BPos Celebrate "Pos Tapes the Album" with Party at The Showdown in San Francisco

Posted by Billyjam, June 28, 2012 12:45pm | Post a Comment
BPos may not (yet) be a household name but the hardworking Bay Area, hip-hop crew, whose name stands for Be Positive sure deserve to be. And this just might happen with the release of their tight new album Pos Tapes the Album released this week on their own One League Entertainment label. Comprised of DJ Johnny Venetti and emcees/lyricists Goodword, Khafre, & D-Wiz (who also produces) this San Francisco diehard hip-hop quartet's new joint is their strongest release to date: a 17-track collection culled from Pos Tapes Vol. 1-3, a trilogy of self-produced “mix tape” digital albums released by the group over the past two years and featuring guest spots from Z-Man, Pep Love, Equipto, and others. 

In celebration of their latest release, which is available at Amoeba Music, BPos are throwing a record release party tomorrow Friday (June 29th) at The Showdown on Sixth Street in San Francisco. In addition to performances throughout the night from BPos the record release party will also include DJ sets from Inkfat, Aspect McArthy, and Johnny Venetti - who as well as being the group's DJ is also the owner of the downtown San Francisco venue. This past week I caught up with the DJ and the other members of BPos to ask them about their hip-hop musical journey to date, the new album, and their personal fave Bay Area hip-hop artists. That conversation follows below the brand new video for the album BPos track "Live Ya Life" 

BPOs "Live Ya Life" (2012)

Amoeblog: Can you give a brief overview of the legacy/history of BPos for those who may not know - including exactly when you first formed and the total number of recordings / releases to date?

Goodword: We Formed in 2006, Officially. But we had been toying with the idea, and others like it, for a long-time prior to that - like a few years earlier, D-Wiz, Khafre and I started a crew with a few other talented artists (Conceit, Orukusaki, Eachbox, Dj SavV), called One League Crew.  Nothing was ever released though and we only did a few shows.  When we started BPos, it was just D-Wiz, me and Venetti.  Khafre was always around though.  We put out The Upside in 2008.  Then, after we put out Pos Tapes 1 & Pos Tapes 2" (2010-2011), Khafre was on so many tracks and hungry to get on hella more.  So we were like, "Pos, just get over here and get in this group fool." haha.  So, pretty much immediately after we put out Vol. II, we beat Khafre's ass hella bad when we jumped him in the group. And now we have Pos Tapes Volume 3 (May 25, 2012) and Pos Tapes the Album (June 26, 2012).

Amoeblog: Can you describe your newest release and how some of those great cameos came about?

Goodword:  Pos Tapes the Album is cliff notes for Pos Tapes 1-3.  it's our favorite songs from those three albums.  But they are unique versions of the original songs, because we remixed and mastered them.  Or I guess I should say, D-Wiz remixed and mastered them (laughs). About the features though, it wasn't very hard for us to get features.  It was actually hard not to.  There's hella folks right now that are pissed at us, cause we haven't asked em to get on a track yet.  That's the beauty of the Pos Tapes though.  The whole idea was versatility and variation.  So it gave us the opportunity to open up the BPos lab to all the homies who, since then, have all been officially inducted into the Pos fam.  The tightest part about Pos Tapes the Album is that each one of the Pos Tapes exclusively features beats from one single Bay Area producer.  So each of them has it's own unique sound.  But when we took the best songs from each album and made a whole new album, the different styles fit together like the final pieces of a jigsaw puzzle of Beyonce's ass.  And last few pieces reveal the sugar shack.
BPos "DOPE" (2011)   

Amoeblog: It seems like BPos does a lot of live shows. Is this true and how important to a hip-hop group is it to perform onstage versus only been in the studio?

