Talib Kweli will release his first book Vibrate Higher on Feb. 16. The book will feature the Brooklyn MC reliving some of his storied memories growing up in NYC and his journey to becoming a hip-hop star in his own right.
Some of the author’s fondest memories in the book include his early days working for party promoter Jessica Rosenblum who regularly threw parties with a young Puffy during his rise to fame. Kweli discusses handing out promotional flyers in his youth and seeing The Notorious B.I.G. and Tupac hanging together in clubs prior to him becoming established in the industry.
Some of his other reflections include Q-Tip complimenting him after an early performance in his career and Jay-Z mentioning him as one of his favorite lyricists of all time.
Kweli stopped by “The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon” recently and discussed his new memoir and being witness to some of the biggest behind-the-scenes events.
“We are all a collection of our memories,” explained the “Get By” rapper. “And I’ve been blessed and highly favored and uniquely positioned to be in the back rooms of all different types of history. And that’s another quote I got from Harry Belafonte, a man I was also able to establish a friendship with. He said he ‘was in the back rooms of history and that’s where I want to be.'”
Talib also told Fallon that his book differs from other artists’ books because he’s chasing the greats when it comes to writing.
“Those are the people I look at. I don’t look at what’s going on trend-wise. I’m not trying to compare myself to other rappers right now,” he added. “As a writer, I’m looking at James Baldwin. I’m looking at Maya Angelou, Richard Wright. I’m looking at people who told their stories halfway through their lives. I’m in my 40s. I have a lot more living to do.”
The conscious MC also revealed to the late-night talk show host that he has a new project in the works that will be dropping later this year. “I’m very excited about my next project. My next project is featuring one of the legendary hip-hop producers and one of the [iconic] founders of this culture. His name is Diamond D. The album is called Gotham and it’s a dedication to New York ’cause that’s where we from Jimmy,” he continued.
“The new album is crazy. It’s bringing that feeling back and I’m just proud to be a part of it,” added the legendary producer was made a cameo appearance with Kweli during the remote interview.
Fans can pre-order Talib Kweli’s Vibrate Higher at www.us.macmillan.com. Check out his interview with Jimmy Fallon on the next page as well as his new video “On Mammas” with Diamond D.