“They the ones that’s gon be carrying this city!” - Axel Roley
There's nothing new about the concept of rap collectives. From Dungeon Family and the Wu-Tang Clan to Spillage Village and Odd Future, groups like these have been around for years, and now Louisville has its very own. that’s crazy camp is a collective primarily centered on rap music, but as their slogan “allthingscreative” implies, they do it all.
Members include shy!!!, Nise, the Nymph, dohboiii, Horace Gaither, Dreamz, Otéz, Chris, Aminata Bassirou, Jxhnny Boii, kalvin kozy, Zell, Hector, and Cole. Their talents are music, of course, but also multimedia visual art. “If you ever hang around us… we be throwing around ideas that have sh*t to do with other forms of media because we like to take our creative mind and branch it out,” Gaither, one of the group’s rappers, said. “Right now, it's music, but I wouldn't be surprised if one day there's a “that's crazy” film.”
“Rap collectives have been a thing for a long time; we love Wu-Tang, but like I said before, I think that what separates us is the fact that we are all so individual,” dohboiii, one of the producers and DJs of the group, appreciates the fact that they don't feel obligated to work alongside each other all the time. “Most n*ggas have to drop a project together.”
They aren't interested in being contractually required to do projects and do shows with each other. They work well together because they want to. shy!!! shared that there have been nights where multiple members would have shows on the same night, but it's alright because they all have their own careers.
On July 8. that’s crazy held their first independent concert, "A Crazy A** Show Vol 1,” hosted by local comedian Fat Freddy. There was an opening DJ set by Dj Richie, merch by that’s crazy and Chase the Day, and art by Aminata Bassirou. A DJ set from dohboiii came between performances from Nise, the Nymph, Dreamz, Otéz, and Horace Gaither.
As each performer took over the stage, you could feel and see the love between the members. After the show, their tired smiles and strained voices were proof of their genuine pride in their group and their admiration for each other. These days it's easier to acquire fame individually than in a group. Members of that's crazy see benefits beyond the fast acclaim.
“I had the perspective of ‘oh, I’m gonna do everything by myself; I don't need nobody,’ and that's exactly what I did for the first three to four years of my music,” Nise, the Nymph, a rapper, and producer, opens up about why she felt drawn to being a part of a group. “But as you get deeper into the music business to where it's not a hobby anymore, you start to realize that you do need a village of people behind you in order to do anything.”
They utilized this village to its fullest extent for their concert rollout. Before the show, Otéz, Dreamz, Nise, and Horace released a short freestyle and a music video over ten days. Every beat was produced by either dohboiii or shy!!! This idea came from shy!!! reflecting on Tyler, the Creator’s rollout for Call Me If You Get Lost, in which he released short videos teasing the album concept followed by a final freestyle video.
“I realized most people, you can tell when people listen to your music, but once they see it, they gon be like ‘oh this is something special,’ and that's how we get peoples attention,” shared shy!!! They wanted all eyes to be on them in the week leading up to the show.
dohboiii says, “A lot of shows [we’ve done] were basically tc (that’s crazy) shows cause we got a big collective and we get individually invited on bills, but this one’s cool because, this is us, we get to put it together,” It was important to them to create their atmosphere, especially since the show title implies more shows to come and the first one sets the tone. “All the music is curated; n*ggas get to do whatever they want; it's gonna look exactly how we want.”
Several local and not-so-local artists who have been on the scene for years agree that this collective is “the future” of Louisville rap. “Everybody sees it, and it makes me proud cause I already know it's something special, even if nobody else knows or acknowledges it. I know,” shy!!! said. They appreciate that people see the effort they put in. “It helps me with my music, hearing stuff like that; it makes me wanna push out better music, have a better message in my music,” Dreamz said.
They are confident in their abilities and ready to do what it takes to elevate. When asked how he feels about this claim, Otéz says simply, “We are, we are the scene, respectfully.” This group, individually and as a collective, has already taken over shows at Headliners Music Hall, Louievolve, and more.
No disrespect toward what some would call “street rap,” but these individuals want to remind people that this city has more to offer. They are changing the landscape of the Louisville rap scene, requiring their peers to be more creative and intentional.
You can keep up with them on Instagram and Twitter @thatscrazycamp.
Honorable Mentions/Shoutouts from the artists: Forrest, MIKE, Allen Vice, TiaCorine, Zaniah, Dom Haley, Hendo Houdini, Axel Roley, dave.will.chris, Mr. Dave, Mr. White, Cole’s mom, Shively (yes, the neighborhood), Zell’s mom, David Ruffin, Otis Redding, God, Horace’s mom, Horace’s homie Jr, and Tisby, rest in peace.