George “Geo” Quibuyen of Blue Scholars.
George “Geo” Quibuyen of Blue Scholars.

The hip-hop group Blue Scholars have finally revealed more details about their next album, “Cinemetropolis”, and announced a return to the independent approach that “made them who they are.” For their third full-length release, MC Geologic and DJ/Producer Sabzi are forgoing traditional music industry channels and taking their creative vision directly to the people who they say matter most: their family, friends, and fans. Instead of letting a record label decide how and when to deliver their music to the people, the group has launched a campaign on the fan-funding platform Kickstarter from March 6 through April 21, to support the album’s distribution and creative projects. The goal is to raise at least $25,000 in 45 days from fans who can pre-order the album and receive a variety of other benefits, based on the amount they pledge. A video with more information about the project is available at www.bluescholars.com/cinemetropolis. Every dollar raised will go toward creating a product that will excite fans and make them feel proud for supporting it.

For their first full-length release since “Bayani” in 2007, Blue Scholars are signing a deal with the people. “We believe in the power of word-of-mouth over hype, and recognize that it’s been the support of our fans, and not who we’ve signed with, that has gotten us where we are,” says Geologic.

The two members of Seattle-based Blue Scholars, MC Geologic and DJ/Producer Sabzi, have been making music together since 2002. Last year, the duo sold out three nights in a row at the Showbox. They are live show veterans who have performed more than 400 shows with the likes of Kanye West and Common, played the main stage at Sasquatch! Music Festival and Bumbershoot, and connected with the community at labor organizing conferences, youth-run events, and their own Northwest Hip Hop festival.

Their self-titled debut album came out in 2004; an independent project that was created, managed and distributed entirely by the two friends and a small but dedicated network of supporters. As they grew in popularity, the duo explored a variety of approaches to creating an album. As Sabzi explains, “Our philosophy has always been to produce our music and media with creative freedom, while still being able to sustain and grow ourselves. And at this point, we don’t believe that the tired music industrial model is necessary for people to pick up what we’re putting down.”

Scheduled for release in June 2011 and followed by a tour in the fall, Cinemetropolis is not only “a departure from the established model of the music industry, but also a twist on the traditional relationship between music and cinema,” they wrote in a release. Cinema has always been a major influence on the music of Blue Scholars, and this collection of songs is the most complete expression of that source of inspiration.

More information about the group is available at www.bluescholars.com.