R.O.S.E L.I.F.E JAO

He use to have a loud heart but from past experiences and certain vibes he received from some of his peer's JAO's heart seems to speak low these last few years.

Art Sisters

Kira Dixon, Shanina Dionna and Ameerah K., came together and put together "one of the dopiest events this year" quoted from some of their peers.

R.O.S.E L.I.F.E Harrisburg

Recap of Jan 11, 2014 R.O.S.E L.I.F.E Harrisburg with video.

Media Traffickers

CEO of Media Traffickers International Jamie and his right hand and business partner, friend and artist B.P. to see what their viewpoints are as business men, rappers, relevancy of the music scene locally and the upcoming compilation mixtape their company is hosting.

Tuesday, July 13, 2021

Defeating The Odds Ft. Toke x Thelonius


Defeating The Odds

(Ft. Toke x Thelonius)

Written By Anwar Curtis


On Friday, June 11, 2021, the Firehouse Restaurant in downtown Harrisburg was packed to capacity with some of Central Pennsylvania's illest emcees and hip-hop fans. Everyone in attendance was ready to witness a performance that many had not seen before. So, what led to this night full of excitement? A good ol' fashioned rap battle. 
Hidden Treasures' owner Kevin "Toke" Windemaker and everyone's favorite Harrisburg indie emcee Thelonius introduced the world to Capital Warfare -- a music series featuring rap battles and live performances. But what would entice both Thelonius and Toke to host a night full of aggressive wordplay and emotions?


Oftentimes, life is the epitome of a rap battle, and how one performs comes down to preparation, creativity, and crowd support. This philosophy is shared by both Toke and Thelonius. They are both individuals who quickly figured out how to defeat a rap (life) battle.



For Toke, he remembers being a child who loved to draw and loved watching wrestling. In fact, Toke would probably be a household name right now if it wasn't for his grandmother's lack of appreciation for his Ultimate Warrior imitations. It only took Toke one time to receive what felt like unfair wordplay --- a good pop from his grandmother for "playing like that" in her house for him to realize that dream was a total nightmare. Toke would later find a liking for LL Cool J's "I'm Bad" song and performed it quite often. One particular time Toke remembers performing it in front of his godparents. "My godfather said everything was great except the curse words," Toke expressed.


📷  Brandyn Reynolds

If it wasn't for Toke's godfather embracing him on that day, there would have been a really great chance Toke would have never invested his time in finding a real passion for music that almost landed him a record deal with Rawkus Records (but Rawkus Records fumbled its distribution deal). That experience was another punchline life would recite to him, but Toke prevailed and continued to pursue a life where hip-hop remained important. A few years later Toke would find a liking for artist management but due to a lack of timing, Toke almost found himself throwing that passion in the trash, but once again he bounced back and kept his love for music alive.


📷 Brandyn Reynolds

So what about Th-Th-Th-Thelonius' life experiences grants him permission to appreciate the essence of battle rapping? Like many, Thelonius has considered walking away from music several times due to heavy bars life gives. One occasion where Thelonius almost walked away from his pursuit of happiness was the time somebody stole most of his music equipment. Ironically, this was a time in Thelonious' life where his music was really starting to take off. The release of his album, "Roses and Gangland," had been well-received by his peers, and he enjoyed every collaboration and live performance opportunity that came his way. But because of circumstance, Thelonius thought life was throwing a subliminal line at him, telling him that music wasn't the way. Thelonius would eventually respond to life with a few bars of his own and released "F.E.A.R.," his fifth body of work, which got him back in his bag.


📷  Brandyn Reynolds

There was another occasion when Thelonius considered walking away from the music game. This was inspired by the birth of his first child. "I didn't want to be that guy who excelled greatly in that world (music) but didn't take care of what's going on at home," Thelonius recalls. Well, little did he know that some two years later, his oldest daughter would see him perform for the first time. This almost ended up being his last show ever, but thank God it wasn't. That experience would open both her eyes and his. Her excitement seeing him perform encouraged him to get back in the mix of making music, which was something he really needed.


