Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Oakland's DLabrie Says 'Krush Groove' Changed My Life and Explains Bay Universal Movment

After years making a name for himself as the fierce, witty, and energetic emcee from the Bay, DLabrie a.k.a DLabrozia is set to drop his official debut album, MR. NETW3RK (RonDavoux Records/Selecto Hits) this spring. The 23 track LP features M1 of dead prez, Mistah F-A-B, San Quinn, The Jacka, Zion-I, Adisa Banjoko, among others. Production on MR. NETW3RK is shared by Traxamillion, Sean T, MG, Infinate, and EQ.

And if you think the guest artists are an eclectic mix, it's because they are. Labrie's style is a fusion of many types of hip-hop and represent the different parts of his personality. "I don't affiliate solely with the hyphy, political, or back pack movement. I dig a lot of music from all over the globe. I call my music  Bay Universal!" 

Born and raised in East Oakland in the 80's, Labrie came up during the golden age of hip-hop. "In `85 my mother took me to the Eastmont Mall to see "Krush Groove"," states the emcee. "And that was it." Labrie also attributes his knack for writing to his mother, a singer, clothing designer, hair stylist, and community advocate. She also suffered from Schizophrenia.

"I had to grow up fast," explains Labrie. "I had to call a neighbor when she went into psychosis and sometimes had to get her to a hospital so I spent a lot of time with doctors and nurses chopping it up about different philosophies and life."

At 13, it was a done deal  and he knew his calling was to be a rapper. He started freestyling, writing, recording on a karaoke machine and passing out mixtapes using fast dubbing on his stereo.

When asked how he came up with the title for his record, Labrie laughs: "My former manager used to call me "Mr Network" cuz I always was connected to all kinds of people and would know cats everywhere. And it just stuck!"

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