Hunter Beard
Gig Seeker Pro

Hunter Beard

Los Angeles, California, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2008 | INDIE

Los Angeles, California, United States | INDIE
Established on Jan, 2008
Solo Hip Hop Rock




"Hunter Beard Is a 14-Time Felon From Arkansas Trying to Make It in L.A."

Hunter Beard is a born hustler. By the time he was 13 in Little Rock, Arkansas, he was selling drugs. When he was sentenced to adult prison at 17 for robbery, he spent his time recording songs off the radio and rapping over them until a guard hooked him up with her father, a promoter. And for the last year, he's been doggedly emailing and dropping off his music at the L.A. Weekly offices.

He and his musical partner, Kendrick "Keddy Mac" McNeil, both 31-year-old MCs, are currently sitting in a recording studio at the SAE Institute of Technology on Sunset Blvd. Beard, ruddy and wearing glasses, and McNeil, who sports an afro and speaks with a molasses-thick accent, are exceedingly polite and gracious. They are shaking their heads at the fact that they played the House of Blues recently. - LA Weekly

"From rap to rock- Lyricist Hunter Beard"

Rarely do we get things right the first time. We are not perfect people. We make mistakes and then can only hope that we will get a second chance. For Arkansas rapper and lyricist, Hunter Beard, a second chance came in the form of a handheld cassette voice recorder and a nosey prison guard.

Riding out the latter part of a drug-related sentence, Beard, who now resides in Hermosa Beach, took to avidly writing and recording raps about his past and the feelings he had with being locked up for nearly seven years, starting at the age of 18. As Beard’s verses spilled from his small prison cell, one of the guards, intrigued by Beard’s knack for storytelling, approached him, asking if she could listen to the tape. She claimed to have direct connections to some bigwig promoter for Flipside Entertainment, and could probably get him to listen to Beard’s choppy tape.

“She told me she was going to pass it to Don Coleman of Flipside and I didn’t believe it. Who would?” Beard told Easy Reader in a recent interview. “Then the following month she asked if I was going to be out in a few weeks. Coleman needed someone to open for Chris Brown at a show that Flipside was putting on.”

Beard’s sentence carried past the date of the show, but the prospect for opportunity resonated with his dreams for a clean future. You may not be able to go back and start a new beginning, but you sure can start today and make a new ending. Beard, who is originally from Little Rock, Arkansas, has since found himself on a slew of festival stages, performing alongside Brooke Hogan and southern rap heavyweight, Paul Wall, and selling out shows at the otherwise rock-oriented Viper Room in Hollywood.

“I have been in Los Angeles for four years now, and over the years I’ve somehow gone from having to pretty much beg people to come to our shows, to selling out shows at Key Club and other Hollywood spots,” said Beard. “This is really the first time that this has happened since I’ve been out here.”

As an independent artist, Beard has undoubtedly faced the hardships of burgeoning into the rap world, but his narrative style lyricism and underlying rock sound on his most recent album, Solar Bipolar, has helped to differentiate him from the overwhelmingly large amount of talent in Los Angeles. Beard’s sets promise an energized stage show, with the help from drummer, Greg Ladanyi, guitarist, Tommy Bruno, and fellow rapper Keddy Mac, who more often than not, performs alongside Beard.

“I have found that Los Angeles and the musicians I have met here have definitely influenced my music and the person I am. Over the years I have branched out a lot from just being a rapper. Thanks to the addition of a live backing band instead of a drum machine I am branching out into rock. It’s important that you learn to differentiate yourself from the rest,” said Beard. “Keddy and I perform with a live band, do rock and rap songs, and are totally southern. So we have definitely set ourselves apart. If you are different, it’s easier for people to recognize you.”

Although Beard’s increasing popularity and recognition in the business has supplanted his harsh past, lessons learned continue to permeate his life.

“Every single ounce of my past has influenced the person and lyricist that I am today,” said Beard. “It has had a huge influence on me as a man as well. Every single person I know from back in the old days still has a needle in their arm, or they’re dead, or they’re in prison doing life on the installment plan, and just can’t get out. My past has become like motivation to not fall to that and end up like them.”

