1. SALT LAKE MAGAZINE PRESENTS BANDWIDTH: YOUR TICKET TO 8 LOCAL ACTS YOU NEED TO HEAR

      On stage, he may look like other rappers, but when you listen to Reaper's lyrics, you quickly realize there's more to his music then that of an average M.C.---and more motivating him then money or fame. "I don't want to hear about cars, clothes , and chains all day long," he explains. "I'm a lyricist, first and formost."
     
      Despite his gental smile and easy laugh off stage, when he's performing. Reaper's serious--dead serious. a mix of music, conversation, poetry, and storytelling, each of his songs recounts a 
  2. ​life through death." And we can all learn a lot about life through Reaper.
                    -- Tessa Woolf 
  3. true-life tale of death, pain, and revenge (to name a few). Having worked in the health care field for over a decade as a counselor and youth advocate, he's seen and heard it all--events that became the basis for most of his songs. 

      "When i perform I'm really charged," he  says. "I want the audience to be emotional." And he hopes that emotion will translate to action and, eventually, change . Sponsored by The Road Home, The Rape Recovery Center, and the YWCA, he helps raise awareness and funds for each organization. At all of his shows he sets up a "cause table" 
  4. ​​where concertgoers can learn more about the organization's missions and make donations to their causes. "I'm asocialactivist but I dont want to be preachy." explains the former choir boy. "I'm just the resourceman."

      In 2005, Reaper released Bad Dreams, an experimental hip-hop albu, with fellow local performer Ply, and he recently released Reaper presents Deathsend--Shadow Psychology, his debut solo effort. The album features songs about evrything from infidelity and incest to gang shoot-outs and suicide. Despite the heavy content, don't  fear Reaper--or his graphic, powerful words. "I talk a lot about death 
  1. SLUG MAGAZINE: LOCALIZED

    The Reaper is not a stranger to the stage. He's been performing since his childhod. Whether singing in his grandfather's church choir or trying to raise awareness about important issues, his efforts have always had the greater good in heart and mind. "I'm an activist storyteller musician," he explained. Even back in high school, the Reaper was doing things such as his self-produced The Death of the Black Man, where he dressed in black for an entire year to raise awareness about minorities in Utah. He was also participating in the theatrical group Improv, who would act out unscripted scenarios 
  2. for students to help give them ideas of how to deal with situations like rape or bigotry. He was also able to travel across the country with Improv teaching other schools how to implement the for themselves the programs for themselves.

      So what eles could he do to raise awareness and funds for his favorite nonprofit organizations? Since he was already getting ointo freestyle with his friend Ply by participating in rap battles. he decided to take his music to the nex level and start writing and recording. What makes his album Deathsend ; Shadow Psychology so interesting  
  3. more ears to hear the Reaper's message. Besides raising awareness of important issues through music, the Reaper is also using the shows as a chance to raise funds for The Flow Project , a collaboration of art by local artist which is compiled by the Reaper and then sold at his shows, with the proceeds getting split up between the Rape Recovery Center, the YWCA and The Road Home. Clearly, the eaper is a man with a massage and when you see the passion with which he delivers his massage, you will listen.
                                                           
                                                                                --Jesse Kennedy
  4. is not only the different talents that the Reaper brings, but more importantly the stories he tells. Friend and producer Jebu had a large influence, not only as the album's editor and mixer, but as a musical contributor. Although many of the songs on the album tackle sensitive and often under publicized problems in our society, Reaper is able to adjust his perspective as the storyteller to avoid sounding like a man with an agenda. He tells the stories from the position of different people in these situations (possibly a trait instilled from his time with Improv).


  5.   For the live shows, the Reaper like to mix things up to keep it new for his performers and the audience. "My shows are totally different; sometimes I'll bring in stage performers or different musicians," he said. Musicians like Carol Dalrymple on Violin and Jamie Rackman on percussion have  been known to add spice to the Reaper's stage shows in the past. In fact, the Reaper's shows are more of a production than a concert. For the Localized show this month, he's having Lavish kick things off for him.

    ​  All of this effort for the live shows is not just to entertain but to bring
  1. CITYWEEKLY - I FEEL THE REAPER: LOCAL HIP-HOP ARTIST ISN'T AS GRIM AS YOU THINK

      When I was told I was interviewing Salt Lake City hip-hop artist Reaper--quite frankly, I expected to sit down with a thug in a puffy jacket and baggy jeans. but, of course, hip-hop is obviously much more complex than just thugs dressed as stereotypes. In fact, contemporary music owes a great deal of thanks to artists like Nas, Busdriver, Talib Kweli, Odd Nosdam and countless other innovators who fall under the ever-expanding umbrella of hip-hop."
  2.   "Someone always dies in my stories. but it's not as morbid as it sounds," he says. "Wha I do is mostly about cycles. I explore the cycle of life."
    Reaper's many years in the healthcare industry--working with a range of patients, from disabled adults to sex offenders--have taught him a great dealabout the human experience. 

      "I've always been an activist. I can't help it. It's just part of who I am," he says. 
    Reaper stresses that he always has pamphlets available---for every cause from Rape Recovery to domestic violence--at his shows. "It's amazing how those pamphlets magically disappear from the table. People always secretly pocket them. It just goes to show that everyone has problems."


  3. ​​Reaper is the least thug-like person I've met. He exudes depth, originality and brilliance.
      Reaper is quick to laugh aand crack a joke with his large toothy smile . "People sometimes come to my shows expecting to see 50 Cent and the type of stuff you see on MTV, and thats's just not what I do," Reaper explains.  "Not that I dislike stuff, it's just not me."

      Reaper's brand of hip-hop is all about storytelling, a tradition reflected in his adopted pseudonym. 


  4. Reaper says. "I urge people to come to a show and see it. You just have to see it to believe it." Reaper's next show is a birthday bash. "It's actually a week after my birthday," he says of Oct. 17th gig at Monk's. There will be costume changes, props, and even a few presents for the audience. I always like to give other poeple presents on my birthday."
                                              --Jenny Poplar
  5. But Reaper doesn't want his listeners to forget that he is first and formost an entertainer. 

      "Entertaining is very mportant part of what I do. I want people to have fun at my shows," he says. You can think about something and have fun at the same time. I promise."
     
    Reaper's shows seamlessly integrate spoken word poetry, live hip-hop beats, and even a few props.

      "I always use original beats. I'm not one who likes to sample. My
  6. ​very talented partner Jebu helps me out in that department. He's multi-instrumentalist, so there's always a little soul in my music."

      Reaper's most recent EP, The Storyteller features plenty of smooth, relaxed beats that recall the glory day of '60s and '70s soul. In the past, Reaper has been backed by everyone from straight up rock & roll bands to a calypso outfit. "It all depends on what feels right. If something feels like it flows, even if it isn't straight up hip-hop. I'll still use it."

      "What I do is pretty differet from anything you'll see around here," 
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