Larry Fitzmaurice

What? He may not have either the Democratic or Republican nomination, but California indie-hip-hop mainstay Murs (an acronym for "Making Underground Raw Shit") is throwing his hat into the election ring with his seventh solo album and major-label debut, Murs For President, out tomorrow on Warner Bros. Murs For President finds the underground-rapper-gone-big-time retaining his verbose and engaging flow while sticking to the soulful, jazzy beats that have marked his best records, notably 2004's Murs 3:16: The 9th Edition.

Who? Before signing to Warner Bros., Murs, a.k.a. Nick Carter, had been a fixture in the California underground hip-hop scene for over a decade, starting with his 1997 debut F'Real. Besides his critically and commercially revered collaborations with producer 9th Wonder on Murs 3:16 and 2006's follow-up, Murray's Revenge, Murs has worked with such respected rhymers as Mr. Lif, Aesop Rock, and Jean Grae.

Odd Fact: Murs has also collaborated with Atmosphere's Slug. The duo's two EPs, 2004's A Tribute to Christina Ricci and 2005's A Tribute to Lisa Bonet, drew inspiration from an argument between the two rappers as to who could have sex with the actresses first.

Now Hear This: Murs, "Can It Be"

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