So what's an acclaimed artist to do when they no longer have anything to prove? In the case of hip-hop's legendary Detroit lyricist ROYCE 5'9" you shut out all of the hype that places you in the same esteemed company as such revered, game-changing emcees as Jay-Z, Ice Cube, Eminem, Scarface, Nas, and Andre 3000 and release your most potent, celebratory and brazenly honest album of your 20-plus-year-career. His recent album Book of Ryan, the 7th solo studio project from the grinding rhyme visionary born Ryan Montgomery, is a work that defies well-worn, grizzled veteran rap clichés. This is the sound of artistic freedom.
No other rapper from Detroit has been as prolific as Royce when it comes to releasing music. In addition to his solo releases, over the span of his career, Royce has collaborated with long-time friend Eminem as a member of Bad Meets Evil, been a member of the lyrical assassins known as Slaughterhouse and DJ Premier as a member of PRhyme. He was also ranked at an impressive #30 on About.com's Top 50 MC's of Our Time.
Watch ROYCE 5'9'': Caterpillar ft. Eminem, King Green
It was not at all a shock to see an army of kids hanging out with the gregarious Royce at the Montgomery house. Despite his 'hood surroundings, the hardcore basketball and boxing fan wasn't into drinking or drugs nor was he involved in illegal pharmaceutical street activities. While he struggled academically in school, he did find solace in his main obsession: hip-hop. "If it wasn't for Redman, Ras Kass, Jay-Z, Eminem, Dr. Dre, E-40, Too $hort and guys like that I may not have ever fallen in love with the artform. Thirty years later, I still have that same love for hip-hop I did as a kid writing my first rhyme."
For ROYCE 5'9", it's all about the journey. "I just want the fans to hear my evolution as an artist as well as me as a man and learn from my mistakes," he says. "I think they got a little bit of that with Layers, (2016 album which came out in Australia via Golden Era, an imprint label run by Australian rappers Hilltop Hood) but Book of Ryan is me letting it all out. We've been taught everything but the right way to do shit. I want to be an example to the younger artists and help out anyway I can."
ROYCE 5'9" is headed to Australia for his first ever headline shows!
ROYCE 5'9" Australian Tour Dates:
Friday 14th December SYDNEY Manning Bar
SAT 15th December BRISBANE Eatons Hill
SUN 16th December ADELAIDE Gov
FRI 21st December MELBOURNE Max Watts
SAT 22nd December PERTH Capitol
Pre-Sale - Friday 14th September, 9am Local time - Monday 17th September, 8am Local Time
On Sale - Monday 17th September, 9am Local Time