STEVIE WONDER Invites KERO ONE to perform this Saturday in LA!

Kero One will be performing live at Stevie Wonder’s 17th Annual House Full of Toys Benefit Concert this Saturday night (12/15/12) at Nokia Live Theatre with Bruno Mars.

Kero One, whose music has been endorsed by Will.i.am & Epik High, received a major endorsement from Stevie Wonder this week after the Legend himself heard Kero One’s  new song, “What am i Supposed to Do” featuring Suhn and asked Kero One to perform the song at his Benefit Concert tomorrow night.

You can check out the song “What am i Supposed to Do” ft. Suhn at:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dSMxQe63x1I

The song is from Kero One’s latest album, Color Theory, and is available to stream for free on Spotify or from iTunes:

http://bit.ly/MRfaSw

Check Out This Interview with: Raspy Rawls (Rare Royalty!)

What’s good everyone! I’ve been M.I.A. for so long, from a trip out to Washington state for two weeks, to school,

you name it! – So many things I coming your way (as always – Hey think of it like this, can’t stay I never owe you some sort

of cool post right?).  As always I like to interview artist when I have time. While I enjoy getting the chance to interview some

dope artist, I have to say that this one is truly one of my favorites. If you haven’t heard of the name Raspy Rawls, or

even if you’re familiar with the name, this is a interview you don’t want to miss.  I always believe connecting with fans, and

viewers is important when getting your music out there, but it also plays a huge role in keeping things alive as well.

With that being said, enjoy this interview, as I truly hope you take something positive from it. Also be sure to check out

Raspy Rawl’s music as well!

 

Interview with Raspy Rawls:

LS: Bait, Fisherman of Men without a doubt is proof of your mantra, “Truth With Real Music, Not Kill Music.” The album houses a lot of positivity, and puts forth some real topics. Can you talk a little about this project, and give us some insight to how it all came together?

RR: Let’s see, where should I start. Aite I got ya. In the beginning of 2011 I began actually working on my debut album. Blujai, who is my main producer, and I had just started working together. We were trying to get a feel for one another. At this point, he was in his beat making stage. He’s an artist also by the way. He started sending me these crazy beats that got my created juices flowing. Only problem we had was that he sent more than a few with samples in them. Being that this was going to be for an album and not a mixtape, I knew I did not have the funding to clear them all. All I knew was I had too many great concepts to let those beats go to waste. This is when I decided to put out the Bait mixtape.

LS: It’s safe to say you keep it old school, but weave the sound that it
can resonate with a younger audience, as it’s different from what is on the radio. What influenced that sound?

RR: When you find out, please tell me LOL! Compared to the rest of my team I’m old. Well at least that is what they tell the world every chance they get lol. This project felt more Old School mostly because of the samples that were used. My sound is different than what you hear on the radio because they are not talking about anything important in their music for one. For two, in rap it is a bunch of rap songs being made, instead of music. I can’t rap!!! I’ll be the first to admit it. People look at me funny when I say this, but there is a difference in being able to rap, and being able to write songs and make music. I am great at writing songs. Where the chorus goes into this verse, that verse ends falling into the chorus, and so on and so on to make a complete song. I hold any artist to the same standards I hold myself to. I do not understand how you have a chorus saying one thing, and the verses saying something else. I listen to lyrics, and you must make sense to me in your music. EVERY SINGLE WORD HAS TO MAKE SENSE TO ME!!! Not only does it has to make sense, but it has to be good music. I could give you all the positive lyrics in the world, but if I do not know how to make good music, it’s pointless.

LS: Word!

LS: For those new to hearing the name Raspy Rawls, where did it all begin?
Can you give us a little history of your music?

