Jesse Boykins III and MeLo-X: “Black Orpheus”


“Never bound by the shackles of genre, we travel and shift through musical landscapes breaking down barriers in the process. Our approach to music is similar to that of the spirited tribal warrior; conquering new land as we travel the world winning wars through romance.” 

I’m starting to find it harder and harder to differentiate one genre from the next or decipher whether or not genres even exist anymore. Take “Black Orpheus” from Jesse Boykins III and MeLo-X, for instance. You will find this track on their collaborative album, Zulu Guru, due out October 15. The track itself has been loosely labeled as Hip Hop by various music domains, but nonetheless seems a breed of its own. “Black Orpheus” is a categorical medley as will be Zulu Guru, which “[absorbs] influences from around the world into the production including Afro-Beat, West Indian, and Electronic Soul – expanding [MeLo-X and Jesse Boykins III’s] brand and message worldwide.”

As emcee/ DJ/ producer MeLo-X and singer/songwriter/ producer Jesse Boykins III join forces, they make apparent the musical pedigrees from which their revolutionized sound has fallen. The album has been said to elucidate “modern romance”, but even more so the evolution of emotion through sound. Jesse Boykins III and MeLo-X assemble the root elements of Hip Hop, R&B, and Soul to “connect wholeheartedly with their artistic visions and do all they can to make it reality.” With or without a definite genre, the final product of “Black Orpheus” leaves us wondering what’s to come on Zulu Guru and fails not in communicating its deeply woven message:

“The Guru in us all simply craves evolution and tranquility which comes with experience, which is simply the process in which we become more and more true to ourselves: being able to acknowledge our flaws and mistakes and wrongdoings and grow for the better.”

MeLo-X and Jesse Boykins III: “Black Orpheus”

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