They sing, craft poetry, start punk and folk-rock bands, star in movies, put on festivals with 18,000 attendees, tour with Flea, teach kids, council kids, fight homophobia, and many, many other things. And now we can add this to the list of things Twin Cities rappers do: write books.
One of the scene’s more colorful and seasoned MCs, Zach Combs -- a k a Big Zach of Kanser and More Than Lights – has just self-published his autobiography of sorts, titled, “Headspins, Headshots & History: Growing Up in Twin Cities Hip-Hop.” The 277-page book is at once a semi-subjective overview of the history and characters here, and an ultra-personal account of Combs’ own involvement in the scene and of his youth in south Minneapolis (here’s hoping no cops or possible future employers read this thing). It also includes his ranking of the 25 best rappers in the scene (which I won’t spoil, except to say Zach himself is pretty high up on the list).
Even if you’re not familiar with Zach and his groups, the book includes stories on everyone from Atmosphere, Eyedea, the Doomtree and Heiruspecs crews and other big-wigs. On a practical note, it could also serve as a guide to younger scenesters on self-promotion and tenacity. Definitely a lot of tenacity here.
Combs, 34, is hosting a unique “release party” for the book Thursday at Honey, 205 E. Hennepin Av. (catty-corner from Nye’s). The free all-ages party, 6:30-10 p.m., will feature a discussion with the author, Truth Maze and other vets, plus a lot of rare, classic videos, such as a 1999 battle between Eyedea and Carnage. Zach will also tout the book at More Than Lights’ Dec. 17 gig with Heiruspecs and Muja Messiah at the Cabooze.
Click here for more info on the Honey party and details on ordering the book.