Hip-hop has come into its own as a culture in the South Asian community. From Bohemia to Mafia Mundeer in the 2000s to Divine and Emiway Bantai in recent years, the movement has evolved and aided artists in the art of storytelling; playing on themes like love, identity, gender, socio-political issues, oppression, and introspection. Transcending the boundaries of a genre, hip-hop has become a beloved medium of South Asian expression.
Tracing its history, emergence and evolution in India and other South Asian regions in the past decade including the diaspora, Ruckus Avenue Music Group released a collection of South Asian hip-hop music in a compilation album titled 'The Rise' across all global music platforms, earlier this year. It features some of the biggest South Asian artists across the global Hip-Hop landscape.
Some of the notable artists on the album include Anik Khan (New York), Bohemia (India), Raxstar (UK), and DJ Upsidedown (Los Angeles) alongside Adi, RMS, Raoul, Pav, Shivxm, Gopal, Hasham, FeniFina, D-Boy, Sef, and more. The album features 25 mastered tracks by more than 35 South Asian artists, musicians, and tastemakers from all over the world including the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Nepal, Pakistan, India, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. The multilingual album compiles tracks in English, Hindi, and Punjabi.
The curator of the album, Rukus Avenue is a ground-breaking music company founded in 1996 by record producer, Sammy Chand. With 25 years of history in the music industry, it has caused a confluence of cultures to create a signature musical expression and has carried a wide range of artists; cementing its legacy. The company noted for its cultural contribution to America, captures a movement taking place worldwide to bring social change through music. Ruckus Avenue is considered the conduit of the South Asian music movement in North America and believes in innovation that pushes the boundaries of expression through our unique mixtures of eastern and western cultures.
'The Rise' is a one-hour, twenty-one-minute travel into the South Asian sound and a musical interpretation of the lives of its diaspora. From boom bap to road rap and lo-fi to instrumental, the South Asian artists in the compiliation have projected their stories into different sub-genres of hip-hop to create a truly quintessential representation of the Brown experience.