Zion Antoni is a Freelance Journalist and Grassroots independent Recording artist/Record producer from the Bronx NY. He is the Founder/Chair of The Urban Cry LLC, a limited liability company with two main branches: Freelance Journalism, and an independent record company. The Urban Cry has administered to hundreds in American inner cities, and has also extended reaches in overseas in international diplomacy.
Zion serves as columnist for the non-profit Negusworld Enterprises/Movement, and is the Author of the award winning internet blog “No Prisons”, published in 2009. He is also in involved think tank industries, founding The Sekou think tank, a grassroots social policy network functioning in research and advocacy, addressing issues in Urban America.
It’s impossible to overstate how hip-hop shone in 2017. It shattered Billboard records, and got the most-streamed genre recognition from Nielsen. Industry hype aside, rap reflects our collective conscience. In a year this robust, it would be easy to make an exhaustive list of the best releases.
Indeed, the Internet is chock full of them. But hip-hop did not ascend to new heights in a vacuum. Its sonic uprising happened amid a backdrop of political upheaval, racial discord, violent demonstrations and revelatory reckoning around the systemic abuses of power and gender inequality that hits so close to home in this genre.
In hip-hop, as elsewhere, the personal is always political. Where you’re at, so to speak, and how you choose to cultivate and represent that space matters.
In that same upheaval of 2017, in London, Zion Antoni released his single “Rain Come Soon”, produced by bornscholarz, which he is currently promoting.
Antoni is one who roils with indignation, wrestling with political, cultural and social themes. He is one of those rappers exploring the plight of an America that’s seen the resurgence and relative normalization of injustices. There’s never been a shortage of talent amongst rappers from the Bronx. The place has always beamed with pride whenever one of its emcees achieve success.
It remains to be seen whether Zion Antoni will become a trailblazer of an imminent new movement for the area. But his moment is right now on “Rain Come Soon”, so let’s toast to that. Antoni spits his fiery and focused rhymes over a classic Santana sample, giving the track both an experimental and a world music flavor. Here he documents the specificity of this generation in no uncertain terms.
It feels like Antoni made it for people who needed hip-hop to finally acknowledge their particular reality. The result is almost journalistic, like a timeless documentary. With more music from Zion Antoni probably due out in 2018, this guy will undoubtedly continue to shatter boundaries and redefine the capabilities of a rap.