heath mcnease is really talented.
i first heard about this guy when i was scanning noisetrade.com (a great website full of music and ebooks that you can download for a donation of your choice) for some thoughtful rap music. i stumbled upon heath mcnease, which was a fortuitous discovery, because once i started listening, i couldn't believe just how talented and interesting this young man is.
i first heard an album called thrift store jesus, full of great rhyming on interesting, layered beats, with a ton of thought put into the lyrics. he is gifted at turning a phrase, and does so in a very interesting, engaging way. then, i heard that he was putting out an album of songs all centered around the great Christian writer/thinker, c.s. lewis. when i first started listening to it, i was dumbfounded. it wasn't rap at all, but some sort of folky, modern rock, indie mashup sound that was easy on the ears, all while dealing with themes from the books and life of c.s. lewis in a cogent and literate way. amazing.
he followed that up with a remake of the c.s. lewis album (called "the weight of glory) in a completely different way: rap. he didn't just remix the songs, he completely reimagined them. the artistry and creativity of this guy, not to mention the God-given talent, is impressive.
so i have kept listening. he's got other albums out, too. one about a difficult trip to canada on tour. one about the season of autumn. one really fun freestyle rap album. and this is all available for free or for donation on noisetrade.com, or from his own website.
now, mcnease has written, directed and produced a 43-minute film called "fort wayne," which deals with the struggles of the singer/songwriter, trying to make it in the midwestern town. i haven't seen it all yet, but i certainly will be watching.
and since i admire the man as an artist, and for his courage in offering his art to the world without price, i wanted to take a moment just to pass along a good word about him. i know rap isn't for everyone, but he is so diversely talented, you might find something else you like about him, too. his soundtrack for the "fort wayne" movie, for example, is kind of bon iver-ish folk pop.
check him out on noisetrade here.
check out his own website here.
here is a song from you tube: