Musical Bio and Discography
Born and raised in Cleveland, now residing in the Bay Area, JAHI, a lyrically conscious emcee, has been rocking stages, writing prolific songs, and touring internationally for the last 10 years.
Raised in an urban household, which regarded music as more important than television, JAHI’s first musical inspirations came from the sounds of James Brown, The O’Jays, Curtis Mayfield, Sam and Dave, and people like Isaac Hayes and Barry White. With the first huge rise of Hip Hop in the 80’s, it was artist like Run-DMC, Whodini, LL, Rakim, KRS-One and others that inspired JAHI to first pick up a mic and use his eloquent gift of rhyming, charm, and charisma to get block and house parties jumping.
Jahi’s first major break came in 1999 when, after battling for over 2 hours, he was selected to be the first local emcee to perform at The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as the opening act for Public Enemy, Slick Rick, Outkast, and Goodie Mob. This was in conjunction with the 20th Anniversary of Hip Hop Exhibition.
Releasing his first album in 2000- “Higher Elevation,” Jahi realized that he needed to begin his journey outside of Cleveland to see if the world at large would embrace his style of music which is classified as introspective, thought provoking, political, and motivational. Throughout a span of 10 years, Jahi has shared the same stage with Chaka Khan, Chuck Brown, Jay, Z, KRS-One, Scarface, X Clan, Floetry, Mos Def, Talib Kweli, Public Enemy, Blackalicious, Dead Prez, Missy Elliott, Dilated Peoples, Raheem DeVaughn, Outkast, Cee-Lo Green of Gnarles Barkley, Jaguar Wright, and Mary J Blige to name a few.
Jahi has released 9 independent records, and one on a major label. His accomplishments range from being a 2nd place Winner in the International Songwriting Competition in the R&B/Hip Hop category, to performing in front of 50,000 people at Wembly Arena. Jahi has toured all of the US and Europe, and has been featured in numerous publications, newspapers, and online sites for his musical works. Throughout his career, Jahi has continued to push the envelop on creating the much needed balance in the world of Hip Hop by creating musical landscapes that talk more about love and respect, honor, politics, and encouraging peace, unity and having fun. In describing Jahi’s style, cultural icon Chuck D says, “Jahi brings what’s needed in today’s world of Hip Hop.”
Jahi is currently working on his triple threat plan: Release two projects this year- The George Benson Tribute Project (Spring 09) and his next solo album The Artists Way (Fall 09). In addition, there will be a DVD and book entitled Everyone Has a Story to Tell (Spring 2010). Also, Jahi continues to give back to the community as Creative Director of The MYC Records in San Rafael, CA at The Marin Youth Center, where youth produced their first CD “Many Thoughts/One MYC” with support of Carlos Santana’s Milagro Foundation.