Run the Jewels’ Killer Mike and El-P are all about the community. After their performance this past weekend at Lollapalooza, Mike told the Huffington Post why it is important for Chicago to reach out to it’s youth.
“I say it every time I play in Chicago: ‘Please find one child and mentor them. If you don’t believe it can really change that child’s life, my name is Michael Render, and my mentor is from North Chicago. Her name is Alice Johnson.’”
The rapper does his part in the Atlanta community by offering up his barbershop Graffiti SWAG (Shave Wash And Groom) as a place to address activism efforts.
Mike said that running a barbershop has helped him create a better community atmosphere, provide “specifically, black tradesmen” with employment develop a direct line to his neighbors so that he can “hear what the community thinks and feels.”
El-P explains that community is exactly what hip-hop is about. “That’s really what hip-hop is: It’s the most inclusive music of everything around it,” he said. “The roots of it come from people who were really listening to everything that was out there, applying their ideas and making something beautiful of their own.”
That since of community is also the reason El-P thinks hip-hop has taken over the festival scene. He stated that the two feel [a] responsibility to project something that’s positive.