Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Shafiq Husayn Of SA-RA Creative Partners Exposes His History Stamp On L.A. Hip Hop

via the L.A. Weekly

The cover of En’ A-Free-Ka, the solo album from Sa-Ra Creative Partners’ Shafiq Husayn, shows the producer and MC studiously perched on a slender, dark-green stool, clutching an ancient-looking brown spear. Around him, an eclectic selection of antiques and artifacts clutters the scene, while a hazy, late-afternoon beam of light defines him as the focal subject. He’s sitting inside Africa by the Yard, a store in L.A.’s Leimert Park district. It’s an artsy area, he explains, a former cultivating ground for the progressive-thinking early-’90s hip-hop movement Project Blowed, and home to Good Life Café, where artists like Freestyle Fellowship and Abstract Rude would congregate.

He found his calling in hip-hop after attending Uncle Jamm’s Army parties in the early ’80s. “Uncle Jamm’s Army was the West Coast Zulu Nation as far as throwing jams and playing that electro and funk music,” he explains in his low-register growl of a voice. “They started to rent out the L.A. Sports Arena, where the Clippers were playing at one point — that gives you an idea of how influential they were in L.A.

“I met Ice there,” he continues, casually referring to Ice-T, then a budding rapper hosting parties at clubs like Radiotron, where a prefame Madonna could also be found on the bill. “Ice would come to the jams they held at Crenshaw High School in 1984,” he recalls.

Read the full article here:
L.A. Weekly - Shafiq Husayn, Sa-Ra Creative Partners and the Sound of Leimert Park Hip-Hop

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