For Beard, getting a second chance in life is about giving himself the opportunity to grow beyond his past failures. After spending a third of his life dealing with the repercussions of bad decisions and habits, Beard now plans on finding any way that he can give back and help others that might find themselves in the same position he did, whether it be through his music or otherwise.

“We plan on going to the Phoenix House, which is a drug and alcohol awareness center for kids,” he explained. “I would love to do a workshop where I can share with them my story. Music saved me and got me off dope. I want to give kids the same opportunity to discover something that can maybe save them. It’s important for me to be great in some way, to give back what I took in my past.”

Not only has his music proven a form of therapy for the wounds of his past, but it has become the catalyst for a better life. ER - Easy Reader

"Hunter Beard: Always on the Hustle"

Hunter Beard is a rapper, producer, record label owner and business man who vowed to change his life after spending time in jail. He is now performing in venues he dreamed of when he was growing up.

“To me, hustle means obsession… I’ve heard that success comes from the time spent to reach your goals after your bills are paid,” says Hunter Beard, a 32-year-old, Arkansas- born and raised transplant to the South Bay of Los Angeles. “That’s when people usually stop working. And those people wonder why things aren't happening for them.”

Everything you want to know about Hunter Beard, the criminal, has already been written—his past is not a subject that needs more ink. But, what I will tell you is that when we first met, I found his background intimidating. It’s not often I meet such a boisterous person with such an extensive rap sheet. My first thought was, “Damn nice guy, I’m just not going to let him hold my wallet.” But that was years ago.

When I say Hunter Beard has made a mistake or two in his life, I’m making an understatement of a whopping proportion. Everything from drugs to robbery mark his past. But that is past-tense Hunter. What is more important now is the rapper, producer, record label owner and businessman who makes up more a more three-dimensional individual.

Present-day Hunter Beard stands on his deck looking at the Pacific. When you meet this Hunter Beard, pacing outside, you don’t see his background. You see an obsessive perfectionist, a man overcome with his music—a mix of hip hop, rock and Arkansan southern charm. You see a man who could have easily kept his darkness on the surface, but instead pours it into his rhymes. You see a guy who pulls out the phone he’s never without to give you a sneak peak of his newest track. You hear almost a decade of lyrical exploration of craft. And if you were to ask his friends, the scary side of that man is much better off inspiring lines.

These days it’s Hunt, Keddy Mac and Dub-Raw laying down tracks in a Los Angeles studio, plotting their future like only formerly young and misguided Arkansans can do. Keddy Mac is like Hunter’s brother from another mother and color. Having met in Arkansas through Keddy’s cousin, the late Clint G, he and Dub-Raw headed west to work with Hunter to help complete their collective goals of making music and eventually building a record label.

Being recognized as something positive instead of destructive is one of the high points for new Hunter. “I haven’t had enough, either, I love headlining venues that I’ve always heard about as a kid,” he adds. Just recently Hunter, along with Keddy Mac and Dub-Raw, took that next step in independent rap and started Lion Pride Music Group, a record label fostering both their music and other young artists they have discovered. “I want to continue releasing quality music videos for each project with our incredibly talented, up-and-coming director Alexander the Titan,” says Hunter as we wait for the sun to set from the Redondo Beach home he shares with his wife. “I’m no saint at all, but I try to help the people that are still suffering with addiction and related issues. I relate to them more than anything else because I’m one of them.”

For more information, digital downloads and show schedules on Hunter Beard, Lion Pride Music Group, Keddy Mac and Dub-Raw, visit, like Hunter Beard on Facebook at or follow him on Twitter @HunterBeard - Hydrolife Magazine

"Hip-hop hustling out West"

Hunter Beard can’t come home yet, but he’s making the most of his time in Southern California.

The Little Rock-bred, hip-hop artist made the move westward a few years ago, hustling for an opportunity at the big time. But since he moved, parole difficulties have made it impossible for the 30-year-old Beard to return home, even for a visit. (Beard did two different prison stints on robbery and then drug charges, spending seven years in Arkansas prisons starting at the age of 18. He was released at the age of 25 and has been on parole since.)

And so he creates music and fights for his break into the music industry while living in Hermosa Beach, a beachfront community along the Pacific Ocean to the south of Los Angeles. He is joined by two friends and fellow Arkansas rappers: Keddy Mac and Ant Dub.

“Everyone contributes and does things for the team that the others can’t do,” Beard says. “We’ve set up a solid foundation to make money as independent artists. The main thing now is just exposure.

“I am driven by a very strong need to make up for the negative things I’ve done with positive things and actions. If I don’t make it to the level I feel I should be on, then I am a failure in my own mind and that’s a hard thing to swallow.”

Following his prison time, Beard joined with friend Chad Kennedy, forming the Little Rock hip-hop duo The Definition. The duo’s first single “Want It With Us” received local radio play, but the pair realized greater fame lay beyond the borders of Arkansas so the two drove to Los Angeles in July 2007. By 2008, Beard had moved full time to California, setting up his website and even starting a clothing line.

But the main focus has always been the music, something Beard first started focusing on while in prison. He released the album Solar Bipolar last year as a follow-up to his self-titled album, and has performed at such famed Los Angeles venues as The Viper Room and the Whisky a Go Go. Currently, he is working on a new, currently untitled album that is about “75 percent” done.

Recently, Beard answered a few questions via email about his upcoming moves:

On how his music has changed since The Definition:

“I’ve learned how to structure a song better; not just hook, verse, hook. It’s definitely a little less violent. I’m growing as a person, and it’s reflecting in my music. As a writer I’ve learned how to put myself in other people’s shoes and also to write figuratively. I’m working on ghostwriting because I have written some songs that just aren’t for me. The album I released last year had a little of everything from rock to club to dark street songs. With the new album I’m dealing with some more issues such as the loss of a good friend, [and] being kept from visiting my daughter and my 94-year-old grandfather by my parole. I don’t know, it has been a struggle to stay positive. But they say the best music comes from angst. I won’t release anything that’s not better than my last, and I think this album is.”

On being an independent artist in Los Angeles:

“It’s interesting, I’ve gotten some opportunities that I wouldn’t have had otherwise. There is a lot of competition but also a sense of people working together out here. I’m working with a veteran publicist this summer for national exposure. I’ve been able to headline and sell out places that I never dreamed of being able to perform at. You just have to work hard to stay relevant and not get comfortable.”

On being away from family:

“I’m finally set to get off parole in November of this year so I will then be able to tour. And most importantly come home to visit. Ever since the first day my parole transferred here, I was told I would never again be able to return to Little Rock while on parole. I told them I have a daughter and a 94-year-old grandfather in Little Rock. They said they didn’t care. So for the last three years I have been flying my now 8-year-old daughter out here for Christmas, summer and spring breaks and such. I call her every week, and I have a great relationship with her but as you can see it is a big deal for me. I miss my family and friends.”

For more on Hunter Beard, visit his website at for music and videos. - Sync Weekly Magazine

"The Hustle of Hunter Beard: From Drugs to Music"

Everyone has a story to tell. Adorned in mahogany pants, a button-down shirt and glasses, one would never be able to guess from passing him on the sidewalks of Isla Vista that Hunter Beard has done more than your typical 34-year-old. Beard, who will be playing at Velvet Jones in Santa Barbara this Friday, has quite a history.

From selling drugs at thirteen to beating up a police officer, Beard’s earlier behaviors landed him in and out of prison for a good part of his young adult life. America leads the world with 2.2 million people in the nation’s prisons. So what makes Hunter Beard special?

It’s not his past actions, but the direction he chose to take his life. Seated in front of Jimmy Johns in IV along with his two musical companions Treezus and Keddy Mac, Beard spoke about his last altercation. “I felt like if I died just out of prison then that would be all I would be remembered for,” he said. And that’s exactly what he sought to change. Searching Hunter Beard on Google yields a long list of achievements rather than his history of infractions with the law.

He’s released three studios albums, had a viral YouTube video and two songs on the radio and much more. He spoke of his successful business ventures: “I started the label with my best friend Keddy Mac officially last year. We motivate each other every day.” While Beard has come a long way from his troubled past, it still follows him today. As his career progresses, he hopes his achievements will put more between him, his old ways and his temptations.

However, this does not seem to be his biggest concern. One can immediately see that Beard cares more about the hustle than the recognition. “The main goal is hard work and obsession,” he said. “I kick doors down and don’t take no for an answer. Over time it becomes a habit. I know when I wake up I am going to send my e-mails”.

Treezus, one of his partners besides him, chimed in on the subject. “It’s all a part of the energy we cultivate as a team. The business thing is all part of being a job divider. It leads to salvation for all of us and keeps us focused.” It’s now more apparent than ever how Beard has turned his life around. Before, he encircled himself with people preoccupied with the kinds of activities that landed him in trouble with the law, such as drug trafficking and violence. Now, he is surrounded by nothing but the talent and love of his peers. “We all kinda saved each other in a way,” Beard said.

It’s easy to say that Hunter Beard is no longer associated with his gangster ways, and has taken steps to help others avoid his previous path. He speaks to kids about alcohol and drug awareness whenever he gets the chance. He shares his experiences through his music. Hoping to help others, Beard believes “music can save peoples lives. It’s the one thing that speaks to everyone.”

Beard continues to show his drive and passion for music touring the country and playing as many shows as possible. His soon to be released album “Winter Soul Summer Mind” shows the “honest progression” of himself away from the gangster life.

The music industry is a political place. However, with the rise of social media it is becoming easier for musicians to be independent. Now, people like Hunter Beard and his group of “super friends” make their living doing what they love, turning it into a business and turning their lives around.

Keddy Mac shared what sums up Hunter Beard and his success: “We used to hustle on the street but now we do the same thing with music.” - The Bottom Line


Still working on that hot first release.



The man LA Weekly has referred to as "a born hustler" is no stranger to hard work in the face of adversity. Yet at first look you would never know the hardships and turmoil he’s had to face and overcome. And that’s the way he would have it. Growing up in Little Rock Arkansas, Hunter made a name for himself for all the wrong reasons, losing years of his life to bad decisions and what he calls trying to “fit in” with his surroundings. Only after accepting his uncanny ability to “stand out” was he able to find purpose and change his life through music. The following is just the beginning of a very real success story.

Hunter began recording his first album, Scars, in December 2006. Countless magazine articles and covers followed hailing his talent. In his first music review, Free Press writer Rachel Thompson wrote, “Imagine a fusion of the intelligence and realness of hip-hop with the proclaimed flashiness of rap. Hunter Beard is a lyrical mastermind who has a style that is refreshingly unique.” Within only two months after Hunter’s release, his first single, “Want It With Us,” was introduced to the radio by Power 92 Jams on their segment “Pump It Or Dump It”— receiving 100 percent votes to “Pump It” from station fans. This led to the song’s placement in rotation at Power 92 Jams and Hot 96.5, as well as stations in Oklahoma, Alabama and Louisiana (all Clear Channel Networks) reaching a total of 200 BDS spins in addition to “drops” and live radio interviews.

Since then Hunter has performed hundreds of shows from headlining spots at Hollywood's famed venues such as The Whisky A Go Go, Troubadour, The Viper Room and Key Club to festivals such as SXSW , Vivacity and even Sundance Film Festival. He has been featured on countless mixtapes, and his single, “Get Hypnotized,” is featured on, The Music Hustle 3, album along with artists Lil Wayne, Too Short, and Ying Yang Twins. A second song of his entitled “I Came For You” was recently introduced to the radio on Power 92 Jams making him the only hip-hop artist out of Arkansas to have had two songs on the radio. In 2014 Hunter started his own record label, Lion Pride Music Group, with fellow artist Keddy Mac and is set to release his first album on the label in 2015.

Hunter Beard has etched his place as one of America's successful independent musicians and has the talent, style, and marketability to be a worldwide platinum selling artist. It is safe to say he has come quite a long way since his humble beginnings, but that is to be expected from an artist who regards himself as a workaholic. As Thompson has proclaimed in the Free Press, “Hunter Beard is one of the most promising unsigned artists in the hip-hop scene and has the talent and potential to be the best thing that hip-hop has ever known.”

Band Members