RR: I was released from incarceration in the fall of 2009. One night while at the barbershop/studio, a few artists were working on a compilation album for the studio. After getting my fresh cut, I told them I would write a verse for one of the songs. They thought I was joking. So they threw on a
beat and rapped the chorus to me. I grabbed a pen, and paper and said give me about 20 minutes. My oldest nephew, Gee, looked at me and said if it was garbage he would clown me. I wrote it, went in the booth to record it, and they pretended like the equipment was tripping. Go figure, LOL. They all left and I was still there, when a close friend of mine, and fellow artist J. Frank came through. I asked if he could record me. He recorded me, but I did not let them know until the next day. I played it for them and my cousin, AJ/owner, told me I had 24/7 access to the studio, and he wanted me in there every day. I chose the stage name, Somebody, at that time. It was because everybody was Somebody to someone. Move along to 2010, a female friend of mine started calling me Mr. Raspy. So I changed my name to Mr. Raspy before the release of my first project, Voice Recognition Street Album. That was June 2010, by October that same year, God woke me and showed me the mission that my life was created for. Once awakened, He started revealing things to me that was embedded in my mind for years. Things I use to wonder why I
even recognized, let alone remembered. I use to have this saying, “ I’m a rare species”. Still don’t know why I was thinking about this that day, but while doing it a name change came to mind. I dropped the Mr., took Rawls from Lou Rawls and his distinctive voice, and said I’m not a rare species. I am Rare Royalty. The official name is actually Raspy Rawls Rare Royalty.
I just use Raspy Rawls for the convenience of it, but my logo has the
complete name on it. That name change came in my mind in under a minute. God made it tailored made to fit!!!

LS: Got to appreciate that you take time to recognize self. I believe people sometimes forget their own greatness.

LS: On the Bait album, you dedicated a song to your upcoming album. What can we look forward to hearing on your next project?

RR: Lol, my lil brother T-Mav be saying he still can’t get over that concept. Let me clear this up, that song is dedicated to my next album, not mixtape. The album I referred to earlier in the interview that I was working on at the start of 2011. That is what that song is dedicated to. Now as far as my next project goes, Politics will be dropping in a few months. No release date as of yet. I don’t want to box myself in. You can expect growth from me as an all-around artist. More comfort in the booth, a totally different lane as far as production, and I slowed down the flow some so you can understand me better. Some of the knowledge was getting overlooked, because
I was rapping fast on some songs. I can’t wait to release Politics to the
world!!!

LS: If someone asked me what separates Raspy Rawls from other artist, I’d have to say your approach to music, and the content. You’re not afraid to be yourself on a track, and I think that is the key element, aside from your voice (hence the name!). What do you think is missing from music these days?

RR: A fight for humanity. I mean a real fight for it. We are letting this
popularity and money get to our heads. Artists walk around like they do not breath the same air as others in a lower tax bracket. Those others you look down on are the ones who probably scraped their money to go to one of your concerts. The gap between the have and the have not’s are widening. But you can’t put all the blame on the artists, because people are the ones who worship them. If you are reading this, I want you to listen to my next words clearly. I am a human like you. It does not matter how popular my
music becomes, do not run up on me with all that hollering and screaming. I am not famous, that would be Jesus!!! Want an autograph or a picture, walk up and ask like a human. You’ve been warned!!!

LS: Speaking of music, the production on the Bait has some very creative moments such as track 15, “Saw The Signs.” More so, it was unexpected. What would you say is your most favorite song from this project to perform?

RR: First let me go on the record about that song, Saw The Signs. That has to be the hardest song I have written to so far. I had to sink into that beat to find a way to come on it. Shout out to my super producer Blujai for always challenging me. My favorite song to perform has to be 1 Love. It is a fan favorite and mine also.

LS:  As mentioned, you did a song as a prelude to a future album. What do you hope that people will get from your next project?

RR: The next project is an empowering project. I am on a mission to empower the everyday human, the percentage of humans that are at the bottom of the barrel, yet it’s that same percentage of people that are the most on the planet. I have a serious problem with that. This makes me seek the knowledge I seek, and write the songs I write. It’s time to wake up the world, and shake up the system. We are at an info war. The less you know, the dumber you are. And I
would love to see a world full of smart people who think for themselves.

LS: I remember we were talking about concepts, which are far, and few from albums releases these days. Will the next project incorporate something
that goes beyond the normal creative process, rather than just the project being labeled as just as a new album?

RR: It wouldn’t be a Raspy Rawls project without it standing out. I’m Rare Royalty, it’s just in me. The concepts are crazy, but nothing I tell you can prepare you for Politics. You knowing the tracklist would not even benefit you, because my mind is in so many places. It is basically
impossible to detect which view point I will write from. As I am writing
this, I just came up with another concept LOL! #WICKED

LS: Nice!

LS: As always, I like to inform everyone of what’s happening with new
artist, or current. Do you have any shows coming up, or anything people should be on the look out for?

RR: First, thanks for interviewing me. It means a lot to my brand, my team, and myself. Thanks to you, the reader, if you are reading this it means you read the entire interview. Hope you enjoyed it and have a better feel for me, and my cause. I’ll be shooting my first video sometime in July. The date is not locked in yet, and I’m not telling which song lol. I am playing in and performing at the Positive Solutions 2nd Annual “Stop The Violence New Orleans” Celeb Basketball Game and Peace Feet. That will be held on July
21st at L B LANDRY HS, 1200 L B LANDRY AVENUE, NEW ORLEANS, LA. If you in the New Orleans area during that time, come out and show some support for something positive. We need to show others that someone really does care.
Thanks to everyone again, and MAY GOD BLESS YOU ALL – RASPY

 

Be sure to check out these links for Raspy Rawl’s music!

Also follow him on Twitter, and stay updated!

 

http://www.datpiff.com/profile/RaspyRawls4Rs

http://www.youtube.com/Raspy4Rs

http://www.facebook.com/TeamRaspyRawls<https://www.facebook.com/TeamRaspyRawls>

http://www.reverbnation.com/raspyrawls


Follow us on twitter:

http://twitter.com/raspyrawls

http://twitter.com/teamraspyrawls

http://twitter.com/1stclassmuzik

KERO ONE – COLOR THEORY (2012)

Get Kero’s new album Color Theory on iTunes!
http://bit.ly/MRfaSw

Get Physical Cd’s of Color Theory at the merch store!
http://t.co/6qFzmqJZ

 

Tracklisting:

1) Return of Kinetic
2) What Am I Supposed to Do? feat. Suhn
3) In Time feat. Clara C & Dumbfoundead
4) Whiplash
5) To the Top feat. Jane Lui
6) Love & Hate feat. Myk
7) R.I.P. feat. Suhn
8) Count on That feat. Dumbfoundead
9) Shortcuts feat. Sam Ock
10)  The Last Train feat. Shing02
11)  So Seductive feat. Jeni Suk
12)  Land of the Free feat. Myk
13)  Lackadaisical Living
14)  Father feat. Suhn

Kero One, coming fresh off the heels of performing at sold out shows at Korea’s Olympic Stadium, House of Blues Hollywood, and Showbox Seattle with Dynamic Duo (Korea’s equivalent of Jay-z & Kanye), is ready to release his fourth solo albumColor Theory.  On naming the album, the San Francisco native says, “I believe color theory can provide clues about life and this album is all about doing life; the good, the bad, and the ugly.”  Different from his previous albums, this album was partially funded viakickstarter.com, an all-or-none funding website.

Through the journey of his 12 year professional music career, Kero One has worked with artists such as Aloe Blacc, Mark Farina, Fashawn, Talib Kweli, David Choi, and Abstract Rude.   With Color Theory, Kero One looks to keep the collaborations coming, this time with a slew of emerging youtube stars such as Clara C, Dumbfoundead, Jeni Suk, as well as Shing02 of Nujabes fame.

