In the midst of a five-year run that has seen the release of two full-length albums, an EP, and countless packed shows, SeattleÂ’s Blue Scholars continue to the carry the torch for the Pacific NorthwestÂ’s burgeoning Hip-Hop scene. With their latest release Bayani leaving an indelible mark on 2007, the duo has built on the momentum of their critically-lauded album with a restless schedule of national and regional touring. In further efforts to stay in motion, Blue Scholars have hit the studio to record their new digital-only EP, Joe Metro, before embarking on their upcoming third full-length.
With equal attention paid to the stage and the studio, Emcee Geologic and DJ/producer Sabzi bring an innovative yet familiar sound distinguishable from what’s currently blasted on MTV or BET. Prior to the duo’s formation, Geo made local rounds as a battle emcee and spoken-word performer, while Sabzi honed his skills as a classical and jazz-trained pianist while coming up in the indie ska and punk scene. This unlikely partnership set the precedent for what distinguishes the group from the vast sea of independent hip-hop artists – the ability to strike a balance between worlds usually seen distant from one another. Poetic lyricism with beats you can dance to; Marxist theory with Baha’i spirituality with musical influences ranging from Thelonius Monk and Aphex Twin to Marvin Gaye and J Dilla.
Blue Scholars are just as much rooted in community as they are in music. Their experiences in the world of academia provide an intellectual dimension to their craft, while their backgrounds as second-generation sons of working-class immigrants keep the music grounded. Less sloganeering and more storytelling, the current state of Blue Scholars showcases a more focused Geologic and a polished Sabzi coming into their own as a premier DJ-emcee duo.