Today: Apr 14, 2024

Mixtape Review: Jon Connor represents for Michigan

 SEAN MEENAGHANPhoto Editor

Since coming on to the scene in 2011, rapper Jon Connor has been getting more and more popular throughout the industry.

Unlike most rappers, who tend to take a somewhat easy route, rapping about clothes, money and women, Connor’s music represents his struggle with living in one of the most economically depressed cities in America—Flint, Mich.

The last rapper to come out of Michigan was Big Sean, with Eminem of course being the most known, and Connor looks to make the world realize Flint can produce rappers as well.

photo courtesy nahright.comMainstream rappers like Busta Rhymes have taken notice to Connor and recently Rhymes was featured at the end of Connor’s track “Someone Like Me” saying “I can’t remember anyone from Flint, Mich. who has meant anything to hip-hop.”

Connor has made videos for a couple of his singles and always brings the video to the streets of Flint.

Instead of seeing Buggatis and rooms full of strippers that one may see in a Lil’ Wayne video, the video for Connor’s track “Ain’t no Future,” Connor brings out Flint residents to show how much support they have for one of their own trying to make it.

Connor planned on taking the men away from thinking about the ladies for a little while with his new mixtape, “The Blue Album” that he released on Valentine’s Day and he did not disappoint.

Lyrically, Connor makes each song refreshing, as it doesn’t sound repetitive.

Throughout the tape, Connor mixes in hard aggressive tracks with slow emotional ones.

Connor avoids using club tracks and gives the listeners moderate pace melodies that people can just listen to and not blow out their eardrums with ridiculous bass notes and high trebles.

With slow-tempo songs like “Thank You” and “Never Change,” listeners can hear each word Connor says instead of hearing hundreds of MPC kicks in the background.

You won’t see any appearances by Lil’ Wayne or Rick Ross on this tape. Connor features artists born and raised in Michigan like Mickey Wallace on “Poppin Tags” and Lyric da Queen on “Some How Some Way.”

Connor decided to put a spin on Jay-Z’s 2009 hit “Run this Town” and including rappers Lia Mack and Brandon Mars, in a sense replacing Rihanna and Kanye West.

Connor took another jab at how the rap game is today, by saying “I’m a dog, yall tuck ya tail, take a ‘L’ while I take a ‘L’ rarely.”

On the track titled “Show You How…” Connor raps about how still he hasn’t truly made it and yet he’s going to take over the rap game.

Connor said, “If it’s me against the world expect the world to lose.”

On another bar, Connor said “How ‘bout three grown (men) living in one room, trying to pay the rent so they can barely pay for food, never complained once we just took it as paying dues.”

To end the mixtape on a lighthearted note, Connor chose to remake Mariah Carey’s hit single “Heartbreaker” and feature another local artist from Flint, Lia Mack who in the end sounds very similar to Mariah which is saying a lot.

To be able to find artists not trying to follow mainstream artists by rapping about marijuana or materialistic items it is relieving to see that artist like Connor are still trying to produce true hip-hop.

4 out of 5 Owls

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