Three-time Grammy-winning singer, songwriter, musician and activist Fantastic Negrito (neé Xavier Dphrepaulezz) announces his most ambitious project to date, White Jesus Black Problems, out June 3rd via his own label, Storefront Records. To accompany the full-length studio album, Fantastic Negrito created an entire companion film set to the music. White Jesus Black Problems was written, recorded, and filmed in Oakland, where the artist grew up and currently resides. The multi-media work is based on the true story of Negrito’s seventh generation white Scottish grandmother (Grandma Gallamore), an indentured servant, living in a common law marriage with his seventh generation African American enslaved grandfather (Grandfather Courage); in open defiance of the racist, separatist, laws of 1750s colonial Virginia.
In addition to the album release, Fantastic Negrito will be hitting the road through the US and Europe for a tour full of festival dates and headlining shows throughout the summer. Joining the artist on bass is Jonathan Herrera, who is best known for his electric bass, synth, and production work with Cathedrals, Miguel Migs, Stanley Jordan, Brain, Oz Noy, Kai Eckhardt, and many others. The tour will kick off on May 21st in Prescott, Arizona and will conclude on October 2nd in Memphis, Tennessee.
Fantastic Negrito broke onto the national radar by winning the inaugural NPR Tiny Desk Contest in 2015. Since then, he has gone on to win the Best Contemporary Blues Album Grammy-Award for each of the three albums he has released: The Last Days of Oakland (2017), Please Don’t Be Dead (2019), and Have You Lost Your Mind Yet? (2020).
Fantastic Negrito has a truly enthralling story rooted in struggle and strife: from the highs of a million-dollar record deal to the lows of a near fatal car accident that left him in a coma, permanently damaging his guitar playing hand and changing his outlook on life. Outside of music, Xavier puts his socially progressive lyrics into action. He created Storefront Market, a marketplace free of charge to the public, featuring vendors representing the community of West Oakland and surrounding neighborhoods. He runs his own urban farm Revolution Plantation, where he teaches the surrounding community to garden – an effort to pass on practices that can sustain local neighborhoods and our planet alike, while connecting with his newly discovered Free Negro Farmer ancestors.
Over the summer, Fantastic Negrito released single "Rolling Through California,” a "twangy, country-soul groove" (New York Times) rallying cry that calls for solidarity and collective action in the wake of drought, water management challenges, accelerating climate change, and the growing calamity of California’s annual fire season. Recorded at his own Storefront Records studio in Oakland, the track features a powerful backing vocal performance from fellow Bay-Area artist Miko Marks.
Pre-Order White Jesus Black Problems HERE
For more on Jonathan Herrera: Click Here