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by Ryan Snyder

upcoming shows you should check out

The “Road To 8 Mile” is Elm Street?

Thursday night Greensboro’s N club will host Red Bull emcee: The Road to 8 mile, a traveling battle rap event that aims to find “North Carolina’s Best emcee.” Don’t bother to sharpen your swords (or pencils if you prefer) because the invitation-only lineup is already set. The competitors — kaze, Treason, Tenacious, seven, ko kid, Fuzz Jaxx, shef seenya and killa chris — will go through three rounds for the honorary title and the winner will advance to a nationwide final in Detroit, where the most infamous 8-mile native will judge their skill. The conventional battle-rap format is reserved for the third and final round. In the first round the competitors will base their verses on five randomly projected images apiece and in the second round their rhymes will be based on themes texted by the audience and projected onto a screen. “I’m looking for somebody to stand out, to be unique and to say the sickest, most ridiculous, most retarded shit you can say, something that makes somebody want to quit,” says the company man Mr. Mathers of the competition. DRes tha BeATnik and kyle santillian will host the festivities and local rappers Phonte, of little Brother and Foreign exchange fame, and sonny cheeba will be among the judges. Legendary golden-era duo ePmD are also billed as judges, though whether that means Erick sermon or Parrish smith, both or neither is unclear (though presumably both are still “making Dollars”). The show is 18 and up, doors open at 8 p.m. and admission is free.

Joe Next Door’s Zoo solo album release party

Zoo, lead vocalist, piano and guitar player for Winston-Salem band Joe Next Door is celebrating the release of his solo record open All Night Saturday night at the Garage in Winston-Salem. Zoo’s self-described “epic” solo effort will be on sale at the show and along with his band mates from Joe Next Door, Jason Faylein (bass) and former Yes! Weekly staffer lee Adams (drums), Baco and Jason Shelton will also perform. North Carolina school of the Arts alum Michael Zeoli (better known simply as Zoo) and the rest of Joe Next Door will also take their unsigned act to chapel Hill and Kernersville in September. The melodic, laid-back pop of Joe Next Door will certainly provide the soundtrack for a smooth Saturday night at the Garage. The show starts at 9:30 p.m. and five bucks will get you in the door.

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