Blending soulful sounds and roots music with insightful messages and thoughtful lyrics, the husband/wife hip-hop duo known as The Reminders will perform at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 22, in Central Lakes College’s Dryden Theatre in Brainerd.

The performance is part of the Central Lakes Community Performing Arts Center’s Cultural Arts Series.

The duo consists of Brussels-born emcee Big Samir and Queens-born emcee/vocalist Aja Black, who have been married for almost a decade. Samir weaves intricate rhythmic patterns with a bilingual French/English flow, complemented by Black’s delivery, diverse cadences and vocal stylings.

“There are songs that reflect how we both feel, that stem from a conversation, and we take that and turn it into a song,” Samir said in a news release. “That’s the more fruitful songs that we have, where we both share the same idea and we turn our conversation into a song.

“There are other times where one of us may come up with an idea and share it. Then the other one basically adds the extra spices on it, and vice-versa.”

The Reminders have been recognized for their work internationally through concerts, tours, music awards, TV and radio appearances, and their fan base. Having shared the stage with artists such as Les Nubians, Snoop Dogg, Fishbone, Barrington Levy, Nas, Mos Def, Big Boi, KRS-One, Rakim, K’Naan and others, the Reminders have garnered international acclaim.

Beyond performances and appearances, the duo is constantly and actively engaged with community organizations, schools and universities delivering workshops, talks and specially catered performances.

“What I particularly like about their coming to Brainerd is that they’ll do community outreach to the schools,” series director Patrick Spradlin said in the news release. “Whenever we can connect the artists with the public in this way, it’s a much more satisfying event.”

Tickets for The Reminders are available from the CLC Theatre Box Office at 218-855-8199 or online at

The show is sponsored by the Graphic Design program at Central Lakes College. The season is made possible in part by the voters of Minnesota through a Minnesota State Arts Board operating grant, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.