Poe Boy Music Group, the label that
brought you hardcore Miami rappers Brisco and Billy Blu, is getting
into EDM with Kulture Shock, a dance-pop group
made up of three very good-looking model-type singers named Jase,
City Boi, and Stephanie Lecor.
In recent weeks, Poe Boy has been
heavily promoting the trio's upcoming performances at the Miami
Marlins Ballpark on July 14 and LIV for the kick-off to Miami's swim
fashion week on July 18. It's a strong indicator label founder Elric
"E-Class" Prince and his brother, Poe Boy President Elvin "Big
Chuck" Prince, are expanding their repertoire beyond 305 hood
"It is a new direction for Poe Boy," says label executive assistant Ryan Sookram. "Obviously, we are known for making hip-hop, but with Flo Rida and now Kulture Shock, we feel we can expand into pop."
Poe Boy signed Jase, City Boi and Stephanie in 2009. Over the past three years, the group has released short videos for five songs on Youtube.
With the exception of "These Are The Times," an R&B tribute melody for victims of Haiti's 2010 earthquake featuring Billy Blu and Brisco, the tracks are laden with synthesizer rips, big beats, quick, syrupy verses by Jase and City Boi, and high pitched vocals from Stephanie.
One of the songs is a remix of MTV Jersey Shore cast member DJ Pauly D's, "Beating Up the Beat," which surprisingly bangs hard. Kulture Shock also colloborated with French R&B pop singer Leslie on "Never, Never."
"It's all electronic dance pop," says City Boi, who along with Jase write the lyrics. "It's the top 40 crowd that like us."
Jase and City Boi were classmates at Barry University when they began writing songs together in 2004. At the time, the former was an accounting major while the other was working on his biology degree. City Boi, a South Jersey Shore native with olive skin and a jet-black GQ-styled mohawk, recalls he and Jase would come up with tracks in their dorm room.
"We did this one track, 'Runaway Chic,' that was a smash hit on campus," he says. "It was very cool."
Jase, a handsome British Virgin Islands native, claims he was in a boy band when he was 12. "I hit all the high notes like Michael Jackson," he quips. "I even made a girl faint one time."
After graduating from Barry, Jase and City Boi signed a deal with an independent label in New York that fell through.They returned to Miami in 2009, earning cash by writing songs for Billy Blue, French Montana, Akon, and Bun B.
"That allowed us to make money so we could hire a lawyer to get us out of our previous deal," City Boi relates. "Once that happened, we were able to sign with Poe Boy."
City Boi adds that he and Jase also convinced Big Chuck to sign Stephanie, whom they had worked with in the studio. A pretty, light-skinned Haitian American born and raised in Miami, Stephanie was a back up singer for Ky-Mani Marley when he went on tour with Van Halen in 2007. "I met City Boi and Jase through Fliptones, a producer we had in common," she says. "They wrote songs for me."
Originally, Jase and City Boi were going to be an R&B rap group ala Pretty Ricky and Stephanie was going to a solo singer. "But one day Chuck asked us seperately what we thought about all of us being a group," Stephanie says. "At first, it was a shock because you want to do your own thing. But we embraced it because we really have something going here. Our chemistry is undeniable."
Although it's too early to tell if Kulture Shock is going to take off. Wanna Be Free, the most recent track Poe Boy uploaded to Youtube this past February, has only gotten 1,262 hits. Kulture Shock's video for the single Private Show has gotten 14,344 views since it was uploaded 11 months ago.
Kulture Shock will be performing July 14 at 7:10 p.m., after the game at Miami Marlins BallPark, and will also be performing July 18 at LIV for the Splashion 2012 kick-off party.