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Elemental Zazen - JPop.com
Artist info
Elemental Zazen

Elemental Zazen

Elemental Zazen


The son of international school teachers, Elemental Zazen was born in the US and raised in Al Taif (Saudi Arabia) and Beijing (China). Despite growing up in vastly different countries, Zazen saw a similar pattern of injustice everywhere he called home. Unwilling to accept a system that produces inhumane poverty and opulent wealth side-by-side, Elemental Zazen focused his fury into his 2004 debut The Adolescence Weapon - which The Weekly Dig praised as "one of Boston's most enlightened hip-hop discs in recent memory." Read more on Last.fm
The son of international school teachers, Elemental Zazen was born in the US and raised in Al Taif (Saudi Arabia) and Beijing (China). Despite growing up in vastly different countries, Zazen saw a similar pattern of injustice everywhere he called home. Unwilling to accept a system that produces inhumane poverty and opulent wealth side-by-side, Elemental Zazen focused his fury into his 2004 debut The Adolescence Weapon - which The Weekly Dig praised as "one of Boston's most enlightened hip-hop discs in recent memory." When Elemental Zazen started working on his sophomore release The Glass Should Be Full, he envisioned the album as a political manifesto for radical social change - revolutionary hip-hop in the tradition of Public Enemy. Over the next two years, a series of tragedies in his personal life interrupted his plans and forced Elemental Zazen to shift his focus to survival. In 2006, Zazen lost a close family member in a tragic accident, and then lost most of his worldly possessions when his house burned to the ground in a five-alarm fire.

The following year, Elemental Zazen (real name Jason Trefts, age 25) was diagnosed with a life-threatening tumor in his occipital lobe, which required immediate brain surgery. His new album narrates the fear, hope and anger of a disillusioned revolutionary struggling against both political injustice and personal tribulations. Elemental Zazen raps with an aggressive flow, attacking the mic with honest grit and athletic lyricism. With an urgent need to tell his story, Zazen limits his guest appearances to an elite group of veteran and emerging underground hip-hop producers: Kno (Cunninlynguists), Maker (Glue), Joe Beats (Non-Prophets), Gnotes, Scroll, J.Ferra and Confidence. On The Glass Should Be Full, Elemental Zazen continues the fight against global inequity and exploitation, but this time his rhymes are laced with an urgent appreciation of life: "All of the events that have happened to me in some ways have opened my eyes to the brilliance of life, so without them the album wouldn't have more upbeat songs like 'Machine'." Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply..

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