State of the Studio Address:
Dearest supporters, Please do not worry for us! Despite random fits of beef, GroundUp Studio has still been in full productivity mode as usual. An update would be an understatement… but we’ve been busy! Upcoming shows: 3/1/2020 – GroundUp Studio’s 100.7 FM KMUZ interview with DJ O 3/11/2020 – Caskey & GroundUp Studio @ The Corral Club in Salem, OR 3/12/2020 – Mostafa & DJ Will w/ GroundUp Studio @ The Space Concert Club in Salem, OR 3/21/2020 – RizzleMusik’s #TheMonster Album Release (TBA) April 18th – Day Dreamer’s So Below Tour w/ RizzleMusik in Portland, OR April 19th – Day Dreamer’s So Below Tour w/ ThatKidCry @ Marci’s Bistro in Lincoln City, OR …and that’s just a PEEK at what the future holds as we continue to plug away on booking more shows all over the area. The future looks as bright as the present! After RizzleMusik’s newest release #TheMonster on March 21st, we’ll be following that up with music from the rest of the GroundUp Studio team as well. From solo albums, to multiple duo projects, and even our first all original group album produced in house by Steven himself! 2020 is crazy already… we’re on month two of the year and the musical vibes have been overflowing from inside the bamboo dungeon. Just this month we’ve laid new tracks in the studio with RizzleMusik, Mposter, ThatKidCry, CeaSoN, Xzayvieon Tyler-C, KRYPTiC, Scotty Picasso, and even Enkay47. One could say that the swords are sharp and the vibes are heavily creative! All that said, join us for 2020 as we overwork our engineer and put out unrealistic and copious amounts of music and music videos on our low income budgets. You can look forward ThatKidCry continuously teasing the release of his album “Bare With Me” with no actual date for release in sight… or you can expect massive moves from the MONSTER, RizzleMusik, as he himself signed a 10 music video deal this year with Mr. Nice Ty Films and has been moving rapidly forward with his sharp witted and unique sounds. Mposter is also putting his best works to date together and giving you his first project “Shadows” under GroundUp, while CeaSoN (formerly known as Steeze) is in the middle of a transformation of his own as an artist and grinding out fresh and meaningful material. Then there’s T-Rell Baker who is steady writing, recording, and creating, and Fahari of course will be showing off her crowd moving vocals at more shows and music as she always does. You should all expect us to deliver you massive amounts of great content… quality + quantity only for the reason that we love to create it, and that it fills a need in us as artists to put ourselves out there like we do. Lastly, we’ve also developed another way to speak to you guys… you can now hear GroundUp Studio members chop it up about all of this stuff, current events, and more with special guests regularly on newly launched “The Zoo Podcast” which has already gained 400 followers before the first episode even dropped! And with that (combined with everything we still keep secret) we must confidently say that 2020 might not really be our year… but that EVERY YEAR is our year for as long as we love making hip hop. We welcome the beef if you don’t agree, GroundUp Studio Established in 2012 ThatKidCry | Steven Gibson | RizzleMusik CeaSoN | Mposter | Fahari T-Rell Baker | Queen LaChiefa
#EFRT Entry 9 (Final #EFRT post)
We spent the day recouping from our travels and chopping it up with DJ Noiz and his son Fr!to. We got a couple beats for future music from his son and enjoyed good food and hospitality from the Castro family in Maricopa (yes, it’s also a fairly new city in Arizona and not just a county). Around 5:30 pm we headed for the Thunder Canyon Brewstillery and set up the show.
It felt like a reunion with the Oregon homies with Noiz and Kus Rasme there. The show was a highlight of the trip and we only performed for about 20 people – but we did it like there was 1,000. The vibe felt good. People knew our story. We gave them our art and we killed it the best we could before heading back to DJ Noiz’s house one last time. We’ll never forget this part of the trip, and not because of the shows or the journey itself, but because of the people we got to be around. Love y’all.
