By Ana Gonzalez
This is how the D.C.-based hip-hop artist Wordsmith begins every track on his newest album, King Noah. Out of context, this interjection seems ridiculous and worthy of the mockery usually reserved for Lil Jon, but it does have a purpose. Wordsmith uses this line as a buffer between his messages to his son and his music. See, King Noah is not just a record; it’s a “blueprint for life” for Kingston Noah Parker, the first child for rapper Anthony Parker, Jr. [a.k.a. Wordsmith].
That being said, listeners have to take the majority of the songs with a grain of salt. Due to the intent of the album and Wordsmith’s strict adherence to the ideals that he would like to pass on to his progeny, the music is lack luster at points. King Noah is like a very well-structured essay with a thesis stated in its introductory song to which Wordsmith relates every consequent track in a lengthy, slightly awkward personal message to his son. While this makes for a beautiful gift from father to son, I found myself, as an impersonal listener, getting bored.
I give Parker credit for rapping without swearing or demeaning women and varying his sound from old-school hip-hop [“King Noah,” “Rhymesayer Revival (Remix)”] to mainstream songs with radio potential [“On My Job,” “Eye For The Spotlight”], but these pros did not make me fall in love. Fortunately, I am not the audience member that matters the most to Anthony Parker, Jr. I am sure Kingston Noah Parker will appreciate this album more than anyone else on the planet, and rightfully so. It’s really meant for his ears only.