Goodword: Yeah, we do as many shows as we can.  The only time we aren't actively tryin to book shows is when we are crunch time on a project.  Our live shows is the best thing about BPos tho. We put a lot of thought and practice into it.  We are all performers at heart.  So we would never have prerecorded vocals or scratches playing during a live show.  But that's predominantly because it's an underground/independent hustle.  We don't have the option of mainstream radio because we don't have the money.  Our only option is to come correct at these live shows to keep the fans coming back and continuing to tune in.  I think having a good live show is more important than having a good product, but you better have both.  If you are signed to a major label, it doesn't matter that much though because the industry has somehow made the masses accepting of super star doing karaoke on stage.  If you wanna be successful at our level though, you gotta be able to "move the crowd." If Rakim was from the Bay, he would be my number one hero.

Amoeblog: What makes BPos unique and  what has kept you doing hip-hop. And will you ever stop?

D-Wiz: No I will never stop. I could never see myself stopping. I keep doing it in hopes of reaching more people, bigger crowds, and changing more opinions on what I think and what people think dope hip-hop is. BPos is unique because we make ourselves that. We spend a lot of time making sure what we record, how we write and perform will be different and raise the current bars and standards in hip-hop.

Khafre: It stops when I stop. Hip Hop is what I do and I'd do it wherever, whenever, and with whomever. Fortunately enough I get to do it with these motivated cats. That dedication is why, when you see us; you see a show. Dopeness!

Goodword: I think Johnny Venetti is what makes us most unique.  Just look at him.  [laughs] For real though, just by looking at us, you see how we are so individually unique in comparison to each other.  And then if you listen to our styles, you can tell that we are all quite different artistically as well.  But we have known each other so long we're family now.  That's definitely why we have made it this far. If we weren't so close, a lot of this drama that we have been through might have torn us apart.  We love each other like brothers.  So when we get into it with each other we know what we're doing is bigger than some little disagreement. And when we wake up the next day it's all love.  So I don't think we are gonna stop till we drop. Even if we never make it to that next level of rap stardom you can find us at the old folks home doing a routine with walkers and wheelchairs.

Johnny Venetti: I feel what makes BPos unique, like other groups as well, is all our individual personalities as artists. We all bring something entirely different to the music as well as keep the styles coming. Not one of our records sounds like the previous or next one and that keeps it alive in so many ways. If I stopped, I'd be dead. And even then I might keep going. Check out the new group then :BNeg

BPos "Stay Alive" (2010)

Amoeblog: When I listen to BPos I feel like you are carrying the torch/vibe/soul of the Souls of Mischief school of Bay Area hip-hop. Who are some of your Bay Area hip-hop heroes?
Johnny Venetti: Bay area heroes? I'm surrounded by them! So fortunate to be in the Bay area where so many styles and inspiration have grown on this soil. Hieroglyphics first come to mind for taking a different approach to bay hip hop with such versatile styles and creating constant anthems. And still going hard! Same as Bored Stiff with all individual artists constantly working and putting out that undeniable sf sound. I also was really influenced by all the Young Black Brotha artists. Khayree is an amazing producer. Mac Mall, Ray Luv, of course [Mac] Dre pioneering with V-town neighbors The Click, E40? - A true ambassador. RBL Posse, Rappin' 4tay, Andre Nickatina, San Quinn all influenced me. Made me need to roll (laughs) Gurp City! The Coup, Crown City Rockers for numerous reasons, style, sounds and hard work.I could go on with this forever..I'm going to stop.

Goodword: Hieroglyphics crew, is my number one Hero, because I remember the feeling I got when they first came out.  I felt what they were talkin about so much, it was like I could taste it.  Nobody put the Bay on the map like Too $hort.  So I gotta give him the 2-spot.  There is no pre-Too $hort Bay era.  Not that I remember.  Then Comes Living Legends, Blackalicious, and Zion I.  So you know I always rooted for the good guys!
D-Wiz: Souls of Mischief because they changed the whole style Bay Area emcees rapped, Bored Stiff because they casually been reppin' the Bay for over two decades and continue too, all of Hieroglyphics because all the crews and emcees on the label are unique and hella sick. I need to think of some more.


BPos celebrate their new album Pos Tapes the Album, which is available at Amoeba Music, with a record release party tomorrow Friday (June 29th) at The Showdown on Sixth Street in San Francisco. 9pm 21+ No cover. And for more info on BPos

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