ooooo :)! Enjoy it, play it to impress your african friends, play it at all your african soirees, and send the link to a friend. And keep this story between you and i shhhh :)

Peace Peace

m dodotido

* Life Dey Jom translates as “life is going very good” or “life is jamming” in more literal terms

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

losing my religion w/ Sarah White

listen to the song here!

Peace peace people.

I've been sporadically working on a project, S & M , with the mighty talented and sultry Sarah White. the synergy has been dope thus far. and with time and schedules permitting we'll have a full ep for you and yours this year. here's a pre-final-mix song "losing my religion" off the project. It's produced by the ultra-talented Gmo who is part of our 4shades collective. we recorded this late spring when Sarah came to minneapolis to visit fam and thangs. enjoy and let me know your thoughts. peace peace

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

4Shades Ubiquity Beat Tape w/ Songs Included

i'm privileged to work with some very talented producers. enjoy this "Ubiquity" beat tape with exclusive songs and remixes added for good measure. and we do do business. so if some beats (imeem playlist below or download here) grab your attention, holleration! . peace peace

4Shades - Ubiquity

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Red Bull Music Academy - "Content Under Pressure" this Thurs June 25th!

This is a very fresh idea! The basic concept is to pair 7 producers randomly with 7 mc's on the day of the event and give them 3hrs to record a song to be performed later that night. The event is all ages and is FREE to the public! At I.P.R. in Minneapolis - I'm a part of it. Should be dope! There'a video below with Kevin Beachem (Rhymesayers) speaking in detail about the event. C u there!

THE MCS: Abstract Rude, M.anifest, St Paul Slim, Carnage, New MC, Sims, & Felipe Cuauhtli

THE PRODUCERS: Blueprint, Medium Zach, O-D, Katrah-Quey, Benzilla, X:144 & Big Cats!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Lauryn Hill - Lost ones (Katrah-Quey remix)

I love this right here. makes me want to hear a Lauryn Hill and Erykah Badu Collaboration. big shouts to Katrah-Quey from my 4shades production crew. its featured on a beat tape/compilation we just released called ubiquity.

Monday, May 11, 2009

been a minute..."blueberry skies" (new song)

do you copy, do you read me? been m.i.a. just figuring out life's details. smoothing out kinks, trying to walk str8 and not bend over backwards. enough of the abstraction.

a producer friend of mine, DJ Unwind dropped an itunes single of a real smooth tune called "blueberry skies." He's on production and i'm on vocals with a singer, kaytee.

Hear it on myspace
Get it on itunes

check for it, enjoy and buy it when it tickles your fancy. more about life and music later. blessings, always

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Free M. Song + Sebmaestria's Legendary Remixes free album!

Download M.anifest - Who ft. Guiguipop

okay, i'm still on my international grizzly. Producer comrade of mine, Sebmaestria - produced two songs off "manifestations" and has done work with "arrested development's" speech - just dropped a mixtape of remixes to some classic songs. mos def, kweli, pharcyde, biggie, etc. Seb is nice with his and we have a statsh of songs in the archives. Download the Mixtape here. enjoy!

m diggy dot

Guiguipop dropping sixteens on "who" track

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Chester French & M.anifest chop it up on tour bus

Attended the Lady Gaga & Chester French concert. Afterwards, D.A & Max (Chester French) benevolently played us a bunch of dope tracks off their mixtape that will precede their major label (interscope/ star trak) debut. A lot of surprise guests on that mixtape. Pharrell signed them and they certainly deserve the shine. i appreciate the honesty, creativity, and dopness they bring with their music. look out for them soon. good times.

Chester French & M.anifest on tour bus from M.anifest on Vimeo.

PS: and oh, i added an intriguing convo we had to the video. funny stuff about costumes and endrogeny. Shout out to Prince!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Sold out. Rhymesayers artist meets artist show

one day somewhere in twin cities history...this day will be remembered.

Sold Out! Rhymesayers Artist meets Artist Show from M.anifest on Vimeo.

Here's a summary of my thoughts.

- Twas a dope night. packed to capacity
- Rhymesayers has an insane loyal following - beautiful thing
- Plain ole bill and Jimmy 2times did a nice DJ set that was biggie infested. very appropriate for the night - March 9th seen
- Toki and Slim came out swinging
- Muja Messiah and I came on stage to Curtis Mayfield's "we the people darker than blue"
- crowd response was great. Muja's that dude. big up chale
- but just as an artist that's hard on myself i'd say there were a few moment our energy wasnt quite parallel to the audiences. but only a few short moments. good otherwise
- Slug and Ali with Ant on the wheels was very well done. Smooth. Crowd loved it.
- All six emcees gathered on stage at the end for a short but savory cipher much to the crowds delight
- Homey that did the sound check is a beast. Rhymesayers Cat...trying to remember his name. vocals were clear all night. Shout out to EMS too
- was good to see I Self Devine afterwards. Big O.G respect
Shouts to Dj Fundamentalist! what's good turtleneck

