You know it’s going to be a good day when you wake up at noon and the first thing you listen to is a collab between Abstract and Jah Jr. That collab is called “Ease Yo Mind”, and Abstract announced its release late last night. Both of these dudes have grown a lot as artists over the past year, and I’m happy to see that they’re working together. The Charleston hip-hop scene has long been criticized for a lack of collaboration, but Abstract’s game is based on collaboration and he’s out there shaking up the scene in that regard.
Perhaps the best collaborations for Abstract – That Rapper are the ones that start up in a live setting. Over the past year, off the top of my head, you might have seen live Abstract collaborations with Whitehall (at Extra Chill Fest), Little Bird, See Water, and The Peep Show (Darby Wilcox’s band). The last time I saw him perform was at The Purple Buffalo a few weeks back, and on stage he thanked the crowd for being there while him and the band were up there figuring it all out.
From what I’ve seen, Abstract is well on his way toward figuring it out. He takes command of the stage and directs the band to play the way he wants them to play. His backing bands typically jam along to his cues while he raps at all different tempos over their improvised beats. It isn’t always perfect, but in those moments when Abstract and the band are in sync, you can feel the energy in the room building. Abstract feeds off that energy from the crowd and it translates directly into his performances.