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The best kept secret in music


"The Ground Zero Movement: Elevating the Underground"

March 20, 2004
The Ground Zero Movement is not ballin'. Ground Zero Movement is not rollin' with an entourage of super models and flashing their bling-bling. Ground Zero Movement or simply GZM is clawing and tearing up through the soil breaking from within the coffin holding the corpse of Hip-Hop. Aching to scratch the surface and breathe new life into the putrid husk of a seemingly lifeless movement to say, "Yes, Hip-Hop is still alive and well in the underground, it is in every corner and on the walls in mom and pop-shops and on the clothes on our back. It is writhing in the minds of our youth who are striving to rise above and dig their way out into a world that only thinks they understand what they have learned about Hip-Hop."

It is a spirit alive in the Ground Zero Movement and they are coming with undaunted speed.

The five-member group would gladly admit to seeing itself more as a family of brothers than a group of musicians. When asked to define GZM, D.O. tha Fabulous brazenly replies, "D.O., Dow Jones, Sid Fly, Ase One, and SeeWhy?, period."

It is easy to understand why GZM is such a cohesive amalgamation of creative minds as well as a celebration of different people with musical back rounds dating back to the childhood of each member. "(I never had) NO formal training," says Ase One.

"We (his family) had Karaoke nights around the house before they even had the machines for it," he continues.

Where Ase One relied on spontaneity for his musical release, others like Dow Jones were allowed more traditional ways of expression, "I took piano lessons from age 10-14...I started playing instruments because it was naturally the 'thing to do'. I come from a long line of singers and musicians so it was a natural progression."

Dow Jones was also an integral musical figure in the Denver Punk Rock and Hardcore scenes in the early to mid 90s, offering both his bass guitar abilities as well as his advance guitar playing skills to a number of projects.

D.O. who is originally from New Jersey had a street level introduction to his art "I just threw myself into the business, free styling and getting credibility on the streets."

Ground Zero Movement is on a quest to blur the lines of Hip-Hop culture. Converging each element of the genre with retro and contemporary, creating a style beyond labels and genres, determined to display the movement for it's artistic and cultural, social and political aspects rather than focusing on monetary gain. "For the most part hip-hop music is dominated by people who think rap music and Hip-Hop are synonymous terms," Dow explains.

"Recognize that it is really only one of nine elements that make up Hip-Hop culture. The other elements of Hip-Hop are progressing beyond belief. What I see from a lot of the B-Boys, DJs and Graf artists here in Denver is amazing. The music has become stagnated by the commercial aspect. Yes, everyone is trying to eat so they have to make a living, but when dollars are the only focus instead of being one of many focal points, the creativity suffers."

As important as it is to GZM to continually make progress with their music Ase One makes a valid observation at the current state of their art form, "Hip-hop music has definitely changed - it's not the same. It's harder for artists that represent Hip-Hop to actually do Hip-Hop. So many people are doing so many different things with rap that it doesn't even resemble where the music came from."

Although the members of Ground Zero Movement feel the current state of Hip-Hop may be skewed, they have plenty of advice and encouragement for young musicians trying to break into the "business." D.O. says, "You have to be ready to put your music out there and take risks. You can't just be passive and hope success is just going to fall from the sky and hit you in the head."

Dow Jones adds, "Don't listen to what people have to say unless they are people you TRULY admire. A lot of people like to run their mouths and give "advice" on music or the music industry without any real knowledge of how it really goes down."

Ase One says, "Success in music comes from the work that you put in to it. Success is having a real connection with the people - where people recognize you as a musician and respect your work. They'll recognize the difference between you and someone who is just starting out."

By Jason Andrade - The Music (San Diego)

"The Ground Zero Movement"

By Michael Roberts
Article Published May 6, 2004

People in the know realize that Future I.D. was released late last year. The problem is, most folks aren't in the know, which helps explain why one of the best hip-hop discs ever to come out of Colorado hasn't made more of a bang. This review is an effort to turn up the noise.

