His musical talents spawn from a musical family. "There are four generations of gospel singers in my family. It's in my blood." Summoned to Minneapolis in 1999, by a family friend from Pine Bluff, Ark.,-one Morris Hayes, keyboardist with Prince & the New Power Generation. Kip cut his teeth on second keyboard and backing vocals with the NPG and as front man for NPG-drummer Kirk Johnson’s Fonky Bald Heads. As background vocalist/keyboardist for Prince, Kip had an amazing two year stint with the NPG totaling five tours including one international.
While working with Prince in the studio and touring Kip shared the stage with many musicians like George Clinton, Lenny Kravitz, Common, Erykah Badu, No Doubt, Sheryl Crow and many more. As a solo artist Kip released a self titled EP "Kip Blackshire" '05 and "The Eleventh Hour" '06. Both with successful sold out tours internationally. Having learned how to handle a stage and an important pointer from the Purple One, himself. “What Prince gave me was feel. He taught me, ‘Always go with your gut,’ versus trying to force something together.”
• Prince (Keys/Backup Vocals) 1999-2002
- Rave Un2 the Joy Fantastic 1999 (Platinum album).
- Musicology 2004 (Platinum selling Grammy Award winning album).
- Call My Name (Backup Vocals).
- U Make My Sun Shine f/Angie Stone (Backup Vocals).
• Eminem - I'm Not Afraid & Underground (Backup Vocals) on Relapse & Recovery albums.
• Dr. Dre
• Eric Benet f/Nikki Minaj (Chocolate Legs Remix)
• Michael Bolton - Break Free (Vocal Production)
• Mint Condition
• Black-ish - ABC TV Show. Vocals & production.
• Jason Bourne -Trailer, Music production.
• Make it Happen - Soundtrack song Hello.
• Way Black When - TV One Talk Show.
House Band 2010
Bobby Brown, Mint Condition, The Emotions,
Sheila K, Dougie Fresh, Larry Graham,
Bell Biv Devoe and more.
Concert photography by Steve Parke. Courtesy of Paisley Park
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