Baba Brinkman uses hip-hop as a vehicle to communicate science facts while illuminating the origins and complexities of hip-hop culture. Back in 2009 he started with Darwin and Evolution. Nine years later, he raps about consciousness Off-Broadway in New York.
The Rap Guide to Evolution
With his first thematic show, The Rap Guide to Evolution, Baba won a Scotsman Fringe First Award and a Drama Desk Award nomination for “Outstanding Solo Performance.” Also, he was featured on MSNBC’s The Rachel Maddow Show and at the Seattle Science Festival, opening for Stephen Hawking. In 2014 the show enjoyed a sold-out week at the Sydney Opera House.
The project origins at the suggestion of Dr. Mark Pallen, author of The Rough Guide to Evolution. To ensure scientific and historical accuracy, Baba consulted Pallen throughout the creative process. As a result, The Rap Guide to Evolution happens to be the first peer-reviewed hip-hop show.
And, as an early review explains, “Where most people would be happy just to convey the gist of Darwin’s theories in rhyme, Brinkman adds a twist: this isn’t just a show about evolution delivered in a hip-hop style, it’s also a show about the evolution of hip-hop…Evolution, it transpires, has much to teach us about hip-hop, and vice versa: bling is a fitness display; the process of natural selection operates on iPod playlists and teenage pregnancy in the ghettos can be read as an evolutionary strategy designed to maximize the chances of genetic material being passed on in a high-risk environment.”
A new Chapter in Baba’s Evolution
Finally, a new chapter in Baba’s personal evolution process marks his two children, Hannah and Dylan. About his son, born in 2016, he wrote a song that is included in his newest project. It is incredible how Baba manages to combine science, politics and his personal life into a comprehensive and entertaining mix.
Buy Baba Brinkman’s albums on Bandcamp.