This past weekend, I experienced a highlight of my time doing Midnight Madness, an underground hip-hop mix show Dizzy and I host every Sunday on WBRU. Sage Francis and B. Dolan, two local rappers who have brought a taste of RI across the country, came to the studio to promote Dolan’s new album, Fallen House, Sunken City.
I have been a fan of Sage Francis since I was a youngin’ on his grind back in high school. I have to admit though, it took me a few months to get into his work and fully appreciate his style of hip-hop. The first Sage Francis album I heard was his 2005 release A Healthy Distrust, a perfect title to match the passion and mood of the album. The first song that caught my attention was “Lie Detector Test”, a song who’s slow and infectious beat that loops a familiar sample syncs perfectly with Sage’s slowed down yet intense lyricism.
After playing “Lie Detector Test” over and over, the rest of the album fell into place for me. Songs like “Sea Lion”, “Slow Down Ghandi”, and “Jah Didn’t Kill Johnny” soon followed among other solid, unique songs. Eventually, I found myself playing the album more or less all the way through, appreciating the grit, passion, and flow that Sage brings to the table.
It was a while since then that I got a chance to check out any new Sage, until I was re-introduced last summer. Sitting in an airport in San Francisco, enjoying free wi-fi, I found myself listening to A Healthy Distrust, wondering if Sage had any new stuff out. A quick Google search came up with a Sick of Wasting, his latest release from the Sick of… mixtape series. Hard hitting beats provided the backdrop for my introduction to Sages’ doppleganger, B. Dolan.
While Sage and B. Dolan sport a matching pair of bald heads and lumber-jack beards, their flows are easily separable. To give you a taste, here are two tracks featuring both Sage and Dolan we played on air :
Sage Francis – House of Bees ft. B. Dolan
Sage Francis – SFR Pays Dues ft. B. Dolan and Prolyphic
The Sick of Wasting mixtape can be downloaded here.
The real reason these guys came on, though, was to promote Dolan’s new album Fallen House, Sunken City. Instead of wasting your time giving you my perspective, hear it from B. Dolan himself during Midnight Madness:
Apologies for the poor video quality, I hope to have a better version up soon.
Here is the video for Earthmovers, the first single off of Dolan’s album:
Be sure to look out for Sage’s 2010 release Li(f)e which should be dropping in May.
Oh, and did I mention they have jokes?