As we anxiously await Kota the Friend’s historic Flight Night Hip Hop Festival (PA), which will coincide with the grand opening of his FLTBYS retail location blocks away, it is essential to remember Kota’s vision for this event. In a recent interview with Today’s HipHop, Kota restated the Flight Night mission:
“We are going to NYC, Chicago, LA, Colorado, Paris, London, Australia etc. In each city we will give local artists, who are grinding, a chance to perform. We will create fun events where people can discover new artists and get immersed in the FLTBYS NYC culture. We have big plans for Flight Night.”
With this vision to connect up-and-coming talent with their communities, we will highlight a stacked lineup of opening acts in Harrisburg, who will bless the mic prior to Kota taking the stage at H*MAC on Friday, November 12th. One of those performers will be lyrical and socially conscious emcee J Radiant.
Born in Apollo, PA and representing Pittsburgh, independent artist J Radiant fuses soulful instrumentation, with meditative writing, and easygoing delivery. With a steady cadence, insightful lyricism, and an effortless ability to mesh vocals with calculated beat selections, Radiant’s discography is diverse, stimulating, and evocative. One of his greatest talents is creating luxuriate ambiance through choruses and verses that envelope a listener in layering, depth, and sonic intricacy.
Take, for example, the penultimate track 2020 Album ReAwakening Cosmic Translation. Radiant effortlessly melds the complex elements of chords and rifts of a succulent instrumental, with a dazzling vocal performance from singer Christina Romano, utilizing these elements as a vivid backdrop for powerful verses. The vision, and foresight to compose a track with such depth, and so many harmonious elements is the mark of an artist with exceptional melodic instincts, and J Radiant is just that. ReAwakening is a superb showcase of the varied skill sets of a talented emcee. “I’m honestly proud of everything I’ve released, but I’d say ReAwakening might be my favorite body of work so far,” said Radiant, when asked about his greatest accomplishments as an indie artist thus far.
On top of his unquestionable gifts as an emcee, J Radiant is prolific, consistently releasing high-quality music. In June of 2021, he released a conscious, collaborative project with fellow rapper Noah’s Art titled The Promote Peace Project. Just two weeks ago, J Radiant dropped another EP, DEDICATED 2 ME 4 ME, which features fire, head nodding verses, and elaborate wordplay. With a ton of positive momentum, and a stable full of new material to perform, Flight Night is coinciding with a highpoint in Radiant’s musical existence. Get Flight Night Tix
Taking the stage ahead of Kota the Friend would be an honor for just about any independent musician, and predictably, J Radiant’s excitement about the opportunity is palpable; “Opening for Kota is so special and enlightening for me man. I found his music soon after I started creating, and he’s been a big inspiration to me since. I actually got to meet him at a show in Pittsburgh in 2019, and we got to exchange some really good energy and conversation. I spoke to him that night saying it wouldn’t be long until I was up on stage rocking out like he had that night, and low and behold, he’s the one that ends up giving me my first real opportunity to do so. It’s a true honor with Kota being a pioneer of the indie wave, and one of the artists I’ve always really respected. It couldn’t have been scripted any better.”
J Radiant truly spoke this moment into existence but paved the way with hard work and dedication to his craft. You can find J Radiant on Instagram and on Spotify. Stay tuned as each week we will be highlighting the local acts for Harrisburg, PA’s Flight Night.
by Jack Carenza