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Brother Ali/Sa-Roc/Last Word/Sol Messiahh

Two of Brother Ali’s most well known songs embody the dichotomy of the rapper’s writing. On one hand, you’ve got “Forest Whitiker,” which dishes a “beauty is on the inside, not the outside” narrative, and then you’ve got “Uncle Sam Goddamn,” which sinks its claws into a country built on injustice and inequality and, naturally, hypocrisy. In both forms, Ali flashes a street-pastor vocal style and a knack for acrobatic social criticism. This is conscious hip-hop, embodying the slick and savvy Rhymesayers ethos. (Sandy)

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