Louisville-based teen hip-hop group tackling gun violence and mental health through song | News

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) — A hip-hop neo-soul group from Louisville promotes empathy and critical thinking through song lyrics.

The Mighty Shades of Ebony combines activism with performance. The teen group writes and performs original lyrics on social, economic and environmental issues.

Three years ago, the Mighty Shades of Ebony started a non-profit called Justice League LOU, which stands for Love, Outreach and Unity.

“Love leads to outreach. When you have love for your community, you want to outreach and help them, and outreach brings unity, so it comes full circle again,” said Genesis Hatchet.

Hatchet, a duPont Manual junior, said the group performs their songs to address real-world issues.

“We actually have a song called ‘No more gun violence,’ and some of the lyrics are, ‘What goes around, comes around. That’s karma. You don’t need a gun. Where no book can be your armor,'” she said .

The Louisville Metro Police Department has arrested at least five youths for murder in Louisville this year.

“A lot of times, as black kids or black youth, we get this idea and we’re put into this box of who we can and can’t be and we just work to show all those kids, to show all of the youth, that you don’t have to be in that box and be so much bigger than people say you have to be, you don’t have to pick up a gun,” Hatchet said. “You don’t have to be a member of a gang. You don’t have to be on here to be street. You can be a scholar.”

“As a young person, we shouldn’t have to wait 10 or 15 years to make that change. We should be able to do it now. Especially because, you know, we’re the young people,” Ingram Quick said.

Fast raps with Hatchet and Jayus Rasheed.

“We already have people you know ruining their childhood. Hopefully not. But sometimes it hurts to see their future,” Quick said.

The group said that’s why they’re working to learn more about gun violence and other issues.

“It works and reaches these people so we can have a better community,” said Jayus Rasheed. “Our ‘Tricked-out trashcan’ initiative was one of the first initiatives we’ve ever done. It’s about painting murals and trash cans and putting them in red-outlined neighborhoods. So these neighborhoods can look nice and like we’re proud of them. may be neighborhoods.”

“Some people might not want to listen to a speech about gun violence, but they might want to listen to a song,” Hatchet said.

The group has children from 11 to 17 years old. The group’s founder, Chris Rasheed, said they perform in Louisville almost every weekend.

“I discovered the fountain of youth because I can see and experience them, and watch them take the world by storm,” said Chris Rasheed. “When I tell them, ‘I see you, and this is a partnership,’ we are equal in solving these problems. Therefore, by being active, they are no longer victims.”

Click here to learn more about Justice League LOU.

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Louisville-based teen hip-hop group tackling gun violence and mental health through song | News

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