Mikal Amin also known as THE HIRED GUN is an interdisciplinary hip-hop artist and educator. "Hired Gun" is a veteran of nine international music and educator tours including extensive work as a State Department Cultural Ambassador through the American Music Abroad program, and as the Artistic Director for the Harlem Biennele “Our Better Angels” project. The Brooklyn resident has implemented master classes, cultural workshops, lectured and performed in over eight countries on four continents including Nepal, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Brazil, France and at such institutions and festivals as Arca Theater (Czech Republic), Columbia, Fordham, Alliance France, Palais De Tokyo (France), Shoko International Festival (Zimbabwe), Hip Hop Kemp (Germany), Azgo Festival (Mozambique), The Bushfire Festival (Swaziland) and The Lourve. The founder of Fresh Roots Music, and co-founder of Re:Education and Say Word Entertainment, he currently serves as program manager for Brooklyn Academy Music, and arts facilitator for the Cyphers for Justice at IUME, Teacher's College
Hip Hop/Spoken Word educator, and performer extraordinaire.
In 2008 he released “The People’s Verses” a critically acclaimed album recognized by such taste makers as Wake your Daughter up, Rhymehouse, Ohword, HipHopinformant and Hip Hop Linguistics with various cuts and music videos from the album getting exposure and being selected for year end awards. He is recognized as one of URB magazine's Next 100 (2009) and 90.3 radio, The Voice of Harlem as 2009’s “Best New Artist on the Come up”. "HG" has appeared alongside legends, Rob Swift, Slick Rick, Fat Lip, J-Live, WordsWorth, Breezevahflowin and The Last Poets, in such famous venues as the Nuyorican Poets Cafe, Bowery Poetry Cafe, and the famed ARCA Theater in the Czech Republic. Since 2008 Hired Gun has toured extensively in Eastern Europe, South America and Africa. In 2010, his collaboration album "Skillz to Take Brazil" w/ partner Rabbi Darkside, and DJ Zajazza paired him w/ international artists from France and Brazil. In 2012, Mikal Amin released two EP's "The Hits and Pieces" and in 2015 released his second full length album, "#niceguysfinish" w/ co-collaborator ZQ
FRESH ROOTS is synonymous with growth, a brand new start, and something organic. It’s these qualities that reflect the art which will represent the collection of artists and projects that fall under the same name. Fresh Roots Music is the imagination of Mikal Amin Lee aka “Hired Gun” come to life. For over a decade, Hired Gun has collaborated with artists in various genres of music and art disciplines, and these experiences were the catalyst for him to create his own branch from the creative tree that he has grown from. The mood, music and modes of Fresh Roots music will span across many different types of audial expressions and attitudes, but with the same radical spirit that embodies everything The HG has touched.
Fresh Roots are firmly planted in the soil of community collaboration, and pro-activist thought. This means individuals and styles that are grounded in tradition, but forward moving. The music will be a reflection of de-genrification, the melding of various styles to create simply dope rhythms. We are the grandchildren of Stax and Impulse! The cousins of Transmat, Model 500, Underground Resistance, and Metal Headz. Our Avatars are the Last Poets, Gil Scott Heron, Juan Atkins, Big Daddy Kane, Rage Against the Machine, and Anti-Pop Consortium. The mission for Fresh Roots is basic; push thought, push boundaries, push society to feel a little uncomfortable about its surroundings, and push itself to create the highest quality of expression music has ever known.
Fresh Roots in its current incarnation will be projects from individuals such as Hired Gun, Statistics, Frequency Activism, The Black Opz Drum n Bass outfit, and various collaborators that will be revealed in due time. Expect music with a purpose. Expect music that moves you, in every way the human existence can be moved. Expect the unexpected, but most importantly expect something FRESH.