The first time you hear the news, it comes across as an unlikely tag team.
Who would think to pair the crunchy, CeeLo-ate-a-Transformer vocals of Pettidee with the boom-bap lyricism of unlocked action figure KnowdaVerbs?
The idea actually originated with both emcees. Dig a little deeper and you’ll find the two men have a healthy history thanks to the connective tissue of GRITS’ Teron “Bonafide” Carter and the Factors of the Seven fellowship.
Petti and Verbs have also partnered on music projects in the past (check out their collaborative carol from the Soldier Sound Christmas album), but now it’s time to introduce music fans to their group identity as Village KNG (pronounced “king”).
“About a year ago, Verbs and I linked up to discuss some voice over work. During the process we reminisced about the rich community that comes from being in the studio with other hip hop heads who follow Jesus,” Pettidee said. “We ended up pulling up some beats and just messing around with some tracks. One thing led to another and we ended up with a handful of songs we felt were worth sharing.”
Part of their spark came from seeing rappers of their era (think NaS, Black Thought, Jay-Z, etc.) continue to release and perform music at a high level.
“It just shows we shouldn’t place self- or externally-imposed age limits on the use of our gifts and talents,” Verbs said.
The team decided upon the name Village KNG. It represents their desire to make an impact on a local level and to remind others they serve the “King of Kings.”
The first release from the group will be We Are Village KNG (side A). It contains the songs “Afro Frontier,” “Forward Motion,” “Harriet Tubman,” and “King.” Beatmaker Tone Jonez infuses the project with futuristic sounds and frequent nods to the artists’ distinct cultural roots as African-Americans with lived hip hop experience.
“We wanted a challenge,” Verbs said. “What sounds can we use to clearly communicate what’s in our heart? You’ll hear it on We Are Village KNG.”
Side A will be released in early 2023 with another, four-song Side B to follow. Look for both on all major digital service providers and find associated photo/video content on social media at @villagekng.
Written by Sketch the Journalist