Like his previous albums, Kero One shows that he is not only a rapper, but also a musician by producing a majority of the tracks using influences from jazz, analog synths from the 80’s, and funk basslines from the 70’s.  Kero One rhymes conscious messages reminiscent of Mos Def or Lupe Fiasco, as heard in the lead single What Am I Supposed to Do.  In this lead single, Kero One announced a call-to-action for the “Free the Slaves” charity, where half of the proceeds from the downloads, in the first month, were able to provide a year of specialized education for a former child slave in India and help prevent future slave trafficking in their home village.  However, Color Theory is not only about conscious raps, tracks like “In Time” and “Lackadaisical” showcase fun, lighthearted lyrics accompanied by bouncy beats reminiscent of a pool party perfect for this summer season.

Release Date July 4th, 2011
Catalogue# p00014
UPC 859708313819
Genre Hip-Hop   Label: Plug Label

Kero One Prepares His 4th Album, “Color Theory”

 

Hello Everyone!

Just wanted to send you a little update here! If you haven’t heard, Kero has a new album coming out this summer titled, “Color Theory.”

The album is pretty much finished, but we could certainly use help getting it out! When you have a moment, check out

Kero’s KickStarter page to found out how you could be apart of Kero’s 4th coming release!

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/kero/kero-one-prepares-his-4th-album-color-theory

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/kero/kero-one-prepares-his-4th-album-color-theory

Check out the video for Deux Process, “Lift Off” Freestyle!

Deux Process teamed up with Concrete Pulse and director/editor Jordan Abrantes to lace up some visuals for their “Lift Off” Freestyle. The song was recorded during the final sessions for the Deux Process LP “The Price of Dreams,” which is slated for release later this year. Audio and Video Download links included.

 

Shoutout to Yappari Hip-Hop!!

 

What’s going on everyone? Shameless here.

I wanted to take a moment to send a HUGE THANK YOU to my homie Akkee, and YAPPARI HIP-HOP for their interview with Kero One.

See here: http://www.yapparihiphop.com/interviews/kero-one-%E3%82%A4%E3%83%B3%E3%82%BF%E3%83%93%E3%83%A5%E3%83%BC

Since October of last year, they’ve shown us love, so as always we like to show it back!

If you’re not familiar with YAPPARI HIP-HOP, then take some time and check out one of the dopest music websites that is holding it down from Japan.

http://www.yapparihiphop.com/

http://www.yapparihiphop.com/category/interviews

 

As for the interview, I’m working on the translation so I’ll keep you posted!!!

 

 

Kero One Interviews with Sparkling Magazine! [Winter 2012]

Hello Everyone!

Shameless here with one of the many surprises that I’ve been promising at the start of the year (What, what do you mean I’ve been promising stuff since late last year!?!! Lies!!! – You know I haven’t forgot you)! Late last year, Sparkling Magazine got in contact with us at Plug Label about doing an interview with Kero One! If you never caught an interview with Kero One, then this is your lucky day! In this interview, Kero One takes a moment to talk about he got started, his music, touring,  his plans for 2012, and more!

On behalf of Kero One, Plug Label, and myself, we want to send a special thank you to Kero One fan, Andhie To, and Sparkling Magazine for making this happen!!

Enjoy!!!!

 

 

In All The Right Places,“  Interview with Kero One.

(Sparkling Magazine – Winter 2012)

 

We’re digging the sexy-street sound of pioneer jazz-hop artist Kero One.

By Chinggay Labrador

One of the first independent hip-hop artists to land on the iTunes charts, Kero One is known for spearheading the jazz-hop movement. The San Francisco-based multi hyphenate talks about music, traveling, and how his roots have influenced his unique brand of music.

SM: Your first record came out of do-it-yourself efforts. What sparked the idea of actually coming up with and distributing your own record?

KO: I started as a DJ in the ’90s and back then having your own 12″ record was like dating the most popular girl in school; as a result, people paid more attention to your music. Once I manufactured the records I had to figure out how to get them into people’s hands anyway I could, so I started hustling and reaching out to friends.

