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The many neighborhoods of Kendrick Dial

Settling into a Lyrical Groove

Lyrical Groove started with the lyrics, then found the groove.
Lyrical Groove started with the lyrics, then found the groove.

Lyrical Groove’s Kendrick Dial, a Dallas native, came to San Diego in 2000 with the Navy. Since then, he’s called Chula Vista, Spring Valley, Downtown, and North Park home, and noted how each district boasts its own dynamics. “I enjoy Downtown’s unforeseen element of surprise,” says Dial, who’s bringing Lyrical Groove to Carlsbad’s Museum of Making Music on May 20.

Past Event

San Diego Sound Project: The Lyrical Groove

“I remember one year during Comic-Con, Big Boi from Outkast was performing for a private party at the Hard Rock Hotel. I had to go! So I made my way to the Hard Rock. It just so happened that as I arrived and was following the red rope, a group of young men who were [actually] on the list jumped the rope and got in line ahead of me to enter the event. [Then] one of the members of the group didn’t show. I managed to include myself in the group, and walked right in. Once I got to the top, I saw that the stage was in another blocked-off section. As I wandered around, a lady randomly gave me a wristband that allowed me to go into where the stage was. I was right there by Big Boi by the time he got on stage.”

But as fun as Downtown was, he says he’ll stick with his current neighborhood, Chula Vista. “There’s a great sense of community here. One of the things I love most about my home in Chula Vista is my porch. Reminds me of growing up in Dallas and sitting on my Grandma’s porch, watching the sunset.”

Between the Navy and his current gig as a social worker (and a few other things), Dial has taken a roundabout road to funking it up. “Many folks wouldn’t know it, but, growing up, I really was not as outwardly expressive as I am now. I tend to try things as a part of my creative process as a way of experimenting and seeing what happens. I thought I was going to be more of a scientific inventor growing up, so I was also experimenting with electronics. I would take apart my mom’s VCR and put it back together, and yes, I had screws left over.” Even after he got into performance, he says, “I didn’t start with music, I started with spoken word. I am a part of the performance collective bkSoul, which is a mix of poets, dancers, musicians, and vocalists. We normally do shows that center around social justice, community building while exploring elements of hip-hop and soul.”

Prior to joining bkSoul, Dial worked with a poetry outfit called Collective Purpose, which he describes as “a collection of art lovers, mainly poets and activists from the community. We hosted an open mic called ELEVATED! Myself, Ant Black, Chris Wilson, Rudy Francisco, Jessica Molina, Viet Mai, Joe Soltero, Shivon, Taili, and a few others…folks from all walks of life that loved poetry, art, and community. When myself, Rudy ,and Ant started performing as a collective, we added the element of music because we were asked to do a set at Indie Fest.”

Lyrical Groove really got started back in 2010. “I’m just thankful that we’ve had a community of talented musicians to lean on. So, at this state, I just kinda see the community: like Snarky Puppy or The Roots, you have some staples with me and [singer] Brisa [Lauren], but there’s a group of folks who may pop up at times.”

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Lyrical Groove started with the lyrics, then found the groove.
Lyrical Groove started with the lyrics, then found the groove.

Lyrical Groove’s Kendrick Dial, a Dallas native, came to San Diego in 2000 with the Navy. Since then, he’s called Chula Vista, Spring Valley, Downtown, and North Park home, and noted how each district boasts its own dynamics. “I enjoy Downtown’s unforeseen element of surprise,” says Dial, who’s bringing Lyrical Groove to Carlsbad’s Museum of Making Music on May 20.

Past Event

San Diego Sound Project: The Lyrical Groove

“I remember one year during Comic-Con, Big Boi from Outkast was performing for a private party at the Hard Rock Hotel. I had to go! So I made my way to the Hard Rock. It just so happened that as I arrived and was following the red rope, a group of young men who were [actually] on the list jumped the rope and got in line ahead of me to enter the event. [Then] one of the members of the group didn’t show. I managed to include myself in the group, and walked right in. Once I got to the top, I saw that the stage was in another blocked-off section. As I wandered around, a lady randomly gave me a wristband that allowed me to go into where the stage was. I was right there by Big Boi by the time he got on stage.”

But as fun as Downtown was, he says he’ll stick with his current neighborhood, Chula Vista. “There’s a great sense of community here. One of the things I love most about my home in Chula Vista is my porch. Reminds me of growing up in Dallas and sitting on my Grandma’s porch, watching the sunset.”

Between the Navy and his current gig as a social worker (and a few other things), Dial has taken a roundabout road to funking it up. “Many folks wouldn’t know it, but, growing up, I really was not as outwardly expressive as I am now. I tend to try things as a part of my creative process as a way of experimenting and seeing what happens. I thought I was going to be more of a scientific inventor growing up, so I was also experimenting with electronics. I would take apart my mom’s VCR and put it back together, and yes, I had screws left over.” Even after he got into performance, he says, “I didn’t start with music, I started with spoken word. I am a part of the performance collective bkSoul, which is a mix of poets, dancers, musicians, and vocalists. We normally do shows that center around social justice, community building while exploring elements of hip-hop and soul.”

Prior to joining bkSoul, Dial worked with a poetry outfit called Collective Purpose, which he describes as “a collection of art lovers, mainly poets and activists from the community. We hosted an open mic called ELEVATED! Myself, Ant Black, Chris Wilson, Rudy Francisco, Jessica Molina, Viet Mai, Joe Soltero, Shivon, Taili, and a few others…folks from all walks of life that loved poetry, art, and community. When myself, Rudy ,and Ant started performing as a collective, we added the element of music because we were asked to do a set at Indie Fest.”

Lyrical Groove really got started back in 2010. “I’m just thankful that we’ve had a community of talented musicians to lean on. So, at this state, I just kinda see the community: like Snarky Puppy or The Roots, you have some staples with me and [singer] Brisa [Lauren], but there’s a group of folks who may pop up at times.”

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