📷 Brandyn Reynolds

Now fast forward to the year 2021. Both Toke and Thelonius have survived every bar life has projected. Toke has curated over 30 showcases, has introduced names such as Daisy Mayze, Yung Dev, Ki, T. Jetson, and Kierra Luv to so many indie fans, and has helped so many more "hidden treasures" become underground legends. Toke has also decided to invest his time back into artist management and development. Thelonius, on the other hand, has been working on several projects, has produced many fire beats, has been nominated for a Central Pennsylvania Music Hall of Fame's Song of the Year for "MELANIN-19" featuring Daisy Maize, and has lived up to his daddy duties. But there was that one idea that life encouraged both Toke and Thelonius to attack together that has re-energized their passions for music with Capital Warfare. Again, hip-hop, like wrestling and life, can be one of those things where preparation, creativity, and crowd support helps to combat aggressive moments. And since both Thelonius and Toke understand the concept of walkinging through life no matter what, they both decided to curate Capital Warfare as a collective.


📷 Connie Hobbs

The first showcase of Capital Warfare brought a night full of tension, clever bars, and style thanks to opening acts CHRISTILEZ, LOEGANG BADGETT, BARRY BYRD, and DJ PETAI; however, it was the anticipation of the rap battle between P-$SPARKS and VESEY that created a standing room only environment. And that vibe was needed, just like Thelonius and Toke's ability to defeat life's burdens one rhyming life bar at a time.

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If you enjoy our content and would like to support our website and Youtube Channel, you can do so by clicking our Donate Button which is located a the top-right side of this page. Proceeds will go towards improving production, creating more dope content, and supporting other creatives.

We appreciate your support ~ ✌🏾 👑's




Friday, February 19, 2021

2.19.21 I feel like I'm made to rap. I can't put it down ~ Signed Geniuz

I feel like I'm made to rap. I can't put it down. 

Signed Geniuz 

📷 James Klippel


Written by Anwar Curtis


When we all ushered in the New Year on the eve of December 31,  2019, I doubt there was a single person who was ready to embrace its full offering. I mean, how could anyone prepare for something they’d never experienced? It didn’t matter what space a person occupied in 2020; parenting, establishing a business, wedding plans. Everything came to a halt. This, of course, was all thanks to  COVID-19, a.k.a The Rona, who undeniably showed up and showed out. Now, fast-forward to present day. The world is not completely back to normal just yet, but many adjustments and improvements have been made. Adjustments may be unfamiliar for many, but not for Geniuz who has been doing so for a lifetime because he refuses to GO FOR BROKE. 

Since the age of fourteen, Geniuz has been making music. During his high school days, many would have considered him to be a  “nerd”. However, “nerd” is a label that never fazed him. He just liked what he liked; Anime, Hey Arnold, and music with a vibe and a message. Over the years, this strong sense of individuality is what draws people to Geniuz the most. He has become one of those artists everyone loves to work with. This is certainly a  benefit of an early life lesson. One of the most important attributes a person can have is a solid understanding of self. Many creatives lose their balance in their pursuit of success and happiness. But for Geniuz, this is just another day in the life. All he’s ever wanted to do was create. The smiles he catches are just a very pleasant perk.  


📷 James Klippel

If you don’t follow Geniuz on IG (@geniuz717), you should. You can tell from his updates there that he’s been making significant progress in his career despite whatever The Rona had planned for the industry and the world at large. From packing in the photoshoots to stacking up the studio time, Geniuz has been piecing together his life story in music form. All this grinding is what prepared him to drop Favorites, a song he is extremely proud of and rightfully so. Shortly after that release, he started making appearances at La Cultura’s Open Mic Nights. There, he not only thrived as an emcee but also took advantage of his connections with other fellow creatives. One night during the forever lively sessions, he encouraged his peers with a gem. “This is for you to  get your feet wet.” Geniuz received that same gem from me six years ago after performing for the very first time at an event curated by Levels Ready Entertainment. He took in every word then. Now, it shows. His growth in the last six years alone is nothing less than amazing.  

Doubling back, the first quarter of the year seemed promising. But then, there was a shift. That’s when we all realized that the contagion was here to stay. Y’all remember the “quarantine and chill” segment of 2020? While we were all kicking back, locked in our lover’s cribs, Geniuz remained laser-focused. He aspired to create his best body of work ever. He continued to write and record. It was also during this time, that he decided to revisit some of his unfinished material. This led him to rediscover some of the songs that were still near to him. He picked them back up and polished them off. With a little bit of patience, dedication, and remixing, the release of his latest EP entitled “Go For Brokehas arrived. A debut that means the world to Geniuz.  



Go For Broke is a true testament to Geniuz’s musical journey.  From the artwork, music production, and wordplay, he shows he has the ability to follow his sound to the places tailor-fit for him.  The makings of a truly solid project. Audible gold. 

Last year was historical. The year 2020 will go down in history as one of the most infamous years ever lived. Especially through the lens of the Black community in America. This was a year that brought continuous heartache to the nation with undying recklessness from the police. Recklessness that affected Black families, Black Culture, and Black survival. If you’re wondering how much of Go For Broke is centered around this content, we were too. 

