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"VOA Special English "AMERICAN CAFE""



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Yemi, Musician Poet

J: Hello I'm Jody! Welcome to American Cafe.

Y: ???,??????????????? ????????Yemi?Yemi????????,????????????????

J: Oh, I think you're going to find Yemi very interesting. First of all he's a sound engineer. But that's not all he does.


??1: Yemi: My full name is Yemi... and I'm from Washington, D.C. I was born in 1976. I perform, I produce, and write songs under the name, stage name, Nfact which is N-f-a-c-t. If you'd like more information you can visit my website at (

Y: ?????Yemi ????????????????

J: As soon as you hear Yemi, you know he's a singer. He has a great voice.

Y: ???????????????????????????? ?

J: That's right. He's soon to release an album, which is a huge step in a musician's career. So we're really happy for him.

J: Way to go, Yemi.

Y: Yemi,???

J: Again here's Yemi.

??2: Yemi: And lately I've been working on my album. We'll probably sell it at our website and other websites.

Y: Yemi????????????????

J: That's right. Yemi says that you can buy his album on the Internet. And not only does Yemi record music, but he also writes poems and performs them a local poetry readings here in Washington D.C.

Y: Yemi?????,?????,??????????

J: On Wednesdays he performs at a place called the Bohemian Caverns, a famous place in Washington DC.

Y: ?????Yemi??????Bohemian Caverns??????????

??3: Yemi: My more recent performances lately have been poetry readings at a place called Bohemian Caverns here in Washington D.C. And every Wednesday they have, ah, local poets come out and read their poetry.

Y: Poetry reading???????

J: According to Yemi the crowd at Bohemian Caverns is really supportive. And he says it's inspiring to have other poets listen to his poems.

??4: Yemi: The Bohemian Caverns ... my experience there ... it's more like a lot of poets coming out to hear other poets. Well, I like it because the other poets listen. They actually listen to what I'm saying and, um, it's supportive. And then when I hear some of their stuff it kinda of inspires me to go home and write even better poetry.

Y: ????????,????????????????????Yemi??,????????? ??????????????????,????????,???????

J: He feels a responsibility to wake his generation, which he feels has been bred to be dependent - which means raised to rely on other people too much.

Y: ?,???????,???????,????????

??5: Yemi: A lot of the stuff that I write has more to do with waking up my generation. I feel like we've been a generation that's been bred to be dependent.

Y: ?????Yemi??????????

J: Now, you may not understand all the words in his poem ...

Y: ?????????,??????????

??6: Yemi:

Nfact, what is this we call rap?

Intertwining words through instruments, instrumentals to your mental.

Weaving and bobbing through notes with verbs,

Is it just that simple?

Oh come come now. Will this ever stop here? Does this ever stop now?

Hallelujah is powerful happiness over the people. But you aint gettin' it.

Y'all too busy searching for a hero.

Yes, Yes. Y'all too busy searching for a hero.

Influenced by high definition reflections,

Raised by idle hands all you found was zero.

'Cause y'all too busy searchin' for a hero.

Y: ??????Yemi????,?????????????

J: And now we'll leave American Cafe with the rest of Yemi's poem, "Stop Waiting."

??7: Yemi:

Time to get it together, gather them thoughts.

Mike check one, mike check two, mike check...

Now in tune to the central nervous system's main board.

Elevate that mind (stop hating.)

Elevate that mind (stop faking.)

Elevate that mind.

You be the leader, the preacher, the hero.

Stop searching. Stop waiting. J: Hello everyone! I'm Jody. Welcome to American Cafe. - VOA

"Legendary Gatherings"

various artists :: ICM Records Presents - Legendary Gatherings :: ICM Records
as reviewed by Tom Doggett

"Legendary Gatherings" is a pretty bold title, especially when it refers to an album by a crew of Canadian underground emcees. Maybe they're banking on the future success of the artists, but as of right now, the featured names don't exactly take my breath away. If the music is good, though, the title of the record is of absolutely no importance to me. Island City Monsters is the name of the label, and a series of recording sessions between a variety of rappers and producers resulted in this thirteen-track album.

And yes, "Legendary Gatherings" is pretty good. I wouldn't attach a word like "legendary" to this project, but that doesn't matter. "Humble Beginnings" opens things up with a soft-edged beat from Prodject Grimy, and Memo highlights the importance of living a humble life. After the following "Move Up," the music's simplicity is noticeable, but so is its quality. A few concept songs keep things going. "The Bench" mimics a cipher in the park, complete with production founded in a beatbox from Butterbeats. There are no true quotables, but each emcee delivers a pure verse that fits the concept perfectly.

