Chatman educates, gives back with benefit song
Proceeds of Aaron tribute go to MLB's Urban Youth Academies
Hip-hop producer Karen Chatman is using music to educate kids about baseball and give back to Major League Baseball's Urban Youth Academies.
Chatman, a Los Angeles-based artist who specializes in producing educational rap songs, recently released a track in commemoration of Henry Aaron through her fictitious character, "KarenGirl."
Fans can preview and purchase the song, "Electrifying on the Diamond," which features CR crew, at MLB.com/civilrightsgame, with all proceeds collected from the 99-cent iTunes download benefitting MLB's UYAs, which are in Compton, Calif., and Houston.
Chatman previously worked with some big names in hip-hop, including Dr. Dre, but steered her approach in another, more positive direction after the death of iconic rappers Tupac Shakur and The Notorious B.I.G. (Christopher Wallace) in 1996 and '97, respectively.
Since then, Chatman has been using music to educate youngsters on subjects that otherwise may not grasp their attention -- currently doing so via the "Karen Chatman Edu.tain.ment" initiative.
Chatman made an appearance at the Youth Summit/"Wanna Play?" event during MLB's Civil Rights weekend in Atlanta earlier in May. There, kids learned about key African-American ballplayers like Aaron and Ernie Banks through songs.
"When we had a tent set up at [the Youth Summit], proof was in the pudding because I had kids coming in not knowing anything about baseball, and within an hour they knew everything, and they were rapping and singing the songs," Chatman said. "They really enjoyed it."
Chatman's work -- which, among an array of topics, includes a tribute to Hurricane Katrina -- has previously been featured on ABC's "Good Morning America" and FOX News.
Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his columns and his blog, listen to his podcast and follow him on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.