By Malcolm Morrow Alfred Banks is a Hip-Hop artist that hails from New Orleans, LA. He has been performing professionally for years and has gone on to...
By Malcolm Morrow
Alfred Banks is a Hip-Hop artist that hails from New Orleans, LA. He has been performing professionally for years and has gone on tour with artists such as Mickey Facts and Dappa. He has a brand new album out called The Beautiful, which released in March and debuted at #12 on the iTunes Rap/Hip Hop and at #79 on the Billboard Top New Artists/Heatseekers chart. It’s safe to say that 2017 is getting off to a great start for this talented young artist.
Since releasing his latest album, he’s hitting the road on the self-booked River Kings 2 Tour with Memphis-based artist Marco Pave, which caught the attention of legendary Public Enemy front man Chuck D. “That was an incredible moment. Man. Incredible.” This will mark the second time that he’s toured with Pave. The pair seems to have a synergy that can’t be denied, “Marco is my guy. More than chemistry though, we both just get out here and make things happen. We both respect each other’s accomplishments & felt it was time to combine forces to make Megatron.”
2016 was a very eventful year for the young artist. He was featured in a Volkswagen car commercial along with his song “Homecoming”, had his single “Garden District” debuted on The Source, headlined a self-booked tour, opened for several major artists such as Warren G and Pharoahe Monch. That’s honestly just the tip of the iceberg.
In a year filled with standout moments, one stood out above the rest. “Performing in Hamburg, Germany was my favorite thing of 2016. I was there for a week and performed at Reeperbahn Festival. We got so much love out there & I can’t wait to go back.” It’s amazing to think that a young Black man from New Orleans is over in Europe performing to festival crowds purely off the strength of his hustle.
Banks is the true embodiment of an independent artist. His ability to consistently add to his brand leaves many wondering what his secret to success could be. The diligence he displays in pursuing new opportunities and forming new connections should be replicated by any indie artist hoping to see success.
One of his most recent brand connections was with the designer footwear company Radii. “They are based outta California & have been around for years. I’ve been buying their kicks since high school; so it’s an honor to be working with them for sure.”
Alfred is a friend of TheHoodHippie.com. We interviewed him early last year on our podcast The Hidden Culture and got some exclusive details about his upcoming album The Beautiful. He told us about his personal life and how the tragic loss of his older brother changed his life. It was amazing to see how dedicated he was to honoring the legacy of his brother. He’s using the album to bring attention to mental health issues in the Black community. Many feel like these issues are non-existent and view it as a sign of weakness to utilize therapy.
His partnership with UnmaskNola, an organization dedicated to helping remove the stigma of mental health in the Crescent City, provided him with another platform to spread his healing message. “UnmaskNola is a group of wonderful people who really have a goal in mind. That goal is raising awareness for mental health & that’s very important. It meant a lot to work with that company. They are so friendly, helpful & ambitious. Much love to them.”
He released the video for his song “The Funeral of Orlandas Banks” last Monday. It is a beautifully shot visual with a deeply creative concept.
“Shooting this video was an amazing emotional rollercoaster. The Location was awesome and the storyboard me and GhostMonster came up with fits the song so well. I’m proud of this piece and feel like it’s the video best video I have ever released for the most important song of my career. I hope the people enjoy.”
The video features bright colors and truly seems like a visual representation of a chaotic mind. Shifts in tone and actions of the crowd convey his inner emotional state while dealing with his brother’s suicide and furthering his career as an artist. He’s at the funeral but he’s thinking of the crowd that’s going to be at his show later that night.
With the amount of creativity in his content and his unceasing work ethic; I’m certain that this isn’t the last that we’ll be hearing from this talented young artist. This is only the beginning of the a new underground New Orleans legend.
Stay Updated via social media @UnderdogCentral
Check out the full album The Beautiful