Blizz writing lyrics. Roanoke, Virginia. 2011. All Images © Jared Soares
Photographer Jared Soares moved to Roanoke, Virginia in 2006 for a summer internship at the local newspaper. That turned into a full time gig that lasted a few years. During that time Soares got to know the community and surrounding areas very well. While working at the paper he wanted to work on a personal project about local hip hop artists. Even though Soares was a legit hip hop fan, it took a while for the local artists to open up to him. He took it slow, spending about four years on the project now called Small Town Hip Hop. “I think Small Town Hip Hop is at a good resting point,” Soares says, “but I still keep in touch with a lot of the guys that I photographed.” One of the main artists Soares worked with was Poe Mack. Check him out here.
Small Town Hip Hop will be exhibited as a part of “New Works #16: En Foco’s Photography Fellowship Award.” “New Works #16 also includes work by Mercedes Dorame, Yijun (Pixy) Liao, Daniel Ballesteros and Rodrigo Valenzuela. The exhibition opens this evening, June 6, at the opening reception from 5-9pm at Longwood Art Gallery @ Hostos Community College in the Bronx. The exhibition runs through August 30.
Juneteenth performance. Roanoke, Virginia, 2009
Sports bar concert. Roanoke, Virginia, 2011
Poe Mack checks his phone messages before working on a song in his converted garage recording studio. Northwest Roanoke, Virginia.
Hotel rest in College Park. Georgia, 2011