"Dear Mr. President" Song & Video - A Scathing Indictment


Emcee/Producer Jackson Whalan continues his prolific run of eclectic hip-hop releases with the blistering single “Dear Mr. President”, a furious-yet-focused response to a culture in crisis, and a scathing indictment of the so-called leader of the free world.

(click on your favorite)

Riding the high of several recent Jackson Whalan Live Band releases, and a smattering of successful concerts with the group, the rapper returns with a vengeance, steadily pushing the status quo with thought-provoking subject matter. The evolution continues with the October 4th, 2019 release of “Dear Mr. President”, a bold example of the Massachusetts-based wordsmith using his voice to affect change, redirecting his own attention, and ours, at once inward and towards the nation’s capital.

The track is right on time with regard to current cultural events and the upcoming 2020 presidential election, but aesthetically it’s a throwback to a simpler time in hip-hop. A smoky piano chop dances atop boom-bap drums, a combo that calls back to mid-90’s era DJ Premier or classic Boot Camp Clik, Jackson settles in to speak his mind, he gets serious and leaps into the verses with a patient, golden-era cadence. The longtime activist is just motivated and exasperated, while the song’s title is intentionally direct, the lyrics reveal a nuanced style of messaging that communicates clearly but does not come off preachy. 

“It’s what I would hope to say if I was in the room with him. It’s been very tough for me to put how I feel into words regarding the current administration, but the mood of the beat really prompted the character of my rhymes and the subject matter; the anger that’s been welling up inside of me just kind emerged, and I allowed it to go there.” Jackson Whalan

Press photo by Avida Love Photography

Press photo by Avida Love Photography

“Dear Mr. President’s” first verse finds Whalan addressing the culture at large with observatory metaphors galore, while the second verse is a more direct breakdown of how this particular president is swimming in his own narcissism and selling lies to the citizens while climate change and communities continue in despair. The sum of these parts is this sign of the times, and Whalan delivers an artistic statement that is cut from the same cloth as politically-charged hip-hop heroes like Public Enemy, Dead Prez, X-Clan, and Immortal Technique. 

“In a more direct sense, the lyrics are meant to shed light on climate change, misinformation, freedom of speech, immigration, and how narcissism prevents a leader from dealing with any of these issues.” explains Whalan 

Jackson Whalan co-produced “Dear Mr. President” with longtime collaborative partner Ian Evans, the keyboardist of Jackson Whalan Live Band, and a talented player who’s worked with reggae icons like Barrington Levy and Collie Buddz. The track was mixed by The Arcitype, an accomplished producer in his own right with an impressive resume that cuts across the genre; it was once again mastered by Bob Macchiochi at Subvert Mastering (UK).

Photo at The Bridge Sound & Stage in Cambridge, MA (Avida Love Photography)

Photo at The Bridge Sound & Stage in Cambridge, MA (Avida Love Photography)

Press release written by B. Getz/Upful Life

For press inquires contact: hello@jacksonwhalan.com
For bookings contact: booking@jacksonwhalan.com

The Jackson Whalan Live Band Opens for Talib Kweli on 9/27

On September 27th, Jackson Whalan and his live band will be opening for Talib Kweli at Hawks & Reed Performing Arts Center in Greenfield, MA.

This milestone comes as Jackson Whalan prepares to put out his song “Dear Mr. President”, set to release on October 4th. The lyricist and producer has been working incredibly hard in the studio finishing a large folder of unreleased music to add to his rich catalogue of singles, EPs, and albums. Earlier in the summer, he released his Epic Proportions live band EP, which launched his focus on playing the majority of his shows with a full live ensemble. For this show, Jackson will be joined by musicians from his hometown in The Berkshires, MA: Brandon Lewis on drums, Brian Ross on bass, Ian Evans on keys, Ian Stewart on trumpet, and Tyler Gasek on saxophone, with Jackson on lead vocals and samples.

