Hip-hop group returns home

Matt
Matt Gardner
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A young hip-hop ensemble originally from Prince Albert made a triumphant homecoming last night -- and they brought company.

Rappers Adam “EhWall” Wallace (left) and Tanner “Tfresh” Fetch, representing two-thirds of the hip-hop group Fresh City, get ready for their Tuesday night performance opening for Madchild of Swollen Members at the Ches Leach Lounge. Fellow group member Troy “Capo” Junker could not attend due to work commitments.

Up-and-coming group Fresh City served as an opening act for Swollen Members rapper Madchild on Tuesday evening, as the veteran performer’s Dope Sick tour took him to the Ches Leach Lounge at the Art Hauser Centre.

“We are on a mini-tour just through Saskatchewan, and then Madchild … is on a cross-Canada tour,” Fresh City rapper Tanner Fetch said. “So we kind of hopped aboard his tour to do shows in Saskatoon and P.A.”

Members of the group, all of whom are 20 years old, include Fetch, Adam Wallace and Troy Junker. Their stage names, respectively, are Tfresh, EhWall and Capo (Junker was unable to attend Tuesday’s concert due to work commitments).

Fetch was an alumnus of St. Mary High School while Wallace and Junker attended Carlton. The three had each previously dabbled in music on a solo basis before joining forces.

“We kind of started out as individuals doing our own thing, kind of experimenting with writing lyrics and recording music,” Fetch said. “We knew each other through sports and school, and we kind of hit it off, started talking music, and realized we all kind of made underground music.

“So we decided to form a group called Fresh City, and since then I guess it’s kind of living in the fast lane. We’ve been doing songs with major artists and shows all across Saskatchewan and Manitoba and whatnot.”

Earlier on, Fetch was influenced by rock bands such as AC/DC and Kiss. But it was rappers like Eminem and Wiz Khalifa that played the most decisive role in his musical evolution.

Fresh City’s sound might best be described as “electro hop” with a strong LMFAO influence. Although the rappers’ lyrics occasionally delve into more serious topics, the main focus is on good times -- as indicated by the title of their debut album, Bottles Up.

We decided to form a group called Fresh City, and since then I guess it’s kind of living in the fast lane. Tanner "Tfresh" Fetch

“We do a little bit of everything,” Fetch said. “We like to rap about having a good time, partying, and kind of that upbeat, uptempo kind of music. But we also like to get down and dirty and relate to people as well with some problems and struggles. Some music as well -- I’m not going to lie -- is materialistic … because that’s kind of a main theme in hip hop these days.”

While Fresh City is currently based in Saskatoon, the group plans to bring more hip-hop artists to Prince Albert in the future to help the local scene prosper, depending on their reception at the Ches Leach Lounge.

In the meantime, the group members will continue working at their day jobs while striving to build full-time musical careers.

“We’re going to be working on a couple mix tapes,” Fetch said. “We already got them actually started. We started doing them while we were also making the album, so we’re going to try and get those out there and build a buzz. We are working with some producers and promoters from the U.S. in North Dakota and Georgia and they are going to help to spread our music throughout this college scene in the U.S.”

Singles by Fresh City can be viewed on YouTube. The album Bottles Up is also available for free download at www.freshcitycanada.com.

Organizations: Art Hauser Centre, Cross-Canada, Mary High School AC/DC

Geographic location: Fresh, Saskatchewan, Saskatoon Manitoba U.S. Prince Albert North Dakota Georgia

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