McAD & the Freedom Movement

Emerging from the block parties of Boulder Colorado, Freedom Movement blew up the hip-hop scene in 2002 with their debut album, Random Acts of Peace. The band's latest album, ORDO AB CHAO, mixes McAD's hard-hitting wordplay with funky beats to produce a bevy of feel-good Revolutionary jams. With standout tracks like "A Righteous Man," look for Freedom Movement to be a major leader in the hip-hop landscape for years to come.

The Freedom Movement was founded in 1999 by Aaron Dukes (aka McAD) in an effort to bring members of the community together in an enjoyable environment, and to raise awareness around various social/political issues. With a background and a degree in the Fine Arts, McAD understood the value of incorporating an artistic medium as a way to communicate social/political topics in a manner that was digestible and appealing to the general public. Inspired by the poetry and style of artist Saul Williams, McAD began to refine his writing skills and started practicing the art of Spoken Word.

Amazed by the response and support within the local Colorado community, this quickly progressed into the Hip Hop style of music we hear today. Developing in the College town clubs of Boulder, Colorado the music reflects the up-tempo dance feel that was growing in popularity through the late 1990’s into the 21st century. The Freedom Movement has always remained positive and socially conscious about its message, communicating the ideals of localization, sustainability and community development. The Freedom Movement strives to “Be the change that you want to see in the world.” The result is a new form of music and an energy that is desperately needed in today’s culture.

The Freedom Movement is more than just great, conscious hip-hop, it is a way of life. It is being a support system for each other, and our dreams. It is a commitment to living in community, and making that community your family. It is spreading love and unity to all people everywhere. It opens the doors to your own heart to see what is inside, and to be able to see your own struggles and demons, and turn them into divinity, no matter how long it takes. It is expression of music, dance, performance, and art. It is a movement of pure love.

The Freedom Movement is comprised of a group of individuals dedicated to change and the raising of consciousness. They utilize their skillz and talents, within the mediums of music, art, and social activism, as a vehicle to promote and spread their message. Their goal and message is simple. They strive to promote unity and inner strength through communication and love. Although the message may be simple, the revolution will not occur overnight. We ask you to join us in our Movement towards freedom and liberation.

Wandering Monks

Wandering Monks is the fusion of the creative juices of two very different minds that developed separately but established a contrast that works. McAD, a Midwest native, is the leader and founder of the long-standing Freedom Movement, a Boulder-based hip-hop group that has been soulfully addressing social and political issues for over a decade. Linguistory is a Colorado native whose lyrical style and complex rhyme patterns are steeped as much in literature as in popular music. The two ironically met via a musician wanted ad on and it’s been on ever since.

Though the guys are over 10 years apart in age (McAD is 42 and Linguistory is 31), they influence each other musically. “Working with McAD has evened me out as an artist in a sense. I think that without this partnership my lyrics would be more abstract and personalized towards my own thoughts and perceptions but perhaps less presentable to the common listener,” says Linguistory. McAD feels as strongly about his growth thanks to his partner. “I feel that Linguistory’s age and unique specific make-up has influenced me significantly, pushing me to be more youthful in nature, challenging me to put myself in anothers shoes who is not necessarily coming from my own personal stand point or seeing things from my own culturally biased position,” says McAD. The creative vibe the duo has developed over time has pushed them to make the best music of their careers.

Being based in a state with tons of artists participating in hip-hop culture but no discernible unified scene or style has benefited Wandering Monks as they are able to focus on their music without falling into sounding like anyone else. That is very apparent in their self-titled debut album, where the duo successfully merged their personal lives with their sociopolitical ideologies, demonstrating that activism and moderate self-indulgence can peacefully coexist with the right equilibrium. The album boasts a wealth of rhymes and melodies that touch on topics such as police misconduct, fractional reserve banking, genetically modified foods and globalization. McAD and Linguistory also shine the light on themselves by sharing personal experiences involving family, friendship and spiritual balance.

Musically, McAD’s production runs the gamut from straight-forward hip hop to reggae to funk/soul to even some Latin influences. Showcasing their wide diversity in styles, following the release of their debut album, the Monks released two more back to back albums, the conceptual EP album "Jubilee," and the full length release titled "Shining Through."

Drawing inspiration from a long tradition of protest music, including Bob Marley, Public Enemy, MosDef, Rage Against The Machine, Dead Prez, System Of A Down and Immortal Technique – Wandering Monks may not be the most commercially viable group but in the day and age of internet and expanding sub-genres that matters not. “The mainstream is a minor distraction but it doesn’t prevent us from doing what we want to do,” says Linguistory. “Hip hop is infinite!”