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Chicago Spoken Word Artist Jeronimo on New Album ‘The Gordian Knot’

Jerod “Jeronimo” Rodgers, co-founder of The Solace Souls Sunday, recently released his spoken word album The Gordian Knot.

We had a chance to get the story behind this project that debuted in August. The Gordian Knot is a new level for Jeronimo, who shared that the project was a two year process, with the goal of operating on a “higher mental frequency” than his previous albums.

“On this album every track is consistent in theme and recorded with intention; I feel as though everyone operated in mastery feature, production, or otherwise,”  he said. The album explores several themes from faith to being Black in America. We asked Jeronimo about his well received album’s inspiration and more:

ASR: What’s the inspiration behind the name of this album, including the voicemails after each track? Jeronimo: The Gordian Knot album name has the two meanings that I recognize with the best are: that no problem is unsolvable; that there is always a way around or though any complicated issue. [The second definition is] that I am destined to conquer all feats, obstacles, and trials placed in front of me, inevitably being the best in the world.

The voicemails are a narrative of my life and are representative of balance. In the beginning my personal life is prospering: I got a new job, my wife is happy, the people around me are positive and encouraging. But my poetry career is lackluster: free shows, low paying gigs, and I have a poetry career of incompleteness. But as the CD goes along, my poetry career is developing into a full blossom, but my personal life starts to struggle until I get to the point where I am successful by [professional] standards but my personal life is destroyed because of my lack of balance.

ASR: Do you have a favorite track and why? Jeronimo: I have two favorite tracks on this project including “Soul” featuring Amber M. Whitted and the other one is “Leadership” featuring Muva the Creator, and K Love the Poet. The reason why these are my favorite tracks, beyond these amazing features and high-hitting soulful beats, are that they are socially relevant. They touch on the current negative strongholds that affect the Black community today.

ASR: How do you incorporate faith in your works? Jeronimo: I am an advocate of walking in your purpose. I can attest that favor ain’t fair and God has favored me to be able to do what I love while operating in His greatness mercy and light. As I grow in my walk with God, I have begun [to include] him in my pieces. I understand that it should be always understood who He is, always giving His glory for the talents He has given me.

ASR: What will Solace Souls be doing to give back to the community this year? Jeronimo: Solace has an annual two weekend event that we have Generation Takeover Weekend (GTO). We feed the homeless, give them clothes, toiletries, and basic necessities. Then we give a free poetry open mic for the youth and ran, hosted, DJ’d by youth. We end the weekend with church, praising and thanking God for another successful year. Then the following month we repeat the activities in Kankakee, IL, with our group Solace Minds.

ASR: What message do you have to share on behalf of spoken word artists today? Jeronimo: Never give-up!! Spoken word is still an untapped market on so many different levels. There are so many different platforms still untouched and so many souls that need to bear witness to this eccentric craft we love so much.

Jeronimo SolaceSouls Chicago poets


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