In a stunning recognition of his artistry and cultural contributions, the Los Angeles Tribune has named GRAMMY®-Nominated singer, songwriter, and producer Matt B as the Critically Acclaimed Artist of the Year. This accolade comes in the wake of his latest groundbreaking work, the album “ALKEBULAN,” which has deeply resonated with both critics and audiences alike.
“ALKEBULAN” is more than just an album; it is an audacious journey through sound, history, and soul. Translating to ‘Mother of Mankind’ or ‘Garden of Eden,’ “ALKEBULAN” is believed by many to be the original name of Africa before colonization. Matt B’s ambitious project is a celebration of roots and a pilgrimage to the ancestral homeland, woven with the stories of a culture that fought fiercely to preserve its freedom and way of life.
Matt B’s connection to his lineage shines through every track of the album, which features a rich tapestry of sonic elements drawn from various African countries including Namibia, Zimbabwe, Uganda, and Nigeria, each reinterpreted with his unique musical stylings. The album’s visual storytelling, directed by Angela V. Benson, was filmed across Africa’s sweeping landscapes, further enhancing the authenticity and potency of Matt’s message.
Crafted meticulously over three years, “ALKEBULAN” stands as a testament to Matt B’s dedication to honoring his people, their music, and their culture. It’s a call for African Americans to reconnect with their origins, to discover the essence of their identity.
Matt B’s career has been a series of ascending milestones. The Chicago native, now Los Angeles-based artist, has enjoyed multiple chart-topping singles and albums worldwide. His music has received robust support from notable media outlets and his impact has crossed oceans, particularly in Japan where his albums have soared to the top of the charts, and in China, where his single ‘Color Blind’ went viral.
Signing with Priority Records in 2017 was a turning point that brought his music to a broader audience, and his philanthropic ‘Holiday Cheer Tour’ has demonstrated his dedication not just to music, but to community enrichment and charity.
With his album ‘EDEN’ debuting impressively on various Billboard charts, and his single ‘Gimme Love’ earning him a GRAMMY® nomination, Matt B’s talent is undeniable. However, it’s with “ALKEBULAN” that he has solidified his position as an artist of exceptional influence and importance—a feat that the Los Angeles Tribune celebrates with this year’s title of Critically Acclaimed Artist of the Year.
For those who have followed Matt B’s ascent, this recognition by the Los Angeles Tribune is a confirmation of his significant contributions to the musical landscape. For newcomers to his work, it’s an invitation to experience the art of a man who is not only reshaping the contours of genre but is also redefining the power of music to connect us to our past and propel us into our future.