I have extremely high hopes for 2012. God has blessed me with so much in 2011 and, though I also faced many obstacles, the year was one of my best so far. My relationship with my wife is better than ever, and, if that weren’t enough, we are preparing to have our first child (Malakai Anthony Whitsell was born at 11:51 on December 28th, 2011 – I originally wrote this a couple of days before). My desire to grow this year is four-fold; I hope to become an even more loving child of God, husband to Hanan, father to Malakai, and driven/creative artist. While the first three are paramount, for the sake of this platform, I would like to focus on the last area of my life, the creative/entrepreneurial.
“Why the picture of Kanye in the studio?” you might be asking. Well, from all that I have gathered over the past 8 years or so, Kanye West is one of the hardest working men in hip hop, shoot, in business, in America. I hope to exhibit just a fraction of his drive and commitment to the creative process and to creating a quality “product”. Soul Anchor Collective is the vehicle which I have created to use as my means to pour out my creative energy and to provide a place where others might be able to do the same.
I am working to take SAC from being a good hip hop blog to being a fully functional, independent record label. This effort will be spread out over many different aspects, but here is a list of some of those aspects: purchasing a business license and turning SAC into an LLC, creating and maintaining a business plan, creating systems and procedures now that will allow SAC to run properly once the dream is realized and, of course, continuing to do what we are already doing. I have been so blessed by my brother in law, Antonio, joining forces with me and taking on SAC with me, which makes the dream feel more possible than ever before.
I would also like to see SAC begin to “sign” and promote artists who are like-minded in what and how they want to achieve. This will begin with myself, NathanAnthony, as a solo artist by releasing my first ever LP, Behind My Eyelids – prod. by Josiah Panella aka Vinyl Transport aka Bobby Vanilla of the Irie Office on February 1st, 2012, and continuing to create and release other solo projects throughout 2012. Also, as “KnewBalance” alongside Antonio “PAZ1” Appling (thePiecemakers) I hope to continue creating our first LP together (which will be produced by Kalamari Beats and should include a few music videos and what not) and putting out random singles this year. Once our LP is finished, the goal is to take some time off of teaching and to do a small tour along the west coast (this sounds crazy to me too, but I am just being completely honest about my hopes). There are also three other artists who I hope to mentor and create music with as the year progresses: J. Hamady, D.Levon and HEROX. These three are ridiculously talented and, in my humble opinion, could make a living off of their music if given the right opportunities. Last, SAC will be releasing quarterly “magazines” (more like newsletters currently), highlighting what has taken place in hip hop during the previous quarter; the first quarterly publication will be released January 31st, 2012 and will feature artists like: Blame One, Makeshift aka KingChoosey, Grieves and Budo, Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, Childish Gambino and more.
While the above is by no means a comprehensive plan of action, it is a glimpse into my heart and mind. I pray that this year finds you pursuing whatever it is that God has put into your heart and that He gives you the energy and wisdom to follow through with that pursuit.
Peace and Love,
P.S. If you, in any way, would like to be a part of what we are doing here at SoulAnchorCollective, or if you would like to offer wisdom or know-how, or just plain encouragement or useful critique, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.