Trapo helps put Madison on independent hip-hop map


Eighteen-year-old Madison hip-hop artist Trapo may not have many places to play in town for exposure, but that doesn't stop the national music media from taking notice. 

In the past 9 months, increased coverage from Pitchfork along with music blog Pigeons and Planes has gotten the ball rolling for the teenage upstart. In July, he traveled to New York for an influential showcase at Brooklyn club Baby's All Right. Trapo has been releasing material on SoundCloud, including the well-received SHE EP, with the track "Chicago" raising his profile considerably. It has also contributed to some confusion on where he's from.

"I wish some blogs would stop saying I'm from Chicago or Milwaukee," Trapo told Pitchfork Radio. "I'm from Madison."

Trapo's new album "Shade Trees" comes out in September. He's just released the first single "Beg" which fuses nuances of old school R&B with hip-hop in Trapo's signature laid-back manner. New York rapper Skizzy Mars adds some East Coast attitude to the proceedings wetting fan's appetites even more for the full-length album. Trapo does all his recording live in true DIY fashion directly from his bedroom.

Trapo joins fellow Midwest cohort Chance the Rapper in a social conscious oriented motivation for the creative process.

“I want my music to be able to speak to people," Trapo explains to Pigeons & Planes. "I’m not making it to drop tapes and get this fan base. We don’t need a lot of the music that’s out right now—we need music that’s going to help or benefit people. That’s what I’m here for.”

The only local Madison gig on his calendar right now is the annual Freakfest halloween party at the end of October. By that time, the new album will be out and the skies the limit for Trapo's next career move.

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