The Austin Chronicle

Spotlight: DJ Rapid Ric

9:30PM, Back Room

By Robert Gabriel, March 17, 2006, Music

Traveling across borders with his vinyl and MP3 files, Austin's DJ Rapid Ric is the Johnny Appleseed of Texas hip-hop.

"With the advent of LiveWire! Broadcast,, and other Internet blogs, there's suddently this weird underground fan base that can't be tracked by Soundscan," Ric says. "Last month Matt Sonzala of HoustonSoReal hooked up a show for Devin the Dude and me in London, Ontario, and the crowd hardly seemed to know who Devin was, but they wanted so badly to see us perform."

As momentum continues building for Screwston-styled rap, Ric's reach as the premier purveyor of impeccably blended Lone Star mixes hits critical mass in the form of an upcoming compilation. Sneaking flashes of Deep in the Hood of Texas by way of his Saturday night show on Hot 93.3, Ric basks in the sunshine of a formal Magno/Chalie Boy/Top Dollar collaboration.

"I see 'Pullin' Up' as much brighter than most of the stuff that's been coming out lately on a typical 'I'm hot and you're not' kind of vibe," Ric explains. "We're planning to shoot a video for it during Texas Relays."

In a live setting, Ric constructs a virtual mixtape piece by piece as his instrumental collages are accompanied by freestyles from Austin's Bavu Blakes, Ryno, and Lil Mario.

"The only difference is that on stage, I have to measure the reaction of the crowd," he says. "If they're already hype, it allows me to go right into my introduction. If they're not, I may need to warm them up first by playing a few classic cuts. And SXSW is great because it's almost a sure thing that the sound will be tight. When the mics and monitors are good and we don't have to worry too much about technical issues, it gives us more room to move into doing something truly remarkable."

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