Mick Jenkins took a space shuttle to Swaysuniverse the other day, his debut visit to the studio and a notable appearance for a few reasons. First, it's amazing to see Chicago artists take their game from the local to the national level, on an international platform, let alone when it entails receiving a blessing from a champion such as Sway Calloway. Second, Sway's interviews always lend a deeper insight into artists than you're going to find just about anywhere else (here they heavily discuss The Healing Component, use of language, Jenkins' path, and how he developed his philosophy). Particularly interesting is their lyrical breakdown of "Spread Love", where Jenkins provides insight into his extended metaphors, and Mick's analysis of whether we hold a high enough standard when it comes to music.
But finally, the most important reason; Mick Jenkins showed up in the Valley Of The Hyenas more than ready, busting out with a jaw-dropping freestyle that should be released yesterday. It must be mentioned, the production provided by guest David Sisko was pretty killer, and you can find his recent mix here. If there's one thing the show respects it's a good freestyle, and Mick Jenkins drew stunned silences and comparisons from Heather B to Jay Electronica's "Exhibit C" by the time he was done, long after the beat had ended. Going above and beyond lyrically, Mick Jenkins gave a lesson on the pull between real and perceived artistic integrity, and commercial success. It was a class on why bars still matter, and is certainly entering the Sway Freestyle Hall of Fame. Congrats to Mick Jenkins, and thank you. That was a blast to see and hear.
Freestyle starts at 24:30 - don't miss this.