THESIS De MayoNot only is tomorrow, Cinco de Mayo (which, for those of you who don’t know, celebrates the Mexican victory over the then-powerful French Army in the Batte of Puebla in 1863) it’s also first Thursday which means it’s time for The THESIS!

As always, We Out Here Magazine, XRAY.FM and resident DJ Verbz are set to bring you an unbelievable showcasing of talent from the region’s best and brightest. If you’ve never been to The THESIS, we do things a little differently. Each show is painstakingly curated to combine artists from different camps and sub-genres in order to bring our audiences a fresh new angle from which to view NW hip-hop. Veteran emcees and young swag lords alike grace the stage at Kelly’s Olympian, bringing their most dramatic and intimate sets to our regularly sold-out crowds. Old heads, young bucks, lyricists, turn-up artists, trappers, poets and singers co-exist in our space, resulting in one of the most dynamic safe spaces for hip-hop culture in the city. And did we mention that our fans are the best?

Vinnie DeWayne and the Dookie Scholars in March. Photo by Renee Lopez

Tomorrow’s show builds on the raucous April celebration, with EYRST co-founder and former NBA swingman Martell Webster topping the bill. Changing positions within a spot is hard enough, and – ask MJ – changing sports altogether is a daunting task; nonetheless, Martell seems to be making the transition from the hoop game to the rap game fairly easily. Martell’s entrance to the music world has been well documented by outlets like ViceBillboard, and Rolling Stone, and his contributions to the local scene through his label are undeniable.

With tomorrow’s performance, Martell becomes the last member of EYRST to be billed on The THESIS, joining Epp, Blossom, Ripley Snell, Neill Von Tally, Maze Koroma, Myke Bogan, Dodgr and Calvin Valentine. With just a few songs publicly released, we’re not quite sure what to expect from the 6’7″ rapper’s set but I’ve got it on good authority that he’s got a few surprises for us.

Serge Severe is one of city’s most revered rappers, and his turn to rock our show has been way overdue. The textbook lyricist has been a staple in NW rap since the early 2000s, accomplishing everything an underground rapper could in that era. From rocking with legends, to sold out shows at home and even a European tour with Sandpeople, Serge and his indestructible flow have literally been around the world and back. The lowkey emcee’s last project, Boom Bap & Bars Vol. 1 (released in 2013), defines his style perfectly, though a recent performance at The Liquor Store (formerly the Blue Monk) shows he’s been adding to his arsenal. The single he dropped earlier this week through WOHM demonstrates that the PDX rapper has in fact reloaded, and is ready to do damage.

D3 of Trust No One Entertainment hails from Gresham. With a raw flow and an infection smile, the flagship artist has been tearing down all-ages shows at the Hawthorne Theatre all year. Originally pegged to perform at The THESIS last Fall before running into some legal troubles, D3 returned and hit the ground running. Anyone who’s seen a live performance from D3 knows the kid brings it everytime, and he always leaves it all on the stage. Besides the risk of getting stuck outside – these shows tend to sell out quickly – D3 provides a great reason to show up early.

Rounding out the line-up, we’re bringing a new face to the stage. SB aka Supreme (of D$C) is a young rapper in a grown camp with a lot of swag and a dope voice. The energetic kid from deep in the East is looking to make a name for himself out here, and he’s got a few tricks up his sleeve so stay ready. With a trappy sound and a strong desire to turn up, Supreme will get the show started on the right foot.

All of this and more (there’s always more) in just a few hours tomorrow night. We value our time and yours, so from 9pm till midnight, we’ll be going hard, no filler. Of course, you’ll also get to hear Verbz get busy on the boards and Bro Pluto will be out once again with their latest fashions. This month, we’ve also reunited with KPSU to raise awareness for their Pledge Drive, which is so very important for students interested in careers in radio. The Pledge Drive was designed to not only raise funds and awareness for Portland’s most storied college radio station, but also to give a stage to the oft-most underrepresented, marginalized, and most promising artists that Portland has to offer.

Oh… and the surprise guests…don’t even stress yourself about who we haven’t mentioned. Just bring yourself – and a friend – to Kelly’s Olympian tomorrow night and come have a great time! Tickets, as always, are $5 at the door and if you want to get on the guestlist please (holds your spot till 10:30) contact Jennifer Moore. Hope to see you #OutHere!

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