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Rollie Pemberton – Bedroom Rapper hosted by Vivek Shraya
July 20, 7:00 PM – 8:30 PMFree
We are excited to have Rollie Pemberton in-store for the launch of his new book, Bedroom Rapper. Rollie will be in conversation with Vivek Shraya.
If you’d like to attend, please register! We have limited capacity, so registration is recommended.
*Masks are not mandatory, though appreciated!*
ABOUT THE BOOK
Bedroom Rapper is a book for obsessive music fans who are looking for the definitive take on what’s happened in the last two decades of hip hop, from Cadence Weapon, aka Rollie Pemberton: Pitchfork critic, award-winning musician, producer, DJ, and poet laureate.
Tracing his roots from recording beats in his mom’s attic in Edmonton to performing with some of the most recognizable names in rap and electronic music—De La Soul, Public Enemy, Mos Def, Questlove, Diplo, and more—Polaris Prize winner Rollie Pemberton, a.k.a Cadence Weapon, captures the joy in finding yourself, and how a sense of place and purpose entwines inextricably with a music scene.
From competitive basement family karaoke to touring Europe, from fights with an exploitative label to finding his creative voice, from protesting against gentrification to using his music to centre political change, Rollie charts his own development alongside a shifting musical landscape. As Rollie finds his feet, the bottom falls out of the industry, and he captures the way so many artists were able to make a nimble name for themselves while labels floundered.
Bedroom Rapper also offers us a wide-ranging and crucial history of hip-hop. With an international perspective that’s often missing from rap music journalism, he integrates the gestation of American hip hop with UK grime and niche scenes from the Canadian prairies, bringing his obsessive knowledge of hip-hop to bear on his subject. Rollie takes us into New York in the ’70s, Edmonton in the ’90s, the legendary Montreal DIY loft scene of the 2000s, and traces the ups and downs of trusting your gut and following your passion, obsessively.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
ROLLIE PEMBERTON is a writer, rapper, producer, poet and activist who performs under the name Cadence Weapon. He won the 2021 Polaris Music Prize for his album Parallel World. His writing has been published in Pitchfork, The Guardian, Wired and Hazlitt. Currently based in Toronto, Pemberton was a former Poet Laureate in his hometown of Edmonton.
ABOUT THE HOST
VIVEK SHRAYA is an artist whose body of work crosses the boundaries of music, literature, visual art, theatre, and film. Her album Part-Time Woman was nominated for the Polaris Music Prize, and her best-selling book I’m Afraid of Men was heralded by Vanity Fair as “cultural rocket fuel.” She is also the founder of the award-winning publishing imprint VS. Books, which supports emerging BIPOC writers.
A seven-time Lambda Literary Award finalist, Vivek was a Pride Toronto Grand Marshal and has been a brand ambassador for MAC Cosmetics and Pantene. She is a director on the board of the Tegan and Sara Foundation, and is currently adapting her debut play, How to Fail as a Popstar, for television with the support of CBC.