• Poll

    POLL: What Soul Position songs should I perform?

    Although I do have many fans that have been with me since I first started releasing music in the early 2000s, I’ve noticed that a large part of my fanbase is divided into two groups: those who know me primarily from my 1988 and Adventures in Counter-Culture albums, and those know me primarily from my Soul Position work with producer RJD2.  The last Soul Position album was released in 2006 and although RJ and I have worked together since then (most notably the track “the good life” that was released two weeks ago), we have yet to release a full-length album.  RJ and I remain good friends and are definitely trying to align our schedules to work on some new material, but I can’t make any promises how or when that will manifest itself. But rest assured, we’re both working towards making it happen.

  • Blog

    The First Show I Ever Played in Cleveland, OH

    The first time I played a show in Cleveland was around the year 2000. I was still living in Cincinnati at the time and the rest of my crew lived in Columbus.

    We had just released the first Greenhouse Effect and Illogic CDs and were beginning to play shows outside of our city.  Everybody was still working full-time jobs, so doing shows felt more like weekend getaways than touring; Inkwel would get the rental car, we would drive a couple hours to play the show, and all be back home by Sunday morning.  Back in those days we would usually roll at least six or seven deep to the shows: Me, Inkwel, Manifest, Illogic, Plead the Ph5th, DJ Drastic, DJ True Skills, and our dude Juan who did merch.

  • Blog

    Performance Tip: Start Early

    Photo by Joe Crimmons

    For the past couple of months, I’ve been considering writing a book about how to become a better live performer. I’m still in the brainstorming stage of writing down rough outlines and topics that I think should be covered, but so far it’s going pretty well.  If I get a solid enough outline I’ll give it a try.

    I would like to start giving some basic tips about performing here.  I’ve realized that what is unspoken and normal to me may not be normal to others, especially those that are just starting out.  I would like to share these things from time to time.

    The first performance tip I have is to start early.

  • Audio

    Now Available: Blueprint “Weightless Radio” Album

    Last year when Adventures in Counter-Culture was released I created an exclusive instrumental album to be given away free with all pre-orders that were sold through Fifth Element.  The name of the album was Weightless Radio: A Collection of Blueprint Instrumentals and, outside of the people who pre-ordered the album on Fifth Element, it hasn’t been available anywhere else prior to today.  In fact, there’s a lot of people who had no idea that this record even existed.  Therefore, I have decided to make this album available here on Printmatic.net for the first time.   Check it out:


    It it only available in digital format at this time and it is also available on Amazon.com

    At an hour-long and 27 tracks in length, I believe Weightless Radio is a very dope record.

    Thanks for the support!

  • Blog

    How Do You Respond to Failure?


    About six weeks ago, I was contacted about teaching two workshops on writing to a group of High School kids. The person who contacted me had originally reached out to me a couple years ago, but for whatever reason we weren’t able to make it happen.  It looked more likely this time around since my schedule was clear; I had been at home writing my book for several months straight and had no plans to be on the road for a while.

    After giving it some careful thought, I confirmed the date and started to prepare.  Admittedly, I was nervous about teaching, but since I had more time to prepare I felt confident I could put something together that the students and I would be happy with.

  • Blog

    Chip Away At Your Goals

    In the spring of 2010, while I was on tour with Killah Priest, I had the idea to write a book about the making of Adventures in Counter-Culture.  I started jotting down thoughts and memories, emptying my head of everything that I could recollect about the process and everything that went into the creation of the album.  I wasn’t sure if I would ever finish it, but It was a cool activity to keep me busy during the long drives.

    The album itself wouldn’t come out for a year, so my initial idea was to finish the book before the album was done so it would be available on the album’s release date.  Unfortunately, that didn’t happen.  I was able to write up about three or four pages of notes but that was it.  Sadly, the initial idea for The Making of Adventures in Counter-Culture book was filed away along with all the other ideas that I used to talk about but never finished.   I had a bucket list just like everybody else, which included items like sky diving, write a book, and make a movie, but during the two year period that I was drinking heavily nothing really seemed to get checked off of it.

    Things started to change shortly after that 2010 tour with Killah Priest.

