The 27 year old husband and father of 2 spends (almost) as much time in coffee shops as he does in the studio, tweets more than he talks, (@ericbiddines) and while you’re sleeping (assuming you’re in bed by 2am) he is either playing a college show, recording his next mix tape/video/EP, or supporting another up-and-coming Florida MC. But, despite his 6’2” stature, gold teeth (they come out) and arm full of tattoos, Eric Biddines may be the most honest and complex artist you will ever hear. His meetings are always over coffee. It doesn’t matter the time of day; coffee is Eric’s motivation. He could be in the club or in the recording booth, it’s always coffee. “I’ve never drank or done any drugs” the rapper declares with pride, “but I’ve been on my coffee beans since I can remember” It’s no wonder, because Eric doesn’t seem to ever stop moving. “I want success more then I want sleep” he says, “I also want to be a great father, so I do most of my performances and recording after the kids have gone to bed” A drug and alcohol free rapper who is a responsible father? Could this be the new face of hip-hop?
When you listen to Eric’s lyrics you can tell that something’s different. He’s got a very visual lyrical style but it’s not his style that’s the most different. When you’re listening to him you are reminded of some of his influences, namely Andre 3000 of the group Outkast, mixed with a little Al Greene. No, it’s the feeling that you get when you listen to his albums. It’s a mood of someone trying to do more with their music, not in the sense that he is preaching or talking about world peace per-se, but in that he’s telling his story. And it’s a compelling story. “I’m trying to change lives with my music in a positive way, the way music changed my life. I want to tell the story of the average person making something out of nothing.” Talking to Eric, it would seem that getting picked up by a major record label is a forgone conclusion.So why hasn’t it happened yet? Eric sips his coffee, sends out a few tweets, looks off and tells me. “I would have been signed (by a record label) already if I followed the trends, but I didn’t want to do anything that wasn’t completely me. If you stay your course it takes a little longer for the labels to come, but when they do, they will do what you want.” Then Eric stops to think, he’s always thinking past the moment, thinking past changing the rap scene, Eric is thinking about how to change the whole music scene.
He stops to tweet and remind his followers to go and check out his new video that just came out. Its called ‘Southern FLA’ and it’s the title track of his Southern FLA, album, an album that is equal parts hard hitting as it is smooth and thoughtful, and features the song ‘Delray Rock’ which is an anthem for anyone who has any history in Delray. “I just wanted to make an album that was easy to digest.” What that means to you is that you will like it. No mater where you are from. Eric is passionate about building not only his own brand, but also the brand of South Florida. “Artists need to sharpen their focus,” he says. “As an artist right now, you can’t blame anything on the area. The people are here and they are willing to listen, we just need to be thoughtful about our music and innovate!”
An artist recognizes Eric and tells him that they need to collaborate on his next album. It was a reggae artist and Eric agrees to meet with him for a cup of coffee after our meeting is done. Everyone wants to get Eric on his or her team. Jazz Singer Chloe Dolandis recently sat in with him at his Arts Garage concert, someone has approached him to use his song ‘Delray Rock’ to support an upcoming bid for Delray city commissioner. I ask Eric what he’s going to do when he gets signed and becomes a superstar, he says he doesn’t need to worry about that and tells me that a dollar in your pocket is all you need to make change. It’s one of his lines from his latest album and I suddenly realize why he needs all the coffee; he’s got a world to change. For more on Eric Biddines go to www.ericbiddines.com
MUST SEE MUSIC IN MARCH Thru March 4 Delray beach stadium and tennis center International Tennis Tournament. Between matches catch top notch musical acts on the main stage! ITC time is one of my favorite times of the year for good music (and good tennis) March 2 thru 4 – Old School Square Reflections of Rosemary- Debby Boone, Pat Boone’s daughter, has taken the music of Rosemary Clooney to new heights, master- ing the timing, intonation and from-the- heart intimacy she perfected. Debby was recently featured on Oprah’s final season. For tickets: www.oldschool.org March 3rd – DADA The Hard Richards – Ska (Punk music + Horns = Ska) isn’t usually my thing, but these guys put on a great show and their energy is infectious! March 24 – Arts Garage One of the greatest jazz duos returns to Delray with their band to entertain and delight audiences with their amazing style. For tickets: www.artsgarage.org March 29 – Hurricane Lounge Girlfriend Material is rocking the Hurricane Lounge as they tend to do. This band is pure fun, don’t miss them. Fridays in March – Bull Bar Catch the 3 amigos doing their own brand of covers. Always a sure bet. April 7 – Arts Garage, Urban Underground “Rappers Delight” part 2 – Back by popular demand, the best MC’s in Florida as they take you on a tour through the roots of Hip Hop with the Arts Garage House band. Drew Tucker is the founder of Tucker Music Academy. Connect with him on twitter at @tuckermusic101 or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org about any great concerts, gigs, or shows going on in Delray Beach