Hip hop artist goes ‘Out for a Rip’ in Vernon Friday
With more than 5.7 million YouTube viewers, hip hop artist B.Rich is taking his song just out for a rip across Canada.
The hip hop hoser, whose real name is Brendan Richmond, said it all started when his fellow musicians south of the border encouraged him to bring his Canadianisms and his “Canucklehead” voice to the mic.
“They are from Baltimore and Pittsburgh and we always talk in our local accents when we are hanging out and one day they said you should do a whole track in the hoser voice,” said Richmond, whose tour is stopping in Vernon at Monashee’s Bar and Grill Friday. “I remember them commenting on how the Canadian accent is so non-threatening, it’s really like friendly and everything sounds like a question.”
The song, which was written a few years ago and intended to be on a solo album, almost wrote itself. It’s things any Canadian would recognize from Tim Horton’s and plaid jackets to hockey and maple syrup, and hits almost every Canadian stereotype. But it is the chorus that gets everyone hooked.
“Out for a rip” is a phrase used when heading out for a drive with a bunch of friends and simply hanging out.
“I grew up in a small town in Ontario and it was a thing everyone said, ‘Just going out for a rip.’ But, it was when I was on my way to my parents’ house out in the country and pulled into this gas station that I always stop at that there was this young hockey kid pumping the gas and he stuck his head in my window and says, ‘Just out for a rip are ya bud?’” said Richmond. “When I was writing the verses I didn’t know what the hook was going to be, then that popped into my head. I always wonder if that guy remembers saying that to me or if it is something he just said to everyone.”
It was a video Richmond made to go along with it that set things in motion. The band USS, which is scheduled to perform at Penticton’s Boonstock festival on the August long weekend, found it online and were playing it at sound checks and were getting a good reception from audiences.
Richmond heard this and decided maybe it was time to start promoting the song. He uploaded the video one evening, not expecting much and went out with his friends. By the next morning it had 20,000 views; 100,000 by the end of the day and a million in a week.
“It was a crazy week. It was pretty shocking,” said Richmond. “I try not to watch it anymore and just let it do its thing. I should probably go back and watch it to see what all the fuss is about.”
Richmond said he even got a call from TSN to create a third verse for Out For A Rip tailored for the NHL panel. That was made into a comedy video with TV sports personalities James Duthie and Bob McKenzie playing along.
As a huge hockey fan it was a dream come true for Richmond, and it continues to be. He hears stories every day of the crazy places his song has been played.
“I got an e-mail from some friends traveling in South East Asia in a bar in Cambodia and my song came on. Someone sent me a pic of an Out For a Rip personalized licence plate and truck decals, one in the Okanagan somewhere actually. It is so weird but awesome at the same time,” said Richmond. “There is actually companies out there selling Out For a Rip T-shirts. Someone at the Olympics was in the crowd with a sign that said, ‘just out for a gold are ya bud?’”
Toronto Blue Jays slugger Brett Lawrie has even acknowledged the song, tweeting the lyrics from his account. Richmond though, is not looking to be a one-hit wonder. Oddly enough, considering some of the words in his hit song, he had a successful gig performing hip hop for children. Hey Kids is a group he was part of that rapped about everything from trucks, robots, how to give a high-five, the alphabet and other things meant to entertain and stretch children’s minds. Richmond has also been working with a group of lyricists (Shark Tank) in the U.S. and working on finishing his solo album.
“I’m not looking to write a whole album of hoser rap. I like it, but I don’t want to do too much and for it to get old. My solo stuff is normal hip hop. I grew up blue collar so it’s a lot about that,” he said. “For now, I’m just out here working hard and taking this song across Canada.”
B.Rich’s Out for a Rip summer tour stops at Monashee’s Bar & Grill, Friday. Cover is $5 (19-plus only). Show starts at 10 p.m.m