Vernon Little is a Hip Hop artist from the Bronx, NY. He has been writing, recording, and performing since the mid 80’s. Vernon is also a pastor at Faith In God Church in the Bronx. Hence his music carries positive clear messages which can all be heard on latest EP – “Double Minded”. Vernon takes Hip Hop more seriously than any other rapper I can think of offhand. Over and above the spirituality that invests his track, Vernon directs much of his focus to reminding the youngsters about the forgotten roots of Hip Hop. The golden age – a time when rhymes were not just centered on hedonistic themes. A time when artists used the rap idiom to communicate cultural, social and political grievances to the masses.
Hip Hop was the mouthpiece for an entire community, not just a personal boast about loose women and easy drugs. This is why Vernon Little is constantly distinguishing his music by delivering, what he now calls ‘Holy Hip Hop’ and making songs set to redeem a morally degenerating genre.
“The Chance To Tell You” is such a song, and is taken off the “Double Minded” EP. Right from get-go Vernon Little shows that he is a master at timing the rhythm and change in flow, with the drops in the beat, giving every drop a dramatic suspense where the listener knows a stunning punchline is coming up.
He can go through an entire track without a single wack line being thrown in for comfort. Every bar is measured with pearls of wisdom, especially for those who are frustrated with the imitativeness and childishness of much of modern day rap.
The forte of Vernon’s music is the truth in his lyrics; his message. While other rappers struggle to come up with coherent and non-contradictory messages, Vernon truly lives up to his.
Vernon’s undeclared goal, to my mind, is to defeat ignorance. Here he invades the space between gangsta, conscious and worship rap, walking the line with thoughts on materialism, theology, self-expression and the metaphysical. His themes cross boundaries that are generally avoided by today’s mumble rappers and only affronted by a handful of his boldest peers.
Vernon Little is clearly indebted to the old school, propelling his beat forward with funky cadences and soulful female singing in the hook. Appreciating his music requires taking hip hop seriously and understanding what Vernon is attempting to do for the genre.
And when the luscious production works out as it does on “The Chance To Tell You”, the result is nothing less than an extraordinary nostalgic blast from the past, to warn the future of an imminent comeback. While it is a return to an older style of vocal delivery, it is also a step forward in many ways.
Beyond an occasional politically motivated track, many modern rappers do almost nothing to fight for social upliftment or spiritual enlightenment. The exact opposite is true of Vernon Little. Vernon lives these themes and makes his songs believable because of it, using his full template of lyrical skills combined with the knowledge of a spiritually enlightened, conscious and fully matured artist.
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