"Bark," by Second Thought and Memo, is less pleasant, fueled by heartless and uninteresting shock rhymes and a generic beat from Engineer. "Make You Famous" missteps as well, with an irritating sped-up vocal sample ruining an otherwise sufficient beat. A great hook is wasted, as well as three riveting verses from Meta4ce, Velvet Trench Vibes, and David Hodges. Too bad, because the omission of one little loop would have made for a great song. "One" is an uncomfortable inclusion, aimed squarely at radio play with a slicker sound, but Twitch's beat has a subtle hint of Timbaland in its futuristic funk. June Sixth, getting the benefit of a rare solo song, makes the most of it with accessible but quality rhymes over the quiet but tempestuous production.

A four-rapper, four-story song called "Fate" is the centerpiece of the record. The production is simple but interesting enough to contain depth, and each story revolves around the hook, which states "fate is a strange thing, put yourself in the way of the world." The piano loop is low enough to haunt my ears just a bit, and the theme provides more significance than your average storytelling rap. All four rappers, Memo, Second Thought, Cale Sampson, and NFact, are excellent narrators, so there are no weak links. The succeeding "Stand Up" is another bit of brilliance, with a slow, drum-heavy beat and a passionate chorus. Second Thought, the alpha male of the group, is joined by Malicious, and they play the typical hungry emcee card perfectly. For the same reason that battle-rapping has become obsolete, odes to the "hunger" of being an artist now carry very little intrigue. Second Thought and Malicious, however, are a reminder of why a heartfelt mission statement can be so compelling. They display utter conviction with each line, making a believer out of me.

Later in the disc, a few songs struggle to generate interest. "What Happened" and "Breeding Ground," especially, have good beats and solid rhymes, but nothing spectacular to elevate them from ordinary. Battling is not these rappers' forte. "What Happened" asks rhetorically "what happened to this rap shit, used to be some passion," but they fail to answer that question, attacking their competition instead of being true emcees. With such a strong showing on their concept songs, these statements seem empty in comparison.

An excellent bonus track is included, but this is frustrating because of the architect's choice to tack it on the end of the last track. This is one of my serious pet peeves, and it truly feels like a potentially great cut is wasted. Despite this, and the slight deficiencies in a few songs, "Legendary Gatherings" is very accessible and it also will reward repeat listens. Though no individual stands out, each artist belongs on wax, and both the personnel and tracklisting avoid overkill. If your favorite artists are trying your patience, or you have a little extra time to spare, check "Legendary Gatherings" out. It won't disappoint.

Music Vibes: 7.5 of 10 Lyric Vibes: 7.5 of 10 TOTAL Vibes: 7.5 of 10 -


"Freedom Summer" debut album, available on itunes, Rhapsody or at



There are artists...there are emcees...and then there's NFACT. To make a hip hop record, you got to be “Gangsta”, you got to be Hard - that's true for anyone, anyone that is, except NFACT. Edgy, complex, entertaining, and moving, NFACT's lyrics and alternative style, stands outside of the lines of the status quo. NFACT isn't the artist that cares what the industry says radio should play, NFACT is the answer that the listener has been waiting for.

A refreshing twist on hip-hop, NFACT has figured out a way to combine all of the things that have influenced him throughout his life into a work of art. Born, "Adeyemi A. Jimason" in Washington, D.C. NFACT's influences come from the hardships and triumphs of his life. Raised by a single mother, in the city with two boys, he was introduced to the Jazz that traveled from the U-street corridor down to Georgetown’s, “Blues Alley”. He was open to the sounds of “Chuck Brown” and the riffs of “Metallica”. NFACT draws from a vast collection of influences to give you his unique sound. If you could take "A Tribe Called Quest", "Black Eyed Peas", and "Cold Play", roll it all into one, you could come close to getting NFACT.

He's toured as hype man for NOVEL (Rowdy Records), on "The Roots" "Phrenology" tour - performed in Ankara, Turkey - Petite Cafe in Montreal - and will be taking the industry by storm. He's just released his debut album "Freedom Summer". Using sound influences from rock, gospel, jazz and some near east percussion, the album leaves you yearning for more. Taking the time to combine live sound, with harmonies and riveting lyrics to give us this outstanding album.