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Black, Jewish artist delivers fresh, socially relevant hip-hop:

Shemspeed Entertainment presents Y-Love’s second release, the EP “See Me.”  It hits stores and the web May 17 and delivers kosher, socially conscious rhymes to listeners.

Y-Love’s Website – This is Y-Love

Y-Love’s blog – HipHopActivist.com

To paraphrase Isaac Hayes, Y-Love is a complicated man, and no one understands him but his rabbi.

I first came across Yitz “Y-Love” Jordan while writing a review of Eprhyme (another Shemspeed Entertainment artist) for Jewcy.com. Their unique brand of hip-hop embodies the complex racial, religious and political identities modern Americans experience every day. As XXL magazine once put it,  “Y-Love is like Talib Kweli and Saul Williams in a yarmulke.”

Not only is he an African American that takes his Judaism seriously, but he is also a politically conscious rapper and a religiously “revolutionary progressive.” He loves Israel and he hates militarism and the Palestinian occupation. He rages against the machine like Tom Morello, but his lyrics are often sprinkled with words in Yiddish, Arabic and even some occasional Aramaic. Like a lot of Americans these days — my black, sci-fi, religious, left-wing self included – he is quite aware of how he defies the typical stereotypes. Our complicated identities may have something to do with why – despite Matisyahu’s dominance in the Jewish hip-hop/reggae scene – Y-Love may be on the edge of broad crossover success.

The new album – planned for release by his label Shemspeed Entertainment on May 17 – is a shout out to all of his divergent roots, while also calling for the “selecta” with danceable party flows.  “This is Unity” — a track produced by Diwon with a thumping baseline and a Hebrew hook — is a great example. Y-Love forges fun anthems for the diverse Jewish communities around the world — especially black Jews that may feel invisible otherwise.

Now may be the best time to find out what this “militant mystic under rabbinic authority” has on his mind.


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