SM: Your big break came when your record landed in Japan and was played at a club. What was it like when you got the call from the label exec that was interested in your music?

KO: I couldn’t believe it; I was ecstatic. I knew all the hardcore hip-hop collectors and aficionados were in Japan, so it was a big deal. Ultimately, this break came when I was invited to tour in Japan. At that time I was happy about the music I was making but unsure of how others would react to it, and see the appreciation is always amazing-people waiting for autographs and photos… It was surreal. My second big break came seven years later when will.i.am of The Black Eyed Peas sent me a video message telling me he loved my music. It’s moments like those that always remind me it just takes one person out there to believe in you.

SM: Any differences performing for an Asian audience, and U.S based one?

KO: Asians love waiving glow sticks at shows, haha; it’s cool though. Taipei, Manila, Seoul, and Japan have been unforgettable.

SM: Did your Asian-American background inform your style or your creative process?

KO: I talk about my upbringing a lot when I write lyrics. I grew up as an Asian in a primarily white neighborhood; I did a good job blending in but was always the odd man out at the same time. In some instances I felt like the elephant in the room. In fact I even made a song called “Asian Kids” with Tablo of Epik High and MYK, and Dumbfoundead, illustrating some of the struggles

SM: San Francisco is a pretty diverse city. Has the Bay Area influenced your style, outlook, and process?

KO: Yes. I grew up in the Bay Area all my life. It’s a very diverse liberal, and laid-back vibe there, especially in San Francisco. The Bay has a lot of talented musicians, and most of them are humble bedroom artists who aren’t jaded by the music industry such as in other places like L.A. or New York. Those people have inspired me, because at the end of the day it’s all about the music and authenticity.

SM: Your sound blends influences from jazz and hip-hop. Which artists from these genres have inspired you to come up with your own unique sound?

KO: It’s weird, because when I created my first album Windmills of the Soul; I just made what I liked. Hip-hop in the early ’90s sounded this way (jazzy) but a lot of people had forgotten about it; artists like Digable Planets, Souls of Mischief, and Nas used a lot of jazz. When I started getting very deep into ’70s jazz such as Lonnie Liston Smith, or Bob James, I realized there should be more musicianship in hip-hop because jazz music was never stagnant – it was always changing. Thus I started implementing live instruments into my production, and having long piano solos at the end of songs at a time when hip-hop was just about looping the same beat over and over again. I fell in love with hip-hop at an early age then hated what hip-hop had become; that inspired me to make music.

SM: You’re very hands-on when it comes to your music as well as the business side of being a musician. What are the pros of taking care of everything, from art direction to web design and marketing?

KO: I love being involved because I want my vision to be executed the way I see it and not on someone else’s canvas or timeline. However I realized when I’m too involved in the business, I put my hands in too many pots and spread myself too thin. I’ve now decided to focus more on my craft and making music and not be so involved in the grind.

SM: You’ve collaborated with several artists. Any memorable experiences working with the likes of Epik High, David Choi, Dumbfounded, Far East Movement, Talib Kweli, and the rest?

KO: Performing on tour with Epik High was unforgettable; sold-out shows starting in Japan, Korea, then to the States with Far East movement. I remember fans waiting at the airport, red carpet treatment, press everywhere… It was a huge deal. As for studio collaborations, a lot of them happened over the ‘net. With David Choi, our collaboration started from a message discussing a simple video to something that required hours of editing. He sent me his vocals (which he knocked out very quickly), and I already had the video footage from where I was creating it. We uploaded it not many days later and it reached 300,000 views off his channel. The power of Internet is amazing.

SM: How different is you creative process when working on your own as compared to collaborating?

KO: I started as a solo artist, so collaborating with other artists can sometimes be difficult because there may be a clashing of ideas or visions-in that sense it can sometimes be distracting, I’m so used to doing things my way and compromising is not always good. I will fight for my way if I feel strongly about it. Luckily it’s mostly been smooth collabs so far!

