In 2012 i was called to produce a track for Craig G so i went to the studio with DVINE1 and came up with "Originality" (Ramblings of an Angry Old Man - Soulspazm) After being told by J.Rocc & Evidence i need to produce my own album, i took the advice. While already in the studio with DVINE1 working on LexneveL records we came up with "Motherboard" which consists of live instruments, no samples (except for "Deadication") i've been working with DVINE1 since the days of live 4-trk tapes, LBCC recording studios to the now "Motherboard".
James Kelly AKA LMNO (Leave My Name Out)'s storied career as an emcee/performer has just entered its second decade. His 1996 debut 12" "Hit The Fence/Courage" was the beginning of building quite an impressive resume in the world of independent Hip Hop mostly through indie label Up Above Records. Whether it be his group projects with notable crews such a s Visionaries ("Galleries", "Sophomore Jinx", "Pangea" & "We Are The Ones (We've Been Waiting For") and Blak Forest ("You Are Now Entering The...Blak Forest" & "Without Further Adieu") or his incredible solo efforts like his 2001 debut LP "Leave My Name Out", "Economic Food Chain Music" or "P's & Q's", LMNO has always managed to stay true to himself and his personal philosophies while many chased the sound du jour in hopes of getting a look that could only benefit them in the short run. There is a level of sincerity and honesty that is sorely lacking from most music of the past 20 years that is so refreshing when you hear it permeate all throughout LMNO’s output throughout his glorious career.
In addition to having one of the most amazing work ethics in the history of the rap game, LMNO is underrated in his ability to find producers and collaborators with which to made timeless music. When you look back at the sheer number of notable producers and musicians LMNO has managed to make incredible albums with which run the full spectrum of the musical diaspora it also speaks to his versatility as an emcee. Regardless of the abstract nature of the production, or if it's avant garde, mostly culled from live instrumentation or even straight up sample based boom bap LMNO doesn't force himself to be something he's not, he shines time and again by finding a way to be his genuine self on each record. LMNO's past collaborators include legends and underground stalwarts like Kut Masta Kurt, DJ Khalil, Evidence, LD, KeyKool, J.Rocc, Kev Brown, Georgia Anne Muldrow, DJ Babu, Dert Beats, Theory Hazit, Mr. Brady, Astronote, Yann Kesz, KyoItachi and others.
In 2010, LMNO exercised his ability to create consistently excellent material with a wide variety of producers and creatives when he put out 10 albums in the span of a calendar year. These collected projects comprised his eye opening "James Kelly" box set. This feat hasn't been duplicated since although his peer and frequent collaborator, the incredibly prolific Moka Only has come close on occasion. LMNO continues to add to his legend by making timeless music that resonates with listeners in an age where music is both increasingly devalued and disposable. Whether he's featured on projects by Oh No, Abstract Rude, Sapient, AWOL One, Jabee, 2Mex or even Pete Rock, LMNO consistently delivers fresh verses that have allowed him to build a devoted fanbase which he has grown and cultivated over the span of an entire generation.
In closing, LMNO is not only the everyman the you root for who manages to keep his head and stay the course in a rapidly changing world but he is a constant in an age where things are here today and gone tomorrow. LMNO could also stand for Longevity, Motivational, Natural and Original considering the way he's inspired so many emcees, producers and creatives with his tenacity, spirit and hustle throughout the years. No matter what happens over the past two decades two things you can count on are the year is going to change and you're going to hear some newness from LMNO somewhere down the line. In this day and age, it's extremely reassuring to have some things you can actually count on.