Reason for Rhyme P1: #TheLocalAlbum

On January 31st, I released my latest solo album, and my first release in five years. During the time away from the album scene, aside from working the standard 40 hours a week at the job, I was dropping songs periodically on Soundcloud and Reverbnation, and doing shows in the midwest region. I spent some time co hosting a radio show, and performing and recording an album with the band Planet Boom Bap.

#TheLocalAlbum available now on CD and Digital

The trials and tribulations that caused my progress to be delayed, was part of the inspiration to simply call this album, Local. The other inspiration comes from the pride I have in my city’s music scene and talent base, as well as my contributions and involvement over the years. This album was designed with an international audience in mind, though the title might indicate otherwise. The concepts on this project mostly revolve around the experience of doing music and pursuing a career, using your hometown or region as a launching point. If you are an MC/Rapper or a musician in a band, and you record your music, do shows and sell your CDs in your area, or you have music and or videos online, you will be able to relate to the content. Whether you are in the early stages, or someone who is accomplished and established in the industry, at some point, you have to deal with the local scene.

Though this album is mostly conceptual, there are the usual bangers you would hope to find in a hip hop album. I consider it to be the perfect mix of 808s and beat breaks in a nutshell. The traditional, upbeat, boom bap flow, mixed with that midwest, double time, downtempo beat. with a rapid fire delivery. I produced half of the tracks on the album, and the other half, I had the pleasure of working with some great up and coming producers that I have known for some time, all of whom originate from my home region.

I went to high school with DJ Hezekiah, who now resides in OKC. Dolla Bill and Bob Markie are my cousins, and DJ Siege is my son. Area producer Blake Lamirand was a long overdue late addition to the project. I was able to link up with The Klinik, Sonny Paradise and DJ Spoolz from my adventures on the Indianapolis scene. They helped me create the perfect soundtrack for concepts such as Homecoming, Big Time, Gotta Work, and The Rap Show.

This album has no guest features on vocals, for no particular reason other than these songs being personal to a certain degree, and I worked on the project over a long period of time during my involvement with other activities on the music scene. There are a lot of Emcees in the area that would have fit well. But I will make up for that soon as plan on working with many artists from the region on my up and coming Imagination@Work album…

Stay Tuned…

 

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Classic Small Wonders EP; Now Available.

The self titled project from Small Wonders now available on Bandcamp.com

iTunes, Google Play, Amazon Prime, Youtube, Spotify, Tidal, Apple Music, Deezer & More!

 Click here to Listen Now!!!

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Ten years ago, a good friend of mine by the name of Marcus Norwood and I, started a hip hop duo known as Small Wonders. It was the traditional MC/Dj combo, our format was Two Turntables and a Mic, and our mission statement was simple; Quality Handmade Hip Hop. I began calling us the Army of Two a short time after we founded the entity, due to our ability to cover many bases musically between the two of us, both on the stage and in the creative process. During that time we recorded a mixtape project called Playability, which was released on CD and marketed in the Indiana area. We shot a music video for our song They Don’t See, and done a number of shows in the area. In the heyday of forums like Myspace and Reverbnation we were able to reach a lot of listeners online and spread the buzz.

A major influence on Small Wonders, was owner of Village Green Records, Travis Harvey. Not only did he design this cover back in 2008, he also began making handmade T shirts with this logo and spreading it through the Ball State University campus, where the store is located. Our first and last show was at VGR. Needless to say, we will have to return for a reunion show in the future.

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This project includes music that was made from 2008 to 2017, all produced by Marcus Norwood(Definition), and written by Donta Rollins(Goldeneye). All re-recorded and mixed by Andrew Christman in the Palace of Sorrow studio in Muncie. It is a must have for the music collection, especially for listeners of traditional, uptempo, boom bap hip hop. For fans of groups such as Tribe Called Quest, Eric B. and Rakim, and Gang Starr. Another feel good classic to add to your collection of real hip hop music.

Check it out Now!!!

