Ade Gee, who goes by the stage name PradaMane, is a rapper and producer from Brooklyn, New York. He studied film animation and video at the Rhode Island School of Design, and produces most of his own tracks, which feature autotuned vocals, both sad and uplifting lyrics, and interestingly enough, are devoid of any profanity.
PradaMane’s most recent project, ‘RedPrada,’ is a musical narrative promoting themes of non-violence, and follow up to his 2014 debut album. What sets this body of work apart from other projects themed around non-violence is that rather than focusing on criticizing systemic forms of discrimination, ‘RedPrada’ explores the headspace of young African American men experiencing grief due to violence in their communities.
RedPrada was inspired, in part, by public health anti-violence program Cure Violence, which aims to counteract violence on a global level by treating violence as a health issue or disease: “[Violence] isn’t like a contagious disease; it is a contagious disease,” says program founder and epidemiologist Gary Slutkin. Through ‘RedPrada,’ PradaMane hopes to bring awareness to the mission of Cure Violence – “To reduce violence globally using disease control and behavior change methods.”
Throughout ‘RedPrada,’ PradaMane explores the experience of trauma through the five stages of grief – denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and finally, acceptance. Each song on ‘RedPrada’ touches on one of these stages, and dives into all of its complexities.
It would be convenient to say that ‘RedPrada’ encourages communities negatively effected by violence because of PradaMane’s transparency. Although the listener is provided a personal perspective in order to understand the weight of violence, the themes of disillusionment are universally digestible. Despite its heavy theme, ‘RedPrada’ also explores the idea of triumph over grief, forgiveness, closure and endurance. The meaning of his music is to understand the internal, with the listener left to search for the serenity on their own terms.
PradaMane uses experiences from his childhood growing up in Brooklyn, NY to tap into feelings many young African American men in urban neighborhoods may have towards violence in their communities. Though his hometown is now a hub for hipster transplants and post-grad career hopefuls, PradaMane remembers Brooklyn differently during his adolescent years. It was once a violent place – gunshots blended in with sounds from the cityscape, and sirens were a 24/7 soundtrack on his block
PradaMane’s track ‘Denial’ presents a unique narrative themed around Martin Luther King’s definition of peace: “We must live together as brothers or perish together as fools.” In this track, PradaMane compares violence to foolishness or a lack of understanding, but also highlights the importance of experiencing “denial” while going through the 5 stages of grief. ‘Denial’ touches on the idea of navigating a community plagued with violence, while trying to steer clear of its influence, to no avail.
‘World’ is an approach to violence that doesn’t lend itself to abstraction. With vocals chanting “Need peace around the world,” PradaMane takes aim at the mania of violence. This piece is his interpretation of a peacemaking anthem. It is a metaphor for the necessity of positivity in a world overrun with violence and confusion.
Start and End Dates
01/01/2017 — 11/01/2020
Greenville, South Carolina