For Human [legally, Howard Jones], the world of hip-hop is very new. Growing up as a Jehovah's Witness, hip-hop was something that was frowned upon.
"I've always secretly harbored this love affair with hip-hop and would secretly sneak off and listen to it," he said.
Jones admits he has plenty of inner feelings to reflect upon in his lyricism, especially considering his religious upbringing. In fact, he believes the biggest struggle he faces as an artist is sounding too angry.
Since he's new to the Indiana music community, Jones is thankful for the help he has received from local marketing company A Million Other Things, who is sponsoring the show. The company is led by the single-monikered Jace.
"Individually, [A Million Other Things] has helped me build relationships with local artists here," he said. "It also helped me craft my brand and precisely articulate, explain, and communicate to my fan base who Human is."
A student at Herron School of Art and Design, Ejaaz Collins is an artistic emcee. He takes a hands-on approach to his music career, making his own visuals and beats, with the help of a producer.
"I've always been a creator, since I was a child," Collins said. "I just create all the time. It's just something I've always done, even without knowing it."
Jace also sees this authentic artistic ability in Collins, calling him "one of those artists that are genuine and believe in everything they say and do."
Backed by a band, Collins' new age hip-hop tracks reincarnate into a rock and roll influenced and high-energy experience at his live shows. And when it comes to his performing, Ejaaz said he studies the mannerisms of Jimi Hendrix, mimicking and manipulating the legend's crowd-capturing prowess to "give people the best show possible."
"These are talented individuals who are all coming together on one stage on one night to perform," Jace said. "They all currently have releases coming up in July, August and September, so I think it's a great opportunity to hear new music first," he said.
Jace's wish is that artists like Human and Ejaaz can continue to foster an age of creative expression for Indiana artists.
"We really pride ourselves on individuality," Jace said. "No matter how old you are, you always keep that child-like sense of creativity."