“Before and when all else has failed, words are my first and last resort.” As an MC, poet, writer and educator, Mugshot lives by this credo and has dedicated his passion and energy to the written and spoken word. As an avid Queens native, his voice has been inspired by the diversity, culture and grit of his borough, as well as by the beauty and struggle of his immigrant upbringing. This is where the means of his perception has taken root, culminating in a mixture of urban angst, a haze of third world toddler-escent memories and the flowery pessimism of a poetic disposition.
Mugshot has rocked stages throughout the US with his crew, Deep Foundation and has worked on several releases including Deep Foundation’s The First Draft, Generation ILL & Hydroponikz’s Grown. His solo debut project, Punching Clocks, will be released at this special performance at 92YTribeca.
Made up of 3 emcees representing Queens and New Jersey, Deep Foundation remains a benchmark in socially relevant hip hop. With lyrics based on their lives and personal experiences, CeeJay, ILL Poe and MUGSHOT have given voice to an under-represented Filipino American demographic and seek to imbue their compatriots, both young and old, with a renewed sense of cultural pride. Deep Foundation has brought its boom-bap era influenced hip-hop to domestic and international audiences since 2002. With the release of their debut album, The First Draft and groundbreaking music videos for "Children of the Sun" and "Sleep,” Deep Foundation has captured the hearts and imaginations of fans worldwide. In addition to their musical success, the media has also taken note of their drive and originality, having been featured in Filipinas Magazine, the cover of FOKAL Magazine, The Philippine Daily Inquirer, The Myx Channel, PBS, The Filipino Channel, Spike TV and HBO. They have released a brand new EP entitled Deep Foundation & Hydroponikz present Generation ILL which is available now on iTunes.
Ryan “Hydroponikz” aims to inspire everyone in his path with quality instrumentation and conversation. Although his style is deeply rooted in the '90s golden age of hip-hop, he aims to break down barriers of genre, style, location, race, religion and sex, allowing creativity to spill out of its confining boxes and mix together to promote unity on our diverse streets.
He’s played all over New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts and California. He’s worked on many official releases with musicians all over the world, including Deep Foundation (NYC), Illmind (NJ), Incise (Toronto), REplus (Japan), Ninety One (France), SoulChef (New Zealand), Generation ILL (Florida) and Kina Grannis (LA). His first full-length album Grown is available now on iTunes. 'Hydroponikz' is just an old AOL screen name that stuck for a very long time, in case you were wondering.
Rekstizzy is a Queens-bred rapper who’s been a crowd favorite at karaoke bars, room salons and nightclubs all over the East Coast. He’s a proud student of New York City’s rap greats, but also bares the influence of left-field acts like Devin the Dude and J-Zone. His debut, Fake It Til You Naked, has garnered cringes for the cover art, but praises for the music with RapReviews.com calling it “laid back humor of Harold & Kumar taking an Alkaholik left turn.”
After garnering nods from Mass Appeal, Complex, 2DopeBoyz for his bugged-out—and often hilarious—antics and rap offerings, the artiste retrieved back to his creative dungeon to mold his sophomore effort Whatever USAy.
They say what doesn't kill you only makes you stronger. In the case of 25-year-old Anthony Webber also known as artist Noah Caine, what didn't kill him, not only made him stronger, it found its way into his music.
At the tender age of 10, Noah's home in Flatbush, Brooklyn was riddled by bullets in a drive-by shooting. The following year, he and his family moved to the notorious neighborhood of Southside Jamaica in Queens. This is where he would call home. Noah channeled the pain of that ordeal into his newly discovered talent for rhyming. He learned early that he had an affinity for jazz and classic R&B and quickly fell in love with the music of legends like Stevie Wonder, Anita Baker and Nina Simone. He was also a devoted follower of hip hop and its culture. Rap greats like The Notorious B.I.G., Nas, Black Thought and Mos Def were always in heavy rotation and all of these are influences are reflected in his music.
Love of hip hop, basketball and the state of New Jersey are the factors responsible for uniting the members of Triangle Offense. Formed in 2009, Bry, Pwol and Sci deliver a different perspective on mainstream hip hop. Since their formation, the trio has released The Courting (2010) and most recently, The First Love (2012). Aside from amassing a devoted fan following and performing in notable venues like Irving Plaza, Club Amnesia, Public Assembly and the Mets Stadium, Triangle Offense has also cultivated an fresh brand of electro-hop.