More than an Emcee, Fidel has affectively used HIPHOP as a vehicle internationally for political and social change. Fidel, A Taste Emcee, has earned many titles ranging from Motivational Counselor, Lecturer, to Political Activists, Freelance Journalists, Producer, Model, & Messenger. He understands the popularity of Hip Hop is well respected in the art of emceeing, without compromising meaning or flavor. Music with substance has become a method of delivering important messages to our youth, especially in his strong hold of Milwaukee, WI.
According to statistical information on Wikipedia, Milwaukee maintains Milwaukee Public Schools (MPS), the largest school district in Wisconsin and one of the largest in the nation. Statistically MPS has one of the highest dropout and suspension rates in the country among Black & Latino students. This is why Fidel has created two community institutions: The SUMMER OF PEACE and HIPHOP SOCIAL CLUB, both which serve the Milwaukee Area as intervention programs that empower youth with multi media training, and violence prevention education.
Fidel’s has garnered street credibility by dedicating his time to community development. In 2005, his hard work and efforts were recognized when he was awarded the, “Wisconsin Giraffe Award” which is given by The Wisconsin Council of Family and Children honoring nominees who “stick their necks out” and make profound sacrifices for our children, he is also recipient of the 2009 “Faces of Hope” award for community outreach & entrepreneurship.
As an accomplished journalist Fidel is already submerged in the industry has published interviews with countless celebrities and legends including Russell Simmons, P. Diddy, Mobb Deep, Mc Lyte, E40, Marley Marl, Mixmaster Ice, Hip Hop founding fathers Afrika Bambaata, DJ Kool Herc & Just-Ice to name a few. This well rounded artist is a veteran in the industry with over 10 years of experiences in music, film & journalism. Touring professionally as an entertainer/emcee, he is spreading more than a catchy hook in his songs. Fidel is spreading love for the people through music. Performing with the likes of COMMON, KRSONE, TOO SHORT, MIKE JONES, DEAD PREZ & BLACK EYED PEAS. Hosting political greats such as Maxine Waters, Angela Davis, and Fred Hampton Jr., he has strengthened his partnerships and opened his network to many great opportunities. He doesn’t stop there. He facilitates his motivational workshops on college campuses and schools fusing hip hop culture and education. This is a combination necessary to win the hearts and appeal of the youth. Fidel, a messenger-emcee, also has several business ventures that help platform and compliment his career. “…my message is like medicine to your ears, its thought provoking on purpose, “ says Fidel. With a birth name like Fidel, one can figure why there’s a drive to exude leadership.
HIPHOPNOMETRY: Where you reppin?
VIVA FIDEL: Where? I rep Plant Earth
HIPHOPNOMETRY: Introduce yourself?
VIVA FIDEL: My name is Fidel, I’m my mother & father’s son, I’m a Father, Brother, a nephew, and much more, I am a positive representation of the most powerful cultural phenomenon in the world today, Hip Hop…
HIPHOPNOMETRY: How did you come up with your name?
VIVA FIDEL: My parents named me Fidel, and the Viva is a slogan or an affirmation that literally means ‘long live’ , ‘Viva Fidel’ is an international revolutionary salute to the perseverance of Cuban President Fidel Castro who I am also named after. I named my mixtape series “Viva Fidel’ & it stuck.
HIPHOPNOMETRY: What is your main musical inspirations?
VIVA FIDEL: My main inspirations come from the great storytellers and teachers I heard my parents listening to like Stevie Wonder, Bob Marley, Marvin Gaye, Donny Hathaway, Gil Scott Heron, but also the great orators and messengers like Malcolm X, Paul Robinson, Angela Davis, Stokely Carmichael & Dr. King, people who shaped and changed the world with words.
HIPHOPNOMETRY: When did you fall in love with hip hop?
VIVA FIDEL: Break Dancing on cardboard back in the day.
HIPHOPNOMETRY: What do you think of HipHop where it is today?
