In today’s age, technology has flooded our lives with content. Caught in the mire are modern musicians who champion an art form that’s more widely distributed than any other throughout human history. And we, more often than not, overlook the music created by unfamiliar faces because it’s challenging. We’d rather have an easy listen, a known quantity to skim through while we think about something else.
Hearing is easy, but listening is difficult. Welcome to “Why We Like It”, where we rebuke the trends in favor of thoughtful analysis and underknown sounds.
“John Wick” — Mitchel Gerald
How We Found It
I did the inevitable and signed up for Clubhouse, and in doing so just went for it and spoke in four rooms on the first day. In two of which I offered a 24 hour open dm for music submissions to consider for WWLI intro pieces and constructive feedback. While I heard some potential here and there, this top of the year new single by a rapper from a small town in Tennessee really caught my ear. “John Wick,” by Mitchel Gerald has the energy of new outlooks and New Year’s resolutions in slap form. The beat produced by Don Kevo, the engineering by Madiou Diouf, and Gerald’s sauced up raps all blended together making you want to dive into your 2021 goals headfirst.
Why We Like It
We’ve all heard a plethora of rap flex songs. They can become redundant, but can also stand out in their own right if they are specific and intentional. “John Wick” by Mitchel Gerald has a momentous urgency that connects to those of us wanting to emerge out on the other side of this pandemic into our purpose.
The horn sample in the beat provided by Don Kevo makes you feel like you are immersed in an HBCU brass section. The way it is chopped up even creates such a poignant space for the 808’s to enter that when they do, aligned with Gerald’s flow spitting the words “comeback season,” it’s impossible to not get hyped. The way he sits in the pocket of the beat though evokes a sort of knowing assuredness. Gerald’s confidence in his 2021 outlook creates an array of lyrics that work as a sort of playful mantra. In the first verse he raps, “they eggin’ me on these n***as is toast,” and in the second, “they really want beef, we been raisin’ the stakes (steaks).” He uses cheeky food metaphors to enunciate the fact that the new person he has become is elevated beyond what those who spew doubt wish for in his demise.
Coming from a small town in Tennessee, but now living in California chasing his dreams, is what drives Gerald. He holds true to his conviction out of a necessity to show the worth of his effort. This new single shows him bask in his positive perception of what’s to come, creating a triumphant expression vocalized with ease. The last line of the track pretty much sums it all up as he spits, “Tunnel vision my writtens got me at the top of the hit list, this shit feel like a scrimmage.” Gerald knows his place in the game which can only motivate you to find yours.
From Mitchel Gerald
John Wick is meant to be a promise in song to myself to stay focused on the goal of becoming not only the artist I look to be but the entrepreneur and man as well. I relate to John Wick because coming out of a small town of Clarksville, TN, there’s a lot of eyes on me to fail and that just cannot be an option.”- Mitchel Gerald for CentralSauce 2021
More From Mitchel Gerald
As this new single marks a new chapter for the artist it’s definitely worth going back to listen to Gerald’s 2017 project So Here’s The Thing. Also please follow him on Twitter and Instagram for any and all updates.
More to Discover
Subscribe to the CentralSauce mailing list so you never miss out on the freshest sauce. Check out this continuously updated playlist of songs Miki has added to our Discovery section! Each track or artist has been featured in our “Why We Like It” section, so be sure to check out the page here on the site.