Hasan Salaam 2011

It has been a few years since I last contacted Hasan Salaam. Just a few weeks after posting my blog entry, “Hasan Salaam: 2009,” he began “Hasan Salam: Life in Black and White,” a video blog which you can find on youtube, simplyflow.com, and hasansalaammusic.com. In these webisodes you are able to see a few aspects of his life outside of being an artist and performing. Also in 2009 ‘Mohammad  Dangerfield’ was a project in progress. February 22, 2011 that project is a reality.

It’s not hard to get in contact with my brother Hasan. I simply tweeted @Hasansalaam letting him know I wanted to put him on my menu. He then replied, “Of course!”  Between both of our busy schedules it took about a week to schedule a good time to talk. Meanwhile my mind buzzed with questions to ask and questions to keep to myself.  Finally it was time. I got the text from the man. Five minutes later I received the call. I greeted him with ‘salams’ and when he returned the greeting in his big voice all 5 feet of me became nervous like never before, but hey, the show must go on…

Najiyya: What made you start doing the video blog?
Hasan Salaam: Basically the video blog “Hasan Salaam: Life in Black and White” was to keep people informed as to what I was doing, not just music stuff all the time, but life in general. Sometimes people want to put me in a box. I can’t live in a box. Music and all that is who I am, but there are also a lot of aspects to me and that’s what I want people to see.

Najiyya: You say that you don’t want to be painted into a box. What box did you perceive yourself being painted into?
Hasan Salaam: That "conscious" rapper no fun, holier than thou box. I’m an MC. I deal with all aspects of life. I'm far from holy. I’m a man.  I do good things and bad, inshAllah the good outweighs the bad. I'm striving for the best. It’s like people build artists up on pedestals they themselves know is an impossible place to maintain so then they can destroy the pedestal on some “I told you so,” shit.

Najiyya: In your video the audience sees an immediate response to your experience of Goree Island and West Africa, after digesting this trip and looking back on it now what are your thoughts and feelings?
Hasan Salaam: Goree Island still affects me the same way. I think our generation has dropped the ball in regards to African American progress for the most part. We kill ourselves and promote self hatred as if we agree with our enemies now. The sacrifices of our ancestors were not for us to destroy all they built for us.

Najiyya: Arrogance is a serious illness of the heart and I've seen it on those with less press than you. How do you stay grounded? What advice would you give younger artist that are coming up to avoid that nonsense?
Hasan Salaam: All of my ups and downs, trials and tribulations have only proven to me that Allah, God, The Universe is one. You can make a billion dollars but what we all do affects one another. You might not see it now, but what goes around defiantly comes back around. Treat others how you would want to be treated.

Najiyya: Mohammad Dangerfield and Rugged N Raw.  Rugged N Raw is hilarious, where did you two meet?
Hasan Salaam: Rugged N Raw and I had worked with a bunch of mutual people 6 or 7 years ago. We were on a record together before we even met each other.  We did so many shows together we were like we should do a whole album together and that’s how Mohammad Dangerfield came together.

Najiyya: If each album is a story, what is the story of Mohammad Dangerfield?
Hasan Salaam: The Mohammad Dangerfield album is the story of two different artists/brothers dealing with the struggles of life. It’s like a barbershop conversation or one of those days sitting on the park bench shootin’ the shit.

Najiyya: Another solo album soon?
Hasan Salaam: “Life in Black and White” is the next album, an EP, and some free material will be out also.

To purchase your copy of Mo’Dangerfield go to: