At just 7 years old, Zyrei Spencer already has an interesting life story to tell, starting with being born in Anchorage, Alaska, while his dad was competing in the “Rap Olympics.” He moved to Chico a year and a half ago from Southern California and just finished first grade at Little Chico Creek Elementary School. While he is shy talking to strangers, when he straps on a set of oversized headphones and gets behind a microphone, his personality explodes. Starting a MySpace music page just last month, with the help of his dad and fellow rapper Q-Zero, Zyrei entered his first single, “808,” into MySpace’s “Rock the Space” competition, which gives unsigned artists a chance to win a recording contract with MySpace Records. The song is about the drum machine Q-Zero uses to create beats in the studio, but once Zyrei memorized the lyrics and asked for the song to be his, his dad handed it over freely. From an early age, Zyrei showed a “musical inclination,” beat-boxing at 3 and free-styling by 4, but he isn’t into artists like Soulja Boy or Hannah Montana, says his dad. This summer, Zyrei is excited that his family might take a trip to Marine World, but when he isn’t swimming or playing with his 10-year-old sister, Lauryn, he’ll be beat-boxing and break-dancing in the studio. (To listen to Zyrei’s single, visit www.myspace.com/zyrei.)
Who is your favorite artist?
My dad [points and smiles]. And Tupac. My favorite song is “Thug Mansion.”
Is music your hobby or your passion?
A hobby. I do it just to have fun.
How often do you come to the studio with your dad?
Once a week. It’s fun. We just rap.
What do you want to be when you grow up?
A football player for the [Atlanta] Falcons. And a police officer.
Do you play any sports?
I used to play soccer. My dad is gonna sign me up for football soon.
If you had $1 million, what would you do?
Spend it on buying a car, and I’d get a job.