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Detroit rapper Bizarre stays busy outside of D12

@graffonmusic, Facebook.com/Gary Graff on Music

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The Detroit rap crew D12 might be on hiatus, but Bizarre isn't having trouble keeping busy.

Following on the heels of the 2012 mixtape "This Guy's a Weirdo" -- which included the controversial diss track "Justin Bieber" -- the irreverent MC is releasing another mixtape, "Laced Blunts," for free download on March 30, with a new full-album, "11," due later this year, recording primarily with Marky Bass, one of the producers who discovered Eminem, at FBT Studios in Ferndale..

"I was also a solo artist before I was in D12, so I'm really just doing what I've always done," explains Bizarre, 36 (real name Rufus Johnson). "Even when we were doing the D12 thing, in my down time whenever we weren't touring I was putting out solo projects, too."

As for the likelihood of a D12 future Bizarre counsels "never say never," but his focus is primarily on his own work. "Laced Blunts" features guest appearances by Riff Raff, Seven the General, Lil Wyte, Big-T, King Samson, King Gordy and others, while a video has already been released for the track "Molly World." The "11" album, meanwhile, is "about halfway done," according to Bizarre.

And with each new misadventure by its subject, the "Justin Bieber" track continues to have an active life.

"I never knew that song was gonna be that big," Bizarre says with a chuckle. "It actually was my homeboy Theory's idea; he had the idea to write something about Justin Bieber, and I was like, 'Man, that would be crazy.' I gave the concept to (King) Gordy and he wrote a hook to it, and basically the rest is history. I'm sure (Bieber) isn't happy about it."

Bizarre and Jon Connor perform Thursday, May 30, at Saint Andrews Hall, 431 E. Congress St., Detroit. Doors open at 7 p.m. Tickets are $12. Call 313-961-6358 or visit www.saintandrewsdetroit.com.

Web Site: www.saintandrewsdetroit.com

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