Watching Preach Jacobs perform a song about persevering when the odds are stacked against you in front of his computer in his home is a pretty apt distillation of what the 1 or 2 series has been trying to do.
With “Gifted People,” the Columbia hip-hop artist (and, as he notes in the video, frequent Free Times contributor) reflects on what it is “To Be Young, Gifted and Black,” keying on a sample from Nina Simone’s famous song. His raps — the speed, volume and passion of which escalate throughout the performance — are a swirl of pride and consternation, hitting harsh realities head on but refusing to be bowed by them.
We’re in the midst of a pandemic — that and the weather conspired to force this week’s filming inside the rapper’s house — but many people are still finding ways to fight against injustice. I hope Preach performing his powerful tune from home inspires you to keep pushing for whatever you’re passionate about, no matter what obstacles the current moment might present.
The 1 or 2 socially distanced performance series was started to connect Columbians with local artists during COVID-19, and to give those artists a chance to get a paycheck when such opportunities are rare. Free Times remains grateful to our partners in this endeavor — One Columbia, Richland Library and SceneSC — for helping us keep it going.
To check out more 1 or 2 videos, all of which are freely accessible without an online subscription, head to free-times.com/1or2. JORDAN LAWRENCE
(SHOT AND EDITED BY DAVID STRINGER)