Michael Millions recently release a live performance of the track “Ali”, in an Overcoast Session near the month of last month. Shot in the local recording studio at the VCU Art Depot, the track is a tribute song the Richmond rapper wrote only a week after the passing of the great boxer last year.
Millions, 33, has been apart of the local hip-hop community for ages. His last album Beautiful, which was released on his birthday in 2015, got some traction by having a short film to go alongside the release. It featured producers NameBrand, Stellato, Edot the Soundman and RVA’s finest Nickelus F. The same year he also released the joint album TENTHSNDHRS with Purple Republic Music Group/EGM labelmate, Radio B.
“Be the greatest me that I can be, be the greatest me that you can be, we’ll be the greatest that we can be,” he raps in the song.
“Ali” is in the style of the legacy it is named after, who strived again and again in not only boxing, but political matters by being an advocate for civil rights back in a time when there was extreme prejudice against minorities especially against the Black community.
“There aren’t a lot of new individuals replacing their greatness… Muhammad Ali was our first representation of someone wanting to be great and I think his influence stepped people up,” said Millions in a previous interview with RVA Magazine on the songs release.
The video was shot in the style of the NPR Tiny Desk Concerts with live keys and drums provided to go alongside Millions’ bars. The choice to use the VCU Art Depot seemed a strategic one as it compliments the smooth and jazzy style of the song.
The song will make you feel like Ali by having you, “float like a butterfly” or as Millions puts it “Float like water on a bad day”.
The Overcoast Sessions series also included local group Dharma Bombs and Saw Black, be on the lookout for their video to pop up on RVA Magazine as well.