About From The Ground Up – the History of Blackball Universe Brainchild of producer and musician Xavier Dphrepaulezz, Blackball Universe Records is a record label that specializes in genre defying music. The label’s roots lie in Dphrepaulezz’s exploration, desperation and revelation culminating from his experience in the music industry. Xavier In Los Angeles Xavier moved to Oakland, CA at the age of eleven. As a young child, Xavier learned culture through tradition – African folk music, Western Art music, no television — in his conservative New England home. But as a burgeoning adolescent, Xavier experienced a personal revolution with a new found love: American pop. At 20, he headed south to Los Angeles and began his career path, working with a young Robin Thicke and finding himself in the company of industry heavyweights like Al Jarreau, and The Jacksons. Eventually Prince’s manager caught on to Xavier’s budding songwriting skills, and Jimmy Iovine signed the artist to Interscope Records. Touring, Xavier shared the bill with The Fugees, De La Soul, Arrested Development, The Time, and Cameo. But while Interscope was busy parceling out its audiences between NIN and Tupac, Xavier ran into marketing troubles. His unique background and musical perspective resulted in songs that didn’t always fit Interscope’s ideal for “the black audience.” Mounting frustrations reached a breaking point in 1999 when Xavier was in a serious car accident, leaving him in a coma for three weeks. In 2001, after recovering from his bodily injuries, Xavier left Interscope with new attitude and drive to found Blackball Universe. Xavier’s projects under BBU allowed him to collaborate with Slimkid3 of The Pharcyde, Fatlip, Masa Kohama and some of the greatest session musicians in Los Angeles: Cornelius Mims, Brandon Coleman, Keenan Ephraim. Club Bingo Stage, 2006 In 2004, Xavier started the monthly party Club Bingo as a platform to promote Blackball Universe bands like Blood Sugar X and Me and This Japanese Guy. Club Bingo reached its pinnacle of success by 2006– hundreds of people would attend, dancing to cutting edge music until the sun came up. With a relocation to Oakland, and a brand new family along for the ride, Xavier continues to run Blackball Universe as a space for music that breaks through the boundaries of traditional pop. Blackball Universe has released three albums and with Angry Ant Publishing, has over 50 licenses for songs in television and film productions. In 2012, BBU is poised to release four new albums, along with new music from a variety of artists for licensing.