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Kamasi Washington scores Netflix Michelle Obama doc Becoming, score out May 15

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Kamasi Washington today shares that he has scored Becoming, director Nadia Hallgrenand Higher Ground Productions’ documentary profiling First Lady Michelle Obama, which debuts on Netflix today, May 6. The score features new original music Washington—whom Hallgren asked to join the project very early in its development—composed for the film as well as selections from his catalog.

 In addition, the score will be released May 15 via Young Turks Recordings on all streaming platforms, see full tracklist below and pre-save here

“Working with Kamasi Washington on the musical score for Becoming was a dream come true,” says Hallgren. “Not only is Kamasi a masterful musician, he also has a unique sensitivity that he pours into his music. His music reaches deeply into your soul. Mrs. Obama loves music, and when I read the line in her book ‘And heaven, as I envisioned it, had to be a place full of jazz,’ I knew immediately Kamasi was the artist that could interpret her experience musically. His sound is contemporary and timeless, a magical fit to her story.”

“It was such a pleasure and honor to work on Becoming,” says Washington. “Michelle Obama is such an amazing person and this film gives a very unique insight to who she is, how she thinks, and the way she navigates the world. It’s truly inspiring to see! Working with the film’s incredible director Nadia Hallgren to create a musical palette to support this amazing piece was truly a blessing. I’m so thankful to her for the opportunity to be a part of this. Barack and Michelle Obama’s time as President and First Lady had an impact on the history of this country and the world that is hard to put into words, but both Michelle Obama’s book and Nadia Hallgren’s film do an amazing job of it!”

Becoming is an intimate look into the life of former First Lady Michelle Obama during a
moment of profound change, not only for her personally but for the country she and her
husband served over eight impactful years in the White House. The film offers a rare and
up-close look at her life, taking viewers behind the scenes as she embarks on a 34-city tour
that highlights the power of community to bridge our divides and the spirit of connection that comes when we openly and honestly share our stories.
Kamasi Washington is a multi-instrumentalist, producer and composer born and raised in Los Angeles. His three bodies of work to date—The Epic; Harmony of Difference, an EP originally commissioned for the 2017 Whitney Biennial; and Heaven and Earth, are among the most acclaimed of the past decade. As Told To G/D Thyself, his short film companion to Heaven and Earth, debuted at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival and earlier this year he released his first concert film, Kamasi Washington Live at The Apollo Theater in partnership with Amazon Music. Washington has toured the world over, and collaborated and shared stages with Kendrick Lamar, Florence + the Machine, Herbie Hancock and many more.

 

KAMASI WASHINGTON—BECOMING
(MUSIC FROM THE NETFLIX ORIGINAL DOCUMENTARY)
1. Shot Out Of A Cannon
2. Becoming
3. Take In The Story
4. Southside V.1
5. Dandy
6. The Rhythm Changes
7. Song For Frasier
8. Announcement
9. Detail
10. Fashion Then and Now
11. Provocation
12. Connections
13. Looking Forward
14. I Am Becoming
15. Southside V.2
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Nardo Wick recruits Lil Durk, 21 Savage & G Herbo for “Who Want Smoke??”

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Nardo Wick has just dropped the highly-anticipated new version of his smash-hit “Who Want Smoke??” featuring Lil Durk, 21 Savage, & G Herbo. The track includes a show-stopping verse from Durk, displaying the depths of his fiery and confrontational style, a noteworthy inclusion from 21 Savage reminiscent of his earliest days on the mic, and G Herbo delivering the thrilling and seasoned bars he’s renowned for. The song not only capitalizes on the virality of “Who Want Smoke?”, but also serves as a masterclass in collaborating from some of the most prominent artists in the game. Each verse builds on the next, with the superstar additions sticking to theme that Nardo laid out on the original “Who Want Smoke?”, signaling the unwavering faith that Durk, 21, and Herb have in the 19-year old Jacksonville emcee. This collaboration comes on the heels of Durk & Lil Babybringing Nardo to perform the viral record at their tour stop in Orlando, receiving an electrifying response from the Floridan crowd. Though the original song has already amassed a whopping 60 million streams and counting, these carefully curated contributions only further solidify “Who Want Smoke??” as one of the biggest records of the year.

“This next chapter of my career is to give every project I work on my full attention. If I want to be proud of all the videos I work on, then I must never rush the process. I want it to be a great viewing experience every time. The goal is to create timeless quality art that inspires and motivates me, and hopefully it can inspire and motivate those beyond me as well. I view the “Who Want Smoke??” video as the opening page of this new chapter.”
Cole Bennett

Nardo Wick bursted onto the scene in mid-2020 with a string of releases, including “Lolli”, “Slide”, and “Came Up.” Music gave the shy teen an outlet to channel his angst and was accompanied by a fast-following. Though he’s soft-spoken off the mic, when Nardo enters the booth, the raps he produces are dynamic and haunting––a reflection of Jacksonville’s turbulent hip-hop scene. In 2021, Wick transitioned from making buzzing records to inescapable anthems. “Who Want Smoke?” became a widespread hit, achieving over 60 million streams as well as placements on Rap Caviar and Hip Hop Hits. The song reflected a menacing teen with a no-nonsense approach to life and music balancing between being captivating and fearsome. “Who Want Smoke?” is a frequent soundtrack to viral content on social media, with the most recent inclusion being Florida A&M’s marching band, the Marching 100, doing a live-rendition of the hit song during the halftime show for their game against Alabama State University. Hit-producer Cardo Got Wings laced Nardo for a last-minute request to appear on February’s Judas And The Black Messiah: The Inspired Album. That album topped the charts upon release, putting Nardo Wick alongside the biggest stars of Hip-Hop and R&B. Wick followed this with the Nick Mira-produced “Pull Up” in July. In August, Nardo released “I Be Chillin”, an exciting addition to his growing discography. Throughout the run, the budding rapper has received praise from Passion of the Weiss, Lyrical Lemonade, and DJ Booth, who included him in a recent “10 Rappers You Should Know Right Now” list. Recently COMPLEXnamed Nardo among their list of “Best Jacksonville Rappers.”

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