On Tue., Feb. 13, in Midland, a judge will determine the fate – and possibly the career – of Fort Worth rapper Twisted Black. Found guilty in November of conspiracy to distribute 50 grams or more of crack, Black, 35, who’s real name is Tommy Delando Burns, was also convicted of two additional counts of distribution.
(On a fourth distribution charge, the jury did not reach a verdict.) Burns is looking at 10 years to life in federal prison and a fine of up to $400,000. Around the time of his arrest in July, Burns had just signed a record deal with giant indie label TVT Records. A former signee of major label Sauve House/Universal, he started performing in the late ’90s, as part of the rap duo One Gud Cid and as a solo act. He’s released two full-length solo albums, Late Bloomer (2003) and last year’s The Life of Tommy Burns. The conviction hasn’t changed TVT’s plans to release Burns’ new record, Street Legend, later this year.
There’s an interview with Burns, a Detroit native, in the Winter 2007 issue of Block to Block magazine, a regional monthly hip-hop publication. The rapper, who regularly traveled between Midland and Fort Worth, claims he was railroaded. “People who were already locked up testified against me that they bought drugs from me,” he told the magazine. “I didn’t even know them.” The prosecution, Burns said, tried to use some of his gangsta lyrics in his trial, “but the judge didn’t allow it in. It’s about the only fair thing they did.” (Burns, however, went on to say that one of his lyrics was, in fact, used, but it was at the end of the trial.) Burns, who’s been in jail before and was once shot in the face, doesn’t think a life sentence is likely. “In order for me to get ‘life,’ I would need to have done more wrong than they are accusing [me] of,” he told the magazine. For more, visit Block2BlockOnline.com or MySpace.com/twistedblack145.
Southern Gothic Explosion
Next to this column is a story about noise rock, and on page 43, there’s a small piece on an upcoming gig by Fort Worth’s/Denton’s Mara Lee Miller, a.k.a. Bosque Brown. After reading both stories, your appetite for both noise rock and noisy, feline, acoustic Southern Gothic folk will undoubtedly be whetted. So check out Houstonian-by-way-of-Fort Worth Jana Hunter at MySpace.com/janahunter. One song, a new one called “It’s Not Your Stereo,” is a sonic collage-type thing whose title proves useful in understanding what’s happening once the random cracks and bursts of silence pop up. Another track, an old one called “Black Haven,” shares with Miller’s mellifluous dissonance a distinct femininity that’s at odds with the rusty, haphazardly strummed acoustic guitar accompaniment. Hunter’s second full-length solo album, There’s No Home, will be released in April on Gnomonsong.
… Correction: In last week’s Show article on Fort Worth R&B singer Keite Young, the name of the label that will be releasing his forthcoming debut album, The Rise and Fall of Keite Young, was incorrect. The correct name is Hidden Beach Recordings, home most famously to Grammy award-winning R&B vocalist Jill Scott. Fort Worth Weekly regrets the error.
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