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GUANTE is a hip hop artist, two-time National Poetry Slam champion, social justice activist, educator and writer. He and/or his work has appeared on Upworthy, MSNBC, Racialicious, Feministing, MPR, the Progressive, City Pages’ “Artists of the Year” list and URB Magazine’s “Next 1000” list. He's shared bills with Talib Kweli, Saul Williams, Brother Ali, Dead Prez, Sage Francis, Andrea Gibson, Doomtree, Zion I and more. Guante also founded the MN Activist Project and Hip Hop Against Homophobia concert series, writes articles at Opine Season and elsewhere, and facilitates writing/performance workshops for youth.

Yearly Recaps:  2008 | 2009 | 2010 | 2011 | 2012 | 2013

CONTACT: elguante@gmail.com  |  Booking Information HERE  |  Photos HERE

PRESS QUOTES:

"Giving you something to think about while nodding your head to his nimble, casual flow, Guante could very well follow Atmosphere and P.O.S. in the long line of outstanding rappers to break out from the Midwest." --CMJ Artist Spotlight (link)

"Part Cormac McCarthy, part Woody Guthrie, and part Public Enemy." --Justin Schell, Twin Cities Daily Planet (link)

"An all-around firebrand... the tracks are political but also personal, impassioned without becoming preachy, and always original." --Josh Jackson, Paste Magazine (link)

"Guante and Big Cats create intelligent, political hip hop that mercifully doesn't come off as preachy or self-righteous. It's sobering, demanding your attention like a car crash, yet emotional and alarmingly intimate at times."  --Michael L. Walsh, City Pages (link)

"Earnestness can go wrong in hip hop.  On this album, it goes very right." --Sage Francis, Strange Famous Records, on Guante & Big Cats' "An Unwelcome Guest" (link)

"Whether writing of lost causes or zombie apocalypses, Guante demonstrates impeccable artistic control; in performance, he has the audience's undivided attention." --City Pages "Best of 2009" Feature (link)

"...Guante has a deft sense of humor and style in his arsenal, along with a battle-hewn tongue that rattles off sharply-spit rhymes and high-concept narratives... Guante's lyrics go deeper than the familiar comic-book premise into an authority-questioning meditation on violence that'd do John Romero's most allegorical moments proud." --Nate Patrin, City Pages (link)

"...one of the best rappers in the Twin Cities today, not to mention its best spoken-word poet." --Jon Behm, Reviler (link)

"Guante quietly rolled into the Twin Cities' hip hop and spoken-word scenes with a hand grenade, and pulled the pin.  If you look anywhere in those scenes now, you'll see his shrapnel buried deep in every wall." --City Pages "2008 Artists of the Year" Feature (link)

"[El Guante's Haunted Studio Apartment] is a megaton bomb on local indie rap, bound to be the heaviest breath of fresh air hip hop heads will suck in all year." --Jordan Selbo, City Pages (link)

"Shocking as it may be, somehow between writing plays, literature and poetry and organizing politics, this Minneapolis renaissance man still finds a way to hold down a rap career.  Chock-full of biting political commentary... this guy is attempting to carry the Twin Cities on his back." --URB Magazine "Next 1000" Feature (link)

"One of Minneapolis’s best and most important rappers." --Ezra Stead, Eat Sleep Drink Music (link)

"While 'Weaponize' contains sexy beats, biting social critique, and a hard-to-ignore case against apathy, deep down what it really all boils down to seems to be one simple thing: love..." –Jon Behm, Reviler (link)

“Since he emerged in the Twin Cities a half-decade ago, Guante has built an artistic empire of forward-thinking ideals. Assertions on gender issues, institutional racism, class warfare, identity politics, and homophobia, among other progressive causes, show up in his work paired with the haunting stomp of Big Cats! bangers as the backdrop.” –Jack Spencer, City Pages (link)

“Their new album captures Guante at his best as he delivers powerful cultural and sociopolitical theses with a blazing clarity, and it serves as excellent companion piece to P.O.S and Brother Ali's latest records.” –Andrea Swensson, The Current (link)

“Guante establishes himself as the Twin Cities answer to East-Coast lyrical gods like Pharaohe Monch…” –Zach McCormick, The Wake (link)

"Political rap. Conscious rap. Smart rap. Whatever you want to call it rap– You Better Weaponize is exactly what I love about all things hip hop..." --ChooseMyMusic.org (link)

"(Guante) has worked hard to create a style and flow uniquely his own.  He has also made a habit of exploring issues at greater length and depth than most rappers ever do.  On his newest record, An Unwelcome Guest, Guante somehow manages to push the envelope even further." --Emily Mills, Dane101 (link)

"Man of many words Kyle "Guante" Myhre slams poetry, regales with rap and hypnotizes as an MC." --Trish Collopy, St. Paul Pioneer Press (link)

"A WITLESS DOLT." --Dwight Hobbes, Hip Hop Expert (and yes it was in all caps)

VARIOUS ACCOLADES:
~2010 National Poetry Slam champion (St. Paul team)
~2009 National Poetry Slam champion (St. Paul team)

~Grand Poetry Slam Champion of St. Paul (2009), Minneapolis (2008, 2012) and Madison (2006)
~URB Magazine “Next 1000” for 2008
~2008 Independent Music Awards finalist for Best Hip Hop Album and Best Hip Hop Song
~One of City Pages’ “Artists of the Year” for 2008
~City Pages’ “Best Slam Poet” for 2009
~2009 VERVE grant recipient for spoken-word poetry
~People’s Choice for “Best Slam Poet” and “Artist/Activist Award” at the 2009 Urban Griots Minnesota Spoken-Word Awards
~2012 MN State Arts Board Artist Initiative Grant recipient

NOTABLE PERFORMANCES:
~Soundset 2009 w/ Atmosphere, the Pharcyde, Freeway, Brother Ali, MF DOOM, etc.
~Ripple Effect 2008 w/ Rage Against the Machine, Michael Franti, Dead Prez and Anti-Flag
~Forward Music Fest 2008 w/ Neko Case, Killdozer, etc.
~Homegrown Hip Hop Fest 2008 w/ Kid Sister and Doomtree
~Homegrown Hip Hop Fest 2007 w/ Brother Ali and Rhymefest
~80/35 Festival 2010 w/ Modest Mouse, Spoon, Cool Kids, etc.
~Iraq Veterans Against the War 2008 National Conference
~Vices to Verses 2010 w/ Dead Prez, Toki Wright, etc.
~Manifestation 2009 w/ Sage Francis, B.Dolan
~B-Side Jazz Festival 2009 w/ Mr. Lif, Dessa

~Dawn of a Dream 2011 Children's Cancer Research Fund gala
~Hope Rocks 2012 gala w/ Eric Hutchinson
~Hip Hop Against Homophobia concert series (primary organizer and performer, 2009-ongoing)
~Guante's Haunted Van Tour, Verbal Graffiti Tour, Bricks and Bones Tour, a billion other shows...
~Keynote presentations at the Tomorrow's Leaders Today conference, the American Multicultural Student Leadership Conference, the CSJ/SBU Intercultural Center Conference, the BACCHUS Peer Mentor Conference and more.
~COLLEGE SHOWS: the University of MN (Twin Cities, Morris, Duluth), the University of WI (La Crosse, Stout, Madison, Eau-Claire, Stevens Point), Hamline University, Macalester College, Augsburg College, Lawrence College, the University of St. Thomas, Washington University, Marquette University, Northland College, St. Cloud State, Carleton College and more.