Kid Static: Easing Into Adulthood
- Words: Max Herman
Of the many ways Moses “Kid Static” Harris Jr. has been described, “energetic” is arguably the most fitting. The 25-year-old Chicago MC/producer isn’t exactly bouncing off the walls, but he can’t hide his youthful passion for everything he tries his hand at–which includes making music, stunt work for films like I Am Legend, and practicing the acrobatic French art known as parkour, which requires him to literally bounce off the walls of various urban structures. “It’s about confidence and getting in touch with the part of your mind that says ‘You can do it,’ before the other part that goes ‘Maybe that’s not a good idea’ comes in,” says Harris, enthusiastically describing parkour and the related art of free running.
That confidence no doubt came in handy when Kid Static approached the boss at his nine-to-five about letting him do his web-coding work from the road while on tour with progressive producer Yea Big. His boss agreed, and the duo took its synchronized dance routines and electric renditions of offbeat hip-hop from Yea Big + Kid Static, their 2007 Jib Door debut, across North America, making new fans and sharing stages with spaz punks and crunk acts. Kid Static argues that he and Yea Big can fit in anywhere. “No matter what’s playing, people identify with fun,” he says.
While the duo preps their second LP, Kid Static doesn’t want people to forget that he’s also a solo act; he originally started rhyming over self-made drum & bass and IDM tracks as Static Messenger. “Before I was with Yea Big, I was still that energetic rapping dude,” says Harris. “[It was] like, ‘Man, you’re like all over the place. I can’t take pictures of you ’cause you don’t stay in one place for too long.’”
After deciding to take a stab at producing hip-hop–“It was just a natural transformation,” he explains–Kid Static went on to put out the self-released LP, Have You Seen This Man?, in 2005. He also spent two years rapping and playing keys for the now-defunct comedic hip-hop live band The Cankles. More recently he dropped another self-released album, the experimental In the Meantime, an appetizer to his official forthcoming sophomore set.
His new solo LP will feature tracks produced by Maker, Ill Legit, Yoda Rock, and himself, with grooves ranging from the uplifting, horn-drenched heater “I’ll Be” to the meditative downtempo vibes of “Breathe.” “You can see the adult coming out with how I feel about certain things that are going on today, but not in a preachy manner,” he explains of the record’s lyrical content.
Even though he’s growing up, Kid Static isn’t about to take the doom-and-gloom route. “I’m a lighthearted individual,” he says. “The things I care about I take very seriously, but the things that don’t affect me or aren’t really worth worrying about in my mind, I brush off.”
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