Last year I was the Austin Music Hall for a Hot 93.3 show that featured Southern Rap Legend Bun B, headliner David Banner and Z-Ro. I saw people rapping along the words to all his songs, but I expected that because of the radio popularity I mentioned a moment ago. People weren't going any crazier for Z-Ro than they were for Bun B or the previous local performers. I took a couple of pictures and recorded some low quality video from my point and shoot camera just for fun. I posted them to YouTube shortly after the show. I did so for the David Banner videos and for the Bun B videos. Second only to some Cool Kids videos from Stubb's, my Z-Ro videos have the most views on my YouTube page.
Now I recorded some pretty big names last year with my point and shoot the same way, but Z-Ro was the one who took off? I was surprised by that. My videos weren't even good quality. That said something right there. He may be the underground scene's crown holder. For a while there on Myspace, I was seeing a lot of profile songs that were from Z-Ro. If nothing else, he was kicking ass on Myspace.
Since then I have been intrigued by this dude Z-Ro. I downloaded his recent album at the time, Crack. I combed my iTunes for any tracks with Z-Ro and a bunch of Houston artists came up that featured Z-Ro. These were all big names like Paul Wall, Bun B and Lil' Flip to name a few. He has a real distinguishable voice and flow. You can tell he's a big dude and definitely Texan with that heavy accent that even comes through when rapping. If he does write his own rhymes, and I admit I don't know, then he has some talent there for sure.
Earlier this year I went to hit up Piranha Records in Round Rock, a great local source for anything Houston Hip Hop or Southern Underground, and picked up some Mix Tapes (actually CDs) that featured Z-Ro. His stuff on those Mix Tapes were better than some of his radio hits, although too short in length to be songs most of the time. I prefer full length songs, but that's just me. If you are new to Z-Ro, then start with his album I'm Still Livin'. Surf the net a bit and you'll see there's an interesting story about that album. I'll post some links as always at the end of the post that can give you more info.
Again, I'm semi-new to Z-Ro and don't listen to too much new hip hop these days. I'm more of what you call a "back packer" but there's something about the rawness and grime of Houston stuff that just does it for me. Anyway, I just wanted to post a little something about my Z-Ro experience and let you know he'll be at Ace's Lounge tonight. Hopefully, he will perform for you all my favorite Z-Ro track, "Top Notch". Check out the video and give it a listen here:
Z-Ro on Myspace
Z-Ro on Wikipedia
Concert info for tonight:
Ace's Lounge is located on 222 E. 6th Street. You'll see it there on the corner of 6th and San Jacinto. If you see Brazos St or The Driskell Hotel, you've gone too far. The show is at 8:00 and is hosted by Smackola from The Dirty Wormz. See the flyer for details or visit Ace's Lounge online at www.acesaustin.com.