Chucky Blk Mines Blk Gold

Poetic rapper explores Austin’s gilded Eastside in new video

When asked about the theme of resilience in his “Blk Gold” single, Chucky Blk flashes back to his family. First he mentions his grandmother, who emigrated from Jamaica to Germany, learned a new language, and successfully raised three kids. Then the ATX MC cites his father, who worked with the Black Panthers challenging racial injustice in Los Angeles.

Courtesy of Adam Hamze

Then he zooms out for a wider perspective:

“It’s an ode to black people,” he explains. “In this world where people are constantly trying to degrade us, where we live with a president who’s openly okay with the KKK and black people are being shot down every day, it’s so easy to feel like you’re not worth anything. Yet the fact that you’re here – in the face of the deadly transatlantic slave trade where someone survived for you – that’s beautiful enough. Take that blessing and do what you may.”

Blk, real name Charles Stephens, found his voice as a slam poet, competing in national tournaments while attending Austin’s McCallum High. With his debut EP, April’s A Prequel To, the rapper offered six tracks largely exploring black identity in America. A jazzed-out backdrop of piano and brass, courtesy of Soul Food Horns, compliments his free-time, spoken vocal prosody.

Directed by Victoria Prescott, the video for “Blk Gold” follows its lyricist journeying through the Eastside, including the George Washington Carver Museum, Rosewood Park, and the mural at 12th and Chicon. Treasures abound.

“I wanted to celebrate the community and highlight these places in a city with a declining black population,” offers Blk. “It’s just to say, ‘We see you, you’re gold.’”

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

More Chucky Blk
Faster Than Sound: A Month in Austin Rap
Faster Than Sound: A Month in Austin Rap
Three top-grade hip-hop albums emerged this fall. Let’s recap.

Rachel Rascoe, Dec. 13, 2019

More by Kevin Curtin
Back-to-School Guide: Stores to Shop Your Way Into Austin Music
Back-to-School Guide: Stores to Shop Your Way Into Austin Music
Dress for the job you want: stylish scenester – plus recommendations on record shops and instrument stores

Aug. 19, 2022

Review: Yard Work, <i>Yard Work II: Here Comes the Neighborhood</i>
Review: Yard Work, Yard Work II: Here Comes the Neighborhood
With a new lead singer, home improvement punks turn everyday experiences into 90-second anthems

Aug. 19, 2022


Chucky Blk, Charles Stephens, Soul Food Horns, Victoria Prescott, George Washington Carver Museum, Rosewood Park, Black Panthers, McCallum High

One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

Behind the scenes at The Austin Chronicle

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle