New Single “Ain’t No Tellin” f/ Swizz Beatz
AUTOGRAFH The Album Coming 2006
Grafh To Appear In BET’s Ultimate Hustler Series
Jamaica, NY — Queens, New York has spawned legends in the music world, and Grafh is on his way to being the nation’s next lyrical icon. With his new single “Ain’t No Tellin”, featuring and produced by Swizz Beatz, the multi-talented emcee is making a statement to his fans, not just rapping for sport.
Chaz Williams’ Black Hand Entertainment has moved to team with Dame Dash Music Group and the Island/Def Jam system, and will release Grafh’s highly-anticipated debut album AUTOGRAFH in early 2006. “My album will be my signature,” explains Grafh. “My goal is to etch my name on the streets, the hearts and minds of the people. ”
Grafh recently filmed his video for “Ain’t No Tellin”. He will also be featured on Damon Dash’s upcoming series Ultimate Hustler, which will air every Tuesday night beginning October 4 on BET. A part of the contestants’ challenges involve working on a record and promoting a show performance for Grafh.
For more information on Grafh and Black Hand Entertainment, go to www.tygereye.net/grafh and www.grafh.com
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In the high-stakes, often volatile, business of music, everybody needs a trump card, and Grafh is Black Hand’s ace in the hole. The lyrical skills, contagious flow, and unique word play will conjure memories of rap legends from another era. These special elements will ultimately define Grafh as one of the leaders of the new generation of all-star emcees.
Grafh was born Phillip Bernard 24 years ago in the Southeastern section of Queens, New York. This particular part of Queens had an especially notorious reputation. His early years were spent in a climate submerged in the infamous crack wars of the 1980’s. Attempting to avoid these pitfalls, a young Phillip took on rhyming as a past time. Unfortunately, street life would take charge in a way he never expected. A neighborhood mentor was gunned down right in front of him, and following that, he witnessed his father’s murder. With two close and sudden losses, he was caught in a blend of mourning, rage, revenge, and a sense of providing a life for him and his mother. A rough time indeed, but he believed in the adage, “God never gives a burden too heavy to carry or overcome. ”
With the help of a friend of his father, Phillip was encouraged to stay clear of the perils of the street. The family friend asked him to consider other careers with more certainty and longevity than rap music, even making him promise to finish school. But Phillip didn’t exactly keep his promise; with one foot in the street, his entire mind, body, and soul were dedicated to music.
At this time he took on the name Grafh, due to his talent for graphically painting pictures with his lyrics, and to insure his father’s friend didn’t hear of his street exploits and neighborhood rap battles. Grafh hit the rap circuit on a mission and it wasn’t long before word of his raw talents reached the office of Black Hand Entertainment, a Jamaica, Queens based record label with strong street ties. Once the rapper and record label staff eventually met, Black Hand’s CEO was surprised: Grafh was Phillip and the CEO was Chaz Williams – the family friend who had told the young man to stay away from trouble. This was a relationship carved by family and fate, and both men were up to the challenge.
The pace quickened early. Grafh’s freestyles were submitted to all the major mixtape deejays. DJ Kay Slay was the first believer. He put Grafh’s 4 ¬¨? minute freestyle on his mixtape and aired it on his Drama Hour show on Hot 97. It wasn’t long before the rest of the major mixtape deejays and music industry took notice. Grafh was featured on all the major mixtapes, and in publications such as XXL and The Source.
He was soon thrust into a bidding war for his talents. Black Hand eventually signed a deal with Epic/Sony with Grafh as the flagship artist, and Sony having first look at the rest of the Black Hand Chain Gang. Grafh simultaneously assumed the rank of President of A&R at Black Hand Entertainment. In the closing months of 2002, Grafh was on the road as part of a twenty city Lyricist Lounge Tour headlined by Scarface. That same year he was named “Internet Mixtape Rookie of the Year “.
Grafh hit Black Hand studio with workaholic enthusiasm, and recorded two albums worth of material as he continued to bombard the streets with massive freestyles. At that time, Sony made the first of what would become a plethora of marketing errors and slept on his street anthem “Bang Out “. In an attempt to counter the blunder, Black Hand came out-of-pocket to shoot an independent video for “Bang Out “, which eventually rotated on BET, HBO’s “In The Zone “, and on regional video shows nationwide. The video also currently spins in Europe on the U Channel.
During the same period, Grafh appeared on several official remixes including Beyonce’s “Me, Myself, & I “, Ginuwine’s “In Those Jean’s “, and ATL’s “Calling All Girls “. Another overlooked song, “I Don’t Care “, got placement on NFL Streets video game, and on two TV series – HBO’s Entourage, and Fox’s Meth and Red. Yet another song, “Bad Company “, appears in the 2005 video game 25 to Life. Unfortunately, the relationship with Sony dissolved. There were major creative differences, namely that Sony did not understand the Black Hand vision, or the music Grafh created.
Moving on to seek new opportunities, Black Hand put its music where its movie is. Damon Dash’s company Dash Films has been preparing a feature film based on the life of Chaz, the Black Hand’ CEO. Recently, Black Hand and Dame came together to put a distribution situation in place through Dame Dash Music Group that will make history. At long last, Grafh will be able to do his music without compromise. AUTOGRAFH, the album, will be in stores in early 2006. In the meantime, check out The Preview: The Official Mixtape and DVD in stores now, as a prelude to Grafh’s major debut.
Grafh’s songs represent the grind, hustle, and pain of real urban life. His music also argues that life is not always about struggle – it is somewhat akin to a kaleidoscope, like two mirrors at each end showing many different patterns or emotions. “Even the most thugged-out person has some down time to enjoy, ” explains Grafh. “My album will be my signature, and my goal is to etch my name on the streets, hearts, and minds of the people. ”