PREMIERE: David Strickland ft. EPMD and Saukrates “Armed & Dangerous”
"A call for unity amongst the tribes of Turtle Island"
David Strickland is one of hip hop’s unsung heroes. The Native American recording artist, producer, and activist is also one of the most successful Indigenous audio engineers in North America. An early mentor to OVO mainstay Noah James “40” Shebib, David has worked on many Drake projects, starting with Thank Me Later. He was awarded a Grammy for his work on Drake’s Take Care and has also worked behind the boards for the likes of Method Man, The Clipse, and Sade.
Today MASS APPEAL premieres “Armed & Dangerous,” a song from Strickland’s debut album, Spirit of Hip Hop, which the artist describes as a call for unity amongst the tribes of Turtle Island (an Indigenous term for North America). Previous releases from the project have included “Rez Life,” which features a ple Indigenous rappers Violent Ground, Drezus, Que Rock, Joey Stylez & Hellnback, and “Window,” which features Drezus and Toronto singer/rapper Hakeem Roze. Blending traditional sounds with modern production, Strickland’s album draws parallels between hip hop’s “four elements” and Native American culture: the DJ corresponds to the Drummer; the MC is the Storyteller; B-boys are of course Dancers and the graffiti artists are parallel to sand artists and makers of petroglyphs.
“Armed & Dangerous is special to me not only because of my past work with Erick Sermon, PMD, Def Squad & Saukrates but because both Saukrates and I came up listening to and loving EPMD,” says the artist. “To have these legends represent for me on “Spirit Of Hip Hop” has deep meaning. This song is powerful and represents where I am in life right now; I’ve shed the past throughout my journey and now I’m Armed & Dangerous with the tools the Creator has blessed me with.” Get familiar with the tune and listen out for the Peter Tosh lyric in the hook.