Rapper Dave Allen Is a New Kind of American

Rapper Dave Allen Is a New Kind of American
Photo courtesy of Dave Allen

[Editor's Note: Spare Notes is a Weekly music feature highlighting outtakes and personal stories from bands who just finished working their asses off to put out new music.]

Dave Allen, of the hip hop collective Locally Grown, goes solo with his debut LP Young American. On this seven song debut, the Orange-based rapper/singer creates a pleasing combination of R&B, soul and hip-hop rhythms. The title track has Allen harmonizing, while "LLG" shows his skill with rhyming.

While the album puts Allen front and center, he hasn't strayed too far from his extended musical family. Young American collaborators include Locally Grown's DeeJaeBee and Endz with production assists by Bl_nk and 4th Beats. Lyrically, Young American explores youthful dreams and the grinding determination to reach them while having fun along the way.

On how the inspiration to write the song "Skate" came suddenly: I don't normally write in the studio. I actually got the beat for the song "Skate" from Bl_nk. It was right after the video shoot for "Young American." When the after party was winding down around three in the morning, I just got up, listened to the beat and started writing. I ended up recording it the next day. It just came together real cool. We added guitar and everything kept flowing. That's one my favorite tracks on there.

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On what it means to be a 'Young American': Young American came from where I'm at in my life. I don't know how to describe what kind of person I am. I'm not a hippie. I'm not a blue collar worker. I'm not a gangsta. But I do know what I want out of life. I'm going to be a new young American.

The old American had a different experience. America has changed over the years. Rules have changed. The different songs are my different choices and experiences as a young American.

Check out Locally Grown Collective for more on Dave Allen.

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