📷 Levels Ready Ent


“When I get a platform, what can I do with it?”


That is a question Geniuz often reflects on. “I don’t want to make a  song about the sh**. I’m mad about the sh**. Let’s do something  that actually helps.” Geniuz has no regrets about this stance. Many artists find solace in their music. Who could blame them? In a  world so loud, who wouldn’t seek out some silence. If you find yourself upset with this project’s “lack” of substance rooted in another disturbing time for Black America, don’t charge Geniuz, charge it to the Use of Force continuum.  

Evolution is something an intuitive mind yearns for. Geniuz fits the mold. Being one-track-minded isn’t something he takes for granted.  In fact, it can be seen as one of the many strong suits he relies upon the most. It helps him stay focused while the world chills or crumbles. But, he realized at an early age that his next work will continue to be his best work. So, stay tuned. Oh, and lock in on his new work Go For Broke and lets those streams up. 

Stay Connected


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If you enjoy our content and would like to support our website and Youtube Channel, you can do so by clicking our Donate Button which is located at the top-right side of this page. Proceeds will go towards improving production, creating more dope content, and growing our platforms. 

We appreciate your support ~ ✌🏾 👑's


Monday, July 27, 2020

7.27.20 I love making music sound great, signed Vinny Mac

I love making music sound great, signed Vinny Mac

📷  Levels Ready Ent

Written By Anwar Curtis

Having the ability to create your own unique sound that the world falls in love with comes with its very own issues. This includes an abundance of hard-drive malfunctions, countless arguments with other musicians, and more than a fair share of sleepless nights. But, on the bright side, it also comes with a lot of laughing. Sixteen years ago, Harrisburg, PA’s Vinny “Mac Sauce” Mac took a chance with music when he put the basketball down. A choice influenced by one of his high school coaches that would snowball into a beautiful and fruitful musical experiment.


I had the opportunity to speak with Vinny Mac in a special COVID-19 style interview via Facebook Messenger video chat. He started off by saying, “Back in the day I was still figuring out a lot of stuff.” The “stuff” Vinny was referring to was Playstation’s “Music Generator”, a beat making program that allowed him to explore his ability to connect with local singers and emcees by way of storytelling, sample chopping, and chord progressions. “Music Generator was Fruity Loops before Fruity Loops!” he explained. Back in the early 2000’s technology was changing. Inspired beat makers no longer needed to rely solely on MPC’s, Korg Keyboards, or studio time to create their sound. As a matter of fact, thanks to Music Generator, a beat maker didn’t even have to really know music theory to maneuver around the program.


📷 Levels Ready Ent

 

Although there are many attributes that help to mold a good talent into a great one, Vinny Mac shares a special one with many we’d consider some of the best in his field. His very musical upbringing. Many could consider this aspect to be a direct contribution to his creative learning edge. His father Vincent Waters Sr, is a phenomenal drummer. His grandfather, Ronald Waters, plays the hell out of the piano and trumpet. Then there’s his close relative, Kim Waters, the astounding saxophonist. Vinny spent much of his childhood traveling with them; soaking up all the melodic magic he could. These experiences offered lessons to him. So, as he grew up he found that creating a decent sounding beat wasn’t very challenging for him at all. He recollects playing beats off of a Nextel phone to his high school friends and fellow producers Keyz Da Don and Mohamed Diallo. After noticing his upward progression in beat making, Muhammad convinced him to step away from Music Generator to try out the now industry-based software program, Fruity Loops. “Muhammad showed me the basics and after that, I ran with it!”


📷  Levels Ready Ent

Do you remember Lil Flip’s 2004 hit “Game Over”? Vinny says that’s the first track he can remember flipping into a fire, head-bopping hit for his own arsenal. After hearing beats off his phone, people would ask him to import them onto a cd so they could record over them. He vividly remembers rappers trying to convince him to let them “do something on the beat.” That feeling assured him that he was onto something big. That “something” would lead him to working with the Harrisburg based independent group REAL ENTERTAINMENT. “I would go to Music Man and buy mixtapes,” Vinny recalls. “I remember buying this DJ Odini jawn, not knowing he was from ‘The Burg’ a the time. There was a song by Nat King (who now goes by Nascar Nat) on the cd. One day I’m in HACC’s (Harrisburg Area Community College) computer lab, and there was this dude passing out flyers. As I’m reading it I see Nat King’s name which made me immediately say to him, hold up bruh you’re Nat King!” That moment would be all that Vinny needed to take off as a music producer.


