BandHip Hop


"Helping people understand the things they can't see". Braille has used that one sentence to explain the meaning behind his name for the last 7 years. Before going by Braille, he went by many other random names that never stuck, and before that he was just Bryan Winchester - born and raised in Portland, OR. At age 13 he started making bedroom tapes, and from that moment he never turned back. The poetic nature of his lyrics and concepts intrigued listeners from the beginning. It was Braille's faith in Christ (discovered through hiphop) that inspired the directions he took in content. In his music he often expresses things of either a "spiritual", "emotional" or "personal" nature. Visual lyrics that paint pictures of the unseen has become a trademark stamp of Braille's style. Another trademark is his passionate and un-structured delivery. These characteristics have placed Braille in a category of his own. Not sounding like other artists, but just standing alone as himself. Nothing more, nothing less.

So far in Braille's young and extensive career he has already accomplished a lot. In 2004 he was named "lyricist of the year" by Sphere of Hiphop and his album "Shades of Grey" was crowned "album of the year". In 2005 he was named "one of the next 100" Artist's to watch by URB Magazine and one of the "Top Ten Independent Artists" by Christian Music Today. His single "Hip Hop Music" went to #2 in 12" single sales in Japan and #9 for his album "Shades Of Grey". This year he also opened concerts for James Brown on several occasions, including performances at the B.B. King Blues Club in Time Square New York, the Grove in Anaheim, Les Schwab Ampitheatre in Bend, OR and at the Benidorm Futbol Stadium in Spain, with a crowd of 16,000 in attendance. His 2005 tour schedule also placed him in front of crowds in Japan, Germany, the Netherlands and all over the U.S. including the Vans Warped Tour.

Beyond being an artist, Braille also runs his own label called "Hiphop Is Music". In 2004 he released his sophomore solo album "Shades of Grey". The record included contributions from artists such as 9th Wonder (who has also produced for Jay-Z), Rob Swift (former member of the X-Ecutioners), Supastition, Pigeon John, Manchild (of Mars Ill), Illmind, Kno (from Cunnin Lynguists) and the list goes on. In the future, Braille hopes to use the Hiphop Is Music label as a platform for himself and other artists to shine and share God's love to a universal audience. Braille is determined to continue growth regardless of circumstances - destined for longevity in a competitive industry that often forgets about the integrity of the music and the effect it has on the people who buy it.


Shades of Grey

Written By: Braille

My darkest hour, was pitch black
rain clouds in the sky, could only see when the lightning strikes withered flowers, hang with their heads down the weight splashes inside and keeps falling no smiles, beauty hidden for protection until trampled by shuffling feat until a new season arrives and brings joy in times of desperation, seeking to be noticed and all I want is to be trimmed of these thorns to seem more inviting to the poor unfortunate reflection of my selfish existence can it be? It was all so simplistic sipping on my sorrow while it's washing it away trying to add color to these Shades of Grey and trying to make sense out of all this confusion embrace my reality and unmask illusions, holograms I advance on a quest with many questions distracted for a second but I know that I destined counting my blessing, renewed everyday and I know I'd never grow without these Shades of Grey What could drive a man off a cliff, lost in thoughts analyze life to find what's real and what's not forgotten faces, flashing through my conscience a conquest for freedom, constant forward motion leaving Egypt, past erased from attachment to start from scratch with the bricks that established my true identity, secret to most deeper then known, I'm keeping it close, to my heart written on stone tablets, alone in my magic advice projected, correcting bad habits laughing as I drowned in mystical tears mind consumed by thoughts that my physical fears I can't, listen with ears, cause words will deceive as I stand up against darker versions of me looking over my shoulder, waiting for false moves dancing around land-mines and get lost in the grove what happens?, when all the light slowly fades away and you try to see God inside a Shades of Grey he's ever-present, through our mistakes flaws and folly he could have left me falling, but instead he called me and I answered, silent and unsure what to say just thanking him for life even with the Shades of Grey

This life is unpredictable, no limits or restrictions it's filled with opportunities and filled with addictions so much joy, yet so much affliction pain and oppression, shame and conviction so much we see yet, so much we're missing so much to change and so much we're fixing faith and forgiveness, chaos destruction poverty, paychecks, starving children and corporate lunches love, peace, war, hate and hunger fall, winter, spring, summer, sunshine and thunder I'm going under, now I'm rising how much time is left? There's no rewinding sometimes even the light can seem blinding I wash my thoughts in blood to keep my mind clean I don't have everything I want I've always had everything I needed everything hasn't always went how I planned it but I wouldn't change who I am even if you offered me a mansion just existing is enough, just living I'll do my best to make the right decisions until the day heaven takes me away I'm gonna make the most of life even with the Shades of Grey


Lifefirst: Half the Battle : 1997
Shades of Grey: 2004