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Oakland, CA | Established. Jan 01, 2010 | SELF

Oakland, CA | SELF
Established on Jan, 2010
Solo Hip Hop Soul




"Tope Featuring Blu “Let It Go”"

Tope just recently dropped a new track, and this one’s good. “Let It Go” is partly submerged in jazzy aquatics, partly doused in soothing nostalgia, and it features a solid verse from Blu for good measure. Producer Stewart Villain’s mix of nighttime intimacy and urgency (and sax!) provides an excellent listen as the duo delves into cold realities: “Never heard of wisdom, killing these kids/ Gave ‘em props for the plot and now they’re just the murder victim.”

“Let It Go” is a cut of Tope’s BROKEBOYSYNDROME, which drops on Dec. 15. - XXL

"Tope ft. CashUs King – “Red Light” [LISTEN]"

Not often does one see a rapper from Portland making noise, but here we have a new track called “Red Light” by bubbling wordsmith Tope.

Featuring underrated Los Angeles lyricist ChasUs King, the cut is a smooth listen, laden with sharp lyrics and boom-bap drums. Stewart Villain handled the production. Press play below to her Tope’s “Red Light.” - Hip Hop Wired

"Tope just keeps getting better -- the rapper might be Portland's next big thing"

The other week I was chatting with a colleague from Los Angeles and he asked me who I thought was ready to blow from Portland right now. I had to think about it for a moment. Who possesses the talent, the drive, the team and the maturity to make it big from a midsize city known mostly to touring artists as the stop between Seattle and San Francisco? Who has the audacity and the image to blaze his own trail and glamorize a Portland sound? Tope, that's who.

With a style all his own, Anthony "Tope" Anderson has come a long way from rocking house parties for his high school pals in the mid-2000s. These days the Central Catholic alumnus can still be found with his friends, but they're playing large venues across the region and opening for big name artists like Macklemore, Talib Kweli and Mac Miller. In fact, just last month, Tope -- alongside TxE bandmates Epp and Calvin Valentine -- opened for the enigmatic Danny Brown during a wild sold-out show at the Hawthorne Theatre, and he killed it, as usual.

It can be difficult to explain his allure. A clean-shaven, skinny, white guy with no visible tattoos, he doesn't come across as being terribly rapper-like. I'd probably assume he worked at a laid-back nonprofit before I guessed he spit bars for income. That said, hip-hop is a culture not defined by skin color, creed or the number of chains you wear; for as long as I've known him, Tope has embodied this lifestyle. From the kicks to the hats, both his fashion and music consistently convey the essence of Portland's complicated young urban party scene. His lyrics are light yet clever, and his crossover appeal is beyond obvious.
Mac's picks for July
Ratchet Fest with Stewart Villain, Chill Crew and Load B: 6 p.m. Friday, 8831 N.E. Russell Place, $5, 21 and older
Bad Habitat and Monster's Ink dual CD release party, 10 p.m. Friday, July 19, The Blue Monk, 3341 S.E. Belmont St., $7, 21 and older
Lifesavas and TxE, 9 p.m. Saturday, July 20, Doug Fir Lounge, 830 E. Burnside St., $16-$20,, 21 and older
This week, the 27-year old released an EP titled "Trouble Man" -- perhaps his most defining solo work to date -- for free on his website, The album includes appearances from Northwest standouts such as Luck-One, Grynch and Spac3man, and features production from DJ Celsius, Farnell Newton, Chloe Victoria Verve and DJ Flip Flop. If my calculations are correct, between his beat tapes, group work with TxE and Living Proof, and solo releases, this is the 14th project he has put out. How's that for work ethic? The best part, though: He just keeps getting better.

Tope has a few shows coming up in Portland, including a performance at the Pix Patisserie Bastille Day Bash on Saturday, and a TxE performance at the Doug Fir on July 20 opening for Lifesavas. Check him out if you haven't already. I'd also urge you not to sleep on his TxE teammates, because together they put on a great show.

I don't think Tope is the only Portland rapper ready to make it big; in fact, there are more than a handful that could achieve stardom if given the opportunity. Still, it's hard to argue that any are more ready, right now, than he is. With a great sound, ample product, a solid image and a good head on his shoulders, Tope might just be the next big thing.

-- Fahiym B. Acuay, aka Mac Smiff - The Oregonian

"TOPE Matures To #5 Freshest In The NW"

Making his first appearance on the Freshest in the Northwest list at an impressive spot of #5 is Portland artist Tope. The rapper has been busier than ever having recently finished the run of his EP Trouble Man, released a group album with his group TxE called Vs. Portland, and at the time the panel was filmed had just released another EP entitled Chicken Wings & Ice Cream Cones to tease us for his full-length later this year. Right off the bat Q Dot and Horizon answered Tope’s placement with “Tope’s killing it!” Horizon added that Tope should move up as he finds him to be top 3 caliber.

Q Dot and many of the panelists described Tope as a solid rapper, but not the best lyricist like a Portland version of Seattle artist Sol. Mac Smiff commented that he sometimes is underwhelmed by Tope’s bars, but has shown the ability to drop something lyrically solid. He describes that Tope sometimes comes across as the “hipster white guy,” but he’ll step up and own a cypher. D-Money added that he thinks that Tope has matured more than any Northwest emcee in the past two years and recalled an album review he did a few years ago when he noticed the rapper used to focus on trying to impress women rather than being his genuine self. D added that Tope is much realer and mature as evidenced by his just released Chicken Wings & Ice Cream Cones EP. To this announcement Darryl broke out his phone and proceeded to download the project mid-conversation.

The current rapper of the group, Q applauded Tope’s presence on the microphone as strong and professional. Mac told the panel about the emcee’s merch selling out like his custom made jerseys and shirts.

D asked the panel if they preferred Tope as a solo artist or as a member of TxE and Q explained it’s a better look for him when he’s solo. DJ Swervewon agreed, saying that he hears Tope play more of a party rocker with the group while speaking on more subjects when he is in the booth by himself. Mac shared that he was impressed recently when Tope stepped out of the TxE style and stepped away from the energy. Tope’s maturity has come also by working with the guys of the APM Gang including this year’s #7 artist Luck-One and Spac3man while also learning from Illmaculate and the absent panelist Cool Nutz. Swerve mentioned that Tope has impressively gotten co-signs from almost every rapper in Portland. Even his press on his point such as earlier this year when Erykah Badu tweeted her appreciation of Tope’s sampling of her song on Trouble Man. Luvva helpfully added that he was impressed that females flock to Tope when most emcees just talk about getting them. And that’s real!

As the conversation died down, D-Money asked if everyone was fine with Tope holding down the number 5 slot, and with a chorus of yes from the panel D placed the placard on the Freshest in the Northwest board. - D-Money

"Ruff Review: Trouble Man, Tope."

It’s the saddest birthday song I’ve ever heard.

There are no descriptions of “big booty hoes” or strippers jumping out of birthday cakes. You know, the typical birthday songs you hear in rap today.

No. None of that on this EP. I mean, you rarely hear profanity used in his lyrics.

In this birthday song, Portland, Oregon artist and producer, Tope, wrote and produced a birthday song paying homage to his deceased mother. “About You/Birthday Song”, a track off of his current EP, Trouble Man, updates his mother on all that has happened since her passing and where he’s at in life. As he details various situations, he readily admits that he’s still growing:

“And I ain’t perfect I be going through it too…” he raps over the soulful beat.

One thing is for sure: Tope is definitely coming into his own and taking an aggressive stance to showcase his growth as a multi-talented artist. His EP, Trouble Man, has his hands–and heart–all over it. The album opens with Start, the announcement of his re-emergence as an artist and the official introduction to “Trouble Man”. Tope details old relationships that he’s moved on from; apologizes to his fans for the wait; and relives how one of his closest friends used him. He even addresses how some have labeled him Hollywood but if you ask him, he’s simply “good”. Interestingly enough, the song is called “Start” but ends with a woman vocalist belting how she’s going to “be here with you in the end”.

When it comes to this musical body of work, in the end, his bay-heavily influenced production [YES to Start, New Day, Family Affair and Take Your Time]; choice in style of delivery; and raw perspective give it life. On the other hand, inconsistency in story telling and a blip in the choice of track list [Stuck was the weakest link] tells us there’s more growth to be had. Overall, it’s a solid EP worth checking out.

Grab the free album at

Check out more music reviews and news at The Urban Intellectual - Ruffhouse Records

"Tope: A rising rapper out of Portland works his way to Kaleidoscope Music Festival"

Tope is doing it all by himself. The 27-year-old rapper from Portland wrote, recorded and produced all the tracks off his latest EP, “Trouble Man.” The nine songs range from summertime jams to emotionally charged confessionals, all lined with Tope’s honest lyrics and rich beats.

After being in the game for close to a decade, Tope is breaking through the common mold and beginning to morph into his own style of soulful hip-hop. Currently on tour with Scarub from Living Legends, you can catch Tope at two local shows and witness his rise for yourself.

The main focus of the Pacific Northwest music scene tends to be on past grunge heroes and modern indie luminaries. But ever since Sir Mix-A-lot encouraged countless second helpings and squats with “Baby Got Back,” the Pacific Northwest has had a promising hip-hop community.

Acts like Common Market, Blue Scholars and, of course, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis have proven that the rain, putting birds on things and local brews can come together to create a robust hip-hop culture. Anthony “Tope” Anderson grew up in this scene and it has a heavy influence on his style, especially on “Trouble Man.” The sweet piano melodies and skillfully crafted samples backed against tight beats make Tope another mentionable addition to already credible music scene.

Kicking off “Trouble Man” is “Starter,” a suitable beginner that showcases Tope’s excellent producing skills. Mashing a tender guitar sample with a tap-along beat, Tope lays out the album’s aim. “This is for the fans, yeah sorry for the wait though / business on my hands and some problems on my plate.” On “Family Affair,” Tope demonstrates some “College Dropout“­-era Kanye with a hashed out remix of Cheryl Lynn’s 1978 disco hit “Got to be Real.” Tope’s family plays a key role on the record, popping up in multiple songs and acting as a reoccurring theme. They’re mostly mentioned in encouraging and cheerful shout outs, such as track “What Up,” but Tope isn’t shy about displaying his demons.

Prior to recording, his grandfather passed away and he touches on his estranged relationship with his father on the second half of “About You x Birthday Song.” “And they keep asking about my dad / ten years since we spoke and I ain’t looking back / I finally understand what it’s like to be a man and this life ain’t really turned out exactly how you planned.”

If you saw him on the street, Tope could pass as just another pretty fly for a white guy from Rip City. But in the studio and on stage, Tope is a rising rapper who excels behind the mixing board and microphone. Surviving in the game through his grit, Tope sounds determined to make it to the top. See him among other greats at the Kaleidoscope Music Festival on Sunday, August 25. - Eugene Weekly

"See the Tope music video that impressed Erykah Badu"

With Tope's "Take Your Time" video, the producer-MC knew he wanted to pay tribute to Erykah Badu. He didn't know she'd be a fan, too.

The video was released on Tuesday and promptly scored two retweets from Badu, who added the commentary "Blown" and a smiley face.

"Take Your Time" features Tope in character as a '90s Badu fan, waking up to the beep of his pager and popping her cassette into his Walkman as he heads off to work and an open-mic night. It's the latest from the musician's "Trouble Man" EP, which arrived last year. Tope will return with more bars alongside TxE colleagues G_Force and Epp on "TxE vs PRTLND" on Jan. 21. The group previewed the upcoming release, which samples a host of Portland indie rock acts, with a hot set at Mississippi Studios last week.

-- David Greenwald - The Oregonian

"Growing pains: Portland rapper Tope battles to break out of the small market that raised him"

In a vinyl-cluttered Northeast Portland apartment-turned-recording studio, Anthony "Tope" Anderson points to a whiteboard. It's one of those dorm-sized dry-erase boards that stick on the wall. Written down are dates, every Monday from Nov. 11 to Dec. 15 — the Portland-born rapper's roll-out plan, leading up to his eighth solo project, "Broke Boy Syndrome."

Without a label, the 28-year-old MC is his own publicist, manager and PR team. And after nearly a decade in the business, through local accolades and underground opportunities, Tope has proven himself. Now it's time to move on, to move out; but gaining buzz beyond the Pacific Northwest has always been a battle.

By Portland standards, Tope is exceptionally successful. Over the last year, remarkably, Anderson says he has lived off music — through merchandise proceeds, show money and verse fees. But on the national stage, he's still low profile. "Broke Boy Syndrome" celebrates his newfound financial gain, but also leaves the MC staring at the doors still yet to open.

"It's about coming from nothing," Tope says of the new record, reclining in his desk chair in front of two turntables, a keyboard, and his laptop.

He's referring to his childhood, raised by a drug-addicted mother and estranged from an incarcerated father, a hip-hop trope if ever there was one.

"My daddy was a drunk, not a dollar to his name/said I'd never be that punk, and I promised it would change," Tope says on the title track to his forthcoming release.

But it's more than just about making something of himself; the record is a meditation on being a victim of poverty, of failed social mobility. According to Tope, the syndrome in the title means "staying at the same level you were born at because you can't break out of that class."

Broke boy syndrome — a system of stagnation — also could apply to Anderson's music career, but he's hoping the album will catapult him beyond the city limits.

Intense and built like a twig, Tope turns heads when he's on stage. His horn-laden, organ-dabbed, soul-sampled production draws in old-school hip-hop lovers, while bouncy vocal tricks and simple hooks give him wider appeal.

Still, the Portland MC struggles to differentiate himself from his Seattle counterparts. "I'm just that kid from Portland," he says with a shrug. "I think it's just that."

He considers it a weak comparison to put him up against the most recent breakout stars of the Northwest, Seattle rapper Macklemore and producer Ryan Lewis, who in 2013 won four Grammys including Best New Artist and Best Rap Album.

"There will probably never be another independent artist that did what Macklemore did," Tope says.

Instead, he considers his true peers to be independent artists, guys like Raz Simone and Sol, who are gaining attention through YouTube views and Twitter followers, and consistently getting coverage from bigger publications.

It also helps that he's a one-man show.

"It's just me," Anderson says. "When you look at something and it says 'written, recorded, produced, and mixed by Tope,' you can appreciate that."


In Tope's apartment, a framed copy of Slum Village's sophomore effort "Fantastic Vol. II" hangs five feet from his bed. Underground idols like J Dilla are his inspiration—all-purpose artists, guys who didn't just rap but created full-bodied projects. "My hand is in everything," Tope says. That goes for music videos, album artwork, merchandise design and more.

Refining that full package might be the push Tope needs to get ahead.

"All the pieces have to come together to create the overall picture for success," says Portland rap doyen Terrence "Cool Nutz" Scott — a man who's sustained a sturdy 20-plus year career and has worked closely with Tope on a number of projects.

Scott says that for an act to break out it needs to combine a singular sound with a distinctive image and be street- and business-savvy. You need a strong album to earn critical buzz and word-of-mouth, which can lead to a tour, which can lead to selling more merchandise, and so on.

Tope's a prime example of this model, with the "Broke Boy" album, the hashtag, the hoodie, and the tour on the way.

"Lately my brand has been honesty," Anderson says of his present focus. His 2013 project, "Trouble Man," was a brooding look at his life up until that point —discussing broken relationships and his family on some of the most transparent songs he had ever tracked.

"Broke Boy Syndrome" puts that troubled young man in context, looking back at Anderson's childhood, his successes, and his struggles moving forward. "It's the story of all the (stuff) it took to get me to this point," reflects Tope, "and hopefully where I'm going in the future — being as successful as I talk about, dream about."

After stabbing at the rap game for nearly a decade, Tope's aware of his place and his potential more than ever. He says he doesn't aspire to big lights and radio rips, but rather to modest marks as a gainful independent artist. He wants access, the ability to tour comfortably and create music profitably. Yet he understands this rap game is a gamble.

"It's a strike of lightening," Cool Nutz says. But it's also about being ready at the right moment, prepared to "make the turn when the fans are listening." Tope's rise has never been more propitious. And he's never been more prepared.

"Broke Boy Syndrome" has already spread his sound further from Portland than ever. Singles "Red Light" and "Let It Go" premiered on the national hip-hop blog, which is owned by Complex Media, a wide-reaching network of fashion, music and video gaming websites aimed at young men.

"At the end of the day it's just a blog," Anderson says, "but that really was a goal of mine."

In 2014 Tope crossed a few other goals off his bucket list, too: A retweet from Erykah Badu in January, a visit to Philadelphia hip-hop label Ruffhouse Records (once home to Cypress Hill, DMX, Nas, Lauryn Hill and Wyclef Jean) in August, a Northwest tour with bay-area MC Gift of Gab in October, and another national shout-out in November, this one from the urban-music site, founded by Questlove of the Roots.

"Let It Go," which features Los Angeles rapper/producer Blu, "stands as our first taste of a project that's shaping up to be one for the radar," the Okayplayer writeup said, "so give it an ear or two and pick up 'Broke Boy Syndrome' when it hits the web Dec. 15th."

So, what does it take for a rapper from Portland to tramp out of the Northwest? The final line of "Broke Boy Syndrome" offers a guess: "You let the music take control."

For Tope, that just might do. - The Oregonian


ELEVEN: I really feel like each record of yours represents a step forward (which is saying, something since they all are pretty dope) in a way. Is that a conscious decision, or is it something occurs totally naturally and randomly? Do you ever sit down and think, “I want this record to have more ‘so and so’ than the last one,” or does it just pour out of you?

TOPE: I think every album being more and more personal is a natural process of maturing and becoming more comfortable being myself with my audience and in my writing. Every album I feel like I peel back another layer and tell another story of my life. I’m young, but my life has been crazy and I’ve seen a lot already—sometimes I even forget. I think after I wrote “Birthday Song” for my mom (RIP) on Trouble Man, I realized that I could be really honest and open while still staying in the pocket lyrically and timing-wise. After that I decided my story was enough, and that I didn’t need to try to be anybody but myself or tell anybody else’s story but mine.

11: What is the “Broke Boy Syndrome” to you exactly?

TOPE: Broke Boy Syndrome has a lot of definitions to me really. It’s about people who work their entire life to break even. It’s about people who grew up poor and had no one else to rely on for success but themselves. It’s about people who finally start to see success/money and how difficult it is to maintain that success when you come from a dark place and everything around you is trying to bring you down. Broke Boy Syndrome is about the fact that most people never make it out of the social class they are born in. It’s an underdog’s story on trying to make it and maintain. “It’s for my people who never had money, just got money, and they about spend money!”

11: BBS touches on a couple of very personal topics: your family, your father, the frustrations of an up and coming artist, money, etc. Yet your attitude remains positive throughout the record, which I found refreshing and engaging. Is it difficult to keep your mind right while dealing with all this? Is your music a positive outlet for your frustrations?

TOPE: I’ve always just been a believer in maintaining a positive attitude and trying to make a plus out of a minus. Especially with music. If you can’t find a way to maintain your happiness through the ups and downs of trying to “make it,” you’re going to be in for a rough ride. I definitely deal with a lot of stresses; 2014 has probably been one the most personally up and down years of my life, but thankfully I’ve had my music this year to keep me moving forward and always having something to work on. The “rap game” in 2014 doesn’t make ANY sense at all, and you can burn yourself out real quick trying to compete with these industry people with an independent budget. Music is my outlet for everything: positive, negative, and everything in between. I’m 100% honest in my music, so you get humor, anger, pain, party, love, everything.
Photo by Caitlin M. Webb

Photo by Caitlin M. Webb

11: You mention Death Row and Tupac a couple of times. I was wondering what other artists inspire you, both past and present.

TOPE: As funny as it may sound or look, 2Pac was a HUGE influence on me as a kid. Same with Snoop, DJ Quik, Warren G, Too Short—west-coast rap was my favorite growing up, but I also loved BIG, Puff, Ma$e and that whole era. Ma$e still has joints to me. Bone-Thugs-N-Harmony was also a big group for me as a kid, as well as De La Soul, Tribe, and Wu-Tang. I don’t think I really wanted to rap myself until I saw Eyedea (RIP) on HBO Blaze Battle in high school. He was amazing, the way he could use his humor and punchlines to humiliate his opponents. 8 Mile and battle rap were definitely making a comeback at that time, and I think then I knew it was something I could do myself. Later, underground hip hop like Hieroglyphics, Living Legends, Black Star, ect. helped me develop my tastes and what I really liked and didn’t like in hip hop. J Dilla was the main factor to me starting to produce—I loved his work with Common, Slum Village, and The Pharcyde. Jay Dee helped me realize how much soul music was a part of the rap that I loved. After getting into production, I dove deeper into the soul music realm and started discovering world music (Fela!), gospel music, and most importantly jazz! Today I’m influenced by a lot of artists, but mainly life itself. New artists I check for, though, include Dom Kennedy, Drake, Logic, Elzhi, BJ The Chicago Kid, Terrace Martin, Overdoz, Kendrick Lamar, Troy Ave, Jeremih, YG, Nipsey Hussle, Fly Union, etc.

11: Follow up to that: who are your favorite Pacific Northwest hip hop artists right now?

TOPE: Favorite NW hip hop artists right now include HANiF f.k.a., Luck-One, Mikey Vegaz, Eighty 4 Fly, Thaddeus David, Stewart Villain, Trox, Cool Nutz, Lifesavaz, Wes Guy—to be honest I don’t listen to hardly any rap from the NW.

11: Speaking of the Pacific Northwest, I’ve been wondering if it’s ever frustrating to come from a place like Portland that’s so synonymous (at least to the media) with indie rock? Have you ever considered leaving? You rep Oregon pretty hard on the record, which I thought was very cool.

TOPE: Making hip hop in Portland, OR is definitely not the easiest place to get recognized or even for people to take you seriously. I think a lot of Portlanders wish they lived or were from somewhere else, so it’s hard for them to support a hip hop artist from their backyard as opposed to one from NY, LA, or even Seattle. A lot of people don’t understand why you would even live in PDX and make hip hop because they tie the music to an urban culture—something that lacks in our city. I can’t seem to make sense of why Seattle artists are able to come down here, tour, and sell out shows, while artists from this town have a hard time getting a free show to capacity. We have an incredible rock scene here, and the majority of people are white so it only makes sense that rock is the dominant genre in the media and around town in general. For every person that has a Radiation City album on their iPod, they probably have a Kanye West album on there too. I guess it’s just a matter of getting the right music into the right hands of the people. As far as the media and other artists in Portland, I feel like a lot of people only want to support you when you’re “up and coming.” When you start to threaten other people’s position of success, they start to get uncomfortable. This year has been an interesting one for me, because I’ve been trying to step out and really be my own artist, carve my own lane, and it’s crazy to see who is riding with me and who has gotten left behind.

11: Do you feel like Portland’s and the Pacific Northwest’s hip hop scenes in general are getting more attention (finally) with the emerging popularity of acts like Shabazz Palaces, yourself, THEESatisfaction, and Nacho Picasso?

TOPE: I definitely feel like the NW scene is starting be recognized on a national scale. You have artists like J Pinder, who is writing for Dr. Dre, Royce The Choice, who just got signed by DJ Mustard, Trox producing for 50 Cent, DJ Fatboy djing for E-40, Illmaculate battling all over the world, and Macklemore and Ryan Lewis becoming international mega-stars. People are starting to check, but I think a lot of that attention is still focused on Seattle. They deserve it though—Seattle has a great scene– artists like Sol, Grieves, Mack, Grynch, BFA. I really respect those dudes’ grind.

11: Was the massive success of Macklemore and Ryan Lewis a good or a bad thing for the scene here?

TOPE: I think Macklemore and Ryan Lewis’ success was great for the region. I don’t really see any negatives from the issue, besides the “next-Macklemore” issue everyone loves talking about. I’m proud of those guys. I’ve worked with both of them closely and see them rise, fall, everything in between. They definitely deserve all the success they are achieving in my opinion.

11: What are you plans following the release of BBS? Touring and whatnot?

