UPDATE: Watch Talib Kweli, Pharoahe Monch and 9th Wonder further explain their new group, below.
As most folks were out celebrating the 4th of July holiday in a variation of ways, a quiet storm was stirring within the realms of the Hip-Hop community.
The hashtag #Indie500 began to mysterious make its rounds on Twitter but it wasn’t just any ‘ol rappers trying to spread the word for a new birthed movement. It came courtesty of Talib Kweli, 9th Wonder, Pharoahe Monch and several members of their marketing teams. Could be there was a unification of the top purest Hip-Hop talent on the horizon?
The answer appears to be a definitive yes.
Hip-Hop Wired reached out to the perceived chieftain Talib Kweli for a little clarity on the veiled announcements and while he maintains there hasn’t been any sort of paperwork drummed up just yet, the Indie 500 will be a sight to behold.
Combining the talents of Kweli’s Javotti Media, 9th’s Jamala Records and Pharoahe’s W.A.R. Media feels organic, seeing that the artist’s unique gifts align with one anothers. As Kweli relays to us, it makes sense seeing that he and the popular producer from North Carolina have been trying to join forces for a hot second.
“Me and 9th have been talking about doing an album for some time, and we talked about how it would be smarter for those of us doing a certain kind of Hip-Hop to move as a unit,” Kweli reveals to Hip-Hop Wired. “So Pharaohe, 9th and I decided to be the figureheads of this sort of loose knit collective of artists, and we will all support each others movements under the banner of #indie500 being we all indie at this point.”
Kweli released his latest album, Gravitas to much fanfare in December 2013 including making Hip-Hop Wired’s Top 25 Albums list. After much independent grinding, the work has paid off as of today, as it cracked #13 on the Billboard Charts. Pharoahe Monch has blossomed his April release of PTSD: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder into a full-fledged tour. And 9th has been steadily overseeing the careers of tomorrow rap champions in Rapsody and GQ with equal success.
With or without a formal agreement, Kweli maintains that more fruit will blossom from this labor as he reveals, “I am in NC working on music with 9th and crew right now as we speak.”
Keep the Gravitas Billboard dream alive by supporting it at the Kweli Club and flip through the gallery below to see who’s actually waving the Indie 500 flag.
Photos: Instagram/Talib Kweli, Twitter