Thank you and good night. well not quite.

m diggy dot

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Budo Mixes song for "Coming to America"

This is a lo-fi snippet of Budo mixing a joint of my upcoming "coming to america" called "how i used to be. Pretty epic joint i would say. very excited for it. Budo laces some serious horns on them. Budo is cold on productions, chale.
m diggy dot

Thursday, February 19, 2009


finally put up the title track to "the birds & the beats" ep that will precede "coming to america" sophomore release. enjoy it on this link here!


Monday, February 16, 2009

Fox 9 review of K'naan & M.anifest concert

“Twin Cities rapper and native Ghanaian M.anifest was the opening act and got the show started about an hour after the doors opened. Adorned in necklaces of wooden beads and traditional West African garb sporting the symbol of Gye Nyame, the emcee implored the crowd to warm up with him, while he waxed poetic about the warm breeze of his homeland. His set included a number of songs from his debut album, Manifestations, which focuses on life in Ghana and struggles the artist has faced in this experiment we call life. His sound was polished and enchanting, his message Afro-centric yet relevant. It's no wonder M.anifest earned 2008 honors as the City Pages' Songwriter of the Year. His performance was a perfect primer for the performance everyone came to see.”

Full Article...

Thursday, February 5, 2009

the creative process...sometimes

how do we create? no formula. just saw this vid on my hardrive from a late saturday night in '08. Baraka, Nisreen, and myself negotiate the arrangement of a very simple hoook...i shd put this song out for free no? fatigued and croaky voices..but the soul while be in there somewhere on the actual record. o-d on the beats!
sincerely yours
m diggy dot

the creative process...sometimes from M.anifest on Vimeo.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Soundtrack to a Recession

It’s been remarked by many that songs like “whateva u like” and “pop champagne” are analogous to the times. In plain speak – shit don’t add up to how life is now. So let’s see what an appropriate tracklist for the recession would look like. Get your soulseek or itunes out - the list is below the photo. and oh i had to steal this photo from Marlowe williams - hilarious kinda things u see in ghana

1. Destiny’s child – bills bills bills [sing it to your bank account]
2. Koo nimo – ohia y3 ya
3. Mos def – there is a way
4. Wanlov the kubolor – choptime, [no friend]
5. Ebo Taylor – Wofa no nu [oto a ontua ka] - a.k.a “uncle buy-and-never-pay”
6. Mensa – when it rains it pours – [ especially when he says “I just lost my job// but my bills don’t know that”]
7. King Aysioba – My father – [ I remember he spoke about 20 thaasen cedis somewhere]
8. Biggie – everyday struggle
9. Lauryn hill – when it hurts so bad - [ could work after a hangover the day after a job loss]
10. Buju Banton- Destiny – [ in the end we’ll all find a way to control ours]
…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………to be continued

Friday, January 23, 2009

okay...rhymes on B96 - Peter Parker show

so i gave the little behind the scenes video previously. this is some actual rapping stuff.
sincerely yours
m diggy dot

Thursday, January 22, 2009

peter parker says "shout out to Africa!"

snippet of an interview appearance i made on B96 yesterday. its refreshing to get airtime on there without being on the billboard top ten...yet. the response was great from callers! big up to peter parker. i'll have footage of me rhyming on there another time.

sincerely yours,
m diggy dot

m.anifest on B96 w/ Peter Parker from M.anifest on Vimeo.

Monday, January 19, 2009

on FM radio in Ghana

what does it take to make it? dunno...but i shared a few random thoughts at that moment w/ Dj Black

M.anifest on Joy FM (Ghana) - w/ Dj Black from M.anifest on Vimeo.

chop time, no friend

retirement package for Ghanaian ex-presidents...
no wonder everyone wants to "chop" president. see the retirement conditions below the picture

"former presidents should be given fully furnished residences that befit a former president at a place of their choice - one in Accra and another out of the national capital.

In addition, a former president would be entitled among other privileges, to six fully maintained comprehensively insured, fuelled and chauffeured-driven cars to be replaced every four years. The fleet comprise of three salon cars, two cross country cars and one all-purpose vehicle."

is there something wrong with this picture?

m diggy dot

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Menoosha & M.anifest - African Boy (What up Estelle!)

Coupé Décalé! fancy a remake that takes the music and the idea a bit further into the motherland.fancy that. Big shout to Menoosha for her incredible vocals and taking the concept further. was happy to contribute a verse to it. enjoy
m diggy dot

ps: Estelle has African roots no?