Saul Williams has been breaking ground since his debut album, Amethyst Rock Star, was released in 2001 and executive produced by Rick Rubin. After gaining global fame for his poetry and writings at the turn of the century, Williams has performed in over 30 countries and read in over 300 universities, with invitations that have spanned from the White House, the Sydney Opera House, Lincoln Center, The Louvre, The Getty Center, Queen Elizabeth Hall, to countless, villages, townships, community centers, and prisons across the world. The Newburgh, New York native gained a BA from Morehouse and an MFA from Tisch, and has gone on to record with Nine Inch Nails and Allen Ginsburg, as well as countless film and television appearances.
Williams’ most recent musical release, “Encrypted & Vulnerable” is the first album he’s ever categorized as ‘spoken word’ and is the second in a series of three albums and part of the multi-tiered MartyrLoserKing project. The album is self-produced by Williams, mixed by Warp artist Gonjasufi and features contributions from Dave Sitek, My Brightest Diamond, Grammy-winning trumpet player Christian Scott (Atoms For Peace), astrophysicist Bianca Rhym, producer King Britt, Orko Eloheim, Thavius Beck, CX KiDTRONiK, Paul Whiteman and Lippie. The album also acts as the score to his directorial debut musical, ‘Neptune Frost’, executive produced by Stephen Hendel based on the graphic novel Williams will be releasing in 2020 about African hackers living in a village made of upcycled computer parts. Of the album, Williams explains: “Encrypted & Vulnerable is simultaneously a personal and intimately optimistic takedown on struggle, defiance, awareness, aloneness, and a takedown of heteronormative capitalistic patriarchal authoritarian politics in topics ranging from love, technology, religion, war, to migration.”