Brotha Lynch Hung’s seminal Season of Da Sickness, released in 1995, was originally lauded as the introduction of horrorcore, a rap subgenre. But such coinage led to a pigeonholing of Sacramento’s lone rap beacon as a gang-affiliated cannibal, stifling a chance at mainstream success.
Despite this, Lynch, born Kevin Mann, released 11 solo albums as an independent artist—ever faithful to his niche market and committed to operating on his own terms.
In reality, the 45-year-old artist is quiet and humble, lives with his family in Rocklin (including an 18-year-old son who builds haunted houses), and is learning to be patient with his career.
And he’s also far removed from gang life and cannibalistic habits. The only gross habit Lynch has, in fact, is out of his control. Before every show he vomits backstage—a ritual he shares with Adele.
Overall, he’s satisfied with his stature, issuing this report from the road on his current Sicc of Da Industry tour: “I’m not the biggest artist in the world. I kind of just enjoy cruising where I’m at. It makes it easy to just appreciate the loyal fans and support that I get.”
Still grateful for his home turf, Lynch will celebrate Halloween in Sacramento on October 30 at Ace of Spades, a special night he says he considers a “second birthday.”
“I just want my people to be in a Halloween mood,” he said. “However they [want to] do it; paint their faces, wear masks … I’m going to do a little something different than I’m doing on this whole tour because Sacramento knows me so well.”
His fanbase still craves the classic cuts—requests that he’s become increasing likely to oblige. But although Lynch will curate his Sacramento date to please hometown fans, his career obligation remains foremost to Strange Music, a label run by rapper Tech N9ne.
In 2009 Strange Music signed Brotha Lynch to a three-album deal, which he fulfilled via a conceptual trilogy about a cannibalistic serial killer. The series launched in 2010 with Dinner and A Movie, followed by 2011’s Coathanga Strangla, and wrapped in 2013 with Mannibalector.
The trilogy has provided a second wind for Lynch and although he’s satisfied his contractual obligations, he says he’s considering one more record with Strange Music.
“My career could have been a little better because of the past record companies that I’ve dealt with, but I’m pretty satisfied,” he said. “I told [Strange Music] in January I’m going to take a year off to do some thinking.”
He also hinted at numerous projects that aimed to satisfy hardcore fans. For years the rapper’s early albums such as 24 Deep, Season of Da Siccness, and Loaded, weren’t available due to a feud with Black Market Records founder Cedric Singleton, who refused to turn over rights to Lynch’s back catalog. In 2015, however, Season of Da Siccness will celebrate its 20th anniversary, an event Lynch says he intends to mark with a tour and reissue.
“It’s going to kill me to relearn all that stuff, but I’ll be ready by next year,” he said.
He’s also got a new album in the works—one that harkens back to his past, specifically 1997’s Loaded, which was considered a departure from Brotha Lynch’s horrorcore roots with a sound and aesthetic that’s associated more with a 420-friendly creed than the ultraviolent sect. Now that Colorado and Washington have legalized the once controlled substance, Lynch plans to revisit that sound on an album titled Kevlar—a slight pun on his government name Kevin.
“Loaded was kinda unplanned,” he said. “I didn’t know weed was going to go wild like this. Now that people like the Loaded album, the Kevlar album is going to be on that level too. In certain states weed is legal now, so I want to move in that direction.”