Aloe Blacc

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At a Glance

Nationality: American
Born: 1979


Biography

Singer-songwriter Aloe Blacc’s affecting voice, perceptive lyrics, and dapper
sartorial flair are already familiar to music lovers in Europe. In 2010, his
international Top 10, platinum-selling single “I Need A Dollar” surged across the
continent, ringing out from the streets of Paris to the soul clubs of London,
combining social consciousness with irresistible pop. Throughout 2011, Blacc
and his touring band, The Grand Scheme, hit the road in support of Blacc’s
second solo album and international breakthrough Good Things; turning in
memorable sets at iconic festivals like Montreux Jazz in ... Read more

Singer-songwriter Aloe Blacc’s affecting voice, perceptive lyrics, and dapper
sartorial flair are already familiar to music lovers in Europe. In 2010, his
international Top 10, platinum-selling single “I Need A Dollar” surged across the
continent, ringing out from the streets of Paris to the soul clubs of London,
combining social consciousness with irresistible pop. Throughout 2011, Blacc
and his touring band, The Grand Scheme, hit the road in support of Blacc’s
second solo album and international breakthrough Good Things; turning in
memorable sets at iconic festivals like Montreux Jazz in Switzerland and
Glastonbury in the UK. Blacc performed “I Need A Dollar” on the French TV
programs Taratata and Le Grand Journal, as well as the influential British music
show Later…with Jools Holland; spurring the track to become the de facto
anthem to the post-Great Recession recovery. “Everyone has a relationship with
money and can understand the experience of needing a dollar,” Blacc says of the
song’s appeal. “I'm really interested in creating music that can influence positive
social change,” he adds.
Years ago, there were those who made this look easy: Marvin Gaye, Gil Scott-
Heron, Sly Stone, Bob Marley, and Stevie Wonder, to name a few, and their
influence is readily apparent on the retro soul stylings of Good Things. So is the
hip hop that Blacc took to almost as soon as he could walk. “I was a B-boy at age
four,” he says. “The neighborhood crew nicknamed me ‘Little Rock.’ Eventually I
started experimenting with rhyme, and by age nine I was writing my own rap
lyrics on a small pocket note pad.” Licensed around the world, Good Things was
certified gold in the UK, France, Germany, and Australia, among other
countries. Two additional singles, “Loving You Is Killing Me” and “Green Lights,”
became European hits as well, leading to interest from Simon Fuller’s XIX
Entertainment, with whom Blacc signed a management deal. Last year, he
landed a recording contract with Interscope Records.
Blacc is currently recording his debut album for Interscope, with an eye toward
expanding his phenomenal European success to America. It’s where the
California native was born and raised, and where he has been a voice on the
indie hip-hop scene since high school. It’s also where most people know “I Need
A Dollar” as the theme to the HBO series How To Make it In America. It’s Blacc’s
longevity and persistence, however, that helps him put the challenge and
pressures of his remarkable career upswing in perspective. “This feels normal to
me so far,” he says. “It will likely be a new experience to be known in the U.S. I
am looking forward to introducing new music with a label that can help promote it
in ways that were impossible before.”
Over the years, Blacc has seen time and again that it’s always the fresh and
innovative sounds that get attention. “I released my first hip-hop mixtape [with his
then-partner DJ Exile] back in 1996,” he says. “That was the ‘golden era’ for hip
hop, when artists like Nas, A Tribe Called Quest, Tha Pharcyde, and Wu Tang
were all unique but engaging. Back then, being original was the most important
characteristic for an artist or group.” Blacc and Exile’s jazz samples and breakbeat
loops made them cult favorites in Los Angeles. As he grew as an artist,
Blacc transformed from rapper to singer, without discarding his hip-hop spirit and
aforementioned social awareness.
In the late ’90s, Blacc formed the rap duo Emanon and also toured and recorded
with members of the collective Lootpack before going solo in 2003. In 2006, indie
label Stones Throw issued Blacc’s debut Shine Through. Three years later, Blacc
began work on the album that would change his life and career, Good Things;
concocting a vintage yet immediate sound with the NYC-based production team
Truth & Soul. Even this, however, is only a part of Blacc’s vision. “Like most
artists, I can't stick to one thing too long,” he says. “I enjoy experimentation and
playing with emotion and sound.” Blacc draws inspiration from a wide variety of
styles both old and new, from funk to folk and psychedelic rock to reggae and
dancehall. Then there’s the Latin music that marks his family’s Panamanian
heritage, which his close-knit and musical family kept strong while raising Blacc
in the suburbs of Orange County in Southern California. “On the weekends, my
parents would take us to parties with their friend from Panama,” he recalls. “The
energy was electric with loud salsa music, dancing, dominoes, lots of food, and
lots of laughs.”
This year Blacc has been in the studio working on his new album with such
songwriters and producers as DJ Khalil and Harold Lilly, among others. “I think
the tie that binds is having good producers who can keep me in check and tailor
a focused sound,” he says. Blacc’s goal for the album is to weave nearly two
decades worth of style, vision, and soul into his strongest offering yet; one
designed to firmly connect his undeniable talent with the American market as well
as the rest of the world. The constant amidst Blacc’s sonic amalgam is his lyrical
perceptiveness. “The one thing that might connect it all is my storytelling,” he
says. With this latest chapter in an unpredictable career, the story of Aloe Blacc
continues to unfold.

