Similar to his Chicago brethren, Common, when it comes to emceeing and the essence of cultural change that Hip-Hop can provide, Jelani Lateef has spread his conscious rhymes throughout his hometown, evolving from a person who simply puts words over beats, to a speaker that is in tune with giving life to his tracks.

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With his upcoming full-length album, My Soul To Keep 2, Jelani is seeking national recognition. He speaks from a street level but with a consciousness that can be appreciated by those who feel that rap music isn’t positive. He is one of those sole survivors of a dying breed, emerging from a student studying an art to a teacher of Hip-Hop fundamentals and cultural awareness. Motivation may seem difficult in a city that is currently making headlines for murders, but with Jelani’s dedication, he has all the ingredients to provide the change that he wants to see with his own brand of heart-on-his-sleeve personal storytelling.

Check out Jelani Lateef’s promo video for his upcoming album: