Rapper Lyrics Born does free show in Breck | SummitDaily.com

Rapper Lyrics Born does free show in Breck

by Caitlin Morris
summit daily news
Special to the Daily Lyrics Born plays a free show in Breckenridge Tuesday

Calling out to all area hip-hop heads: Legendary Bay-area rapper Lyrics Born will be breezing into Breckenridge to perform a free spring break concert at the Riverwalk Center this Tuesday. Not only will he bring along his full band – The Lyrics Born Re-View featuring Joyo Velarde – but Born also hinted that there may be a special guest joining him for the performance, but was very tight lipped about who that would be.

Born did reveal his plan to preview music from his forth-coming album “As U Were (funk for the future),” which he says should be ready to drop at the end of this month.

“I wasn’t really thinking about radio play, commercials, old albums of mine, I just really wanted to do something I felt really strongly about,” Born said, explaining that the new album will elaborate on the sound that he created with his last solo album “Everywhere at Once.”

“There may be some reminder there, some common threads … I’m only really interested in progression,” Born said.

Fans can sample three tracks from the new album, “Oh Baby,” “Funky Hit Records,” and “Pushed aside, Pulled Apart” at http://www.lyricsborn.com. In each track Born’s big voice dances over music that highlights his signature funky sound, particularly in “Pull Aside, Pushed Apart.” The song features a Lateef the Truthspeaker, fellow member of one of Born’s side projects, Latyrx. On this track Born maintains his smooth soulful flow and raps about being pulled in two different directions. Also keeping in the throw-back funk style is the song “Oh Baby” with James’s Brown-esque horns and driving acoustic drum beats. The third track “Funky Hit Records,” is Born’s greatest departure from his previous solo material. The song uses heavy popping synth beats and a deep, out-of-this world, dancy bass lines to accompany playful lyrics about being a rap star, a subject that Born knows just a little something about.

Born, aka Tsutomu (Tom) Shimura, is not only a veteran but a revolutionary figure in the world of underground hip-hop. A member of the collective Quannum Projects, Born made a name for himself in the hip-hop scene with such groups as Blackalicious and Latyrxs. Born began releasing solo records in 2003 and gained notoriety as a solo force with singles like “Calling Out” and “I like it, I love it.” Born began touring with a live band in 2004 and moved from producing sample-based music to incorporating a live band on his 2008 album “Everywhere at Once,” a move, Born said, that was part of his progression as musician.

“I think at that point I needed to grow as an artist,” Born said. “That was the next logical challenge for me. All of my heroes have done it.”

His band features Born’s wife, vocalist Joyo Velarde, whose debut solo album “Love and Understanding,” was released earlier this year. Velarde’s voice may be familiar to many Qunnum crew fans as she has laid down vocals on Blackalicious, Latryx and Lyrics Born albums.

Born will be touring around the high country and making a stop in Denver to open for Pretty Lights before he heads to Austin, TX for the South by South West Music Festival. Born couldn’t say why he was playing exclusively in Colorado before SXSW but he did know that he loved playing in the state because of the fans’ true passion for all things music.

“I think the people in Colorado really like the party and I really get that sense from people in Colorado that they’re genuine music lovers. It’s not like people standing around trying to look cool. Instead they’re like we paid money to come see you play, now let’s get down.”

The show is free but you do have to get tickets. See info in box.

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