In 2005, Kweli left the major label he was signed to and started Blacksmith Records, a move that has allowed him to take complete control over the process of producing his music and to communicate more directly with his fans. Gutter Rainbows, his first solo album since 2007, was released in January 2011.
In addition to his musical contribution to today’s important issues in youth and urban culture, Talib Kweli has also turned his words into actions. He is currently the spokesman of the P’Tones Records organization, a non-profit group that brings after school music programs to urban youth. Kweli also appears alongside several other prolific, inspirational artists on the upcoming benefit soundtrack to the Hip Hop dance film Beat the World. This soundtrack, produced by EarthTones founder and co-writer Frank Fitzpatrick, features collaborations between numerous internationally acclaimed artists who, like Talib, have consistently proven their devotion to creating positive social change throughout the world.