TOPE: Plans for after BBS include touring (including a European run), more videos, remixes, and releasing more merch to go with the album. I really want to be able to tap into some younger markets and be able to share my story with high school and middle school aged kids. I think BBS is something kids trying to figure what they want to do with their life can relate to. »

- Donovan Farley - Eleven PDX

"“Broke Boy Syndrome” by Tope"


Portland’s Tope adds to his already impressively prolific output with his latest album, Broke Boy Syndrome, and the stellar record is one that is not only one of Portland’s best of the year, but hip hop in general’s.

Songs like “Let It Go”, “Almighty” and the title track are instant winners featuring clever wordplay and some fantastic production, but for me the centerpiece of the record is the absolute banger that is “Red Light.” A fantastic soul sample and some Hammond B3 organ during the intro set the stage perfectly for the eventual beat drop, and when the drums kick in the song becomes literally impossible to ignore. It’s here that Tope’s myriad of talents are on display, and his influences, from J Dilla to jazz, are abundantly apparent and presented with razor sharp focus. I found myself having one of those “Oh shit!” moments the first four or five times I heard the track.

Tope told me in our interview that, “I’m 100% honest in my music so you get humor, anger, pain, party, love, everything” and attempting to bring all of that into any piece of art is a Herculean task, but with Broke Boy Syndrome, he has done just that. Tope hasn’t just made a very good local record, and he hasn’t just made a very good hip hop record, this is just a very good record. Period. Here’s to hoping it and he get the attention he deserves in the coming months. »

- Donovan Farley - Eleven PDX

"Broke Boy Syndrome (Album Review)"

[RAP CONVO] Tope is Portland’s rapper-next-door. He isn’t an abstract word-scrambler, political activist or LARPing gangsta but the guy you fall into conversation with on MAX or in the coffee shop. That rare personableness has helped make Tope the city’s most visible MC, and with each release, the image of the skinny kid born Anthony Anderson comes more into focus. Broke Boy Syndrome, his third full-length, is grounded in a familiar hip-hop narrative, of how growing up with nothing shaped him and sharpened his grind. But Tope fills it with enough personal details to make the theme resonate anew. “I remember when my mama got them lights cut off/And the church came through with that food in the box,” he recalls over the title track’s splashy cymbals and organ. An unabashed nostalgist, Tope throws his reedy flow over the “Funky Drummer” break, samples Biggie’s “more money, more problems” interview and, on the inspirational “UCouldDo,” borrows a line from Nas, declaring, “The world is yours.” But those reference aren’t meant as clickbait for ’90s babies. They’re the building blocks of his life, a story he’s telling one album at a time.

SEE IT: Tope plays Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison St., with Illmaculate, Thaddeus David, Blossom and Verbz, on Wednesday, Jan. 14. 8:30 pm. $7. 21+. - Willamette Week


NEW KICKS (2012)



Producer / Rapper TOPE is considered one of the top up and coming artists in the Northwest region and has been recently featured on XXL, The Source, 2DopeBoyz, Okayplayer, Jay-Z's Life + Times, Hip Hop Wired, Hip Hop DX, and more for his album latest BROKE BOY SYNDROME. 

Since his debut album in 2010, TOPE has produced and/or collaborated with artists including Slum Village, Blu, Planet Asia, TiRon, Myka 9, Abstract Rude, Scarub of Living Legends, LMNO, and many many more. 

With a commanding stage presence and energetic live show, TOPE has shared stages with hip hop legends including Nas, Mobb Deep, Talib Kweli, Run The Jewels, Deltron 3030, Big KRIT, Dom Kennedy, Black Milk, Mac Miller, Ty Dolla $ign, Digable Planets, Hieroglyphics, Aesop Rock, The Coup, People Under The Stairs, Macklemore and countless others. 

In early 2014 TOPE also gained attention from Soul icon Erykah Badu herself for his TAKE YOUR TIME video. 2015 saw TOPE licensing music to Oxygen for his first TV placements, plus headlining his first West Coast tour. 

Recently, TOPE has relocated to the Bay Area and briefly toured with Gift Of Gab from Blackalicious as well as performing at A3C Festival in Atlanta. Currently TOPE is working on his new album + 30 city tour to follow this June. 

Band Members