He rides the beat and becomes the rhythm.
It flows through his mind into his heart and the words are born.
“I write albums about how I feel spiritually,” said Aaron Yates, best known by his stage name Tech N9ne. “I sit down and say what am I going through.”
Tech N9ne’s music is a collision of sound. He is sometimes referred to as a hip hop or rap artist, but he doesn’t confine himself to one style and he doesn’t let others cage him inside one either.
“I can’t be defined by one. I feel like a man of many styles. It’s so hard to place me … you can’t really pinpoint it,” he said.
“You don’t have to reach and do it how everyone else is doing it. You just have to do you.”
His stage name originates from the Tec-9 semi-automatic handgun. It was given to him by Walter Jefferson, known as Black Walt, because of his fast rhyming style.
He draws inspiration from his musical influences such as hip hop artists Public Enemy, N.W.A and other musicians such as The Doors.
Tech N9ne credits Jim Morrison’s influence for the creation of his independent label, Strange Music, which was inspired by The Door’s song People are Strange.
During his 2010 tour in Europe he was able to visit Morrison’s grave in the Pére Lachaise cemetery in Paris and toast the artist with champagne.
The artist’s newest album E.B.A.H. hits stores Sept. 18.
“I have an evil brain and angel heart,” said Tech N9ne about the title. “E.B.A.H. is powerful. It’s just massive. It’s like war is coming. It’s so big and crazy.”
But before his Nanaimo fans get a taste of his newest work they can see him live in concert at the Spice Lounge Sept. 7 with special guests Krizz Kaliko, Madchild from Swollen Members and the Scale Breakers.
“It’s going to be the wildest thing you have ever seen. It’s going to be anarchy on stage,” said Tech N9ne.
Like a warrior preparing for battle Tech N9ne applies his face paint before heading onstage to perform. It’s a ritual he undergoes in honour of his deceased partner Brian Dennis, who first gave him the signature look.
“It hides my shyness. It brings forth my inner strength,” he said.
Doors open at 9 p.m. Nanaimo vendors have sold out, but fans also have a chance to snag tickets at special contest giveaways nights held at the Spice Lounge and the Queens Aug. 31 and Sept. 1. VIP packages are still available online at http://strangemusicinc.net for $85. The VIP pass includes a meet and greet with the artists, a limited edition t-shirt, and a Tech N9ne dog tag.