Mahogany Jones has been on quite the tear of late. She recently organized and performed at the Contemporary Interactive Women in Hip-Hop Conference, held as part of this weekend’s Allied Media Conference in her native Detroit, received an invitation to perform at A3C, the world’s largest conference celebrating hip-hop music and culture, received the prestigious Kresge Art Fellowship, and released a critically-acclaimed album on her birthday. The album, entitled Sugar Water, continues where her previous release, Pure, left off, with its jaw-dropping lyricism, substantive content, and neck-snapping drum breaks over emotive soul samples. All in all, it will remind the listener of the type of sound that endeared Slum Village to their legion of fans, with a contemporary flair.
Sugar Water is a gem for hip-hop purists, and/or those who have grown tired of the mundane content and sounds presented by mainstream hip-hop. Songs like Insight, Gold, Bring Back The Soul, and Grow are among the many treats on the album. Mahogany solicited the assistance of her long-time producer iRonicLee, Darell “Red” Campbell, and newcomer Mozaic for production. The album’s guests include Iomos Marad, Gwenation, Sean C. Johnson, Katrina Mitchell, Rocdwell, and Kamakazi. In many ways, Sugar Water represents what its name suggests–simple, sweet refreshment for those deprived of quality nourishment. With fourteen songs, coming in at just over an hour, Sugar Water will leave you satisfied.
For those unfamiliar, Mahogany Jones is a Detroit-based educator, emcee, and cultural ambassador who has released three full-length albums, and appeared on more than thirty albums, mixtapes, and/or compilations. She stormed onto national scene as a four-time, undefeated champion on BET’s 106 & Park’s Freestyle Fridays. In the time there since, she has headlined concerts in over sixteen countries, on four continents as an official U.S. music ambassador, and shared the stage with the likes of Gil Scot Heron, Talib Kweli, KEM, Rah Digga, India.Arie, The Roots, Jessica Care Moore. In many ways, she continues Detroit’s storied tradition of dexterous lyricism pouring over soulful boom-bap production. A dynamic performer, and master wordsmith, Mahogany simultaneously embodies hip-hop, femininity, and spirituality in a way all her own. Her work harnesses the power of music to uplift, educate, and empower. For example, she launched A PURE Movement “to empower women and girls and confront violence against women.” Moreover, she finds ways to contribute to the future of music by helping to organize a camp for children from ages ten to thirteen.