Tech N9ne - August 3, 2024


Saturday, August 3, 2024

Music begins at 5:30 pm.
Ages 21+
No tickets required. All rally concerts are free w/ paid upgrade options.

Chrome Club Passes

VIP Balcony

Private VIP Suites

Dennis Kirk Main Outdoor Stage
Iron Horse Saloon
888 Junction Avenue
Sturgis, SD 57785

About Tech N9ne

It never happens like this.
Out of the Midwest, Tech N9ne broke all of the rules, subverted expectations, dumbfounded the system, and set a precedent for hip-hop and independent music often imitated (but never duplicated) by generations to follow. At the helm of his own Strange Music proudly based in Kansas City, MO, he has notched four platinum singles, eleven gold singles, and two gold albums. After three decades in the game, he landed “the biggest hit of his career” with 2021’s “Face Off” featuring Joey Cool, King Iso, and none other than megastar Dwayne Johnson. What other 50-year-old rapper has sent TikTok into a tizzy, generated a quarter-of-a-billion stream, and incited a frenzy from Variety, People, TMZ, NY Post, Today, and Entertainment Weekly with just one track?
It’s unheard of in typical hip-hop, but Tech and Strange Music are anything but typical…
Representing the underground, he’s practically “a regular” on the Forbes “Cash Kings” list. Beyond gracing the cover of XXL and the stage of ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live!, he wound up on the playlist of none other than Sir Elton John and performing to 1 million-plus at the parade for the Kansas City Chiefs’ Super Bowl victory. He’s the only artist (on this planet) who has collaborated with Eminem, Tupac, Lil Wayne, and Kendrick Lamar as well as The Doors, Slipknot, System of a Down, Deftones, Jelly Roll, and MGK. He holds down the record for “most Top 10 albums on the Billboard Rap Chart” and staked a spot in the Top 5 of the Billboard 200 four times. On top of a thriving self-sufficient merchandising empire, he notably joined forces with Kansas City’s own Boulevard Brewery for his craft beer Bou Lou. Moreover, his output is nothing short of staggering.
However, he never rests on his laurels. Instead, Tech reaches higher than ever on his 24th full-length offering, BLISS [Strange Music].
“It’s a new me,” he exclaims. “I’m evolved with a new brain, a new soul, and a new heart. I want to start conversations, so we can find a middle ground even if we are different. We can agree to disagree. I want conversation, and these are my observations. I’m opening up and talking about things I’ve obsessed over. To me, this album is a mirror of society.”
Following the “ignorance” of ASIN9NE, Tech found himself on another level.
“BLISS comes from ignorance,” he goes on. “I’m BLISSful, so I can say whatever the hell I want. The reason I took this direction was maturity and evolution. As an O.G., I’m going to speak on what I’m seeing.”
A standout collaboration from the album is “Fatha Fig Ya (Food For Thought)” featuring RMR. Complemented by an anxious keyboard loop, Tech kicks knowledge with the cadence of a quietly confident dynamo and the care of a committed dad (both of which he is). In between, RMR’s hook practically levitates over the percussion.
“I wanted to give my perspective to the youngsters,” he notes. “As I sit right now, I’m a father literally offering you a fig of life to eat in the song; it’s food for thought. RMR’s voice is so distinct that it made the song beautiful.”
“Knock” unites four of the game’s tightest lyricists from across the country with Conway the Machine repping Buffalo, X-Raided of Sacramento, Joyner Lucas hailing from Boston, and Tech out of KC. Minor keys cut through a head-nodding beat as a lyrical masterclass ensues as each MC passes a scorching hot mic back-and-forth.
“You’ve got a quartet of MCs from different regions just crushing it,” smiles Tech. “My East Coast fans are always like, ‘We want to hear you on some boom bap!’ So, we got this incredible beat from Dame The Producer. ‘Knock’ is amazing for 50 years of hip-hip.”
On the other end of the spectrum, glitchy electronics give way to jarring distortion on “W H A T (We’re Hungry And Thirsty)” [feat. HU$H & Kim Dracula]. The refrain’s scream practically pierces the sky.
“I’m talking some shit I’ve never talked before,” admits Tech. “These songs mean a lot to me. I’m not trying to do what’s hot now; I want forever music. This one could be controversial, because I’m talking about people who wrote the Bible and how we’re waking up and being controlled. Kim Dracula was a perfect specimen for this because they are fucking lyrically crazy. HU$H killed it.”
In another departure, he joined forces with none other than Durand Bernarr and Qveen Herby on “Red Aura.” Durand’s soulful crooning floats atop the skittering beat only for Qveen Herby to stomp over the bass line with bold bars of her own.
“It’s another lane,” Tech continues. “I was so moved by Durand’s Tiny Desk. I reached out. He said, ‘Thanks, I was your Uber driver in Salt Lake City. I sang over ‘Redbone’ for you’. I couldn’t believe it. I’m glad I was nice to him on the ride,” he laughs. “We decided to cook up. I found Qveen Herby, and I needed to call her. The ‘Red Aura’ is the welcoming energy I give off.”
Guitar accents the dreamy production on “2 Happy.” Together, NNUTTHOWZE’s Zkeircrow and Phlague The Grimstress join Tech in the madness as the chorus assures, “I’m happy happy to be mentally fucked up.”  Then, there’s the closer “Got What I Wanted” [feat. Navé Monjo]. Tech adopts a flow as if he’s six-feet-under, paints a provocative portrait from inside of his final resting place.
“People wait until a lot of legends die to give them their flowers and the respect they deserve,” he notes. “So, I decided to position this like I’m already dead. I’m talking about all of these things that haven’t happened yet in my career. It was the best way to end the record.”
For as unconventional as Tech’s story may be, he actually embodies what hip-hop was meant to be all along.
“I love words, because they can heal,” he leaves off. “When you say certain things, the crowd gets louder. That’s a Master of Ceremonies. Our words move people and save them. So, I’m going to keep rapping for a while longer.”
— Rick Florino, June 2023


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