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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia with Dead Prez live at Resistance Festival, Athens, 2009
Background information
Genres Hip hop
Occupations rapper, author, producer
Labels BossUp, Real Talk Ent.
Associated acts Dead Prez
Young Noble

Clayton Gavin (born 1974, in Shadeville, Florida, USA), better known as, is a rapper, activist and author known for his work as one half of the political hip-hop duo Dead Prez. He is known largely for their hard-hitting style and politically active lyrics, focusing on racism, critical pedagogy, activism against governmental hypocrisy, and corporate control over the media, especially hip-hop record labels. Dead Prez made their stance clear on their first album, declaring on the lead song, "I'm a African" that the group is "somewhere between N.W.A. and P.E.".


History was born and raised in Shadeville, Florida, a rural unincorporated community in the panhandle. His elementary school was predominantly white and rural, in stark contrast to his high school, Rickards. In the song "They Schools", references his early education: "I got my diploma from a school called Rickards / Full of, teenage mothers, and drug dealin niggas / In the hallways, the popo was always present / Searchin through niggas possessions / Lookin for, dope and weapons, get your lessons"

He used to relax on the campus of FAMU though he was never enrolled for classes. There he and M-1 met and connected due to their mutual love of music and knowledge. The two comrades' growing sense of Black pride and political theory served as a common bond as they joined various community groups, eventually forming Dead Prez as a rap group and moving to New York. After a chance meeting with Brand Nubian's Lord Jamar at a Brooklyn block party, the duo signed a recording deal with Loud Records, which released Let's Get Free. But even before the release of the record, Dead Prez amassed a strong and loyal underground following through their explosive live shows, ardent community organizing and top notch unreleased material.

"I don't really consider myself no producer, but I have fun trying to make music that I wanna hear," confesses stic. "We work with live musicians as well as beat machines. We lay the foundation. We might lay some drums, and then build, either getting samples or some type of rhythm in the instruments, or we might come up with a melody. A lot of times the melody is the first thing for me in terms of creating a song. I just start singing some shit and then we start".

In 2006 demonstrated his writing talents with two books. The first, entitled Warrior Names from Afrika, is a compilation of African warrior names and their meanings. His second book, The Art of Emcee-ing, is a 112-page resource that offers a step-by-step instructional guide on how to emcee, unique tips on voice healing and vocal health practices, and an explanation on many aspects of the hip hop industry, including terminology, styles, and business dealings. described the book as a "succinct panoramic guide on hip-hop wordsmithing."[1] also maintains Boss Up, Inc., an "Atlanta-based music and entertainment company that offers information, music, and gear that reflects a sense of self-determination, creative consciousness, and entrepreneurship."[2] is an atheist and vegan, expressing it in Dead Prez albums.

More recently has produced "Sly Fox", "Untitled" and "We're Not Alone" on Nas' album Untitled. He has also rapped on other artist's albums, such as Bizzare's Hannicap Circus

Trivia owns a multimedia company called Boss Up Inc


Film appearances

He appears in the 2008 film The Black Candle, directed by M.K. Asante, Jr. and narrated by Maya Angelou.


External links



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