Saul Williams performing live in 2012
|Birth name||Saul Stacey Williams|
|Born|| February 29, 1972 |
Newburgh, New York, U.S.
|Education|| Morehouse College (BA)|
New York University (MFA)
Saul Stacey Williams (born February 29, 1972) is an American rapper, singer-songwriter, musician, slam poet, writer, and actor. He is known for his blend of poetry and alternative hip hop and for his lead roles in the 1998 independent film Slam and the 2013 jukebox musical Holler If Ya Hear Me, featuring Tupac Shakur's music.
Alternative hip hop is a subgenre of hip hop music that encompasses the wide range of styles that are not typically identified as mainstream. AllMusic defines it as follows: "Alternative rap refers to hip hop groups that refuse to conform to any of the traditional stereotypes of rap, such as gangsta, bass, hardcore, pop, and party rap. Instead, they blur genres drawing equally from funk and pop/rock, as well as jazz, soul, reggae, and even folk."
Holler If Ya Hear Me is a jukebox musical written by Todd Kreidler featuring the rap music of Tupac Shakur.
Tupac Amaru Shakur, also known by his stage names 2Pac and Makaveli, was an American rapper and actor. He is considered by many to be one of the greatest hip hop artists of all time.
Williams was born in Newburgh, New York, and is the youngest of three children in his family. He attended Newburgh Free Academy, where he wrote his song "Black Stacey". He graduated from Morehouse College with a BA in acting and philosophy, then moved to New York City, where he earned an MFA in acting from New York University's Graduate Acting Program at the Tisch School of the Arts.While at New York University he became part of the New York café poetry scene. Williams has also lived in Brazil as an exchange student from 1988 to 1989.
Newburgh Free Academy is the public high school educating all students in grades 9–12 in the Newburgh Enlarged City School District, which serves the city of Newburgh, New York, the towns of Newburgh and New Windsor, and portions of the towns of Marlboro, New York, Cornwall, New York and various others.
Morehouse College is a private, all-male, liberal arts, historically black college in Atlanta, Georgia. The college is one of the few remaining traditional men's liberal arts colleges in the United States.
A Bachelor of Arts is a bachelor's degree awarded for an undergraduate course or program in either the liberal arts, sciences, or both. Bachelor of Arts programs generally take three to four years depending on the country, institution, and specific specializations, majors, or minors. The word baccalaureus should not be confused with baccalaureatus, which refers to the one- to two-year postgraduate Bachelor of Arts with Honors degree in some countries.
By 1995, Williams had become an open mic poet. In 1996, he won the title of Nuyorican Poets Cafe's Grand Slam Champion. The documentary film SlamNation follows Williams and the other members of the 1996 Nuyorican Poets Slam team (Beau Sia, muMs da Schemer, and Jessica Care Moore) as they compete in the 1996 National Poetry Slam held in Portland, Oregon. The following year, Williams landed the lead role in the 1998 feature film Slam . Williams featured as both a writer and actor in the film,which would win both the Sundance Festival Grand Jury Prize and the Cannes Camera D'Or (Golden Camera).
A poetry slam is a competition in which poets perform spoken word poetry. Poetry slams began in Chicago in 1984 with its first competition designed to move poetry recitals from academia to a popular audience when American poet Marc Smith began experimenting with existing open microphone venues for poetry readings by making them competitive. The performances at a poetry slam are judged by a panel of judges, typically five, and usually selected from the audience, or sometimes judged by audience response. The judges usually give each poem a score on a scale of 0–10. The highest and lowest scores are dropped and the middle three are kept. The highest score one can receive is 30 and the lowest is zero.
SlamNation is a documentary film by director Paul Devlin. The film follows the National Poetry Slam in Portland, Oregon.
Beau Sia is an American slam poet.
Around 1998, Williams was also breaking into music. He had performed with such artists as Nas, The Fugees, Christian Alvarez, Blackalicious, Erykah Badu, KRS-One, Zack De La Rocha, De La Soul, Buckethead, and DJ Krust, as well as poets Allen Ginsberg and Sonia Sanchez. After releasing a string of EPs, he released the LP Amethyst Rock Star with producer Rick Rubin in 2001. In September 2004, he released his self-titled album to much acclaim. He played several shows supporting Nine Inch Nails on their European tour in summer 2005, and has also supported The Mars Volta. Williams was invited to the Lollapalooza music festival around that time, and the Chicago stage allowed Williams to attract a wider audience. He appeared on the Nine Inch Nails album Year Zero , and supported the group on their 2006 tour of North America. On the tour, Williams announced that Trent Reznor would co-produce his next album.
