P.O.S. Brings a Passion for Punk Rock to Hip-Hop

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"Denver is tight," says P.O.S with a chuckle when asked about the music scene here. The rapper, producer, part-time punk-rocker and founding member of Doomtree will be heading here at the end of this week. He'll be playing the Bluebird Thursday night, and Friday night he will be heading to the non-profit Youth on Record -- which works with at-risk youth in Denver -- to talk to the community about music education, youth and whatever else comes to mind. "I'm passionate about a lot of topics," he told us earlier this week.

See also: Grammy-Winning Songwriter Wil Guice on Why Denver Inspires Him and What R&B Needs

P.O.S got connected to Youth on Record through friends, including members of the Flobots and Wheelchair Sports Camp as well as other great Denver artists working to make Denver better. He says music one of the best way to help educate kids.

"I think it's very important," he says. "I think that it's also fun. It's good for your brain development to make music and play music, and it makes you feel good. I think everyone should be able to do it." Hip-hop, he says, can be a great way for kids to express themselves, because literally anyone can do it. "You don't need anything to make hip-hop music. You need your brain, your imagination, maybe a pen, maybe. You can just go do that."

P.O.S also says Denver, like his home city of Minneapolis, has a "crazy" hip-hop scene, due to the collaboration that make things like Youth on Record possible. "It's huge," he says. "Not just for a successful music scene but a successful music career. I don't think anyone can go up there with a head full of only their ideas and expect to come up with something new and unique. You always get the best from other people."

Hip-hop isn't the only skill P.O.S is known for. He started out playing bass in a punk band before trying out rhymes when his band mates left for college. Punk and hip-hop have been connected since they first originated, and both greatly inform how P.O.S approaches his music.

"I think my love of punk rock informs my hip-hop because I thereby make it really noisy," he says. "I think the rap I make is real noisy or real informed by urgency and excitement in the songs and not just laying back. But I got into it first because it was fun and it had its own energy and I love it."

While he will definitely be bringing his punkish brand of rap to the Bluebird, P.O.S has a softer side, one he expressed on a project with Bon Iver, the Rosebuds and other Minnesota musicians.

"If I'm buzzing with people and we get the idea to make music, we're just going to make music," he says. "That whole project was put together by my best friend, and from there I made really good friends with Justin [Vernon] and The Rosebuds guys and everybody. It was a great time."

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