Slaine, Madchild, Reks,Ritehook (cd release party)

On September 2, 2003, Slaine hit rock bottom. After years of drug abuse, starting in high school in Boston, and one final 72-hour cocaine marathon, he was left sitting in a Roxbury detox shaking and hallucinating. He was left to reflect on a life that started in Dorchester and left him with deep roots in South Boston and Roslindale. After growing up as somewhat of a gypsy moving around the Boston area, he moved to New York City at the age of 18 to become a filmmaker. He attended the School of Visual Arts for approximately seven months before being asked to leave due to a fight with an employee of the school. This incident was only weeks after he had been inspired by watching the Best Screenplay Oscar go to an up-and-coming duo of writers/actors named Matt Damon and Ben Affleck, who had created "Good Will Hunting," a film based in Slaine's hometown of South Boston.

Though his dreams of becoming a filmmaker seemed crushed for the moment, he, for the first time, started going to open mics in New York City, rapping on street corners and getting his first taste of venting through hip-hop music. His first love was hip-hop music, and he spent the days and nights of his youth blasting the Beastie Boys, Cypress Hill, Wu Tang Clan, House of Pain, Gang Starr and just about anything he could get his hands on. It inspired him to rhyme. "I started writing rhymes in 1986 when I was nine years old, but never had any forum to spit them in. I used to record on my boom box with a pair of headphones plugged into the microphone jack, but other than that they were just words on a page. New York was a different story."

After a short detour back in Boston, Slaine moved back to New York and lived in Queens where he fully immersed himself in New York City's culture. He spent his nights promoting events to make ends meet and hustling drugs while also doing them on a daily basis. At the same time, he was writing, performing, and freestyling more than ever. Eventually, he began recording and being managed by hip-hop legend MC Shan. After his relationship with Shan fizzled due to a dispute over a record deal, Slaine, now living in Brooklyn, began recording a demo in a studio operated by the Lordz of Brooklyn. It was through the Lordz of Brooklyn that Slaine was introduced to Danny Boy O'Connor of House of Pain. In 2001, 8 months before 9/11, Slaine moved back to Boston to be with his high school sweetheart who had had enough of New York City and Slaine's all night adventures.

Once back home with his girlfriend, however, things only got worse. He had returned to Boston to find many of his friends hooked on drugs. Slaine followed suit and it wasn't long before he split up with his girlfriend. "That was when the shit hit the fan. She was really the only thing holding me together at the time. I just didn't know it."

And so, after hustling and scamming and scheming and getting high, spinning in a whirlwind of violence and endless nights, hospital visits, overdoses, and watching those around him go to jail and die from the same lifestyle he was living, Slaine finally checked into the Dimock. On this day in September 2003, after a three-day bender, Slaine found himself with homeless drug addicts and realized he was no different than any of them. After one of the other patients, who had no idea that Slaine was a rapper, was trying to get under his skin with a battle rap, Slaine fired back. "I started unleashing on the poor guy with probably the best freestyle I ever spit. After that everybody in the room who was watching TV turned their attention to us. The guy started laughing and after that we were cool. I rhymed about all the things that had landed me there. Everybody had a story to tell. That was where the idea and the hunger for "The White Man is the Devil" was born. "The White Man" is a cocaine reference, not a declaration of self hate."

Later Slaine signed a production deal with DJ Lethal of House of Pain, and stayed on Danny Boy's couch while they recorded in LA for months. After returning home to South Boston, Slaine put out "The White Man is the Devil Volume 1" which was a street CD with no distribution, and he hooked up with Boston rap legends Edo G and Jaysaun to form the collective Special Teamz. Slaine gave stacks of CDs to every drug dealer he knew because he felt that it was the best way to reach people that would relate to the music, and he hustled them himself as well. Before long it seemed like the whole city had a copy of the CD, and his shows were starting to become well-attended raucous events. Special Teamz dropped a self-titled street CD after that which garnered critical acclaim while they toured Europe and performed everywhere from Italy and Germany to Amsterdam and London. In a very short time, Slaine had gone from living in poverty with a horrible drug habit to traveling the world performing, growing his fan base, and working with hip-hop icons such as DJ Premier, ILL BILL, House of Pain, Cypress Hill, The Alchemist, Edo G, Necro, Royce Da 5'9", Pete Rock, Sean Price, Buckshot, and a host of other talented artists. He also became part of the collective La Coka Nostra, which includes Slaine, Big Left, ILL BILL, formerly of Non Phixion, and all three members of House of Pain, Everlast, DJ Lethal, and Danny Boy. The group marks a return to hip-hop for the Grammy award winning blues singer Everlast, and their myspace page currently has close to 2 million plays. The La Coka Nostra album is heavily anticipated by hip-hop heads around the world.

In 2007, Slaine released the follow-up to his heralded street CD, "The White Man is the Devil Volume 2: Citizen Caine", a sequel that begins on the third day of the bender that landed him in detox and is an abstract version of his story. Special Teamz made their debut release, "Stereotypez", on the legendary indie hip-hop label Duck Down Records. After putting his filmmaking dreams on the back burner more than a decade ago, Slaine also made his acting debut in 2007 with his portrayal of Bubba Rogowski in Ben Affleck's return to screenwriting and directorial debut "Gone Baby Gone".

Slaine's name has grown far past the streets of Boston due to the exposure he has received in publications such as The Source, XXL, Scratch Magazine, Elemental Magazine, The New York Times, The Boston Herald, UK's Hip-Hop Connection Magazine, Japan's Warp Magazine, Boston Magazine, The Boston Phoenix, The Weekly Dig, The Village Voice, and many other publications and websites. He has performed all over the country from New York to LA from Miami to Las Vegas, and headlined a sold out show of 8,000 people in Switzerland with La Coka Nostra. He was nominated for a Boston Music Award in 2007, and won 4 trophies at The Mass Industry Committee's hip-hop awards in 2006, including one for Best Lyricist. For 2008, Slaine plans to release his first official album, and the debut album of La Coka Nostra. Slaine, who recently married his high school sweetheart on the Brooklyn Bridge, has an interesting way of tying his past to his present. "I love making music that means something to me, and I am grateful for all the experiences that I have had—good and bad. I am lucky to be alive, but my past also made me who I am today. Mostly, though, I am just happy that I got my girl back."

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Slaine, Madchild, Reks,Ritehook (cd release party)

Thursday, November 14 · Doors 8:00 PM at South Shore Music Hall

Off Sale