Take some time to listen to the tracks available on her MySpace, ReverbNation, or ThatsHipHop and hope to see her soon at a venue near you!
Shuffling between family members in rural Pulaski, a small town in Wisconsin laying claim to nearly two thousand people, Mary Kay was swayed by the beat at a young age. As an impressionable child she was captivated by pop stars on music television, and rap music soon took hold. "What really turned me around was RUN DMC. Holy shit; talking over beats... I was hooked" she remembers. At the formative age of nine, a family friend drove her to bustling Milwaukee to see Run DMC perform at Summerfest. "After that, all I could think about was Rhyming. I'd rap at home. I'd rap at school. In sixth grade, my friend Nicole and I did an oral report on the Egyptians. I got the instrumental for the Beastie Boys' "Paul Revere" and rapped about King Tut."
Mary Kay spent most of her Middle School years buying cassette tapes and practicing her timing and delivery over the instrumental b-sides. A barn was her stage, her brother and sister her adoring audience, and a pilfered screw driver her utilitarian microphone. She memorized verses and would recite them for anyone willing to listen. Ice Cube, Too $hort, Tone Loc, the Pharcyde, Beastie Boys, Slick Rick, DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince, and EPMD blared through her headphones. She had fallen in love with words, "the way they fall off of your tongue, the way you can add to the beat or effect it with different lyrics or sounds... the quicker, the better". She trusted her Adidas shell tops, baggy jeans, and gray hoodies to bely her femininity in the hip hop game. She was going to be a rapper, and MC Spryte was born.
After her parents divorced, she spun uncontrolled and unchecked. She began to doubt the existence of a higher power in her life, and insisted on testing her own limits. "I started running away from home, smoking cigs, hanging out at dry night clubs, smoking grass, and doing whatever I could to get away from the situation at home" she recalls. By her sixteenth trip around the sun, she had been arrested a number of times. She was running drugs, getting in fights, and quickly learning the cold ways of the streets. She earned her place within the family structure offered by a group of Gangster Disciples, or GD's. They had relocated from Milwaukee to Green Bay, and their home became her safe place.
She was comfortable as the only white face in a crowd because her brothers had her back and her front. "They taught me how to keep my self respect while hustling and being a female. I earned my place in the crew." She continues "I look back now and realize how lucky I am to be alive. I'd had my Jordans taken from my feet, and guns thrust in my face to intimidate me or test my loyalty. Dirt is dirt, and sometime shit gets pretty fucking dirty." It was around this time that she won her first freestyle battle in Milwaukee. It was possibly Hip Hop that kept her newfound family together "I loved sitting on the porch, blazing a blunt, and rhyming with my crew." She earned their respect, and relied on their support.
Being a runaway put strain on her blood ties. The cops would return her to Pulaski whenever she found herself in their custody, and her mother responded with anger and tears. At nightfall Mary Kay would return to her outlaws, on the run once again. Her brother and sister began to resent her for the pain she was unwillingly inflicting upon their mother, and her father didn't seem to mind as long as he wasn't bothered by a phone call from the precinct. "My grandmother Aubrey bailed me out of jail more than once. She always saw the good in me, no matter how much bad I did" Mary reminisces. "When I was seventeen and living back with my mother for the umpteenth time, I ran her phone bill up to a thousand dollars. She pressed charges and had me thrown in jail. I got two years probation plus restitution, and we didn't speak for the following three years." It was a time of turmoil, and money was tight. "I became really good at moving items that made a lot of easy cash. I kept my nose clean, my ears open, and put in foot work like I was told."
By the time Spryte turned twenty, she had turned over a new leaf. The boys she had been running with had all dispersed; had babies, moved away, or found themselves in prison. She began supporting herself through various serving positions, and trusted her mic skills to move her along a new path. "If a battle was abailable in a club, I jumped on the mic to represent women and my hometown of Green Bay." She honed her freestyle technique because in her world, "credibility on the streets is worth more than a multi million dollar deal." Outside of her comfort zone, Spryte was introduced to techno, breaks, and jungle beats. She began collaborating with friends that spun records and created Daydreams, her own promotional company to promote midwest DJ's.
She has made her presence known and shared stages with the likes of Mike E Fresh, Intrepid, DJ Bomber, Rhinogliphics, Frankie Bones, Paul Anthony, Dirty Dave Keup, Danny tha Wild Child, 3D, Jack Trash, Mark Almaria, KCZ, DJ Simple, Jes-One, Woody McBride, and countless other underground talents. She has rocked the mic throughout the midwest, and doesn't back down from an opportunity to battle and be heard. The crowd loves her, and the feeling is mutual. "They relate to my energy and my genuine love of underground music" she elaborates "My fans are the greatest. They support me and help to build through flyers and word of mouth".
Trackmaster T, a reggae singer and music producer with vision and an appreciation for Spryte's specific sense of style and swagger, invited Mary Kay to work from within his independent label based in Green Bay, Tracker Us Records. Together, they released a four song demo, and circulated three hundred copies at Dropfest, a local car show. Always on her hustle, MC Spryte is also working with Lost Voice Recordings out of Appleton, and Penmanship based in Sheboygan. She is currently working with different producers to illustrate her versatility, and can be seen performing with New Found Flavor, a reggae band she has come to claim as her own.
Her first full length album is slated to drop this spring, but rest assured that she is not resting on her laurels. "About nine years ago I found my path to the Goddess, and dedicated myself to Yoga and the study of the Ancients." she elaborates "but to discuss religion and faith we must be face to face. Just know that I am a spiritual being as well as an independent, beautiful emcee". With newfound spiritual guidance and the ability to create her own safe place, Mary Kay aka Emcee Spryte has found a way to overcome the indiscretions of her misspent youth. She has found a way to move forward and keep pushing the envelope that holds our preconceived notions of what it means to be a woman in the rap game. "I finally feel that I am ready to introduce myself to the masses, and not just the midwest; they know me well".
To know her is to love her, and this is a privilege that has been reserved for fans of underground hip hop in the midwest. Her light is set to shine on the masses, so keep your eyes peeled and your ears open for the formal unveiling of the Goddess.