  • Video

    The Adventures of Blueprint “Go Hard or Go Home: Behind The Video”

    It's been a while since since I've aired an episode of “The Adventures of Blueprint,” but have no fear, I'm back.  Brand new episode, baby!  This one talks about the upcoming video for “Go Hard or Go Home” and the circumstances that inspired its creation.  Check it out!


    The official music video for “Go Hard or Go Home” will debut next week, on the one-year anniversary of the Adventures in Counter-Culture album.

    Word is Blog!

  • Blog

    How to Cure Writer’s Block

    For those who write, writer’s block is the antithesis of expression.  As unseen as the common cold and as paralyzing to our creativity as any sickness that attacks our bodies. Those unfortunate enough to catch it are forced to carry on their lives voiceless in a world that barely gave them a voice to begin with.

    As writers, we tend to beat ourselves up over it.  The longer it lasts the more we start to question everything that made us unique, how we got this far, and if we’re really cut out for this field of work.  We worry that maybe we just ran out of “stuff” to write about.  Maybe our lives are just boring and we have nothing to offer.  But following that line of thinking only leads to the most obvious solution, which is to go do something interesting so we’ll have interesting things to write about.  This sounds good on the surface but don’t be fooled.

    I’ll explain.

  • Blog

    What I Learned From A 30-Year Old Drum Machine

    Yesterday I bought a used Roland TR-606 drum machine from craigslist.  For those that don’t know, the Roland brand of drum machines are synonymous with most of the music released in the 80’s.  You would be hard-pressed to find a record from that era that wasn’t made using one of the Roland drum machines; the most popular being the TR-808 model.  This model is so popular that people just refer to its sounds as the 808 kit, and an “808” is now slang for the really deep bass kick that’s used all over the place.  Even if you didn’t know what it was, you’ve heard it a million times, especially on southern rap records and 80’s music.  The TR-606 I bought originally came out in 1982.

    Even though I experimented with the 80’s sound on Adventures in Counter-Culture, I never owned any vintage gear, so I had to work from memory and studying those styles more than actually owning the gear they used to create it.   I would’ve loved to own some vintage gear in the past but it’s usually pretty expensive, and I didn’t know if I would be using it enough to justify the purchase.  Luckily, I saw the 606 on craigslist for a price that was in my budget, so I went for it.  I spent a few hours last night going through the user manual and learning how to use it, and while it hasn’t even been 24 hours since I brought the TR-606 home I’ve been reminded of something that was starting to get a bit lost.

  • Blog

    Being Nervous is Good For You

    I often get asked by friends and fans if I get nervous before I get on stage, and my answer for the past 10 years has always been “no.”   When I say I don’t get nervous most people think it’s because I’ve got nerves of steel or that my confidence is just so high that I can’t be shaken by being in front of unfamiliar crowds, but the truth is a little more complicated than that.

    Early in my career, I wasn’t nervous because I was too nieve to be nervous.  I was playing shows in my city but hadn’t really left yet and could still count on knowing the majority of the faces in the crowd.  Shows were social events more than shows back then and it was easy to be comfortable.  At that point being nervous about performing would’ve meant that I actually understood the long term scope of what I had gotten myself into, and that I wasn’t just out there having fun.  It was easy to be comfortable when you don’t know how bad things could go, and what you could lose in terms of fan support by doing really bad shows.  Truth be told, if i would’ve actually understood things a bit more at this stage I probably would’ve been nervous enough to piss my pants.  Everybody goes thru this stage.

  • Blog

    The Struggle of Getting Music Out

    2012 marks the tenth year that I’ve been a full-time artist. Without a doubt it’s the most rewarding career I’ve ever had.  It’s also the most challenging, although in completely different ways than my previous jobs.

    I remember when I was considering resigning from my job back in 2001, I went around getting advice from other self-employed people, in hopes of getting encouragement or advice before I made the leap.  One of the people I spoke to was named Todd Buck and he ran an in-home studio on the west side of Cincinnati that I would routinely use for mastering the first few albums I ever released.  He had just made the decision to move his studio and business out of his basement and to a larger one on the opposite side of town.  He had only been self-employed for a year at the time so I asked him for some advice.