So Ive decided to mix two things I enjoy greatly… music and politics, and tell you all about an artist you may not know about. A very smart, talented, activist/rapper/spoken word artist, and overall good guy Brother Ali. I listen to a ton of different musical genres, and this just happens to be one artist that I’ve started this ‘series’ with… and look forward to doing more in the future. Would love if you all joined me!
Ali Douglas Newman (born Jason Douglas Newman, July 30, 1977), better known by his stage nameBrother Ali, is an American hip hop artist, community activist and member of the Rhymesayers Entertainment hip hop collective.
Ali was born in Madison, Wisconsin and was born with albinism, a disorder characterized by the complete or partial absence of pigment in the skin, hair and eyes. He spent his early childhood moving throughout the Midwestern United States (mostly in Michigan). Ali’s family settled in Minneapolis, Minnesota, in 1992 and he attended Robbinsdale Cooper High School in New Hope, Minnesota. He began rapping at age eight, in the midst of traveling from place to place with his family.
Ali converted to Islam at age 15 and followed Imam Warith Deen Mohammed. During this time, Ali was selected to join a group of students on a Malaysian study tour, in which they explored the way that a more liberal Islamic society could peacefully coexist with different religions.
Though Brother Ali is white, he has often described a childhood marked by cruelty and exclusion by his white classmates as a result of his physical abnormality. He has often explained that, from an early age, he felt “most at home amongst African Americans.”
And just one more video/interview from 2014 that’s worth watching: