Multi-instrumentalist, composer and producer Adrian Younge is a member of The Midnight Hour and has produced for entertainment greats ranging from Jay Z, Kendrick Lamar and Wu-Tang Clan. He’s composed for television shows such as Marvel’s Luke Cage (with Ali Shaheed Muhammad), and films including Black Dynamite. He owns the Linear Labs boutique record label and analog studio, and is co-owner of Jazz Is Dead. When he’s not working on scores for major studios or networks, he’s making albums that speak to his own artistry.
The American Negro is Younge’s most ambitious and deeply personal project to-date. Younge not only wrote, but played every instrument of the album’s rhythm section; he also orchestrated a 30-piece orchestra and recorded them in his analog studio. The multimedia project sees the Los Angeles-based musician share an unapologetic critique detailing the systemic and malevolent psychology that afflicts people of color. The American Negro is a powerful, multifaceted statement that reflects perennial injustices and serves to act as a lever of change during a time of mass disillusionment: an album for the people that details the evolution of racism in America. It is insightful, provocative and necessary in our fight for equality.
The American Negro is not for the faint of heart, including the album cover art–a recreation of “Lynching Postcards” that celebrated the murder of African Americans at the hands of White Americans as vigilante justice at the turn of the last century, with no judicial reprisals; in addition, they served as warning signs against any person of color seeking to eradicate racial inequality. Modernly, death by asphyxiation is a tool Police officers have used in killing innocent Black Americans–the lynching of the Black Americans has to stop!
To better explain the intricacies of the album’s message, he will also release the four-part podcast Invisible Blackness with Adrian Younge and short film T.A.N.–both available exclusively via Amazon Music.
Invisible Blackness with Adrian Younge is an Amazon Music-exclusive podcast documenting the development and evolution of racism in America. Over four episodes and a series of extended conversations, Younge analyzes the Black consciousness of America with new historical parallels to the future and the past. As part of the podcast, Younge will be joined by fellow luminaries like Chuck D, Ladybug Mecca, Keyon Harrold, Michael Jai White and more to reveal, illustrate, and make visible the dominant ideologies embedded in America’s culture.
A true Renaissance Man, Younge wrote, directed, edited and composed the score for the short film T.A.N. — a narrative film that sees five fragile souls, confused and in a haze of consciousness and intolerance, enter an eerie dimension. Piece-by-piece, each person realizes their destiny, and the darkness they’ve left behind.