April 12, 2008


Keith Edward Elam better known as GURU, was born on July 17, 1966 in Boston Massachusetts. He is the lyrical half of legendary hip-hop group Gang Starr together with DJ Premier. With his Jazzmatazz series, he is also considered to be one of the pioneers of hiphop/jazz crossover. The name Guru is an acronym for "Gifted Unlimited Rhymes Universal"

Founded in 1987, Gang Starr built a sizable following in the early 90's, releasing classic albums like, Step in the Arena (1991) and Daily Operation (1992). Guru's lyrical style is based on battle rhymes delivered smoothly, modestly, and with sly wit; he typically avoids using overwhelming charisma, focusing instead on his rhyming ability. His formidable skills on the mic, has earned him legions of admirers.

In 1993, he released his first solo album, Jazzmatazz, Vol. 1 The album featured collaborations with Donald Byrd, N'Dea Davenport of the Brand New Heavies and Roy Ayers, while his second LP, Jazzmatazz, Vol. 2: The New Reality, featured Ramsey Lewis, Branford Marsalis and Jamiroquai. The Jazzmatazz albums are commonly considered some of the best rap of the early 90s, Guru's reputation was also bolstered through the continued success of Jazzmatazz, Vol. 3: Street soul (2000)
His "first proper solo album", in his own words, was Version 7.0: The Street Scriptures (2005), released with the help of super producer Solar. The album reached #1 on the college hip-hop charts. Guru's latest project is the fourth installment in the Jazzmatazz series, entirely produced by Solar. It was released in early June 2007

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