Athens, Georgia-based rapper, linguist, activist, parent, and politician Mariah Parker (they/them) aka Linqua Franqa has announced new album Bellringer due out April 22 on Ernest Jenning Record Co. Weaving a rich tapestry of hip-hop lyricism and neo-soul hooks, Parker uses music as a tool to communicate – and educate – across cultural boundaries, imbuing every song with a sense of urgency and keen social consciousness.
On the clattering modern day labor anthem and lead single + video “Wurk,” Parker directly addresses frontline employees and calls for organization in the face of exploitation. “The pandemic saw the greatest transfer of wealth from the working class to billionaires, perhaps in the history of humanity,” they share. “I’m shouting out the people driving FedEx trucks and getting spit on in the hospital and whipping the grocery carts around the parking lot of Kroger. I’m saying, ‘Y’all don’t have to take this. Come together and fight and you can get what you actually deserve.’”
“lingua franca” is a term for a language used to communicate across cultures. Ultimately, Bellringer is a natural continuation of the work Parker has committed themselves to both as an artist and politician. Produced by Parker, Reindeer Games and Joel Hatstat and featuring guest spots from Jeff Rosenstock, Of Montreal, Kishi Bashi, Dope KNife, Wesdaruler, and Angela Davis, Bellringer touches on issues like police brutality, social media addiction, mental health, anti-capitalism, labor organizing, among other topics ripped from the headlines. Parker is a prominent voice of change and progress in the entertainment community as well as their work as Athens-Clarke County Commissioner. They also co-host popular iHeartRadio Waiting on Reparations podcast (3k+ weekly listeners) with Dope KNife.
Photo Courtesy: Sean Dunn