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Pop Alchemy

Mixing hip-hop and folk sounds about as appealing as mixing tuna fish and ice cream, but alas, Citizen Cope has found just the right ratio to make it work. Born Clarence Greenwood in Memphis, Tennessee, Cope sings radio-friendly hybrids that could be labeled folk-hop or blues-pop. His popular albums — The Clarence Greenwood Recordings, Every Waking Moment, and The Rainwater LP — contain varied influences of Jeff Buckley, Otis Redding, Nappy Roots, and De La Soul. Cope’s raspy singer-songwriter voice might scare away the youngest crop of indie kids too quick to label him just another coffeehouse troubadour. And sure, there’s no T-Pain cameo on any of his albums, and Diplo never thought to remix one of his tracks. But Cope has found blues riffs in modern sounds such as indie folk, hip-hop, reggae, and, yes, even pop. Without knowing it, you’ve likely been exposed to Cope. His singles “Son’s Gonna Rise” and “Bullet and a Target” have been used in everything from Pontiac commercials to episodes of Entourage and the film Ghost Town.
Sat., June 5, 8:30 p.m., 2010


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