Doors at 8PM
Jackson Whalan Live Band at 8:30 PM
Followed by Maspyke & Talib Kweli

Hawks & Reed Performing Arts Center
Greenfield, MA 01301


General/Press Contact: hello@jacksonwhalan.com
Booking Contact: booking@jacksonwhalan.com

Jackson Whalan and His Band Bring Live Hip-Hop to "Epic Proportions"

Jackson Whalan and His Band Bring Live Hip-Hop to "Epic Proportions"

Jackson Whalan and His Band Bring Live Hip-Hop to "Epic Proportions". The five song Epic Proportions live band EP drops in full on June 21st. This first single is available on Spotify and SoundCloud, along with an EP Pre-order via Bandcamp. Get it all here.

Successful Live Band Recording Session | New Music & Video Coming Soon!

The Jackson Whalan Live Band recently recorded five songs at Pilot Recording Studios in Housatonic, MA with in-studio video for each song. The project will be released as an EP titled Epic Proportions in the coming months (release date TBA), with a full-on video campaign aimed at getting some bigger shows booked for the six-piece group. On top of this, Michael Wilbur of Moon Hooch showed up to the studio and is featured on vocals and saxophone for one of the songs, “Climate Chaos”.

Fans who join Jackson on Patreon this month will have immediate, exclusive access to the project while it’s still unreleased. The first video is already available to Patrons, so now is the time hop on board and tune in!


Jackson Whalan



Jules Jenssen



Brian Ross


The band went into the studio in the midst of playing Rockwood Music Hall in New York City, Middle East in Cambridge, MA, and Shire Breu-Hous in Dalton, MA. With this three-show northeast run complete, the focus now turns to getting this brand new music and video out. For those who have not been introduced, the band consists of Jackson Whalan on vocals and sample pad, Jules Jenssen on drums, Brian Ross on bass, Ian Evans on keys, Ian Stewart on trumpet, and Tyler Gasek on saxophone. These guys have been playing music together in The Berkshires and beyond for upwards of ten years. Their deep friendship speaks clearly through the music, which has been defined as jazzy hip-hop, jazz fusion, heavy metal rap, soul, funk, conscious lyricism, and so on…


Ian Evans



Ian Stewart &

Tyler Gasek


The next Jackson Whalan Live Band show will be on May 24th at The Barn in Egremont, MA, with an opening set by the JW live band drummer, Jules Jenssen, showcasing his MAD MIDI solo performance. Tickets available here.

Stay connected…

12/29 at The Egremont Barn: Jackson Whalan Live Band

On Saturday, December 29th at 8PM, Jackson Whalan will perform original hip-hop music with his live band at The Egremont Barn in Egremont, MA. Tickets are available here. Amidst frequent touring and consistent music releases over the past few years, a hometown show is a special occasion for Jackson.

The live band formation will include Jules Jenssen on drums, Brian Ross on bass, Ian Evans on keys, Ian Stewart on trumpet, and Tyler Gasek on saxophone. Here is some footage of their recent rehearsals:

In May of 2018 Jackson released his most recent album, Millennial Sound, an exposition of generational angst and a look at current affairs of the world through the lens of classic hip-hop production with a modern flare. He has since released additional music, and is currently based in The Berkshires with a studio space in Housatonic, MA, where he makes beats and records his vocals.

As the year ends, Jackson looks forward. He plans to release a series of singles and music videos in 2019, all of which will culminate into an album. He will continue to tour, strategically so, and is beyond excited about playing with a live band, a change of course from his solo DJ/Producer format of performing. Jackson claims, “the live band creates a huge impact. It’s like the instrumentation is the score, and the lyrics are the movie. I am so fortunate and thankful to have grown up in The Berkshires with such talented musicians who are also close friends. There is something about us all on stage together that can’t be felt if it’s just me spinning my beats. I feel like this band is going to go far.”

For press inquiries contact: hello@jacksonwhalan.com