Channel Tres is back with a new single, accompanied by a bewitching video, and powerful overtones.
This gorgeous man is everything that's right about music. We can't help but applaud his conscious use of it as means of promoting self-expression, breaking the social and political barriers of race and gender in the process.
As a black man in the States, Tres expresses he cannot afford to not be political. Despite both black and white USA having similar Mary Jane usage rates, one is four times more likely to be arrested and charged if black.
Ironically, the new single, Weedman, debuts during a time when recreational marihuana has just been legalised in New York. Although 40% of the tax revenue generated by the legalisation of cannabis will supposedly be invested in communities which were previously disproportionately targeted, there is still much to do in order to untangle and strip the roots of what has been referred to as a systematically racist institution.
“A weed is a wild plant growing where it's not wanted and in competition with cultivated plants,” – “That just reminds me of when I went to college and was around all these kids that were ‘cultivated,’ I didn't even know that I needed to have a planner.”
Tres points out the layers of depth within his song, and makes a poignant statement not only on weed consumption and race disparity, but also on gender fluidity too.
Following in the steps of the likes of Prince and George Clinton, Tres aims to challenge that one-dimensional perception of black masculinity in music, and imbue it with the many contrasts, diversity, and richness it can truly encompass.
Coming from Compton, he has experienced first hand the idolisation of a tough, hard, dark skinned king. Which is why he so fervently believes it is important to portray himself as the brilliant, good, beautiful, and proud artist that he is. And he does so by embracing the polarity of both his masculine and feminine feelings.
In many ways, his music is both the result, and the tool, for spiritual and aesthetic release. Together with dancing, of which he does plenty in his video, and rather lusciously if we may add, he takes ownership of his own narrative. Throughout his lifetime he has witnessed black men being confined to stereotypes, and the attested real life consequences this has brought on.
Well, not anymore, Tres now holds his story in his own hands, and no one but his own braggadocious and sassy self, will tell him how a strong, beautiful, talented, Compton black man should be, what type of life he should life, or how he should express it.
The dancer, producer, singer, all-round-artist says he's infatuated with music and "the fact that I can be from a small community somewhere but I can connect with someone in a whole other country and make people move", and here at TNC, we are infatuated with the extraordinary being that is Channel Tres.
Now what you've all been waiting for… Ladies and gentlemen: Weedman.