Nasir bin Olu Dara Jones, known professionally as Nas, is an American rapper, songwriter, record producer and entrepreneur. The son of jazz musician Olu Dara, Nas has released eight consecutive platinum and multi-platinum albums and has sold over 30 million records worldwide. He is also an entrepreneur through his own record label; he serves as associate publisher of Mass Appeal magazine and is the owner of a Fila sneaker store. He is the founder of Mass Appeal Records.
Blackalicious is an American hip-hop duo from Sacramento, California, made up of rapper Gift of Gab and DJ/producer Chief Xcel. They are noted for Gift of Gab's often tongue-twisting, multisyllabic, complex rhymes. The duo have released four full-length albums.
Erica Abi Wright, known professionally as Erykah Badu, is an American singer and songwriter. Badu's career began after opening a show for D'Angelo in 1994 in Fort Worth; record label executive Kedar Massenburg was highly impressed with her performance and signed her to Kedar Entertainment. Her first album, Baduizm, was released in February 1997. It spawned three singles: "On & On", "Next Lifetime" and "Otherside of the Game". The album was certified triple Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). Her first live album, Live, was released in November 1997 and was certified double Platinum by the RIAA.
This collaboration resulted in 2007's The Inevitable Rise and Liberation of NiggyTardust! . The album was available only from its website until a physical CD was issued, featuring new tracks and extended album artwork.The first 100,000 customers on the website had the option to download a free lower-quality audio version of the album. The other option was for users to pay $5 to support the artist directly and be given the choice of downloading the higher-quality MP3 version or the lossless FLAC version. The material was produced by Trent Reznor and mixed by Alan Moulder. It was Reznor who said, after his own recent dealings with record labels, that they should release it independently and directly to the audience.
The Inevitable Rise and Liberation of NiggyTardust! is the third solo studio album by Saul Williams. It was released in 2007. It peaked at number 41 on the Billboard Heatseekers Albums chart, as well as number 89 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart. The album is entirely produced by Trent Reznor. The title of the album is a reference to David Bowie's 1972 album The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars.
FLAC is an audio coding format for lossless compression of digital audio, and is also the name of the free software project producing the FLAC tools, the reference software package that includes a codec implementation. Digital audio compressed by FLAC's algorithm can typically be reduced to between 50 and 70 percent of its original size and decompress to an identical copy of the original audio data.
Michael Trent Reznor is an American singer, songwriter, musician, record producer, and film score composer. He is the founder, primary musician, and principal songwriter of the industrial rock project Nine Inch Nails, which he founded in 1988 and of which he was the sole official member until adding long-time collaborator Atticus Ross as a permanent member in 2016. His first release under the Nine Inch Nails name, the 1989 album Pretty Hate Machine, was a commercial and critical success. He has since released eight Nine Inch Nails studio albums. He left Interscope Records in 2007 and was an independent recording artist until signing with Columbia Records in 2012.
In early 2008, a Nike Sparq Training commercial featured Williams' song "List of Demands (Reparations)". In a November 2008 interview with Wired.com, Williams talked about his forthcoming projects: "There's one album that I'm waist-deep into. I'm aiming to finish it up next month. Trent wants to work on a sequel for Niggy that I think would be cool, and I also have an album and new songs demoed at home that I'm ready to go into the studio and lay down. It’s a complete reflection of how I feel in this country; it's a very transformative time."
Nike, Inc. is an American multinational corporation that is engaged in the design, development, manufacturing, and worldwide marketing and sales of footwear, apparel, equipment, accessories, and services. The company is headquartered near Beaverton, Oregon, in the Portland metropolitan area. It is the world's largest supplier of athletic shoes and apparel and a major manufacturer of sports equipment, with revenue in excess of US$24.1 billion in its fiscal year 2012. As of 2012, it employed more than 44,000 people worldwide. In 2014 the brand alone was valued at $19 billion, making it the most valuable brand among sports businesses. As of 2017, the Nike brand is valued at $29.6 billion. Nike ranked No. 89 in the 2018 Fortune 500 list of the largest United States corporations by total revenue.
Williams' fourth album, Volcanic Sunlight , was released on November 11, 2011. Williams showcased the album at London's Hoxton Bar Kitchen on January 26, 2011. Livemusic interviewed Williams on the evening and made a subsequent film, produced by artist Alex Templeton-Ward. When Williams was asked what the point of poetry was, he said: "I'm making this up, I have no idea but here we go. I think that it would be to express, to share, to relieve, to explore. For me, poetry offers some what of a cathartic experience. I am able to move through emotions and emotional experience particularly, you know, break-ups, difficulties in all the things that I may face, whether that is with an industry or a loved one or whomever, there needs to be an infiltration process, like you have a window open over there. That is the purpose of poetry: it is the window that opens, that allows some air in, some other insight, some other possibility so we can explore all that we feel, all that we think but with the space to see more than what we know, because there is so much more than we know. If I didn't open myself to the possibilities of the unknown, then I would be lost."
Williams' fifth album, MartyrLoserKing , was released on January 29, 2016.
In March 2018, The Kills released their cover of Williams' "List of Demands (Reparations)" and Williams opened for The Kills' sold-out performance at the Regent Theater in Los Angeles on August 13, 2018.
As a writer, Williams has been published in The New York Times , Esquire , Bomb Magazine , and African Voices, as well as releasing four collections of poetry. As a poet and musician, Williams has toured and lectured across the world, appearing at many universities and colleges. In his interview in the book Words in Your Face: A Guided Tour Through Twenty Years of the New York City Poetry Slam, Williams explained why he creates within so many genres: "It's not that I balance those arts out, all the different arts balance me out. So, that there is a certain type of emotion that is more easily accessible through music than poetry... some things are meant to be written, some are meant to be sung, some things are meant to be hummed, some things are made to be yelled, and so that's just how life works."
In January 2009, he released NGH WHT – The Dead Emcee Scrolls with The Arditti Quartet, a reading of his 2006 poetry book of the same name. This collaboration with Thomas Kessler (who also set Williams' spoken-word track ",said the shotgun to the head" to music) was released with two payment options: listeners could download chapters 18 to 22 of the 27-minute composition in MP3 format for free, or could download the entire 33-chapter composition in lossless AIFF format for $6, along with the isolated vocal and quartet multitracks. The entire paid download totalled in size at 563 megabytes. Williams contributed to two tracks on the 2011 album Baba Love by Arthur H.
On film Williams has starred in Slam (1998), and Today (2012). On stage Williams was chosen for the lead role in Holler If Ya Hear Me , a Broadway musical featuring music by Tupac Shakur. Though it features Shakur's music, the musical is not about his life. It is an original script written by Todd Kreidler. Rolling Stone described the production as "the first hip-hop jukebox musical in Broadway history".The show opened on June 19, 2014. Williams' role in the musical landed him an interview on The Colbert Report , where he spoke about his career and performed a poem entitled "Amethyst Rocks".
Williams is a vegan.He is a vocal critic of the War on Terrorism and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Among his better-known works are the anti-war anthems "Not in My Name" and "Act III Scene 2 (Shakespeare)". In 2011, he added his name to Occupy Musicians, supporting the worldwide Occupy movement against income inequality. He identifies as queer.
Williams and Marcia Jones, a visual artist and art professor,began their relationship in 1995 as collaborative artists on the Brooklyn performance art and spoken word poetry circuit. Their daughter, Saturn, was born in 1996. A collection of poems by Williams entitled S/HE is a series of reflections on the demise of his relationship with Jones. Jones created the cover artwork for The Seventh Octave, images throughout S/HE in response to Williams, and set-designed his 2001 album Amethyst Rock Star . Saturn performed with her father on his 2008 concert tour. Williams also has a son named Xuly.
On February 29, 2008 (his 36th birthday), Williams married actress Persia White, his girlfriend of five years. They met in 2003 when he made a guest appearance on the TV show Girlfriends .On January 17, 2009, White announced via her Myspace blog that she and Williams were no longer together.
He is now married to Rwandan-born Anisia Uzeyman.He recently lived in Paris for four years but now resides in Los Angeles.
|"Coded Language"||1999||Krust||Coded Language|
|"Monkey Theme"||2000||The Infesticons||Gun Hill Road|
|"Release"||2002||Blackalicious, Zack de la Rocha, Lyrics Born, Sela Kerr||Blazing Arrow|
|"Playing House"||Tre Hardson||Liberation|
|"Sent from Sandy Shores"||2003||Adventure Time||Dreams of Water Themes|
|"Time (Jungle)" (Temple of Soul Mix)||Wax Poetic||Nublu Sessions|
|"Freedom"||2004||Karl Denson's Tiny Universe||N/A|
|"Three Fingers"||2005||Buckethead & Friends||Enter the Chicken|
|"Sea Lion" (Extended version)||Sage Francis, Will Oldham, Alias||N/A|
|"Lyrical Gunplay"||2006||Thavius Beck||Thru|
|"Mr. Nichols"||Coldcut||Sound Mirrors|
|"April Showers, April Tears"||Stuart Davis||N/A|
|"Said the Shotgun to the Head"||Thomas Kessler||Thomas Kessler|
|"Survivalism" (backing vocals)||2007||Nine Inch Nails||Year Zero|
|"Me, I'm Not" (backing vocals)|
|"Gunshots by Computer"||Year Zero Remixed|
|"Easter"||2009||Stuart Davis||Sex, God, Rock 'n Roll: Songs from the TV Series|
|"U Can Do It"||2010||Maeckes||Kids|
|"Dance or Die"||Janelle Monáe||The ArchAndroid|
|"Black Intro"||Vic Mensa||Straight Up|
|"Le Paradis II Est Chinois"||2011||Arthur H||Baba Love|
|"Money God"||2015||Haleek Maul||Prince Midas|
|"The Virus"||A Tribe Called Red, Chippewa Travellers||We Are the Halluci Nation|
|"Wings"||2017||Vic Mensa, Pharrell Williams||The Autobiography|
|"Ancestral Recall"||2019||Christian Scott||Ancestral Recall|
Nine Inch Nails, commonly abbreviated as NIN, is an American industrial rock band from Cleveland, Ohio, founded in 1988. The band consists of producer and multi-instrumentalist Trent Reznor, as well as English musician Atticus Ross. Over the course of their three-decade existence, the band has signed with several major labels, the most current being Capitol Records, under the name The Null Corporation.
Nothing Records was an American record label specializing in industrial rock and electronic music, founded by John Malm Jr. and Trent Reznor in 1992. It is considered an example of a vanity label, where an artist is able to run a label with some degree of independence from within a larger parent company, in this case being Interscope Records.
Eric Adam Avery is an American musician. He is best known as the former bass guitarist and co-founding member of alternative metal band Jane's Addiction.
Atticus Matthew Cowper Ross is an English musician, songwriter, record producer, and audio engineer. Along with Trent Reznor, Ross won the Academy Award for Best Original Score for The Social Network in 2010. In 2013, the pair won a Grammy Award for Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media for their soundtrack to The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. In 2016, Ross became a member of Trent Reznor's band Nine Inch Nails.
Randolph Isaiah "Ikey" Owens was an American Grammy Award winning keyboardist known for his work with The Mars Volta, Jack White and an array of bands from the Long Beach music scene.
Alessandro Cortini is an Italian musician best known for being the keyboard player in the American band Nine Inch Nails, Cortini is also the frontman for the Los Angeles-based electronic-alternative band SONOIO.
Nine Inch Nails, an industrial rock band fronted by Trent Reznor, did various live performances throughout the world, including tours in North America, South America, Europe, Australia, and Asia. While Reznor controls the creative and musical direction of Nine Inch Nails in-studio, the touring band performs different arrangements of the songs in live settings. In addition to regular concerts, the band has performed in both supporting and headlining roles at festivals such as Woodstock '94, Lollapalooza 1991 and 2008, as well as many other one-off performances including the MTV Video Music Awards. Prior to their 2013 tour, the band played 938 gigs.
Year Zero is the fifth studio album by American industrial rock band Nine Inch Nails, released by Interscope Records on April 17, 2007. Frontman Trent Reznor wrote the album's music and lyrics while touring in support of the band's previous album, With Teeth (2005). In contrast to the introspective style of songwriting Reznor has used on other albums, Year Zero is a concept album that criticizes contemporary policies of the United States government by presenting a dystopian vision of the year 2022.
Thavius Beck is an American record producer and rapper. He has been a member of Global Phlowtations and Lab Waste. He has also put out solo releases under the moniker Adlib. He is a certified trainer of Ableton Live.
Anis Mojgani is a spoken word poet, visual artist and musician based in Portland, Oregon. Mojgani has been characterized as a "geek genius" with "fiercely hopeful word arias."
Musicane was a social shopping and discovery network. Users can feature, recommend, and find new music and products through feeds and themed mixes and broadcast to all their existing online communities. Every user gets their own Musicane widget which can be embedded on websites, social network pages, and blogs. The widgets can directly retail music and physical products and contains all the user's featured items, mixes and media. Musicane offers all their users affiliate commissions on all music they help sell. Musicane is currently an MP3 retail partner with Universal Music Group and The Orchard and works with over 50,000 independent artists.
Ghosts I–IV is the sixth studio album by American industrial rock band Nine Inch Nails, released on March 2, 2008 by The Null Corporation. It was the band's first independent release, following their split from longtime label Interscope Records the prior year. The album's production team included Nine Inch Nails frontman Trent Reznor, studio collaborators Atticus Ross and Alan Moulder, and instrumental contributions from Alessandro Cortini, Adrian Belew, and Brian Viglione.
Gingger Shankar is an Indian American singer, composer and multi-instrumentalist. She has scored several films, including Circumstance.
FADER Label is an independent record label based in New York City that has released albums by Matt and Kim, Yuna, Editors, Neon Indian, Birdmonster, and Saul Williams. It was founded in 2002 by Rob Stone and Jon Cohen.
Two months before the release of their fifth full-length album, Year Zero, industrial rock band Nine Inch Nails began a new tour, officially called Performance 2007. The tour initially started off as a 'best-of' tour but later transformed into a direct Year Zero support tour.
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