R&B Artist and Revolutionary Andre Henry on Exodus 3v7
What if you could combine the poetic social commentary of James Baldwin, the prophetic fire of Bob Marley, and the contemporary sounds of John Legend? Andre’s alternative R&B music would be at that intersection. His unique “Future Reggae” sound combines a little Atlanta and a little Montego Bay. As an award-winning singer-songwriter and music producer, Andre uses music to sing about Black life and social justice with elements of reggae, electronica, rock, and a dash of hip-hop. His combination of art, social commentary, and on-the-ground activism recalls the work of countless Black artists such as Nina Simone, Paul Robeson, and Marvin Gaye.
In 2016, Andre’s passion for social justice and art came together when he decided to lug a 100-pound granite boulder around Los Angeles for a few months in protest of systemic racism in the United States. His ongoing performance was the start of a serious intellectual quest to understand how ordinary people can fight social oppression; the work has established him as a respected thought leader on anti-racism and social change.
“I just wanted to help people understand what it is like to live in a Black body in an anti-Black world,” he explains. “One day, I lugged the boulder over to a piano. ‘It doesn’t have to be this way,’ I sang, again and again. Tears crawled down my face, as I realized this is it. This is the message.” That lyric is his rallying cry of a growing movement.
Andre’s commitment to use art to inspire social progress has led him to study the works of great freedom fighters like Gandhi and Mandela and Martin Luther King. After studying leadership in nonviolent movements at the Harvard Kennedy School he went on to consult with founders of international movements and national revolutions. He incorporates the insights he’s gleaned from his experiences as an activist and his studies into his music.
Make no mistake about it, Andre Henry is trying to incite a revolution.
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