COLUMN: Black artists you should be listening to

Rob Le Cates

Ashanti Thomas is a junior digital media technology major and can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected].

Ashanti Thomas, Assistant Photo Editor

I am starting off with Ice Spice because- duh. If you are not already listening, then what are you doing? 

Ice Spice blew up after she released the single “Munch (Feelin’ U)” back in August and has only been getting bigger since.  

She is making records already with hitting 2.5 million streams the day her EP “Like…?” released only a week ago. The fact that she only had 3 new songs on the EP is crazy.  

Plus, she only started making music in 2021, so she is really my princess of rap right now. Her accent and soft voice rapping over drill beats is chef’s kiss, a truly great combination. I loved her lyrics throughout each song, too.  

She was so real when she said, “How can I lose if I am already chose? Like…” So generational. Real lyrics right there. My personal favorites from the EP are “In Ha Mood” and “Gangsta Boo.” She was really spitting on those tracks, and I cannot wait to see what she will do in the future.  

For some lowkey artists, I must talk about rap duo Paris, Texas. I love alternative and rap and they are a perfect mix of both of those genres.  

Their first album “BOY ANONYMOUS” came out in 2021, which features electric guitar riffs and upbeat production throughout the whole album beneath their rapping.  

In the song, “HEAVY METAL,” they rap over some harsh guitar sounds, a perfect title to match the energy of the track. It also rapidly changes at the end to the opposite of how it started, with what sounds like an acoustic guitar with softer, slower strings being played.  

Their sound on this has so many different levels, which keeps it interesting and fun to listen to.  

On songs like “PACK 4 DA LOW,” it can be so energetic while “BETTER DAYS” starts out that way but switches to a softer and slower beat again, to match the vibe of their lyrics.  

In their EP “Red Hand Akimbo,” the first song starts off with a classic guitar riff, and I love how they mentioned their type of music when they rap, “N****s can’t tell if it’s rock, can’t tell if it’s rap, I walk in between.”  

He really said that so flawlessly. The production value on each track stands out to me on both records, so if you are a fan of either genre, give them a listen.  

I do not even know where to start with Kaytranada, his music is just so good. The production and beats on every single track he spits out are flawless, along with the vocals from featuring artists like Kali Uchis, Syd from The Internet, Thundercat, and so much more.  

He has 2 albums and an EP and honestly, you could start with any of them for the first time, and I am sure you will fall in love.  

With his electronic sound, he adds a variety of beats like house, hip-hop and soul. “TRACK UNO” on his first album, “99.9%” is a masterpiece. It has so many elements to it, it is like a bunch of different songs at once. 

These are just a few of the black artists out of so many that I wanted to highlight and give them all their flowers and recognition.  


Ashanti Thomas is a junior digital media technology major. She can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected].