Kazzer

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Kazzer
OriginBinbrook, Ontario, Canada
GenresRap rock, alternative rock
OccupationsRapper, singer, songwriter
 
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Kazzer
OriginBinbrook, Ontario, Canada
GenresRap rock, alternative rock
OccupationsRapper, singer, songwriter

Mark Kasprzyk (born 1977), better known by his stage name Kazzer, is a Canadian musician whose work ranges from rap rock to alternative rock. He is the lead vocalist and lyricist of the rock band Redlight King and best known for the song "Bullet in My Hand",[1] which was aired regularly on MuchMusic and MTV Europe, played on contemporary hit radio, hot adult contemporary, alternative rock and mainstream rock radio stations in Canada. He is also an auto sports television personality.[2]

History[edit]

He grew up in Binbrook, Ontario, near Hamilton and at the age of 8, he began learning judo, becoming so skilled that he later became part of the Canadian National Judo Team and was an alternate for the Canadian team in the 2000 Summer Olympics.[3] At 16, he began writing songs. Being relegated to alternate status for the Olympics inspired him to pursue a career in music and in his teens he discovered hip-hop and took up breakdancing.[3] Around this time, Mark produced a demo which made it into the hands of Epic Records (a subsidiary of Sony BMG).[4]

Solo career[edit]

Under his stage name Kazzer, Kasprzyk was signed and released his 2002 debut album Go for Broke in Canada, Germany, France and Scandinavia. The energetic lead single, "Pedal to the Medal", was co-written with Brian West, Grammy-nominated producer for the likes of Nelly Furtado. The song was featured on the soundtracks of the 2003 remake of The Italian Job,[3] the 2004 film Catch That Kid on the television series Malcolm in the Middle, and in the Hotwheels Acceleracers movies. It was also featured in the opening "splash" animation and on the soundtrack of the Midway Sports video game NHL HITZ PRO. Additionally, his song "Fueled By Adrenaline" was featured on the two Bugbear games, FlatOut:Head On and Flatout Ultimate Carnage.

Kazzer was nominated for a New Artist of the Year at the 2004 Juno Awards.[5] He has toured Canada repeatedly including a 2003 MTV Campus Invasion tour which on some dates he headlined and on others opened for Gob. He has performed at concerts and festivals in Europe, and opened for The Roots in Chicago, and for a New York Jets game.

Go for Broke sold 25,000 copies worldwide in 2003. Epic Records went through an executive change and Kazzer found himself without representation, and he moved to Linus Entertainment, a leading Canadian independent record label distributed by Universal Records.

Kazzer's second record Broke was mostly recorded at Morph Productions and mixed at EMAC Recording Studios and released on June 28, 2005, featuring the lead single "Ordinary".

Redlight King[edit]

There were plans for a third Kazzer release, expected in 2008/2009, but it never came to fruition. Mark has since formed a new project called Redlight King, who are currently signed to Hollywood Records.[6] Kasprzyk made news in 2011 for his success in securing permission from Neil Young to allow him to sample Young's 1972 song, "Old Man". The sample is included in the song "Old Man" (originally titled "Hardworking Hands") on his debut album "Something for the Pain", released on June 28, 2011.[7] Old Man peaked at number 17 on the Billboard Alternative Songs and Number 24 on the Billboard Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks.

Redlight King's second single "Bullet in My Hand" has so far peaked at numbers 3 and 28 on Billboard's Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks and Alternative Songs charts, respectively. Redlight King was also a part of the Rockstar Energy Drink Uproar Festival 2012.

Redlight King released its second studio album "Irons In The Fire" on September 10, 2013. On July 9, 2013, they released a single from the album entitled "Born to Rise".[8]

Other media[edit]

He has appeared in film and television, including a cameo appearance as a redneck in the 2004 MuchMusic comedy road movie Going the Distance. He was also one of many collaborators on Sports Car Revolution, aired on the U.S.-based specialty television channel Speed Channel in 2005 and 2006. He has owned a 1962 Ford Thunderbird, a 1949 Mercury and a 1930 Ford Model A.

Discography[edit]

As Kazzer[edit]

Albums[edit]

Singles[edit]

YearSongPeak chart positionsAlbum
AUT
[9]
CAN
[10]
2003"Pedal to the Metal"7126Go for Broke
2005"Ordinary"Broke
"—" denotes a release that did not chart.

As Redlight King[edit]

Albums[edit]

YearAlbum detailsPeak chart positions
US
Heat.

[11]
US
Rock

[11]
2011Something for the Pain350
2013Irons In the Fire
  • Released: September 10, 2013
  • Label: Hollywood
  • Formats: CD, DI
445
"—" denotes a release that did not chart.

Singles[edit]

YearSongPeak chart positionsAlbum
CAN
Alt.

[12][13]
CAN
Rock

[14][15]
US
Alt.

[11]
US
Main.
US
Rock

[11]
2011"Old Man"1519172424Something for the Pain
"Bullet in My Hand"351528312
2012"Comeback"1840
2013"Born to Rise"3110Irons In the Fire
2014"Times Are Hard"22
"—" denotes a release that did not chart.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Lambert, Molly (2012) "The Top 10 Songs … IN ACTIVE ROCK!", Grantland.com, retrieved 2013-10-20
  2. ^ Ross, Mike (2003) "Yo, it's judo rapper", Canoe.ca, retrieved 2010-01-21
  3. ^ a b c "Kazzer to rock London at 'House Party' event", London Free Press, June 14, 2003, retrieved 2010-01-21
  4. ^ "Rock in self defence; Hamilton-area judo expert Mark Kasprzyk, (Kazzer) is rising fast on the hip-hop scene", The Record, April 22, 2003
  5. ^ Rockingham, Graham (2004) "Hamilton all but shut out at Junos", The Hamilton Spectator, April 5, 2004
  6. ^ Redlight King
  7. ^ Project Rhythm Seed, "Redlight King Samples “Old Man” And Neil Approves…Gasp", April 12, 2011, Accessed July 9, 2011.
  8. ^ http://www.redlightkingmusic.com/.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  9. ^ Austrian peak
  10. ^ Canadian peak
  11. ^ a b c d Peak chart positions in the United States:
  12. ^ [1]
  13. ^ [2]
  14. ^ [3]
  15. ^ [4]

External links[edit]