With the exception of the Procussions, solo MCs ranging from Kingdom to Don Blas have soaked up the lion's share of attention paid to Denver-area hip-hop acts. The Ground Zero Movement, in contrast, is an egalitarian collective whose lyricists -- Dow Jones, Aseone, Sid Fly and D.O. Da Fabulous Drifta, abetted by DJ See Why? -- have jointly committed themselves to a life of rhyme. The variety of voices on I.D. is matched by tracks that mix up the music rather than subtly tweak the same beat a dozen times. "M.H.C." is powered by a mega-funk bass line and heavily goosed background vocals; "Survival" rages on machine-tooled riffs; "Maintain" pairs a soulful hook with a gentle piano loop; and "Kings of the Underground" goes from gloomy to ecstatic over the course of several blissful minutes. And while the lyrics include typical tropes about niggas and beyotches, they also encompass statements of purpose such as the "Wet Doe" declaration "With the weight of the world/And no shoes on my feet/I'm walkin' the extra mile/Until my soul is complete."

Before the Rocky Mountain West can become ground zero for hip-hop nationally, locals need to get on board -- and this is one Movement worth joining. Better late than never.
- Westword Magazine

"Future I.D."

November 21, 2003
Future I.D.
Response Records

Plain and simple Hip-Hop is not my cocktail of choice. Why? When I was the wee age of ten I was exposed to my first doses of Hip-Hop, Afrika Bambaataa and the Soul Sonic Force, Curtis Blow, U.T.F.O., etc. I was in love with the music and its concrete attitude and ingenuous lyrics. I finally felt as if I had found something unyielding and unabashed that spoke to the rest of the world about how I was feeling growing up in a poor family. Toward the end of the eighties and beginning of the nineties the genre took a turn, and things would never be the same again. Where the music once expressed anger and resentment at the way life was being lived in the inner cities, but maintaining an air of hope for the future and maintaining a sense of humor, artists turned their attention to senseless violence, misogyny, and lyrics laced with street gang attitude. What was once an outlet for the pressures of being poor and in the ghetto had become a podium for the disgruntled youth of the urban jungles to shout their discontent.

Fast forward to 2003 and one will find the genre saturated with faux Tupak Shakur thugs and light weight versions of the Notorious B.I.G., all ill equipped and too short on lyrical ammunition to "wet-chu-up", this all, unfortunately, leaving me with a sour taste on the tip of my tongue. After the early to mid-nineties hosted an array of very talented and seminal artists, by '95-'96 the music began to sputter and then become stagnant. Since, for me personally, little in the Hip-Hop world has caught my ear, until now. Denver Colorado is best known for its sports teams, mountain ski communities and Rocky Mountain Spring water than for its Hip-Hop music scene and for good reason too; until recently it did not seem to exist.

The Ground Zero Movement are without a doubt Denver's premier Hip-Hop contender overshadowing their contemporaries and laying waste to the myth (even if said myth is more a reflection of my opinion than truth) that Hip-Hop is dead. The album burst open with "M.H.C." (or "Mile High City" for those of you not familiar with Denver's nick name, see also Denbury) an ode to early west coast Hip-Hop musically, brought to you by Dow Jones who produced most of the album's beats. Lyrical assaults are furiously conducted D.O. Da Fabulous Drifta, Sid Fly, Aseone and Dow Jones backed up by the meticulous turn-table sophistication of DJ See Why?, not to mention some guest appearances including Tash from the Alkaholics. Subject matter throughout the album ranges from racial discontent, political commentary and social satire, not to mention the self-flaunting of each individual's skills on the mic. GZM's strongest asset would plainly be their dedication to Hip-Hop at its root level, taking the listener back to the days of linoleum on the basement floor, pumping beats through the speakers of your "Ghetto Blaster" while you and your friends pop and lock your way out of a rampant sugar high.

The one thing this album does for me? It makes Hip-Hop fun again, not so much for its musical genius, but its lack thereof. It relies on simplicity and the lyrical content of the M.C. to do its work. The only real complaint I have for this album is its horrific attempt at a rap/rock effort titled "Survival" in which they combine heinous wanna-be "Biohazard" riffing with a curiously similar to "Mobb Deep" chorus. That said, I can truly say that GZM has sparked an interest in me for a genre that was all but dead to me.

By Jason Andrade


[In Reviews]

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From Autumn to Ashes

Exene Cervenka and The Original Sinners


We Are Scientists

Infinite Number of Sounds


Malcolm Palmer


Tom Vek

Man Man

Nocturnal Rites

The Deadly

Novembers Doom


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- The Music (San Diego)

"Soul of the City - D.O. The Fabulous Drifter"

Soul of the City
A journey into the heart of Denver hip-hop

By Vince Darcangelo (
Jan. 2006

In Boulder, hip-hop music is something you most often hear pumped through the speakers of SUVs sporting Yakima racks on top. But though Colorado is better known for fresh powder than fresh beats, true hip-hop does exist at this altitude. You won't find it in trendy LoDo hot spots or on the pristine bricks of Pearl Street and the 16th Street Mall. According to D.O. The Fabulous Drifter, if you want to find true hip-hop in Colorado you have to travel east past the gentrified neighborhoods of Capitol Hill to the lesser-known projects of Aurora along East Colfax—and you'd best travel it by RTD.

"You want to understand my music. You want to understand where I'm coming from, you got to experience the 15 bus," D.O. says.

It's Saturday, Dec. 10, and D.O. and his group Ground Zero Movement are playing a benefit for the Rape Assistance and Awareness Program (RAAP) at Bender's Tavern. But prior to the show, D.O. is taking me on a tour of his East Side hood. We meet at Market Street Station, take the shuttle to California, and pick up the 15 in front of the Capitol.

The 15 runs east along Colfax from downtown Denver to Aurora, the city's most notorious area. From a window seat, the city's geography quickly changes from tall buildings and five-star restaurants to no-tell motels and pawnshops. It's a part of the city that few ever see, where a history of gang violence and poverty has made the area a psychological forbidden zone to the rest of the state. But for D.O., Aurora is a place with a strong sense of pride and community, despite its rep on the outside. It's also the breeding ground for Denver's burgeoning hip-hop scene, where scores of independent artists are cutting killer grooves below the radar of the mainstream consciousness. And if D.O.'s calculations are correct, the scene is about to blow up, bringing a definitive Mile High flavor to the evolution of hip-hop.

First Stop: Ogden House

"This is one of the last footholds of Denver hip-hop," D.O. says as we step onto the porch of the Ogden House.

An unassuming two-story in the shadow of one of the city's most popular music venues, the Ogden House is home to a number of Denver hip-hop artists living in separate apartments but sharing community space, a community studio, and collaborating on each other's projects. D.O. likens the Ogden House to the freestyle circles of his youth, known as "cyphers."

"It's like when we'd be up in the hallways or in the lunchroom of high school or at the Mercury Café, just 10 MCs in a circle, not necessarily battlin', but just flashin' skills. Just freestylin' and talkin' shit," he says.

"[Ogden House] is a modern-day cypher," he continues. "It's a place where cats can get together and build. That's what the cypher was all about, just building hip-hop. If you want to drop a track, you can drop a track here. If you want to pick up some new music, you can get it here."

D.O. knocks on a door, calling for Blaze. No answer. He tries another door, and J-Cook steps into the hallway. He has a thin build and sports an impressive crop of hair like Huey from The Boondocks. He shows us around the ground floor until Blaze, aka DJ Fire, meets us in the hallway. They lead us into Ogden House's community studio, where J-Cook hands me a copy of local DJ Joe Thunda's new mix, Denver 2 da South.

"It's all brothers. We ain't no killer gangstas. We brothers who love hip-hop," D.O. says. "You don't even need to rap. You can just come and bullshit.

"A lot of times young black men don't talk to each other. The way we express ourselves is through rap," he adds. "That seems to be the only time that people listen to you."

After leaving the house, we walk along the Ogden and Corona blocks of Colfax. D.O. points out historic landmarks in local hip-hop culture along the way.

"This area had a lot of shit going on," he says. "There was a lot of hip-hop, a lot of punk rock. It was grungy. This was before the yuppies moved in.

"I'm getting chills just thinking about it," he continues. "All we'd do is smoke weed and freestyle. We would rhyme, make beats, drink. The homies would come through, and we'd talk shit. Aurora was too hot. They were killing people there. We'd come here because this place was open. You wouldn't know it now. They got all these..."

He pauses, shakes his head.

"They call 'em hipsters," he says with a laugh.

The subject then changes to food, and we walk a few blocks to Logar Grocery at Colfax and Marion.

"I'm a corner-store junkie," D.O. says. "I'll take a corner, mom-and-pop place over any of these restaurants. These are people that are struggling to survive just like you. The people that own these stores, they've known me since I was a teenager. It's community. I know all these people; they know me."

Logar, a Muslim-owned grocery, is closed for a five-minute prayer break when we arrive. As we wait for the store to reopen, a small group gathers around us. It's a representative mix of the neighborhood these days: an older black man, a young, hip white girl chatting on her cell phone and an awkwardly neat white couple dressed in CU gear who would look more at home on Mapleton Hill than at a corner store on Colfax. But this is the new Colfax—at least in this part of Denver—where urban is colliding with urban chic, for better and for worse.

"In a sense gentrification is good because you're starting to give life to the city," D.O. says. "But at the same time you're pushing the poor people out of the city. I don't like them tearing down the historic buildings."

After getting a microwave burrito and a Black and Mild at Logar, we cross Colfax to get back on the 15. We have to run to make it, filing on just before the driver shuts the doors. We take two seats in the back and catch our breath. D.O. takes the last few bites of his burrito while I finish jotting down some notes. Then I close my notepad and slide it back into my leather jacket.

"What's our next stop?" I ask.

D.O. smiles devilishly.

"Hitsville," he says.

Emergence of a black hero

D.O. is an encyclopedia of Denver hip-hop, spitting names of past and present artists faster than my pen can scribe. He goes back to the early days and Trips Records and The Homeboys, whom he cites as a big influence on his music. But despite this legacy of hip-hop on the Front Range, Colorado doesn't get much national recognition as a hotspot for MCs. Worse than that, D.O. says area hip-hop acts have trouble just getting gigs at local venues.

"We have no consistent place, no consistent night," he says.

Recently a weekly hip-hop night was cancelled after someone graffitied a mirror in the venue's bathroom, D.O. says, and a downtown Denver club he's played in the past has temporarily stopped booking hip-hop acts following a recent shooting at a show near Union Station.

"I'm not thinking anything of [the shooting]. It's the city. It happens," D.O. says. "They said they weren't booking hip-hop gigs for another six months. Every time we do [a hip-hop show] and something goes on, well, here we go!"

D.O., whose music is street-conscious but doesn't glorify stereotypical "gangsta" themes, says venues shouldn't dismiss hip-hop groups based on their style of music but should book acts based on their track record.

"Recognize people with credentials," he says. "We're doing positive stuff."

For a while, the home of Denver hip-hop was Sports Field on East Colfax. It's a place D.O. speaks of with great reverence, recalling a gathering place where the community was able to thrive for nearly a year and a half.

"Anybody who just wanted to rhyme, work on their stage show, come down to Sports Field," D.O. says. "We had the motherfuckin' city. It was all about hip-hop. Aurora kids, West Side kids, the Mexicans would come down to check it out... Wherever you was from, you'd just get in a circle and rap."

Despite the obstacles, D.O. and Ground Zero Movement have been able to carve out a degree of local success. In March of this year, Westword named Ground Zero Movement Denver's Best Hip-Hop Act in its annual best-of issue. Following the success of the group's 2003 release, Future I.D., and D.O.'s 2005 solo outing, Guns... The New Watermelon, anticipation has been building for D.O.'s new single, "Wake Up," which also contains the B-side, "The Emergence of a Black Hero" featuring Yonnas of Pirate Sygnal. The single is due for release in late January or early February.

D.O. and Ground Zero Movement could be part of a larger groundswell, with a new breed of hip-hop artists potentially emerging from the inner workings of strongholds like the Ogden House to deliver a fresh style of hip-hop to the masses. While Denver might not become as synonymous with hip-hop as places like Hollis and Compton anytime soon, D.O. says the Denver scene is showing some improvement, in particular on the East Side.

"In Aurora, we're gettin' our shine on," he says. "The best MCs in the state come from Aurora... Motherfuckers are like, 'It's our time.'"

Saudi Aurora

The 15 heads east, away from the bright lights of Capitol Hill. We get off the bus at Yosemite and Colfax, the entrance to Aurora Proper.

"This is the part of Denver most people don't get to see," D.O. says. "This is what we call Saudi Aurora, because a lot of crazy shit goes on here."

We walk down Colfax a ways, then cut across a snowy field into a neighborhood of close-set houses and faded apartment complexes. As we trudge through the muddy snow, D.O. talks about his first group, Funky Young Tribe, which released This That Shit in 1994, and his first crew, Black Souls of a Tribal Bomb, peppering his recollections with snippets of rhymes from back then. We emerge from the field on East 16th, where D.O. lived for a number of years.

"The cops used to close down the street because of all the drug dealing. You couldn't go down the street," D.O. says. "There ain't no snowboarders here. There ain't no Broncos, no big buildings... People don't see this shit right here."

We walk through the neighborhood then head south on Boston, yielding for traffic and circling back toward Colfax. Near the Boys and Girls Club a truck pulls up to the curb and drops off a young, curvy black girl. She gets out of the truck and lingers on the corner, eyeing us for a moment.

"That's a hooker right there," D.O. says. "She just finished her trick."

We reach the end of the block and find ourselves in the parking lot of the EZ Market, the community gathering place where D.O. has spent a lot of time hanging out over the years.

"You just stand there, you know, smoke a cigarette, maybe wait for some girlies to come through, just hanging on the corner basically," he says. "That's how I do. Just chill. Just hang out until the APD come around. They mess it up for everybody."

Recalling some of his favorite anecdotes from the EZ Market, D.O.'s worst trouble didn't come from the Aurora police but from security within the EZ Market itself during the early days of his music career.

"They had a security guard, which was pretty funny. I had my tapes. He came up, 'You can't sell those tapes,' so I cussed him out. He wrote me up and banned me from EZ Market. I got banned at EZ Market!" he says with a deep laugh. "He said I couldn't come back for a year. I came up a week later, and he was gone. I was like, 'I'm the least cat you gotta worry about. I'm just up here tryin' to make some money.'"

Outside the market, D.O. pulls out another Black and Mild and searches for a light. He runs off to grab one from a guy in the parking lot, leaving me at the market's pay phone, jotting down the last of my notes—the only white face among groups of African Americans and Hispanics. As I scribble in my notepad, I hear laughter. Two Latina girls are walking past me on their way into the store.

"We get nervous when we see a white guy taking notes," one of the girls teases.

We continue walking down Colfax. Contrary to Aurora's rep, some of the gentrification seen around Capitol Hill has made it to the East Side, as well. One minute we're walking through projects, the next we're standing on a freshly paved block boasting a performing arts theater, a shopping center and the Martin Luther King Library. We pass an ice cream shop, and the sweet aroma of a bakery fills the block.

"This is pretty nice," I say.

"Yeah, that's why we never thought to leave," D.O. says. "There's a lot of life. There's a lot of culture. I may not feel good about Colorado, but you can't talk shit about Aurora."

What does concern D.O. is the changing face of his city due to gentrification. He points to the spot where Sunshine Records, a popular hip-hop record shop in its day, has been replaced by a Berryhill Home Collections store and laments the loss of the dollar-fifty movie house. We pass a newly built apartment complex across from the library, and D.O. points toward the fancy three-story building.

"We know who don't live there," he says.

After a few blocks, the artsy buildings give way to more pawnshops and motels. We hop back on the 15 and take it to Peoria to meet Big Yatta.

To the barbershop

Big Yatta is, well, big. Tall, fierce-looking, but despite his large hands he works his razor with unexpected precision. Today he's etching designs into the scalp of a young child of maybe 4 or 5. The child sits quietly, unnerved by the commotion in Fades Unlimited barbershop where more than a dozen guys are hanging out in the waiting area and underground hip-hop is pumping through the shop's bass-heavy PA system.

Big Yatta, who co-owns Fades Unlimited with his brother, pauses a moment and sets down his razor as D.O. introduces us. He extends one of his meaty hands, flashes a wide smile, then hands me a copy of his latest mix disc, From the Block to the Barbershop.

You see, Fades Unlimited is not only a place to get a haircut. It's also home to independent hip-hop label Aggression Records.

"Go show him the studio," Big Yatta says.

I follow D.O. into the back of the shop where an office has been converted into a makeshift recording studio with a computer, a mixing board, some microphones and speakers.

"Colorado has more independent studios and labels than L.A.," D.O. says. "We're going to be the independent record capital—because we have to be."

According to D.O., the hip-hop scene is evolving not only at the local level, but at the national level as well. The major-label homogenization of hip-hop has forced artists working outside the mainstream to release through independent labels, such as D.O.'s 5 Points Plan Media Group (named after Denver's notorious Five Points neighborhood), which he runs with fellow Ground Zero Movement member Dow Jones. As the industry changes, he says, so will the music.

"I think it's going to be a lot more individualistic, and a lot more originality is going to be put back in the music—the originality that hip-hop is supposed to be about," D.O. says.

And just as hip-hop's creativity has been hijacked by the industry, D.O. says the lyrical content has been pigeonholed as well.

"They're telling people to perpetuate these things about the ghetto," he says.

This is where D.O. comes in. Growing up in the projects of Aurora, he's got the street cred to back up his raps. But like KRS-One and other progressive-minded rappers, he's not glorifying his background, but documenting it, confronting it and encouraging listeners to overcome the stereotypes.

"It's street-conscious music. It's still hood, but it's conscious. I could still be out here hustlin'. I'm right here with you. I just got clean shoes on," he says. "I did jail. I been there, done that. I don't glorify it. I don't think it's cool. There's nothing hot about jail.

"Gang violence and sellin' drugs and disrespecting women, that's not the entire black experience," he continues. "These rappers that glorify this, you know what, if you're 25 and still sellin' dope, get out of the rap game. If you're that ill on the streets, then go back to the streets. Leave the rappin' to people with talent."

D.O. pauses a moment, then turns to me with a smile.

"That's what I'm going to say at the Grammies."

The Grays

D.O. points to where gangbangers shot his buddy twice in the head. He raises an arm and makes a trigger-pulling motion with his fingers.

"They shot him, just like that," he says.

He nods further off to where his buddy, Trey, was hit and killed by a car. Then he points to either side of the street.

"This is a tough intersection," he says.

This is the junction of Colfax and Sable, where the Crips territory meets the Bloods territory. We are now on D.O.'s home turf.

We wait for the 53 bus behind one of the intersection's three gas stations. At a car wash, a group of Latinos are selling CDs out of the trunk of a car. A truck is pumping serious sub-bass. Then a large-bodied Cutlass drives past.

"Cutlasses, Caddies. That's Aurora," D.O. says with a laugh.

We catch the 53, headed north toward Montview.

"We had an episode of Cops shot over here," D.O. says, pointing in the direction we're headed.

We get off at Montview and walk across the street into a housing project.

"We're going to where it all started," D.O. says.

Where it all started was the Grays, a project not known by its proper name but by the color of its buildings. As we walk through the complex, D.O. points out the homes of old friends and offers brief glints of their lives: a girl whose brother died; another girl he had a big crush on; an old friend who got shot; Mr. Davis, who's lived here for 20 years.

"This was a black community, so of course hip-hop was here," he says.

We move through the fort-like arrangement of apartments, past a twisted basketball hoop and over the blacktop where they used to play football. D.O. shares an anecdote about being so poor they could only afford one pair of boxing gloves and had to box each other one-handed. As we get closer to D.O.'s old apartment, a group of kids emerges on the sidewalk. They eye us suspiciously.

"You lookin' for someone?"

"Shalik out today?" D.O. answers.

The kids shrug their shoulders, walk past us.

"You see, that's the community," D.O. says. "You watch out for each other. We had to—especially with the gangs. They'd come around. It's like, 'You may have a beef with this dude, but our families live here.'"

We pause for a moment in front of D.O.'s old apartment, then move on to Shalik's—one of D.O.'s childhood friends. After talking with Shalik a while, we head back to Sable to catch the 53 to Colfax. D.O. glances back as we walk out of the Grays.

"We got a lot of pride in this shit," he says, then falls silent.

Pride and projects

D.O. says the inspiration for his name, Dynamic Orator, came from an old Gang Starr record, Daily Operation, but the latter part of his moniker, The Fabulous Drifter, came to him in a Columbus, Ohio, bus station.

"I was traveling everywhere, but I was doing it fabulously," D.O. says. "That's why I'm The Fabulous Drifter."

Tonight's travels lead him to Bender's Tavern and the RAAP benefit. D.O. and Ground Zero Movement lay down a lock-tight set for the Capitol Hill crowd, emerging from the underground of the East Side for a one-night stand. The only hip-hop act on the bill, they get a mixed response from the audience, some of them getting off on the Ground Zero groove, others not sure what to make of the hip-hop act following alt-country and art-rock groups The Railbenders and Badpenny. But Ground Zero Movement stay true to their roots. Whether playing Capitol Hill or Sports Field, they refuse to cater their set to accommodate mixed company.

Unfortunately, the group won't be playing either Capitol Hill or Sports Field anytime in the immediate future. But while Ground Zero Movement are on hiatus, D.O. will be performing a number of solo gigs this winter and spring in support of his new single, "Wake Up." In the short-term, The Fabulous Drifter will be doing his thing in Boulder and Denver. In the long-term he'll see how far he can take it. But no matter where his music leads him, Aurora will always be this drifter's home.

"Everybody gotta brag about their hood," D.O. says. "You can have Denver. You can have Boulder. This is Aurora."

Projects and pawnshops, corner stores and barbershops, East Colfax and the infamous 15. This is the geography of D.O.'s rhymes—and the heart of Denver's hip-hop community.

"Where the hell would motherfuckers come up with hip-hop around here?" he says with a wry smile, sweeping his hands across the landscape. "Right here."
- Boulder Weekly

"Whatsa Happenin' in Memphis This Weekend"

Thursday, October 9, 2003

Whatsa Happenin' in Memphis This Weekend

Friday, Oct 10th: Digital Underground and Ground Zero Movement will be appearing at Young Ave Deli. The Chris Scott Band will be performing at Poplar Lounge. At Automatic Slim's, Adam Levy (Norah Jones' guitar player) will be performing songs from his released CD, "Get Your Glow On" which was recorded in Memphis. At the Capriccio Bar is the CD-Release Party for Memphis-own jazz artist Kelley Hurt...Saturday, Oct 11th: The Oktoberfest celebration begins at St. Mary's Catholic Church downtown to raise funds for the St. Mary's Youth Group and runs through Sunday with all kinds of activities, a Biergarten, and live music by an oompah band. Also, the Sidewalk Sale on South Main with galleries and shops participating in an 'urban yard sale' along S. Main Street and live music to entertain you while you shop. And, the First Annual Mpact-A-Go-Go kicks off at the Stax Museum of American Soul Music. This is a fund raiser for Mpact Memphis and will recognize recipients of the first Mpact Maker Awards. Share in the fun with food, beverages, and live music by Coffee and Bonnie Bramlett.....Sunday, Oct 12th: Di Anne Price & Her Boyfriends and The Gamble Brothers Band will be appearing at Huey's Downtown.

- Juke'n'Jamm Music (Memphis, TN)

"The Ground Zero Movement"

The sound of Ground Zero is a tag-team-like, rapid-fire rhyme of classic hip-hop styles similair to De La Soul and Gangstarr, combined with the hardcore hip-hop of Wu Tang Clan and DMX. Ground Zero produces a sound not yet heard in the Colorado hip-hop scene that demands respect from those who like their hip-hop rough, ragged, and raw. -


1. "No Radio Play" EP - released January 2002
2. "Tangerine" LP - released May 2002
3. "Future I.D." LP - released Sept. 2003 (Response Records)
4. "Writers Square" LP - recorded Jun-Aug of 2004 unreleased
5. "Struggle" b/w "Uh Huh" single - released Oct. 2004
6. "Wake Up" b/w "Emergence of the Black Hero" single - relased January 2006


Feeling a bit camera shy


Formed in 1999, The Ground Zero Movement was the brain child of D.O. Tha Fabulous Drifter. D.O. is a storied Denver Performer with roots in Trenton New Jersey. His stints with the Funky Young Tribe (1994 release: “This that s**t”) , and Shades of Dialect (1995 release:ASE-One demo) introduced him to ASE-One. The two shared aspirations of changing the focus and the sound of the Denver music scene.

At this same time the Denver hip-hop scene experienced a significant upheaval when another influential group, Voo Doo Economics, parted ways. As members of this group Sid Fly an energetic and feared battle MC, met Dow Jones, a little known, area producer with striking creativity.

In 2002 The Ground Zero Movement began the ground work of reestablishing Denver hip hop as a top commodity in the local scene. In the process they opened the doors of venues and promoters that typically shunned hip-hop as a potential source of violence.

The Ground Zero Movement remained busy recording the 2002 release “No Rado Play” a 5 song E.P. “No Radio Play” gave The Ground Zero Movement the ammunition necessary to explode on to the local and national music scene. The release made The Ground Zero Movement into Denver’s ambassadors for hip hop allowing them to work beside a number of legendary artists. Among these artists are Tha Liks, The Beatnuts, Bone Thugs and Harmony, KRS-ONE, Eightball and MJG, The Pharcyde, and Ludacris.

The release of their first full length album "Tangerine" brought attention from a number of independent record labels. They settled on Response Records a newly formed company based in Denver. Response Records sponsored the 2003 release “Future I.D.” on which The Ground Zero Movement harnessed the creativity and talent of Tash of Tha Liks. The album marked the beginning of their rise to prominence in underground hip-hop.

2004 was a year of significant change for The Ground Zero Movement. The early part of the year was marked by the mutual dissolution of their relationship with Response Records and the cancellation of a planned 39 city tour with Digital Underground.

The Ground Zero Movement remained steadfast and diligent. Their diligence paid off when they received the 2004 Westword Music Award for the best hip hop group in Colorado.

The group is currently hard at work and has been recording a number of tracks in preparation for a fourth album release.

In late 2004 the group released a single entitled "Struggle" featuring ASE-ONE on vocals featuring Allison Wright a Denver based R&B singer. This electrifying track, produced by the group's own Dow Jones, let everyone know that the Ground Zero Movement was still in full effect.
It was featured on Basementalism (KUCB 1190AM) as the Colorado Track of the Week.

Recently D.O. The Fabulous Drifter released a single entitled "Wake Up/The Emergence of the Black Hero" that has garnered significant media attention and radio play. He was also featured as the cover story for the Boulder Weekly Newspaper in January of this year.