Before WBL was a nonprofit, it was a t-shirt.
Our connection to apparel as a method of community building goes back to our founding at the University of Maryland (shoutout Terps!). Our founder worked with a design created by Boondocks’ creator, Aaron McGruder, to bring UMD’s Black Student Union its first piece of apparel featuring a fist-raising Testudo, the university mascot.
That one shirt represented a culture of unity amongt marginalized students from all over the world together with ethnic and racial communities laying the groundwork to create the Words Beats and Life Hip Hop conference. We are now Words Beats & Life Inc., building bridges extending beyond DC throughout 5 continents and it all started with a shirt. Everything here is a part of our legacy.
This eclectic collection of Hip-Hop is the first full length Words Beats & Life album from some of the DMV’s finest including Maimouna Youssef, Gods’illa, Javier Starks and more. Flow through the wide range of styles teasing boom-bap nostalgia with neo-soul elements and social commentary all-inspired by the game of chess. This is the CROWNS Album.