LITTLE ROCK, Ark.(KTHV) - An event planned for this weekend will hopefully shed new light on the music scene in central Arkansas.
In tense times, central Arkansas hip hop artists are pledging to promote peace and they’re doing it with the community in mind.
In their art and music, there is power and persuasion. That’s the positive message Little Rock rapper Big Piph is trying to send.
"To kind of show the city what we do in a more positive light and give the proceeds to a charity," he said.
This weekend at the Rev Room in downtown Little Rock, Big Piph will join 8Ball and MJG along with a handful of other local artists for a U.N.I.T.Y. (United Neighbors in Touch with Youth) concert. The rappers will take the stage with a message of unity which will benefit the Boys and Girls Club of Central Arkansas.
"I encourage people to just look into one, where hip hop came from and how it was a voice for people who didn't have a voice and how now it's about telling stories and building communities," Big Piph said.
Big Piph said giving back to the community is a lifestyle for him.
"To you, much is given, as much as required," he said. "I don't see it as much as me doing something special, [just] as something that just needs to be done, because I've been allowed to obtain certain levels in the music, so I try to give back."
His involvement has helped him to take kids from underserved communities in Arkansas to visit different countries as well as help to provide breakfast, books and workshops at the children's library.
His new album, Celebrate releases at the end of the month.
"Right now, it's a lot of struggles, a lot of issue and a lot of friction," he said. "Really, from the standpoint taking a moment to appreciate certain things."
In light of recent events, he knows hip hop music doesn't have the best reputation, but he and other artists are trying to fix that.
"Every time I do something music wise I figure out how to dig deeper in the community. Hip Hop came from the culture, so as you grow in hip hop you're supposed to give back to the culture. That's how it becomes sustainable," Big Piph explained.
The U.N.I.T.Y Concert is set for this Friday at 8:00 p.m. at the Rev Room. Rappers 8Ball and MJG will be joined by the Rodney Block Collective, Rod-D, Young Freq, Big Piph, and more.