Wilkes-Barre’s Daniel ‘Source4Prez’ Valentin releases personal debut tape
Daniel Valentin didn’t take a break after he graduated from Luzerne County Community College — he put his degree in music recording technology to use by building a studio and finding his sound. He wanted to find a way to reach people in unfortunate circumstances through music and make a change.
“I’ve been in these darker places and situations where it’s just dark, you know, but I want people to understand they’re not the only one,” Valentin said. “If you’re in the streets — if you’re hustling or if you’re doing something in a negative aspect to feed your family — there’s always a way out. Always work to get out of that situation, to make it better.”
Nas was a prevailing influence on Valentin, who moved to Wilkes-Barre from New York in 2006; when the rapper’s single “Project Windows” was released in 1999, he listened to it staring out his own window in the projects of Coney Island. The song and circumstance provided an epiphany to Valentin that sent him down the path he’s on today.
“It just gave me a vision that I can definitely portray my own stories as he did because his stories were actually real, so I can create my own stories myself,” Valentin said. “I started writing music from then.”
His experience and education culminated in Valentin’s debut mix tape “Rhyme & Reason,” released July 1 under the moniker Source4Prez.
“‘Rhyme & Reason’ is supposed to have that New York gritty feel to it with a sense of class,” Valentin said. “The whole point is I want people to understand that (it’s possible to) make it out of a tough situation, that’s really it, you know? I’ve come from the ghetto, I’ve come from having nothing. Rhyming is the music, but reason is reality—how are we going to make it out?”
Since its release, “Rhyme & Reason” has amassed more than 300 downloads and more than 1,400 plays on popular mix tape hub DatPiff.com. Valentin said he understood from the start that success wouldn’t be an instant thing, but he’s taking each step forward as its own victory.
“That was a blessing,” Valentin said of the DatPiff community’s reception to his album. “I feel amazed, I didn’t think I was going to get so much attention and love.”
Valentin hopes to keep the momentum going with a Sept. 24 live performance at 119 S. Main St., Wilkes-Barre venue The Other Side. He’ll share the stage with friend and fellow musician Jared Xavier, along with GGO, Dough B, AJ Suede, Sik Vik and iEnvy. Valentin said it’ll be “the event of the summer,” and given his track record and message, he’ll do what he can to make that a reality.
Reach Gene Axton at 570-991-6121 or on Twitter @TLArts