In the often saturated hip-hop community, it's a challenge to establish one's own musical identity. Newcomer Coleon seeks to do just that with his debut release, Tha Seed."If I get slapped in the face, I turn my cheek
This Chicago native brings an unmistakable East Coast vibe to the table with well-crafted lyrics that are guaranteed to get your attention. One listen to the orchestral arrangement in his introductory track tells you that you're in for an unforgettable ride.
Coleon, aka Mr. (Corey) Rogers, offers a great deal of diversity on this project. Several cuts are reflective and relaxing: "Relax Ya Soul", "Pass You By" and "Looking For Direction" all have messages which admonish to trust in God for direction and lean on Him for life's success.
However, it's the 'in your face' attitude of this album that makes it noteworthy. The album features several finessed tracks that have strong, and at times almost controversial lyrics.
In "Stuff Be On", Coleon chronicles the happenings within urban city life. He describes some of the participants in this lifestyle as "money sucking fiends" and as folks who are "rockin' Timbos, surfin' the web lookin' for cyberhos".
On another track titled "If I", he speaks about the importance of keeping his witness pure. He colorfully rap about how certain actions reflect his level of relationship with God. In one verse, Coleon states:
If I'm living by the sin you know I'm beat
If I'm lusting booty cheeks you know I'm weak
If I'm living by the Spirit very meek."
While the language on this project can at times push the envelope, the New Jersey resident grabs your attention and tells those living within sinful conditions that they don't have to continue to exist in these scenarios.
It's obvious that this album is designed to reach the unchurched and Coleon makes no bones about that.
All of his tracks are pointed towards going into the world and literally taking the gospel to the streets. "Who's God" is a song that challenges the world to "search your heart to figure who's God". This heavily street-laced vibe is very upfront in telling its listeners to make the conscious decision to find out who God really is.
Coleon surfaced on the double-disk hip hop extravaganza, Fashion Expo Volume 1, a pot-pourri that presents Gospel's finest MCs and DJs. Click on the above image
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Coleon has no problem with addressing issues that are often shunned in religious circles. On several tracks, he addresses marijuana use, gang banging, and sexual immorality.
One of the most moving and thought provoking tracks on this project is a 34-second snippet titled "Choices". This cut identifies the pressure that a young man can put on young woman to provide sexual fullfillment. It's a must hear for all teens.
Coleon also takes the last 45 seconds of the project to rap his testimony in an acapella format. It brings Tha Seed full circle and allows you to see that Coleon doesn't fear his past. Instead, he's using his hard knock life to sow "tha seed" into the life of an unbeliever in the hopes of bringing them to Christ.
This album is certified street ministry and is sure to bless all who listen.
Producers: Brother Jay, Weasel, K-Love
album release date: January, 2001
reviewed by Gerard Bonner —
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