Japanese-born Emcee Kaz-well is a Fish Outta Water

The Bay Area has long since been a haven of experimental hip-hop, where artists aren’t afraid to embark into musically uncharted territory. So it’s no surprise that the San Francisco-based self described “hip-hop geek,” Kaz-well, is readying his debut album, Fish Outta Water, a journey into an artists’ thoughts and emotions, set against a hip-hop landscape, reminiscent of 1980s.

“I just let my pen go as a catharsis,” explains 28-year old Kaz-well, who was born and raised in San Francisco. “It was all a big experiment.”

Kaz’s lyrics are a reflection of his own trials and tribulations, which are typical of many break dancing, graffiti-loving hip-hop heads. Take track no 1, “Krazy Glue,” Kaz charges that you can always put your life back together no matter what your childhood or past was like. Undoubtedly, the topic of love was also on Kaz-well’s mind when recording this LP, as many of the tracks tackle the subject of love, loss, and heartbreak. “Whether a crush or a broken heart, everyone can relate to love. Plus, I had met my fiancé during the time of conception for most of these songs…love was fresh in my heart and mind.”

The fact that Kaz-well, raised by Japanese-American restaurateurs, was consumed with all things hip-hop set him apart from his classmates from an ealrly age. Rapping was the natural extension of his passion.

Sighting musical influences from Wu-tang and Nas to Living Legends and Hieroglyphics to Radiohead and Curtis Mayfield, Kaz’s eclectic influences are reflected in his own style of music. These days, his tastes run the gamut from folk to rock to electronica, sighting Jay Electronica, Iron and Wine, and Ray Lamontagne as his current favorites.