North Texas Daily

Former UNT students part of Dallas hip-hop group success

Former UNT students part of Dallas hip-hop group success

January 24
21:19 2013

Alex Byrd

Intern

Brain Gang is the result of two worlds colliding. During the summer of 2011, after a business split between two colorful rappers Vincent Brown and Brandon Blue of the Dallas SoreLosers duo and a revamping of an up-and-coming group Fly Times, the popular Dallas rap group Brain Gang was born.

Two former UNT students, Bobby Sessions and Donovan Payne (Killa MC), are part of Blue’s now eight-man squad, along with lyricists Henry Etier (Cash’mir) and JT Mohrle, producers King Blue (Blue’s production alias), X’Zavier Edwards (X’Zavier) and Ishmael Davison (Ish), and long-time DJ, Big J.

Blue, the brains of the operation, used his setback as ammunition to start a new chapter. What started as an inner circle catchphrase evolved into a hip-hop collective of diverse talent and fast-growing success. Their first major show is Saturday.

“I do what feels right versus what is popular,” Blue said.

After two years of relentlessly releasing mix tapes, collaborating with other Dallas artists and opening for artists like Yung Nation and Kendrick Lamar, this powerhouse is ready for battle this weekend. This will be their first time performing at the Granada.

“It’ll be fun to perform somewhere with so much history,” Payne said. “This will definitely separate us from the lower tier of artists in Dallas.”

This performance will bring Brain Gang and another Dallas hip-hop sensation, A.Dd+ (pronounced Aye-Dee-Dee) together for a reunion of sorts.

Slim Gravy of the duo A.Dd+ originally introduced JT and Blue, and what started as a simple musician friendship, turned into a full-blown Dallas wildfire of raw, new-age hip-hop.

“A year ago, at the A.Dd+ ‘When Pigs Fly’ release party, everyone was standing wall-to-wall,” Mohrle said. “I’m truly proud to be a face of the underground movement.”

Brain Gang will take the stage again at the “Aero-Circuit” presented by Aeronotiqz in Denton on Thursday, Feb. 21 with Bobby Sessions and a special appearance by Blue.

“We’ll be releasing a lot of personal work and visuals,” Etier said. “Our goal is to really give some insight to the city about who we are, individually and as Brain Gang. We want to make a personal connection with everyone.”

Tickets are $12-35 dollars and can be purchased at granadatheater.com.

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