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Tony Tillman Gets Transparent
Posted November 11, 2015
By DwayneLacy_NRT, Staff Reviewer

This rapper was an ex-crip in Arkansas, one who has seen some of the craziest stuff in life and decided to get really autobiographical with it on Camden. Tony Tillman takes you on a journey of what life was like in that part of Arkansas that some may not believe would happen in the "country." Producers/beat makers Cardec Drums, Derek Minor and GRoc handle the majority of the beats while Geeda, Gawvi and Alex Medina and more each add a track. 

One thing people will realize about Tony is the continual improvement lyrically. The offbeat onbeat staccato flow is killer on "870," while Derek Minor's beat matches the aggressive stylings. Tony introduces his life and how he left the life of the "blue." He brings in Tragic Hero, Deraj and Drew Allen to speak on their journey and how everyone has a "CMDN," the place of their upbringing. 

There are dope and innovative rappers in the mainstream, but the unfortunate part of the mainstream industry is the glorification of violence. Others brag on crimes they never committed and drugs they never sold. Tony speaks on the joy of escaping the crime-riddled past in "Made It Out," while talking about being a teenager who gets enticed by a drug dealer in the rough area of "Adams Avenue." Tony reaches out to one of his ex-gang members and assures him that he cares for his him and his soul on "Praying For You." 

"Ghost" is a sobering look at how Tillman's good friend kills his wife. Haunting piano samples, driving bassline and banging yet stripped down beats accent the serious nature of what happened. Both the husband (Don) and wife (Tina) were Christians who Tony looked up to, but they experienced some marital issues. Don was working a lot, distant and acting strange. His wife even asked Tony to talk to Don, but they never had the serious talk about what Don was going through. After Tina was killed, Tony expressed his regret and guilt for not having that talk. 

The Bottom Line:
There's nothing like real life music. Tony gets real and relevant. He does not hide his past, but he glorifies God for saving him from what looked like a bleak situation in Camden. 

Song to Download Now:
"Ghost" (Get it on iTunes here.)

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