Demrick performs with Madchild at the Queen’s on Friday (Jan. 30).

Demrick performs with Madchild at the Queen’s on Friday (Jan. 30).

Demrick rolls with hip-hop legends

Artist grew up in the Philadelphia projects

For American hip-hop artist Demrick hanging amongst the stars is nothing new.

Since his career began a decade ago, the Philadelphian has collaborated with the likes of Cypress Hill, Snoop Dogg and Xzibit.

“Being in a group with Xzibit and B-Real from Cypress Hill is unreal,” said Demrick, whose real name is Demerick Ferm. “That’s like every up-and-coming rapper’s dream. To be able to get the opportunity to make an album with two legends and work with them.”

On Friday (Jan. 30) Demrick will be performing at the Queen’s alongside fellow labelmate and Canadian hip-hop legend Madchild.

“I am a stoner. I love to blaze up and I know Canada has got the goods,” Demrick said. “Roll up and show up. We’re going to have some fun.”

Demrick’s life amongst hip-hop heavy weights is a far cry from the life he once had.

“I spent a lot of time on the streets hustling and making money however I could,” Demrick said. “That was definitely my main focus in my life.”

Although Demrick was born in Spokane, Wash., he spent much of his early life living in Philadelphia, an area that is notorious for crime, drugs and gangs.

“I’ve seen the small-town life and I’ve seen the East Coast major city living,” he said. “I have walked out of my house and seen trailer homes and I have walked out of my house and seen sky rise housing projects.”

In 2005 Demrick began to shift his focus to hip-hop and became a member of Tangled Thoughts.

“We we’re just kids that were doing it as a hobby,” he said.

Demrick, who has released numerous mix tapes under old name Young De, said his earlier lyrics touch on a wide range of subjects, including his life in the North Philadelphia projects, where gangs, drugs, prostitution and poverty were all within reach.

“I just started doing a lot of writing. Then from there it was just a progression of expressing myself through music. I fell in love with it,” he said.

It wasn’t long after the formation of Tangled Thoughts that Demrick met fellow hip-hop artist, Kurupt, who convinced him and others in the group to move to Los Angeles for a chance at a better life and to pursue their dreams.

“When Kurupt came around, he gave us an opportunity to come see what it would really be like,” he said. “We were really willing to take the risk to pack our bags and come across the country and chase this dream.”

After relocating to California, Demrick began to experience success.

In 2009 he appeared on B-Real’s debut solo record Smoke and Mirrors, where he is featured in tracks with Xzibit, Snoop Dogg and the Cypress Hill rapper.

Demrick is also a member of Serial Killers, a hip-hop group that includes Xzibit and B-Real.

“I am happy that this stuff happened organically. None of this was forced,” he said. “This was all just mutual artists’ respect. Obviously I admired them and grew up listening to them and being able to rap with them is really a dream come true.”

Last year, Demrick signed with BattleAxe Records, which is headed by Madchild.

“I felt honoured that they asked me to be a part of BattleAxe Records,” Demrick said.

The former Philadelphia resident is gearing up for the release of his new album, Losing Focus, which is slated to come out next month.

“I want that soundtrack for your car ride before you go to the party,” he said. “I want it so that you’re vibing out with your homies and you’re ready to go to the club. I want to make that kind of music that people can really create a vibe on.”

Demrick performs with Madchild at the Queen’s on Friday. For more information on Demrick, please visit www.iamdemrick.com.

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Nanaimo News Bulletin