Contact: (859) 882-0078
Genre: Hip-hop, Rap, Jazz, R&B
Chattanooga, Tennessee has given rise to a host of hip-hop musicians and producers using the blood and sweat born from Southern experience and memory. Tackling the expanding passages of modern rap music with an eye toward its jazz influences, Swayyvo (born Jerod Morton) has been breaking down the barriers between various genres for years, collaborating with dozens of artists. Sought after for both his virtuosic saxophone stylings and his knack for arranging unique and complex beat-driven movements without sacrificing his own individuality, Swayyvo has given Chattanooga's hip-hop scene a sustained direction in which to grow.
On his latest single, "Hide Away," he's brought on Scenic City musicians Elijah Daxx and Chris P to help flesh out a complicated sax and vibes hip-hop landscape. Mixing programmed music with live instrumentation, the track offers advice on how to stay focused on what's right in front of you and how to shed the distractions that attempt to move you from your chosen path. Drums clack and electric guitars (courtesy of Tyler Martelli) burn as Swayyvo sends out ecstatic lyrical insights while his touch as producer is as subtle and mesmerizing as ever.
"With all this crazy stuff going on in the world, it's important to cherish the people who love you and to focus on what matters. Its easy to get sidetracked and take those people for granted. This song is about putting things in perspective," Swayyvo explains.
By developing his instincts and subtle lyrical persuasion alongside members of The House, a collective of Chattanooga musicians and producers that includes Isaiah Rashad, Michael Da Vinci, TUT, Johnny Balik and Ktoven, Swayyvo has been able to grow as an artist in an environment that encourages experimentation within the hip-hop genre. By drawing on the collaborative force of his musical conspirators, his insular mash of jazz, pop, R&B and rap seems especially relevant as mainstream music seems to rely more and more on homogeny and recycled ideas to sell records.
Young enough to know that there are still mysteries left to uncover in hip-hop but wise enough to understand that he might need some friends to help him find them all, Swayyvo uses his influences and childhood inspirations to create a fusion of modern production and old-school arrangements. This broad perspective allows him to see the entire expansive history of rap music without being weighed down or circumvented by any current trends or fashionable banality. His work sits outside the rush and sprawl of current musical movements, a bright burst of creativity marked by its fluid sense of construction.