"BlackMale" Video screening
Friday November 7th, a handful of people in the media industry were chosen to screen The Boy Illinois new music video entitled “Blackmale”. The song features heavy hitter legends Trae The Truth and Twista. I was a little surprised, usually when an artist is releasing a video they choose a venue such as a bar, club, sometimes even someone’s house however this release took place downtown at the prestigious Renaissance Blackstone Chicago Hotel. The event was produced by Swank Publishing who came well represented, bringing their event strategist, project manager, art director, publicist and videographer. Among guest were representatives from Donda’s House, Windy City Underground, Goill.net and a few other prominent media outlets known for supporting the Underground scene of hip hop. Wasn’t long before The Boy Illinois walked in, greeted all the guest and began explaining the artistic vision behind the video. He started with the title, “Blackmale” is a play on words because all who were involved in the video are black males, and each have been blackmailed while in the music industry. The video was shot by Alvin Elmore and it takes place in Chicago and Houston. The video stems from The Boy Illinois new project called “New Age Colonialism.” The Boy Illinois was recently on tour with one of his hero’s Lupe Fiasco and says “It was truly an incredible experience.” The Boy Illinois had started his interest in music when he was eleven, and became very serious about it when he became seventeen. He originally attended the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign but dropped out around the age of twenty two so he could pursue music full time. Now He debuts a feature with two of the most renowned names not just in the underground scene, but in all of hip hop. We were able to Skype in Trae the Truth who talked about the organic nature of the project and how everything came together very smooth. To my surprise I learned that his entire verse on the song was a freestyle! The music video looked great, the song is a hit and The Boy Illinois is just getting started.