The Musical Essence Of K-os


You already know how much I dig on the gold knuckle rings so add this one to the collection. For those who don’t know the fine gentleman pictured above, it’s Canadian poet, emcee, singer and producer K-os born Kevin Brereton. In the Madlib/Murs tradition, K-os stands for a number of different things from “chaos” to “knowledge of self” to “kheaven’s original sound”. I’ve loved this creative mind for quite some time now. Whenever I get the chance, I sample his hooks in my own personal poetry (simply because I could never write a hook anywhere close to his). I look to K-os for his unique sound and fearless experimentation with mixing genres (reggae, electro, hip hop, rock), nothing is out of the realm of possibility for his palette. Similar to mighty Mos Def, K-os writes about “emcee murdah” (as in the state of hip hop) and topics often categorized as staples of “conscious” rap (racism, poverty, the hustle) but pulls it off beautifully with the help of storytelling, metaphor and flawless lyricism. I am partial to his seamless fusion of song and rhyme (it’s definitely a style I try to emulate in my own art). Take a look at the very first semi-official K-os music video to “Musical Essence”:

How classic is that? Are you kidding me? If some rich person gave my friends and I *hint hint* a grant we would clearly re-create this indescribable magic. I don’t know about y’all but I love seeing my favorite artists very first works, it shrinks the celebrity down back to earth and helps us understand that they were once no names like you and I. It has to start somewhere and never forget that! I never understood why K-os stayed under the radar for many hip hop heads but I stand by his work from beginning to the present. He’s been going strong for so many years and I see no end in sight (phew). If you haven’t already, check him out here and here and support good shit! I’ll leave you with one of his newer joints off of Atlantis called “Sunday Morning”:

“Everyday is Saturday night but I can’t wait for Sunday Morning”


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