📷 Levels Ready Ent

 

Fast forward fifteen years later, Vinny Mac is certainly a force to be reckoned with on both the local and mainstream spectrum. Vinny Mac is now a father, has music industry placements with Relle Bey, Vado, Dex Lauper, Leaf Ward, and Frenchie from Brick Squad, just to name a few. He is also a full-time recording engineer at Pro Sound Studios in Harrisburg, PA, and owner of his own professional mobile recording studio, “Mac Sauce 2 Go”. I know Vinny as both an engineer and a music producer. So I asked him which one he’d choose if he had to. “I love engineering and making beats, but if I had to choose one as my all-time favorite then making beats would have to be my go-to.” He attributed his reasoning to the creativity he feels while creating. He told me, “You can get creative with engineering too, but it’s different. You can’t play around too much and mess up somebody else’s sound.”





Relationships are something Vinny “Mac Sauce” Mac is adamant about as well. He says that being at Pro Sound for four years has really taught him to “understand and appreciate not always listening to outside noise.” Mac Sauce expressed his love for working alongside childhood friend, Kash on the Beat and his mentor Supa Dupaa Sultan. “Sultan is a dope dude who doesn’t give handouts out. But he does provide opportunities for those who are really working.” He would know this first hand. One of those opportunities was Sultan reaching out to him on New Year’s Eve to conduct a mixing session for Master P. Moments like those are why you must dream dreams that inspire you enough to actually pursue them.


📷  Levels Ready Ent

 

Beside every dope music producer, you can generally find an equally dope singer or songwriter accompany them. In 2019, Vinny Mac found a breath of fresh air in musical talent Daisy Mayze. He was full of joy when he shared the story of how the two of them met. While patronizing a hip-hip show for locally sourced talent at HMAC called “Hidden Treasures”, he made it his business to introduce himself to Daisy Mayze. He says it was her “work ethic and energy” that drew him to her. “The type of person that she is, is very cautious because she knows she’s dope and knows what she is bringing to the table.” She was the exact recipe Vinny Mac had long desired at the time. After a few months, Daisy and Vinny decided to work together and before they know it her entire “5ive” EP was recorded and produced by Mr. Mac Sauce himself.



I consider beat making a hobby, talent, and occupation that many people take for granted. The unique thing about having a hobby that turns into an occupation is the privilege to see your dreams manifest firsthand. I appreciate individuals like Vinny Mac for appreciating this privilege, always showing love and investing in others using his craft. I can only imagine what “Mack Sauce 2 Go” will be cooking up for Vinny Mac within the next fifteen plus years.



Stay Connected


 

@LevelsReadyEnt


#LevelsReadyEnt

#CultureCreatesClass


If you enjoy our content and would like to support our website and Youtube Channel, you can do so by clicking our Donate Button which is located at the top-right side of this page. Proceeds will go towards improving production, creating more dope content, and growing our platforms.


We appreciate your support! ✌🏿 Kings & Queens.

Thursday, July 23, 2020

7.23.20 What Juneteenth Means To Me

What Juneteenth Means To Me

A group of African American Harrisburg Residents Honoring Their 2nd Amendment Right Start Off Juneteenth At The State Capitol Building

Written By Anwar Curtis 

June 19th, 2020 was something of a big deal for melanated people throughout the country. For many of us, this day marked the first of many annual celebrations in light of a newfound understanding and appreciation of the 155th Juneteenth, OUR day of freedom. This year Harrisburg, PA, a place some consider to be a slow-moving city compared to most major cities throughout the country, did not move slow at all. In fact, from sunrise to sunset Harrisburg was filled with brothers and sisters embracing one another to the highest level. We showed that we understood our purpose and expressed the importance of being liberated, despite feeling drowned by all of the desensitized messaging that many news publications continue to display amidst the multitude of the unjust tragedies perpetuated by a corrupt justice system. Even though many Black Americans, both affluent and otherwise, still feel trapped in bondage by the systems and powers that be, we continuously exercise a resilience that not many others have. We used this day to display that we are an ethnic group that is not completely crippled by its past. We not only honored the angels who’d recently received their wings, but we also honored all of our ancestors who came before us and sacrificed everything in them to birth something in us.