Small Wonders

The “army of two” known as Small Wonders is composed of myself(Goldeneye), and Marcus Norwood. We pride ourselves in making “quality handmade hip hop music” using the traditional method of sampling, along with live instrumentation and turntablism to create a vintage sound with modern rhythms and subject matter. We started making music  together in 2000 after meeting through a mutual friend whom I met on a random occurrence in the smoking break room at my job. At the time I was in a local group called the Warheadz, and Marcus became our DJ and eventually started making tracks for us. After the group split up in 02, we began working on music as an MC/DJ combo and developed the formula that would eventually become Small Wonders in 2008.

We hit the ground running with two turntables and a mic, doing shows in the Muncie and Ball State area. Working with Travis at Village Green Records, was an important part of putting the Small Wonders movement together. VGR was the main platform for promoting our music, and Travis was the designer four our main logo and album cover. Some of our best shows came here at this record store/concert venue. It was also the main location for our first video for the song They Don’t See, which we released in 2010. Our debut mixtape Playability circulated through the region and hit various spots around the world online, establishing a listening base.

We were constatly on the scene in Muncie and BSU. Campus hotspots like Be Here Now, where we opened for hip hop legend Canibus and Wu Tang affiliate Timbo King.  We also rocked events like the Village Music fest, Muncie Music Fest and the Muncie Gras on several occasions an even graced the local newspaper a couple times with show pics.The Small Wonders buzz was not limited to the central Indiana region, as Marcus had moved to Galveston, Texas. We were able to gain listeners in that region as well as various points around the globe through friends, family and the power of the internet

I look at Small Wonders like Jedi Knights in hip hop, lying in wait, ready to return and bring a new hope. I feel like our music has a timeless effect that gives it Playability that will last a long time, just like classic hip hop, that’s why I am never in a hurry to release projects from us.  I have consolidated all of our previous music into an album and an instrumental project and I am releasing them online for the entire world to hear. So upon our return, everyone has had a chance to get familiar with our previous songs and knows what to expect, somewhat however, as evolution will bring new ideas and abilities in the future.

Stay tuned

Click Here to Listen to Small Wonders

New Song, New Album

It’s been nearly four years since the release of my last album Donta’s Inferno. Besides working countless hours at a local steakhouse during that time, I also took part in several ventures such as co-hosting a radio show with Merc Versus called POWz Radio, participating in community events with my chapter of the Universal Zulu Nation, and most recently I have been a part of a band called Planet Boom Bap also with Merc, who is the bands founder. Along with The Pearl King on the drums, Wiz Kid Nate Kolbe on the keys, and Zac Burger on the bass, we played a number of shows in the state of Indiana last year, including the Chreece Festival in Indy, and opened for Potluck and Devin the Dude as well as Obie Trice. We also started on our album Parallel Universe. Our first song from the album Astronauts is online now.

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I have also been working on new music the entire time, in addition to making some new quality handmade hip hop with my group Small Wonders, I have nearly completed the creative process on my latest solo album titled LOCAL, which is set to release this spring. I chose this title for the album because it is how I was feeling at the time. I came up with the concept in 2004, when I was feeling the same way, which is close to my city and state.   After doing numerous shows with Planet Boom Bap and Small Wonders throughout the city of Muncie and the state of Indiana, I have established a connection with alot of artists, Djs, and “scenesters” in the area. It inspired me to make something to represent the entire scene. Every artist has ambitions of taking their music around the world, but the love and support you get on a local scale can propel you to the next level. Even the top selling superstar rap artists take pride in performing and “puttin on” for their city.

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The first song released from the LP is my anthem Big Time, which was inspired by the Rick James classic song of the same title.I chose this song first because I wanted to come out the gate with something hard hitting with a solid mission statement to set the tone for the album. The lyrics of the song talk about the experience of an up and coming artist looking to make it to the next level of the entertainment business and at the same time making good music.

The song is produced by fellow Zulu and Indianapolis based producer Klinik, and recorded and mixed by Andrew Christman at the Palace of Sorrowin Muncie.