This biography was provided by the artist or their representative.

Singer-songwriter Aloe Blacc’s affecting voice, perceptive lyrics, and dapper
sartorial flair are already familiar to music lovers in Europe. In 2010, his
international Top 10, platinum-selling single “I Need A Dollar” surged across the
continent, ringing out from the streets of Paris to the soul clubs of London,
combining social consciousness with irresistible pop. Throughout 2011, Blacc
and his touring band, The Grand Scheme, hit the road in support of Blacc’s
second solo album and international breakthrough Good Things; turning in
memorable sets at iconic festivals like Montreux Jazz in Switzerland and
Glastonbury in the UK. Blacc performed “I Need A Dollar” on the French TV
programs Taratata and Le Grand Journal, as well as the influential British music
show Later…with Jools Holland; spurring the track to become the de facto
anthem to the post-Great Recession recovery. “Everyone has a relationship with
money and can understand the experience of needing a dollar,” Blacc says of the
song’s appeal. “I'm really interested in creating music that can influence positive
social change,” he adds.
Years ago, there were those who made this look easy: Marvin Gaye, Gil Scott-
Heron, Sly Stone, Bob Marley, and Stevie Wonder, to name a few, and their
influence is readily apparent on the retro soul stylings of Good Things. So is the
hip hop that Blacc took to almost as soon as he could walk. “I was a B-boy at age
four,” he says. “The neighborhood crew nicknamed me ‘Little Rock.’ Eventually I
started experimenting with rhyme, and by age nine I was writing my own rap
lyrics on a small pocket note pad.” Licensed around the world, Good Things was
certified gold in the UK, France, Germany, and Australia, among other
countries. Two additional singles, “Loving You Is Killing Me” and “Green Lights,”
became European hits as well, leading to interest from Simon Fuller’s XIX
Entertainment, with whom Blacc signed a management deal. Last year, he
landed a recording contract with Interscope Records.
Blacc is currently recording his debut album for Interscope, with an eye toward
expanding his phenomenal European success to America. It’s where the
California native was born and raised, and where he has been a voice on the
indie hip-hop scene since high school. It’s also where most people know “I Need
A Dollar” as the theme to the HBO series How To Make it In America. It’s Blacc’s
longevity and persistence, however, that helps him put the challenge and
pressures of his remarkable career upswing in perspective. “This feels normal to
me so far,” he says. “It will likely be a new experience to be known in the U.S. I
am looking forward to introducing new music with a label that can help promote it
in ways that were impossible before.”
Over the years, Blacc has seen time and again that it’s always the fresh and
innovative sounds that get attention. “I released my first hip-hop mixtape [with his
then-partner DJ Exile] back in 1996,” he says. “That was the ‘golden era’ for hip
hop, when artists like Nas, A Tribe Called Quest, Tha Pharcyde, and Wu Tang
were all unique but engaging. Back then, being original was the most important
characteristic for an artist or group.” Blacc and Exile’s jazz samples and breakbeat
loops made them cult favorites in Los Angeles. As he grew as an artist,
Blacc transformed from rapper to singer, without discarding his hip-hop spirit and
aforementioned social awareness.
In the late ’90s, Blacc formed the rap duo Emanon and also toured and recorded
with members of the collective Lootpack before going solo in 2003. In 2006, indie
label Stones Throw issued Blacc’s debut Shine Through. Three years later, Blacc
began work on the album that would change his life and career, Good Things;
concocting a vintage yet immediate sound with the NYC-based production team
Truth & Soul. Even this, however, is only a part of Blacc’s vision. “Like most
artists, I can't stick to one thing too long,” he says. “I enjoy experimentation and
playing with emotion and sound.” Blacc draws inspiration from a wide variety of
styles both old and new, from funk to folk and psychedelic rock to reggae and
dancehall. Then there’s the Latin music that marks his family’s Panamanian
heritage, which his close-knit and musical family kept strong while raising Blacc
in the suburbs of Orange County in Southern California. “On the weekends, my
parents would take us to parties with their friend from Panama,” he recalls. “The
energy was electric with loud salsa music, dancing, dominoes, lots of food, and
lots of laughs.”
This year Blacc has been in the studio working on his new album with such
songwriters and producers as DJ Khalil and Harold Lilly, among others. “I think
the tie that binds is having good producers who can keep me in check and tailor
a focused sound,” he says. Blacc’s goal for the album is to weave nearly two
decades worth of style, vision, and soul into his strongest offering yet; one
designed to firmly connect his undeniable talent with the American market as well
as the rest of the world. The constant amidst Blacc’s sonic amalgam is his lyrical
perceptiveness. “The one thing that might connect it all is my storytelling,” he
says. With this latest chapter in an unpredictable career, the story of Aloe Blacc
continues to unfold.

