Source of Labor
|Genres||hip hop, rap|
Wordsayer and Negus I are brothers and Kamikaze was their roommate when they began performing at Langston Hughes Performing Arts Center in Seattle's Central District in 1989. Source of Labor began a collective at that time that evolved into a record label called Jasiri Media Group. Their first show in downtown Seattle was in 1993 at the Crocidile Cafe.
Source of Labor was loosely associated with the female rap act Beyond Reality, whose lead, MC Kylea, was Wordsayer's partner and mother of his first child. Both of which performed at the all-day Rap Festival (featuring 30 or more of the top regional rap/hip-hop acts of that time). The event, much like Lollapolooza, was strictly Rap and was called "Phunky Phat 95." It took place at the Evergreen State College during the summer of 1995. Source of Labor performed at Seattle's arts festival, Bumbershoot, and inspired Macklemore to become a rapper. Wordsayer later gave Macklemore his first show at age 15. Source of Labor has been an inspiration to many other artists like Nardwuar the Human Serviette, Ryan Lewis, Strath Shepard, and THEESatisfaction.
Source of Labor's contributions to Northwest hip hop were extremely influential in shaping post-Nastmix hip-hop. They were part of Seattle's second hip hop movement, the first wave centering around Nastymix recording artist Sir-Mix-a-Lot. Some credit the group's front man, Wordsayer, with personally moving hip-hop out of Seattle's Central District and into the rest of the city. In 1997 Source of Labor's DJ Kamikaze was replaced by Vitamin D.
Source of Labor disbanded in 2004 and the artists went on to focus on their individual projects. Wordsayer continued producing and taught poetry at Franklin High School. Vitamin D continued his rapping and production career.
Wordsayer, born Jonathan Moore, died of kidney failure in March 2017.
|2001||Stolen Lives||Source of Labor||Subversemusic|
|2001||Full Circle EP||Source of Labor||Subversemusic|
|2001||JMG: Word Sound Power||Various Artists||Jasiri Media Group|
|1999||Table Manners 2||Vitamin D||Tribal Music Inc.|
|1998||Classic Elements||Various Artists||K Records|
|1997||Choked Up||Sharpshooters||Shadow Records|
|1996||Balance||Source of Labor||Jasiri Media Group|
|1996||Do the Math||Various Artists||Tribal Music Inc|
|1996||14 Fathoms Deep||Various Artists||Loosegroove Records|
|1995||Sureshot Singles EP||Source of Labor||Jasiri Media Group|