Nickodemus’ first musical love has been hip-hop – in large part because of hip-hop’s ability to convey a poignant social commentary through lyrics and production. This is what drew him and Justin Carty together to form the project “A New York Minute,” released in May 2011 to critical acclaim. The project brought together the top talent in New York City’s underground hip-hop culture The Real Live Show, Rabbi Darkside & iLLspokinN – as well as legendary MC Sadat X (Brand Nubian) to do a track and video inspired by the uprisings in the Arab world, the Wisconsin labor strikes & the possibility of the same tipping point in NYC. Nickodemus and Carty always envisioned a continuation of the “A New York Minute “to be “A Global Minute” and the opportunity presented itself in September of 2011 when a musical DJ collective The Beirut Groove Collective, and Jembe Music invited Nickodemus to Beirut – one of the cities most associated with the turbulence of modern Middle East history and a city that has held a special place in hip-hop lore for decades. The hub of the burgeoning Arab hip-hop movement, Beirut has gone largely unnoticed as the uprisings in the Middle East have taken on despots, dictators and monarchs with unflinching bravery and ingenuity. Beirut’s fight, however, is one that represents Arab struggles on many fronts.
“A Beirut Minute” video/song will help illustrate why Lebanon is a country still recovering from a devastating 1975-1990 Civil War and more recently the War versus Israel in 2006, despite it being a top tourist destination over the last 3 years. Through A Beirut Minute people will be viewing Beirut through the lyrical talents of four of the finest Arab MCs on the scene today including, Edd Fareeq l’Atrash, Yaseen, Malikah (who’s worked with everyone from Nate Dogg to Cheb Mami) & Ram6 l’Hamorabi, rhyming over a raw 70’s style drum-break & flipping to a Middle-Eastern Tarab-sampling Hip-hop beat. Vocal version & an instrumental included.