SM: What’s the first song you’ve ever written, and what’s the story behind it? Was it ever released?

KO: I tend to release almost everything that I write. I don’t know what it is; I just think that if I put it down on paper, it’s a waste if I don’t to put it out. The first real rap I wrote was in high school called “Check the Blueprints.” At the time, it was just a nameless rap though. Ultimately, it was a rap I wrote to pass time in some of my boring classes and as years passed it eventually morphed into a real song, a song that took me around the world, if I think about it, its kind of crazy.

SM: Any plans of going on tour soon? How have your previous tour experiences been?

KO: Yes, I’m currently planning a tour with Korean hip-hop groups Dynamic Duo and Supreme Team. We should be on tour in late January. It should be epic.

SM: What challenges do you run into working in the music industry? How different is the scene for Asian Americans now, almost 10 years after you came out with “Check the Blueprints?”

KO: Well, some of the popular U.S. music blogs won’t take you seriously if you’re an Asian hip-hop artist, but I believe that’s gotten a lot better lately. Things have changed so much from 10-years ago- there were only several known Asian hip-hop artists with releases (then), including myself… Now you’ve got tons. You also never had such a thing as an Asian rap group on U.S. commercial radio or TV, and now you’ve got groups like Far East Movement who get played on the radio non-stop. It’s all rather exciting to see.

SM: How did you transition from web design to music?

KO: Working in the IT world, I quickly grew old of the corporate atmosphere. Dressing up to go to work, and oftentimes even falling asleep during meetings. There were even times I’d step out for press interviews on the phone and would think about music and my label for most of the work day; Furthermore, with the success of Windmills of the Soul and after some prayers, I realized pursuing music full-time was calling. I then took that leap of faith, and put in my two weeks’.

SM: What do you do during your spare time?

KO: I like to play golf, bike, drink some scotch whiskey, hang out with friends, and lately I’ve had an absurd addiction to Instagram!

SM: What’s one thing your fans would be surprised to know about you?

KO: My Korean speaking skills are that of a five-year-old, haha. On the other hand I’ve memorized the basic words of over 12 languages, including Tagalog.

SM: What can fans expect from you in 2012?

KO: My new album! I’m very happy about this album; I believe it’s some of my best work.

SM: If you weren’t doing music now, what would you be into?

KO: Maybe a doctor… The human anatomy amazes me.

SM: Which artists would you like you work with in the future?

KO: There are so many. Ever since will.i.am contacted me about working together I was hoping to get something poppin’, but it just hasn’t worked out yet. Otherwise, I’d like to collab with Sade, Outkast, or John Legend.

SM: What are the most played albums/artists/songs/ on your iPod?

KO: Right now its Passion Pit, Jcole, and Tablo’s Fevers End.

SM: How has the rise of social media affected you as an artist?

KO: It’s been an amazing blessing. Back when I started, there was no YouTube, Facebook, or Twitter. When MySpace finally came along I saw the huge opportunity and potential of social media. I was featured on the front page of MySpace years ago and went from 15,000 fans to almost 30,000 fans in one week. Since then, social media has been crucial to my career- I remember many tours came about off my MySpace page.

SM: Any message for your Filipino fans?

KO: Thank You guys for supporting me and reading this interview. I look forward to coming back to the Philippines again soon! You can keep up with me at twitter.com/keroone.

 

Shin-B’s SWAGMOB Contest!

 

Hey!

Hope everyone is having a good week. I’m trying to fight a cold, so I’ve been sleeping a lot, in between work, and so fourth!

In any case, I wanted to pass a little info along for all of you that are fans of Shin-B, if you haven’t heard the name, you should certainly check her out, as she is a dope emcee. 

If you’re a fan, (or on you’re way to be), you should check out this contest a friend of mine is so gracious enough to put together!!

 http://www.facebook.com/notes/andhie-to/swagmob-1st-contest/336783013025991

 

Good Luck!!!!