Detroit emcee Elzhi has taken it upon himself, his peers and constituents to fund an album release and tour entirely through the crowd-funding platform Kickstarter, a move not inconsistent with how many artists (including Spike Lee, James Franco and Marina Abramovic) have funded projects they wish to protect from corporate influence. Through these means they remain the sole creative entity shaping their visions (or in this case sounds) and are free to release an unfettered product that best represents their creative interests.
The emcee (pictured above with fellow Hitsville native and SV camp member Karriem Riggins behind the boards in the studio) copped his first pay check in the industry from his feature on J Dilla’s “Come Get It” off the perfectly carved 16 track opus Welcome To Detroit. El has long been closely affiliated with both Slum Village and Detroit’s notoriously vast underground scene, relationships that gave him the opportunity to rhyme over Jay Dee’s flip of Curtis Mayfield‘s “Little Children Running Wild” years before Kanye West used it for one of the only memorable songs from his Graduation LP (peep “Flashing Lights” and El’s “Concrete Eyez”). In any case, all of this should merely stand to prove that El is not one to be slept on with his ferocious delivery and clear dedication to releasing a pure follow up to 2011’s Elmatic (his tribute to Nas) The fact that Karriem is sitting in on this project only adds to that point, with a resume’ boasting production credits for/with Dilla, Common, Erykah Badu, Madlib and another son of Detroit in Dwele. Needless to say, this writer’s ecstatic to hear what a joint effort from these two would be like. We’ll have more info on the yet to be named crowd funded LP, but watch Elzhi’s promo video for the project below to get a taste, and then get out your card and donate.