This biography was provided by the artist or their representative.

Singer-songwriter Aloe Blacc’s affecting voice, perceptive lyrics, and dapper
sartorial flair are already familiar to music lovers in Europe. In 2010, his
international Top 10, platinum-selling single “I Need A Dollar” surged across the
continent, ringing out from the streets of Paris to the soul clubs of London,
combining social consciousness with irresistible pop. Throughout 2011, Blacc
and his touring band, The Grand Scheme, hit the road in support of Blacc’s
second solo album and international breakthrough Good Things; turning in
memorable sets at iconic festivals like Montreux Jazz in Switzerland and
Glastonbury in the UK. Blacc performed “I Need A Dollar” on the French TV
programs Taratata and Le Grand Journal, as well as the influential British music
show Later…with Jools Holland; spurring the track to become the de facto
anthem to the post-Great Recession recovery. “Everyone has a relationship with
money and can understand the experience of needing a dollar,” Blacc says of the
song’s appeal. “I'm really interested in creating music that can influence positive
social change,” he adds.
Years ago, there were those who made this look easy: Marvin Gaye, Gil Scott-
Heron, Sly Stone, Bob Marley, and Stevie Wonder, to name a few, and their
influence is readily apparent on the retro soul stylings of Good Things. So is the
hip hop that Blacc took to almost as soon as he could walk. “I was a B-boy at age
four,” he says. “The neighborhood crew nicknamed me ‘Little Rock.’ Eventually I
started experimenting with rhyme, and by age nine I was writing my own rap
lyrics on a small pocket note pad.” Licensed around the world, Good Things was
certified gold in the UK, France, Germany, and Australia, among other
countries. Two additional singles, “Loving You Is Killing Me” and “Green Lights,”
became European hits as well, leading to interest from Simon Fuller’s XIX
Entertainment, with whom Blacc signed a management deal. Last year, he
landed a recording contract with Interscope Records.
Blacc is currently recording his debut album for Interscope, with an eye toward
expanding his phenomenal European success to America. It’s where the
California native was born and raised, and where he has been a voice on the
indie hip-hop scene since high school. It’s also where most people know “I Need
A Dollar” as the theme to the HBO series How To Make it In America. It’s Blacc’s
longevity and persistence, however, that helps him put the challenge and
pressures of his remarkable career upswing in perspective. “This feels normal to
me so far,” he says. “It will likely be a new experience to be known in the U.S. I
am looking forward to introducing new music with a label that can help promote it
in ways that were impossible before.”
Over the years, Blacc has seen time and again that it’s always the fresh and
innovative sounds that get attention. “I released my first hip-hop mixtape [with his
then-partner DJ Exile] back in 1996,” he says. “That was the ‘golden era’ for hip
hop, when artists like Nas, A Tribe Called Quest, Tha Pharcyde, and Wu Tang
were all unique but engaging. Back then, being original was the most important
characteristic for an artist or group.” Blacc and Exile’s jazz samples and breakbeat
loops made them cult favorites in Los Angeles. As he grew as an artist,
Blacc transformed from rapper to singer, without discarding his hip-hop spirit and
aforementioned social awareness.
In the late ’90s, Blacc formed the rap duo Emanon and also toured and recorded
with members of the collective Lootpack before going solo in 2003. In 2006, indie
label Stones Throw issued Blacc’s debut Shine Through. Three years later, Blacc
began work on the album that would change his life and career, Good Things;
concocting a vintage yet immediate sound with the NYC-based production team
Truth & Soul. Even this, however, is only a part of Blacc’s vision. “Like most
artists, I can't stick to one thing too long,” he says. “I enjoy experimentation and
playing with emotion and sound.” Blacc draws inspiration from a wide variety of
styles both old and new, from funk to folk and psychedelic rock to reggae and
dancehall. Then there’s the Latin music that marks his family’s Panamanian
heritage, which his close-knit and musical family kept strong while raising Blacc
in the suburbs of Orange County in Southern California. “On the weekends, my
parents would take us to parties with their friend from Panama,” he recalls. “The
energy was electric with loud salsa music, dancing, dominoes, lots of food, and
lots of laughs.”
This year Blacc has been in the studio working on his new album with such
songwriters and producers as DJ Khalil and Harold Lilly, among others. “I think
the tie that binds is having good producers who can keep me in check and tailor
a focused sound,” he says. Blacc’s goal for the album is to weave nearly two
decades worth of style, vision, and soul into his strongest offering yet; one
designed to firmly connect his undeniable talent with the American market as well
as the rest of the world. The constant amidst Blacc’s sonic amalgam is his lyrical
perceptiveness. “The one thing that might connect it all is my storytelling,” he
says. With this latest chapter in an unpredictable career, the story of Aloe Blacc
continues to unfold.

This biography was provided by the artist or their representative.

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