So the morning of the 18th we spoke with the promoter in Las Cruces who voiced his concerns with attendance and stated that we likely would make little to no money for a 4 hour trip out of our way. As you can imagine, this being the last out of state show in the tour, we were already exhausted and in massive debt all things considered. With RizzleMusik being gone, and morale being quite low from our bad experiences and low turnouts, we decided a 19 and a half hour drive home was better than a 24 hour drive home and more money lost. So in the end we called it quits and took the promoters advice by cancelling. All of us have Oregon in our minds and hearts, and we just look forward to seeing our loved ones again.
We originally embarked on a journey on October 8th with the 4 of us and we were promised $1400+ in show payouts… we were only paid for one show on the entire tour and are returning home nearly $900 in debt on top of the $1,000 we already paid to book this tour. It was basically one big and extremely expensive rap vacation. We wanted and expected more than we received, but the hospitality/sympathy of promoters and the help of the fans kept us going. We made the best of a terrible journey and came out with 4 music videos, 3 freestyles, a lot of pictures and footage, a new song, beats from generous producers to make new songs on, and ultimately some friendships we won’t soon forget. If anything this trip was an eye opener to the mistakes that we can avoid on our next journey. We’re about 18 hours from home as I type this as we reflect on the ups and downs. Money isn’t everything. We took a hit there. But the human experience we found for ourselves on the trip was irreplaceable. Thank you to everyone who helped us. You know who you are.
October 16th, 2019
#EFRT Entry 8
We were suppose to be in Denver (again) tonight but finances are tough and we decided to move on to our Tucson location rather than lose more money on another unpaid show at a vegan shack in Denver on a bill we weren’t suppose to be on. So we hit the road and drove 7 and a half hours from Albuquerque to Maricopa to crash with our guy from The Hit Squad aka DJ Noiz! We arrived about 1:30 AM on October 17th after a long cruise through the Arizona hills and were treated amazingly with a place to stay, showers, grub, and just genuine hospitality and friendship. I can’t tell you how good it was for me (Cry) to finally see another familiar face on this trip. We’ve been preparing for our Thursday night Tucson stop since arriving and Noiz was generous enough to offer his home to stay in and his time on stage for our show on the 17th! We can’t wait to rock the stage with Noiz at Thunder Canyon Brewery with the likes of Neurotica Soup, Trahma, and another friend we met in Oregon named Kus Rasme. So far Arizona has been a highlight on this trip and it hasn’t even been a full day… we can’t wait to see how the show goes and to also meet new people.
October 14th/15th, 2019
#EFRT Entry 7
When we reached New Mexico on the 13th we camped out a hotel in Santa Fe then headed for Albuquerque on Indigenous People’s day. When we reached HomegrowNM Trading Post we walked the area and promoted the show to who we could. The spot we performed at ended up being amazing and full of beautiful hip hop and native art. The homie AnTro, his sound man, and DJ B showed up to set up sound and we had ourselves a dope show! After all the chaos this was our first actual scheduled stop we were able to make it to without issue. We threw down with Cryogenikstylez, Macchiato Music, and Siddiq Supreme. During this show we also parted ways with our buddy RizzleMusik as he tapped out of the journey. It wasn’t on bad terms, but a lot went wrong on this tour, and we didn’t blame him for getting out while he could. The choices were either to burn more money with us on this tour or go home and work to pay the bills for his family. KRYPTiC, Mposter, and ThatKidCry head for a hotel. Tuesday morning we begin organizing a pop up show next door to the Trading Post we performed at in Albuquerque. We met a man and his wife, Gabreal and Amanda, who owned a legit little CBD cafe called The Gathering Spot. Their story was awesome and we loved working with them. They were super hospitable to us and sympathetic of our story, so they allowed us to move their tables and invited their friends. We booked two artists named D’Nessa (Spoken Word Poetry) and Modest (the promoter who was originally suppose to find us a spot but wasn’t able to). About 20 people showed up all together and we put on a hell of a performance for them with a karaoke speaker and one microphone. Despite our struggles and unpaid shows, we met some amazing and unforgettable people in Albuquerque. We made friends with a legit freestyle artist and snake wrangler named Zenn – and heard beautiful spoken word from a traveling Dallas, TX artist named Wayne Henry. We also encountered a badass tattoo artist named Naomi who attended The Gathering Spot and said she’d hook us up with some matching “Fuck Montana” tattoos before we left for Arizona to commemorate our journey for life. The trip has been hard – but the constant support from complete strangers has kept us moving strong on our path. We can’t give up and plan to finish strong in Tucson, AZ and Las Cruces, NM before we come back. We love y’all and couldn’t do this without you.