VIVA FIDEL: Hip Hop is in a great creative place and also expanding into every aspect of society including education, activism & entrepreneurship. Hip Hop is still the voice of the voiceless but I hate seeing the worst of our behaviors and conditions being paraded as the only truth. We still need to work on promoting the legacy of Hip Hop , many of our pioneers , originators and elders are around to tell the story and bridge the gaps within the culture. There’s so much powerful Hip Hop music and media being put out worldwide! I love the indie, ‘do for self’ spirit that Hip Hop is teaching our youth & our older generations! We just need to balance out some of the death & destruction with some life & love.
HIPHOPNOMETRY: What are your current projects we should be looking out for?
VIVA FIDEL: In 2012 I’m dropping ‘The Listening Project’ , it’s a full length solo project produced by G Sound Musik Group. Also ‘The New Passage” collaboration release with a group from Capetown, South Africa that I’m extra excited about! I am also planning to release a new documentary style dvd as well as my first book early next year as well. Check out the “Art is Life” series on my youtube.com/vivafideltv that’s an intro to another film project I’m working on.
HIPHOPNOMETRY: Is there any previous work that we should know about?
VIVA FIDEL: The ‘Viva Fidel’ mixtape series volumes 1-5 are all available for free download at www.vivafidel.info
As well as several collaboration projects such as “Relative Theory” and my group projects under the “Taste Emcees” banner are available.
HIPHOPNOMETRY: How did you get started in your mentoring project?
VIVA FIDEL: I started my own organization and youth events because I never want to be a complainer who is just real good at pointing out problems or contradictions. I gathered like minded people, parents and community organizers and we promote the ongoing positive programs and assistance available for youth and families.
HIPHOPNOMETRY: If you had to pick one song that defines your career to date, what song would that be?
VIVA FIEDL: One of my songs? The latest single ‘Triumphant’ truly speaks to my struggles and progress for example there’s a line where I say “The culture was bashed / now we teaching the class/ leading the mass/ bring the flags together”. In “Triumphant” I speak on the power of Hip Hop and self actualization. I’m teaching life skills at three schools a week, doing lectures and workshops at colleges and community centers all over the country utilizing Hip Hop culture and history. In the song “Triumphant” I’m also being interviewed by a University of Marquette professor who used my songs and videos in an actual course assignment and that’s a testament to how I’ve always wanted to teach and inspire with my art.
HIPHOPNOMETRY: If you weren’t doing music, what would your occupation be?
VIVA FIDEL: Hopefully some kind of creative art tied into helping people or educating children. Most likely I would be in Film or TV, behind and in front of the camera. Maybe something radically political, I come from hard working organizers for the people.
HIPHOPNOMETRY: Why should our readers give you a shot and listen to your music from here on out?
VIVA FIDEL: I create my art from the heart with the future in mind, its thought provoking and the feedback is welcomed. For me it’s much more than just music, I put my ideas over beats to spark something on the inside of the listeners! Let’s build!
HIPHOPNOMETRY: If you could only take one record on a deserted island with you, what album would that be?
VIVA FIDEL: Maybe something by Rachelle Farrell or Sade so I could hear a woman’s sweet voice…
HIPHOPNOMETRY: Tell us one thing that very few people may know about you?
VIVA FIDEL: I help & promote a lot of other artists, organizers & entrepreneurs through my networks on http://www.youtube.com/vivafideltv & also my online radio outlet http://www.blogtalkradio.com/vivafidel and I also do graphic design & target marketing consultation for many businesses, brands , events etc.
HIPHOPNOMETRY: What’s next for you?
VIVA FIDEL: World Tour, Movies, Mobile apps, Books, Viva Fidel action figures….all kind of amazing stuff
HIPHOPNOMETRY: Any shout outs or last words?
VIVA FIEDEL Thank you & Thank you again. Keep supporting Hip Hop culture & promoting the positive people of the world. Follow my powermoves on twitter.com/vivafidel
Check Out Viva Fidel On His Social Media Site’s:
Viva Fidel Info
Viva Fidel Twitter
Viva Fidel TV
Viva Fidel Facebook
Fidel’s BOOKING CONTACT email: