Shawn Chrystopher
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Shawn Chrystopher

Inglewood, California, United States | INDIE

Inglewood, California, United States | INDIE
Band Hip Hop Pop


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Interview: Shawn Chrystopher (3/24/10) By Mike Boyd - Interviews"

Shawn Chrystopher’s buzz has been growing steadily since our last interview, and with yesterday’s release of The Audition EP, hosted by Mick Boogie and Terry Urban, it doesn’t look like it’ll be dying down anytime soon!

Last night, Shawn flew out to NYC to perform at SOB’s with Hot 97’s DJ Quiz, only to catch a flight back to L.A. hours after his set. The trip was well worth it though, as Shawn got a chance to rock his new music in front of a packed house of NYC tastemakers and fans alike.

Though the crowd might not have recognized all of Shawn’s songs (his EP only dropped earlier that day), his stage presence and energy had them feeling the set. -

"Shawn Chrystopher Interview: SXSW 2010"

Shawn Chrystopher doesn't come from a long line of musicians, but you would never know that by looking at his musical pedigree. Chrystopher writes, performs, produces and mixes his own music. His latest CD will be released later this month. Spinner recently talked with Chrystopher , who was tinkering away at his studio, before his SXSW appearance.

Describe your sound.

I think my sound is based on art and comes from all different forms. I take movies, paintings and try to jumble them into a cohesive sound, and at the same time try not to stay in the same genre. I think music is art, so I try to put everything together all at one time.

Do you play with a band or solo?

I perform solo. I like to try to do different things. Sometimes I bring out my trumpet and I'll do a trumpet solo. I try to show people that I'm musically inclined. I like to show people that I'm behind the music, too. I like to play the keyboard and engage the people and try to do things differently.

Have you played with a band?

I tried playing with a band accompaniment, but what I found people is people don't hear me as much.

Musical influences?

Kriss Kross was an earlier one. Puff Daddy. Tupac.

What's your biggest vice?

Good question. Well, I was going to say something, but I'm not going to say that... I don't think I'm envious, but when I hear something that's really good, I wish I had done it! I critique myself hard. I need to become a fan more of others than always comparing myself. I'm way too hard on myself.

What's in your festival survival kit?

I have to have my Mac laptop. That's the first thing I grab. It keeps me so sane. My Blackberry is essential. My iPod – I have a crazy playlist. I have to have it – it zones everything out for me. Oh, and this is random, but Sour Patch Kids.

Who's your musical guilty pleasure?

Soulja Boy. I love him because he just has so much fun. He's a kid and he doesn't overthink it. I love to see someone have fun. -

"Shawn Chrystopher Interview"

With thousands upon thousands of artists competing for listeners’ attention, an up-and-coming emcee has to treat each and every project like a career-making Audition – one false move, and you may have lost your best chance at the big-time. Booth mainstay Shawn Chrystopher knows exactly how high the stakes are as he approaches the release of his brand new EP and, despite the nervousness that afflicts even the most experienced actors, he has a feeling this will be the one that’ll cement his status as hip-hop’s next big leading man.

Since introducing himself with the aptly-named “Me” way back in fall 2008, the Inglewood, California up-and-comer has brought us a whopping 19 features, including reader-acclaimed, Booth-exclusive freestyle “Do It For You.” Now, Chrystopher’s getting ready to take his game to the next level with The Audition , the follow-up to last year’s much-buzzed-about A City With No Seasons LP (available for free streaming and download at the artist’s official site). Heralded by leaked cut “Can’t Take That From Me” and the Booth-premiered “Like a Kid Again,” the project is scheduled to hit stores and online retailers next Tuesday, March 23.

In an exclusive interview with our own DJ “Z,” Shawn Chrystopher steps into the Booth to discuss his colorful approach to tracklist selection, why higher education is worth much more than a diploma, and what activity never fails to make him feel just “Like a Kid Again.”


"Starving Artists: Shawn Chrystopher (interview)"


At first glance, Shawn Chrystopher is the epitome of a California native. Skinny jeans and t-shirts from an expansive color palette adorn his small frame coupled with a “too-cool-for-school” vibe. There is something about him that sends you cyber-surfing his name. It could be that his infatuation with cartoons and jaunty demeanor or his staunch college boy bravado. Whatever the case, you find that Chrystopher brings a dProxy-Connection: keep-alive
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ferent perspective to west coast music. While his sound does allude to strong Lupe Fiasco and Kanye West influences, Chrystopher offers his own story and musical creations—he often produces his own tracks—that give him mainstream appeal.

It’s clear that Shawn Chrystopher isn’t your typical Cali artist. He grew up in Inglewood, CA listening to punk rock artists like Green Day, and graduated from high school at the age of 16. He scored a four-and-a-half year scholarship to the University of Southern California and by 2009, landed an ad campaign with LRG clothing line for their 10th Anniversary. Not bad for a kid in glasses.

His first mixtape titled Keep Your Classroom Vol 1. received over 10,000 downloads and was an introduction to what is now considered the “new age” sound of educated artists. In August 2009, he released A City With No Seasons—an album that he hoped would separate his sound from artists that he’s often grouped with like Wale.

Now Chrystopher is back with his upcoming EP, The Audition, scheduled for a March 23 release date. Unlike previous projects, Chrystopher comes with more light-hearted rhymes that will surprise fans accustomed to his intellectual lyrics. His first single, “Like A Kid Again,” boasts a fun, relatable sound, and tips a hat off to the art imitates life adage. Always ahead of the curve, Shawn Chrystopher is poised to take on the ever-evolving music industry and change the image of west coast hip-hop.

Check out his single “Can’t Take That From Me” off of his EP, The Audition:
Can’t Take That From Me – Shawn Chrystopher by 25Mag
25 Magazine: What separates your sound from other hip-hop artists old and new?

I think of music as fingerprints...I have a story that nobody else can tell because I’m talking about my life.

Shawn Chrystopher: I think of music as fingerprints. I don’t think that anybody can make the same music. I think that if you have a piano, a guitar, and a drum set in a room and you put 15,000 bands in that room one after another, neither one of them will make that same exact song. Even though you have the same instruments you all have different songs. I think with me, my music is different because it’s mine. I have a story that nobody else can tell because I’m talking about my life. When it comes to sound, I grew up in Inglewood, CA so I’m five minutes from some of the richest people in California and I’m five minutes from some of the poorest people, so I would listen to everything. I used to be really into Green Day and then I would listen to Bone Thugs-N- Harmony. I was really into 2Pac and I listened to John Mayer. So you have all of that in me; I just mixed it all together so I think it’s unique because it’s mine.

25: In one interview you said that you studied rap like you would study your schoolwork. Who and what specifically did you study?

SC: I would study what songs were popular and why they were popular and which songs weren’t. I remember one year when Juvenile’s “Slow Motion” was the number one song in the country. I was like, this isn’t a club song and it’s not up-tempo; it’s so hood but it’s the number one song on the Billboard. I would just sit and try to figure out why certain songs were big and others weren’t. Why certain artists make it and why other artists’ second album destroyed them.

Like A Kid Again – Shawn Chrystopher by Jabari
25: Your latest single “Like A Kid” off your EP The Audition is a fun tribute to going back to your childhood days. What was your life like as a child?

SC: I have a seven-year-old sister but I was practically out of the house by the time she was born, so I grew up an only child. I was a Latchkey kid so I would come home and my mom would still be at work so I had to entertain myself. TV really stimulated my mind because I would watch everything and I would learn how to talk, how to walk, how to act, and how to dress. Other than TV I had some of the best neighbors. I still talk to my neighbors that I grew up with as a kid; we’re really good friends. I grew up in a house so I had a backyard, was able to go out and play, and have block parties. That made my childhood fun because I could ride a bike. That’s why I started the song off “I used to ride bikes” because I was the kid on the bike in my neighborhood. I rode the bike from sun up to sun down; I had nowhere to go most of the time I just liked bikes. Basketball and riding bikes was my childhood, and cartoons. Actually, that sti -

"Shawn Chrystopher 'You And Only You' New Release Set For October 19th"

Recording artist Shawn Chrystopher is set to release his Sophomore LP, entitled "You, and Only You" on October 19th, 2010. After the widely popular debut album "A City With No Seasons" last year, and the ever-growing "The Audition EP" (released March 2010) Shawn is ready to get back to what he does best and provide listeners with an in-dept an artistic look into his life and everything that surrounds it.

"This album will almost be like a diary or journal of what's been going in my life. I feel that if you write about human experiences, you never limit your audience because these will be stories and emotions that we all go through on a daily basis."

After parting ways with Elitaste management, which Shawn considers being the "best decision I've made in my entire life," he's eager for the world to hear an album that won't be filled with the decisions and direction of people who he feels "dont care about the artistic nature of music."

"I dont regret many things, but I do regret my decision to be linked with them for the time that I was. I just got tired of the 'make music to make money' mindset and was ready to be an artist again. There was no true loyalty or love for music, everyone is just a check. I feel that if the money is supposed to come, it comes...but it will with me being who I am. There was just only so much I can take of going into the studio every night and being constantly forced to make a song for radio."

"You, and Only You" will feature production from Shawn and his production partner Cameron Wallace, as well as well-known producer Apple Juice Kid.

"When its all said and done, and everyone turns their back on have to make a choice to either quit or continue on," says Shawn. "When its you and only you, do you have the heart and strength to go on? This album will prove that I do." - Hooked On That


"I.W.G.: I Wear Glasses" - Mixtape
"A City With No Seasons" - LP
Like a Kid Again - Single
Heartbreaker - Single
Me - Single
Catch Me If You Can - Single

Songs Available on Itunes.



The Inglewood, California native has spent a lifetime perfecting his craft with hopes of one day showcasing his gifts to the masses Growing up, Shawn Chrystopher (Born Shawn Christopher Garrett, II) fell in love with music at a very early age; taking a liking to Kriss Kross, 2Pac, Puff Daddy, and Michael Jackson--to name a few. As a kid, Shawn would take a small radio into his backyard and pretend as if he were performing for a sold out stadium, using his television remote as his microphone.

“I remember having one of my 'performances' in my backyard one afternoon, and glancing over and seeing my mom watch me. She kind of had this 'what the hell is this boy doing?' look on her face.....but I still finished my show.”
-Shawn Chrystopher

In 1997, during his first day at Foshay Learning Center, Shawn was introduced to music in a different light as he enrolled into his very first music class. In this class, he was not only taught the fundamentals of music--such as melodies and music theory--he also acquired the knowledge of music history as well as the skills to not only play, but master many different instruments.

It was that same year that Shawn met industry exec and life-long mentor/friend Tom Sturges. At the time Tom, who was head of Shaquille O'neal's record label "TWisM," came to Shawn's school to meet with another student who he was sponsoring in a mentorship program. Coincidentally, during his visit Tom was able to see Shawn perform at one of the many assemblies he took part in, and instantly saw the talent and star-power Shawn possessed.

As high school came to a culmination, Shawn, then known in his area as one of the premier entertainers, not only continued to perfect his skills as an MC, but also honing the craft of producing.

"I would literally sit and make 5 beats a day, then at the end of the week delete them all; I kept this going for months. The reason why I would delete them is because they weren't any good. I knew they weren't good, but just like every other skill, you have to practice to get it perfected. Im sure Jordan didn't make the first shot he ever took."
-Shawn Chrystopher

In 2003, at the age of 16, Shawn was awarded a 4 1/2 year scholarship to the University of Southern California, where he would study Political Science. While in school, Shawn learned the necessary skills of business and networking that would help him conduct himself in a professional manner whenever he was not in 'entertainer' mode. These skills were nothing more but mere additions to Shawn Chrystoper's already 'micro-manager' demeanor. More than just a rapper, Chrystopher is known to do everything himself--and if he cant do it, he asks to have the final decision on anything made regarding him or else he wants no part of it. Shawn writes, performs, produces, mixes, and masters all of his own music; something he sees being a necessity in the music industry if longevity is to be achieved.

"The era of the 'regular rapper' is almost done. Soon people are going to be asking 'well we know you can rap, but what else do you do?' There are many musicians who write and produce their own music, however in hip-hop, being one-dimensional was accepted. That won't last for too much longer."
-Shawn Chrystopher

Five years later, after careful planning and patiently learning the ins-and-outs of the music industry, Shawn Chrystopher, formally released his critically-acclaimed debut mixtape "I.W.G.: I Wear Glasses"; garnering him a major co-sign by fashion powerhouse LRG Clothing as well as its owner Jonas

In the fall of 2009, Shawn released his debut LP "A City With No Seasons" via his website, "A City With No Seasons" was Shawn's true introduction to the world as it was his first project with the music entirely produced by him (his prior mixtape was comprised mostly of industry instrumentals). With his debut album, Shawn Chrystopher set out to push the envelope with today's rap music; choosing song concepts and instrumentation that would normally be reserved for an alternative act.

"Some people really feel that it's virtually impossible to create something different in this day and age when it comes to music; I strongly disagree. I look at music as fingerprints; being independently exclusive to every musician. The reason why music, especially hip-hop, stays stagnant during certain periods of time is because artists tend to try and duplicate another artists' "fingerprints" because he or she has created a winning formula in the form of a hit song. Just because something worked for one artist doesn't necessarily mean that it will work for me, so I have chosen to basically be my own artist, and create a sound that can only be linked to me as a musician."
-Shawn Chrystopher

With intellect, superior musical talent, and passion for all that he does, the future is truly bright for Mr. Chrystopher.