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Ishmael Butler travels behind in time with Digable Planets reunion

Ishmael Butler travels behind in time with Digable Planets reunion

Time travelers live among us.

Take, for example, Ishmael Butler, frontman for a classical ’90s swat organisation Digable Planets and a stream fashionable twin Shabazz Places. Both are personification Seattle this week — a former during a Moore Theatre on Wednesday (Dec. 30), imprinting a initial reunion for Digable Planets given 2011.

The latter plays on New Year’s Eve during a Neptune Theatre.

Concert preview

The Return of Digable Planets

8:30 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 30, during a Moore Theatre, 1932 Second Ave., Seattle; $24, or $40 for two-show pass including Shabazz Palaces, $40 (877-784-4849 or

Shabazz Palaces

9 p.m. Thursday, Dec., 31, during a Neptune Theatre, 1303 N.E. 45th St., Seattle; $23.50 or $40 two-show pass including Digable Planets (877-784-4849 or

“It’s a singular event that we get to place yourself 20 years in your past with so most fact and specificity,” says Butler. “You can remember things, though to indeed be behind in a same places we were before, doing a same thing, it’s wild.”

Though they share a member, a dual groups are utterly different. Along with A Tribe Called Quest and Dilated Peoples, Digable Planets is cut from a cloth of a mellow, jazz-inspired aria of hip-hop, since Shabazz Palaces is inharmonious and distorted, like a sound of a fuzzed-out electric guitar played for a blood moon.

This isn’t a initial time Seattle has been betrothed a Digable Planets reunion. The contingent was to perform here in 2012 though canceled days before a show, and it looked like a finish of a line for a group.

There were rumors that Digable member LadyBug Mecca was a holdout, though Butler says a crevasse and successive recovering was a matter of timing — total with a renewed honesty between a members.

“There were times when we suspicion censure could be placed or should be placed, though we don’t consider that’s an emanate now,” he says. “Time went by, and everybody’s attitudes and feelings toward it shifted. It wasn’t anything specific, it unequivocally wasn’t.”

For a male obliged for one of a smoothest songs in hip-hop story — Digable Planet’s Grammy-winning “Rebirth Of Slick (Cool Like Dat)” — as good as a during times herky-jerky nonetheless astronomical sound of Shabazz Palaces, this week outlines a apex of an shining career.

Born in 1969, Butler grew adult in Seattle, where his initial incursion into song was personification alto saxophone in his middle-school jazz band. His girl was contemporary with a recover of all a vital hip-hop annals of a genre’s genesis, starting in 1979.

“Sugar Hill Gang,” he says, “I listened all of them as they came out.”

After graduating from Garfield High School in 1987, he changed to a East Coast, where he spent most of his time in New York, Richmond, Va. and Washington, D.C. In 1989, Digable Planets shaped in Philadelphia.

But Seattle is where a rope is reuniting and a routine has ecstatic Butler back.

“Rehearsals for a uncover are unequivocally rich,” he says. “I don’t listen to [Digable Planets’] music. we never listened to it. But to hear it and go behind to it, it puts we in that era, being in New York pre-Internet, it’s flattering fresh.”

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