One week from today, We Out Here Magazine and XRAY.fm present the 15th month of The Thesis, Portland’s hot-spot for local hip-hop talent. It’s really a testament to the region that after all this time, we still have the luxury of bringing out all-new line-ups of regional talent without compromising the quality of our shows. This upcoming concert – taking place February 4th at 9pm – brings together four promising artists for their Thesis debuts.
Much more than a mere concert series, The Thesis is a concourse of sorts where artists, hip-hop heads and journalists mingle insouciantly and proverbially build in the presence of music. The upcoming performers – Brookfield Duece, Yo-X, Kamara Slim and HV Gutter – will bring synergistic vibes as well as new faces out to our little shindig at Kelly’s Olympian, and I know for a fact they are ALL anxious to turn up… as is our resident DJ, Verbz.
Brookfield Duece – product of Oakland California and cousin of the NBA’s most popular rapper – made Portland a second home some time ago, but has recently been mulling a more permanent presence in the city. The high-energy rapper flaunts a street-friendly Bay-area style while dropping conscious rap crumbs along the way. His new single, Sunday (produced by Drae Slapz) was played by the one and only DJ OG One at the Moda Center Rose Quarter during Tuesday’s whopping of the Kings, and in addition to The Thesis, he’s collaborating with WOHM x LILLARDTIME for the unprecedented Winter Warning event February 20th on Mt. Hood with FRSH TRB. And of course, there’s will always be the chance of this:
Yo!-X has been laying low in the NW rap scene for a bit, often caught chumming it up with truly wavy guys like Curren$y and iLL Chris, and performing for big crowds. A gruff and aggressive rapper known to leave it all on stage, we’re really excited to see the East Portlander perform in a more intimate venue. His latest release, Grind Determines Wealth, features production from local standouts such as Bravo Domo & Stewart Villain, as well as features from Blossom, Drae Steves, Weeb and more. Not for the meek-hearted, X set is sure to bring a crazy energy to Kelly’s small stage.
Portland’s Kamara Slim has been at it for a few years, dropping some highly respectable mixtapes in 2014 and some even cooler singles in 2015, and has built himself a nice following in the process, especially on Vine. Beyond rap, the based youngin’ has been promoting an upcoming fashion line and really pushing the lifestyle aspect of his personal brand as he ramps up for future plans. Definitely one of the top young artists to keep an eye on.
HV Gutter technically rocked the last Thesis with partner-in-crime Bocha last month, but now it’s his turn to have his name on the bill. At only 21 years of age, the Gutter Family Entertainment artist is a really chill guy who’s cocky demeanor and high-energy onstage actually caught me off guard. A proven performer, he actually rocked the Curren$y show last fall with Yo!-X, and word is he turned down a(nother) opportunity to open for Snoop in San Francisco in order to stay on The Thesis’ lineup. That’s dedication.
We and our partners at XRAM.fm are super proud to host such a popular concert series; seriously, this thing is really taking off. Doors are at 9 and we sold out in under 90 minutes last month – our third sellout in as many shows – so your best bet is to show up early and avoid the line. In case you heard the rumors, yes, we are working on a guest list situation so stay tuned and we’ll announce that over the weekend.
Truthfully, we do this for the culture, so we want to make this the best experience possible for our awesome attendees. We may be 15 months in, but this is only the beginning. That’s why we call it #TheTHESIS. See you in a week!
Cover art by the incomparable Alexander Wright