Oct. 12th/13th, 2019
#EFRT Entry 6
We failed at getting on a show for the 11th but ended up at Bad Neighbors member Phonosapiens house for the night. We made off with a bunch of his beats and made a really dope track called “Strange Land” with the 4 of us over his production! After a fun night making music we headed out from Fort Collins the morning of the 12th.
At this point we started to realize how missing our first 3 tour stops and not making any money for 4 day’s straight was going on our pockets. So I reached out to the fans for help on our journey in exchange for merch and albums… and the amount of support we got was UNREAL!! We can’t thank you guys enough, but you all put us ahead enough to continue our tour and make the remaining stops. Unbelievable. Without our peoples support I think we’d be heading home right now!
To fill our time for the cancelled shows – I hit up a man named Zachary who also owns a spot in downtown Denver called Bar Red. The spot said it was a 30 person capacity but I’d bet for sure there was about 60 in the place. We took photographs of the whole night (which will be posted after tour) and in exchange we got to throw down a 15 minute set and jump in the cypher on yet another show we weren’t suppose to be on. It was a boombap heavy night and we rocked with acts like Grey Beard, Things That Go Bump At Night, BRA, and Miss.Rice. Even the bar owner jumped on the mic in the cypher and merked it!! We made our impact and left for our hotel.
Now it’s Sunday, and we’re in route to Albuquerque to convene with our people down there for the upcoming shows on Monday and Tuesday. Our Sunday stop in Lawrence, KS was cancelled because of a long 9 and a half hour drive that would have 100% set us back further because the bar owner of the TeePee made it very clear he didn’t want to pay us at all… even not paying us was an upgrade we couldn’t take as he originally wanted to charge us $700 to just use the venue.
Our tour has not been what we were told to expect to say the very least… Today is day 6 and we’ve only rapped on 2 stages that we booked on the fly and didn’t get paid for. From bad weather cancellations, being stuck in Montana, to bookings that fell through, and venue owners who changed their mind last minute on paying us. It’s been a lot of #EFRT not to just go back home. As I said before… We’re deeply thankful and appreciative to the supporters who’ve donated the means to get us to our next scheduled shows. On the road to New Mexico, making the most of a bad situation, and in typical GroundUp fashion we ain’t slowing down. We still have 2 Albuquerque shows, Tucson, Las Cruces, and another Denver stop to kill this week before we head home… universe willing.
Oct. 11th, 2019
#EFRT entry 5
So on our way to Fort Collins, with about 6 hours to spare, we located a venue called Hodi’s Half Note and a promoter named Nick from the crew Bad Neighbors! They just so happened to be throwing a show last night and the universe aligned just enough for us to set up a merch booth and rock our first set of the tour together. From KRYPTiC’s “Hey” to “My Anxiety” with ThatKidCry, RizzleMusik, and Mposter – we all killed a 25 minute set on a big stage in Fort Collins and we left a lasting impression on the artists/fans at Hodi’s Half Note. We connected with dope artists like Scotfree, Eye-Cue, Phonosapien, Cutting Losses, and more! We even saw two comedians battle each other as Ted Bundy and Jeffrey Dahmer in a “celebrity death rap”, so that was wild. We all crashed at a hotel afterward and we’re about to check out for the day and possibly find a studio to record in. We’re staying motivated and finding things to do in Colorado. One of the artists in town has a going away party tonight, so we’re gonna see if we can crash a show at the Aggie. We’re in talks for a Denver show tomorrow, and we hit the road for Lawrence, KS Sunday morning. It’s a lot of effort being put in for the beginning of this #EFRT tour, but we’re out here making the most of our time and not forgetting why we hit the road.