This article is part of a series in celebration of a new, dynamic voice in Black America: the NUBIANO Exchange. Brace yourself for the NUBIANO experience.
Legend has it that one day the souls of Bill Withers and Mos Def would intertwine. On that glorious day a man by the name of Anthony David would come to Atlanta, Georgia, and “evoke the energy of music rather than the style.” For years, Atlanta natives have clamored over his coming, yet the world turned a deaf ear.
In 2004, evidence of Anthony David’s arrival was discovered: 3 Chords & The Truth, an independent album released by Brash Music. In 2006, a second sample, The Red Clay Chronicles, was found. Both, ATLiens say, bear the mark of “Acey Duecy.”
On June 17, 2008, SoulBird Records will distribute Acey Duecy, a collection of his underground recordings. With A.D.’s name slowly entering the mainstream’s consciousness, the prophesy has been fulfilled. Enlightened, Clayton Perry managed to track Anthony David down and discuss life and the inspiration behind his music.
Q: How does it feel to be the artist that christens the SoulBird label?
A: Really good. India.Arie and I have been friends for a long time. It is comforting to know that she has enough confidence in me and my music to represent her new label, you know? I’m anxious to get out there and prove her right and share my music with the world.
Q: How did you and India.Arie first meet?
A: She was the first person I met when I moved to Atlanta 15 years ago. We just got to talking and we never stopped. We hung out all the time—doing the same type of music. And I ended up going on the road with her, singing backup, in support of Voyage to India and Testimony (Volume 1), her second and third albums. Now, I represent our label.
Q: How would you describe your style?
It’s rhythm and blues. Blues is the foundation to everything. When I learned to play guitar, blues kind of evolved in it. I was trying to link the things that I like about hip hop to things that I like about blues. I found that there’s a link between everything, so it’s just taking it and making it modern.