rockford illinois entertainment guide
Date: 02/10/2007
The Bridge - A New Rap Presence
by Gary Hill

It seems that the Rockford hip hop scene is really beginning to happen. For many the first rumblings came from Judah The Lyrical Rev - the first Rockford hip-hop artist to gain some prominence. The latest entry into the field is The Bridge and they will be celebrating the release of their first CD on February 24th at Krypto Music Lounge. It seems appropriate that Judah will also be on the bill at that show.

For those who have been listening to the group already, that show will be in the "do not miss" category because it allows you to get the disc in advance. They'll be selling it there, but for the rest of the world the release date is the 27th. That makes it kind of a gift (a three day early sales event) for those in attendance.

The Bridge is made up of Hollywood (MC), Migweezy (MC) and TapeMan (DJ/Producer). Their sound is based pretty firmly on old-school hip hop, but they bring in enough modern elements to make it fresh and vital. They have been described as "Run DMC on crunk." For those out of the hip hop circle, "crunk" is a term that combines the words (and meanings) of "crazy" and "drunk," but more appropriately in this sense it is related to an energy drink. Rapper Lil' John (known as the King of Crunk) makes the beverage called "Crunk," and it is in the same league as Red Bull, No Fear and other energy drinks. If you don't know who Run DMC were (you probably won't be reading this if that's the case) they were one of the first hip hop acts to make it big and are probably best known to the mainstream audience for their cover of Aerosmith's "Walk This Way," which also featured Joe Perry and Steven Tyler. Suffice it to say that song was the one that really broke the hip-hop sound and culture into the mainstream by putting it in front of rock music fans. So, that analogy would mean an old-school rap sound with a higher energy level. It fits this group.

The Bridge's true strength is the ability of the two MC's to work off of one another. Each complements the other quite well, creating a spirit of cooperation and collaboration rather than competition. The beats and backing music generally has a depth and power often missing in the genre. These elements combine to create a sound that is both familiar and fresh. For those of us in the Rockford area there is also an added charm of hearing rap that talks about the places we live and travel.

Whatever the formula The Bridge have a sound that is sure to please hip hop fans, locally and everywhere else. While The Chosen Few is their first album, it seems likely it won't be their last. It makes a great introduction to an act that (hopefully) will be around for a long time. Do yourself a favor and make it down to the Kryto Music Lounge show and see for yourself. If you can't make it though, you only have to wait a couple more days to pick up the disc - so do that. You'll be supporting the Rockford music (and hip hop in particular) scene and getting some good music. How can that miss? For more information check out their myspace page They also have a website set to debut on the 27th (to coincide with the release of the CD) at

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