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Band Hip Hop R&B


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"Hip Hop"

Northern Michigan is home to a burgeoning record label

Hip Hop is more than just a music genre for those involved with the scene. And it’s very different from rap. “Rap is what you do, Hip Hop is how you live. Hip Hop is a culture, rap is a part of that culture,” said Nate Ritch of Boyne City. Ritch is the founder and owner of Ill Vision Records, a Hip Hop label since 2006 and based in Boyne City. When he moved up to Boyne City from North Carolina, the label came with him. He performs under the stage name HALUSiN8, and has two other Northern Michigan emcees signed to his label, FACE and Proda-J. Although Ritch said Northern Michigan doesn’t seem like the most likely place for Hip Hop, he noted there are signs of it everywhere – from kids wearing baggy pants or shorts or straight-billed hats cocked to the side, to others who listen to the music while driving.
Ritch has been writing for about 19 years, beginning when he was 12 years old. However, a turning point came when he was about 22. He was in prison for breaking and entering, and word got out that he rhymed. As he earned respect for his writing, he began thinking of turning it into a career. “I started putting these songs together with hooks, verses, chorus, bridge and everything,” he said. In 2004, while still in North Carolina, he met a co-worker named Baron Graves, who was also a label promoter. Ritch signed on with Graves, but said he soon found it wasn’t what he thought it would be- full of controversy and politics. He was encouraged to start up his own label, and began forming the vision of Ill Vision Records around that time. “I like being the one to put everything together behind the scenes..I love writing, I love producing and engineering. I mix and master all the CDs that come out of Ill Vision,” Ritch noted.
It wasn’t long that he permanently moved to Northern Michigan that he met FACE, 26 year old Will Wiser of Boyne City. Wiser also became interested in Hip Hop as an early teen. When he was 15 he joined up with two other Hip Hop lovers and formed the group Elite Three. Although he is still a member of the group, he has also branched out to perform solo as FACE when the other group members left the area. “I prefer to be the guy behind the mic,” he noted.
The highlight of performing is audience reaction for fellow emcee Sam Mitchell of Petoskey, 25, who emcees under the name Vindictive. And if people don’t like his music, he said that’s fine – it fuels his writing. “Some people react to the music itself, and some people react to the words you say,” he noted. Each performer has hope for the scene to grow, even if the current scene hasn’t yet been revealed in Northern Michigan. They are going to keep writing and making music, which they say has to come from the heart and be honest. One of Mitchell’s works in progress is called “Devil Dawgz,” a song about nonpolitical patriotism and supporting the troops. It’s dedicated to his brother, Staff Sgt. Murphy, who is waiting for deployment. “Through my whole life, I’ve tried to keep the words as true as possible,” he noted, but added that the focus and themes of his music have changed as he changed.
The same goes for Ritch and Wiser. “When someone’s doing something that’s true and genuine and speaking from the heart…that’s Hip Hop,” Ritch said, later adding, “Once the soul changes, it’s going to change what it puts out.” Along with changes in heart, there have been changes in goals for the emcees. They all started with the idea of making it big, scoring videos on MTV. Wiser said it’s like that for many who are just starting off in Hip Hop.“They want to live good right off the bat because that’s what you see on TV,” he noted. He said he’s changed from holding that as the ideal to the goal of making a living off his music. And Ritch noted that he would like to go to school for recording engineering, audio production, and music business. He said further education would be a realistic way of supporting his family through his music. “My goal now is to feed my kids and put my kids through college on my music or my artists’ music,” he noted.
Maggie Peterson
- The Graphic Weekly


"HALUSiN8 is one of the dopest MCs I've ever heard in my life" - Detroitrap.com

"Live sh!t scares me"

"The way he pieces his set together, & comes so hard & energetic & with such clarity, honestly his live show scares me, as the compettition."

Grand Hustle associate, Black Diamond - Grand Hustle


HALUSiN8 Discography:
Guest appearances:
2003 Total Package Ent., Compilation
2004 T-Tek, Outta Bama
2004 Dutch Man, DK
2006 Ex-Seccary, Factor8
2006 Liquid, Lyrical Sage
Ill Vision:
2008 HALUSiN8, Jackin Ya Beats
2008 Ill Vision Promo
2009 FACE, Mr.Midwest..Executive Producer
2009 HALUSiN8, Jackin Ya Beats Vol.2

FACE Discography:
2001 Country Boys Mixtape Vol.1
2003 Infinite G, Truth Tellin
2005 Elite Three, Northern Royalty
2008 Ill Vision Promo
2009 FACE, Mr.Midwest
2009 HALUSiN8, Jackin Ya Beats Vol.2



Ill Vision:
HALUSiN8 captures ears with his intelligent wordplay, stunning metaphors, multi syllabic rhyme schemes, and uncanny story telling abilities; all while speaking on the kind of subject matter that people from nearly all walks of life can relate to. Music is both therapy and an obsession for this bi-polar, manic depressant, pothead; which means much more entertainment is on the way for Hip Hop fans, as HALUSiN8 is setting up to unleash a lyrical vengeance with new inspiration, motivation, & dedication behind him.
With his counterpart FACE right by his side, and stock skyrocketing, this is a match made in Hip Hop Heaven. With HALUSiN8 as producer, FACE is a fan favorite due to his catchy hooks, clever one liners, & knack for bangin out tracks that pack the dance floors! And now that the Ill Vision roster has climbed to seven artists, it is clear that they have quite an army backing them!

As a military child, HALUSiN8 a.k.a. Nate Ritch, grew up along the southeast coast (Tampa, D.C., Virginia Beach, Fayetteville) and Europe but spent most of his childhood in North Carolina. At the age of 12, after hearing a friend's older brother listening to NWA's "Straight Outta Compton", Nate fell in love with Hip Hop and wrote his first rhyme shortly thereafter. Just a minor hobby, the writing, rhyming, and reciting got serious during an eleven month stay at the North Carolina state penitentiary. After gaining valid respect through freestyles in the prison yards, and being taught the art of self-knowledge, MCing became the top priority, second only now to his family. With almost 10 years of experience bouncing in and out of jail, from worthless job to worthless job Hip Hop and MCing have been the one constant. The one method of therapy that works. The one true friend. The one love.
After honing his lyrical skills through endless writing, live open mics, freestyle battles, and ganja induced ciphers; Nate finally achieved his dream, a record deal. No album was released but HALUSiN8 made many connections in the industry as well as being the opening act for Snoop Dogg, Method Man & Redman, Common, Termanology, City High, Little Brother, Brother Ali, and Ja Rule. Within a year of signing-and learning the hard way that the music business is a very corrupt entity-Nate opted out of his contract to go the independent route and formed Ill Vision Records. After multiple guest appearances on various mixtapes, excelling in various Hip Hop competitions, and rocking countless live shows, HALUSiN8 finally released his debut CD, Jackin Ya Beats in April 2008. Audiences were sucked in by such hits as - Thats Wsup, Breathe Hard, 28 Nates, & I Got This. Real life stories such as - Baby Momma Drama, Mental Disease, In The End, & New Humanity - gave fans a personal look at the upcoming MC that many could relate to.
After the incarceration & separation of hypeman and label mate, Proda-J; Nate began to focus on producing and promoting other artists. FACE, a member of a well known local Hip Hop group, quickly became the focal point of Ill Vision Records, as well as HALUSiN8's right hand man on stage. Using both old and new material, FACE's solo debut "Mr. Midwest" was executive produced by HALUSiN8, as well as featuring him on five songs. With an extensive series of shows, and multiple albums, mixtapes, and promo CDs making their way through the streets, things were looking good for Ill Vision in 2009.
But things didn't stay on that path for our hero. After several painful separations and personal losses, Nate began to fade away from the music while falling deeper into depression. Self medicating through heavy alcoholism and drug addiction seemed to be the only solution that he could find. The brief time away from the mic, along with life changing experiences, suddenly found HALUSiN8 discovering a new hunger and passion for the art of MCing, seemingly out of nowhere. With new subject matters to speak on, he quickly picked up the pen and began scripting the follow up to his debut CD. After several delays amid heavy anticipation, Jackin Ya Beats Volume 2 was finally released in November 2009. Like the man himself, Volume 2 is an emotional rollercoaster of a ride. Viewpoints range from the fears and sadness of death - Good Night, R.I.P.Bree - to the uplifting and positive side of life - Even Tho, Dreams. From showing love and grateful feelings towards others - Devil Dawgz, Receipt - to having a "F**K YOU" attitude towards the entire world - Beastly Flow, Thru Hellashit, Everyone Forgets You. Those people looking for a good story are catered to - 2 Drunk 2 Drive, Losein Her Kid - as well as those that just want to party - Do Ya Homework, Wasted. There is something for EVERYONE to enjoy, and look forward to as 2010 will see an Ill Vision Compilation mixtape, a DVD, and the last installment in the Jackin Ya Beats Trilogy..Along with new work from the HALUSiN8 & FACE collaboration album.