 

On Juneteenth 2020, Harrisburg collectively watered the seeds the angels planted for us over the past century. It will be these seeds that show us true purpose and liberation. In my opinion, this purpose is having the ability to own our own businesses, love and protect our families, advocate for our race, create our own safe spaces to educate ourselves on our existence and to designate a time for Black men and women to be vulnerable with each other at no cost. Now, don’t get me wrong, we’ve been doing the work to hold ourselves accountable to patronize Black-owned businesses. But on Juneteenth, I witnessed greater effort within my race. As a journalist who also owns a media publication (Levels Ready Ent), it is my responsibility to document my experience with the world because my story is also our story. We are the only ones that will tell it accurately. So please, take a few moments to enjoy the content that has been chosen from this year’s Juneteenth celebration!



Levels Ready Ent: What does Juneteenth mean to you?


Jon Williams: Protect yourself at all costs!





📷: Levels Ready Ent

Levels Ready Ent: Juneteenth, is celebrating Black freedom. What does Juneteenth mean to you?

Winnie O: Juneteenth is not a moment but a movement for forwarding mobility and we are focusing on Black people!



📷  Levels Ready Ent

Levels Ready Ent: Juneteenth, is all about honoring the Black Queen. What does Juneteenth mean to you?

Shavonnia Corbin - Johnson: It is important to honor and respect where you come from!






📷  Levels Ready Ent

Levels Ready Ent: Juneteenth, is about Black people being resilient. What does Juneteenth mean to you?

Carey Murry: Seeing that people are coming out to support the city. I think we are going to finally push ourselves more out in the front!



📷 Levels Ready Ent


Levels Ready Ent: What does Juneteenth mean to you?


Jonathan Branch: Being Black is not enough. It's what you are doing with your Blackness. It's what you decide to and how you decide to affect every single person you come across, every single day. That's what your Blackness needs to do and that is what needs to keep the conversation going!


📷  Darius Set


Stay Connected


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If you enjoy our content and would like to support our website and YouTube Channel, you can do so by clicking our Donate Button which is located at the top-right side of this page. Proceeds will go towards improving production, creating more dope content, and growing our channel.

We appreciate your support! ✌🏿 Kings & Queens.


Thursday, June 4, 2020

6.4.20 I HEAR U (VERSUS UNDERGROUND) Continues To Break Barriers With Underground Artist's

  " I HEAR U " (VERSUS UNDERGROUND) Continues To Break Barriers with Underground Artists 


Written by Anwar Curtis

On Saturday, May 30, 2020, the nation was on fire due to angry Americans being once again subjected to another video of a Black man being killed by another White Police Officer. Residents from Harrisburg, Pa, followed suit, hitting the streets of Downtown Harrisburg, Pa, echoing the chant "I Can't Breathe" which were the same three words George Floyd gasped to say while fighting for his life. 


As a Black man in America, my emotions have been all over the place, and music is a way for me to deal. On Saturday over two hundred people locked in to watch the second installment of " I HEAR U " (VERSUS UNDERGROUND) and this one was special and much-needed thanks to WORLDWIDE LAU and CB, who are two artists from the Burg, but don't let me ruin it for you, hit the play buttons below to watch the recap video and J. Bair's (P O V).

I HEAR U (VERSUS UNDERGROUND) ft. WORLDWIDE LAU & CB






J. Bair's I HEAR U (VERSUS UNDERGROUND) POV


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Tuesday, May 26, 2020

5.26.20 Don't dismiss " I HEAR U " (VERSUS UNDERGROUND)

Don't dismiss " I HEAR U " (VERSUS UNDERGROUND)


Written By Anwar Curtis

On Friday, May 22, 2020 the first installment of " I HEAR U " (VERSUS UNDERGROUND) kicked off and it was a dope way to social distance during Memorial Day Weekend. For those who are wondering, if this idea stemmed from Timbaland and Swizz Beats VERZUZ concept, well the answer is yes.



I HEAR U (VERSUS UNDERGROUND) powered by the founder of Harrisburg, Pa’s Hip-Hop Coalition, J. Bair and us at Levels Ready Entertainment will be working together on this idea with one goal in mind, to establish a virtual space for underground artists and their music catalog to be recognized and celebrated. Everything about Friday’s vibe was amazing, from those who locked in and watched, to the comment sections on social media, to the song selections by both Mazon and Cordell. Now that the expectation is set who will be the next two artists to represent I HEAR U (VERUS UNDERGROUND), well I guess you’ll have to follow J. Bair, Jamie Davis, and of course Levels Ready Ent on IG for that update!


I HEAR U (VERSUS UNDERGROUND) ft. Mazon & Cordell



J. Bair's I HEAR U (VERSUS UNDERGROUND) POV



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