One of hip hop's better kept secrets hails from our neighbor to the north. I first heard Canadian-raised Shadrach Kabango when he opened for Macklemore & Ryan Lewis in New York a couple years back. Based on his incredible live set, I immediately copped his 2010 album TSOL and haven't been disappointed by what I've heard from Shad since.
The son of Rwandan immigrants, Shad is a natural storyteller who uses playful lyrics to convey at times deep, powerful messages over a classic golden age sound. Despite some of the deeper songs, he never comes across as preachy and is one of my favorite Canadian emcees along with Saukrates.
Of these three, "A Good Name" is probably my favorite. It sees Shad take pride in his origins, tracing his given name back to the Biblical Shadrach (Saved by a faith stronger than flame/ If I'm half as brave, then I'll honor my name) before tracing his surname back to Rwanda and his own father.
It's a great song off a great album. If you like what you here, make sure to cop TSOL and be on the look out for his follow-up, Flying Colours, set to be released sometime later this year. Enjoy.
"A Good Name"