Kung Fu Vampire sinks fangs into the rap game

Kung Fu Vampire brings its blood-curdling hip-hop to the Mile High City just in time for Halloween. Formed over a decade ago, the San Jose-based act is lead by the group's namesake, who's ferocious, rapid-fire rhymes drive the outfit's hard-hitting hip-hop, which is delivered with live drums of Chris Paxton and bass of Jeremy Pollett. In advance of the group's show tomorrow night at the Roxy Theatre, we caught up with Kung Fu Vampire himself for a quick chat.

Westword: How long have you been rapping?

Kung Fu Vampire: I started in 1991 and I've been going full steam ever since.

Where did the name come from?

Some friends of mine and I had been discussing the idea of a Vampire movie and a Kung Fu movie in my back yard back in the summer of 1999. Both of my friends felt that the name fit me, but we were gonna name our next album the Kung Fu Vampire Satire. By January 2000, I had fully adopted the name.

Recently you shot a video with E-40 for "Zombie." How did that come about?

E40 and his people reached out to me the morning of the video shoot and asked that I play the role of the chorus; it's not actually my voice, it's a sample that the producer used when he made the beat.

I think a lot of people would be surprised at your performance value. What are people's reactions to your set?

Once you see us live, it's a wrap, I really doubt anyone in hip-hop can touch our energy during a live performance.

How did this Love Bites tour come about?

Our new album drops Halloween night 2012, and we wanted to hit the road and give people the live experience while it was fresh. In essence, this is a CD release tour. The tour is the longest tour in the wicked underground genre, 47 dates to be exact [not counting artists signed to the three major labels Psychopathic, Strange and Suburban Noize].

Who is touring with you? How did they get on?

Liquid Assassin is a dear friend to me and was invited out for many reasons. When we pick who we wanna tour with, it's based on who I wanna be around for two months, mixed with skill level and respect. Other artists on the bill are Freelance Assassins from Allentown, PA and Mr. Grey from San Jose, CA.

So your latest project is titled Love Bites?

Yes. Love Bites will be available Halloween 2012 on iTunes and directly from us at

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Antonio Valenzuela