Coming off their fifth official studio release, DysFunk 2020, The DysFunktional Family continues to defy hip hop standards with their grit and in-your-face lyricism. Having performed for over a decade among their hip hop peers, including Bone Thugs n' Harmony and Chali 2na, The DysFunktional Family has been able to solidify themselves as a staple of Ohio hip hop.
The DysFunktional Family consists of two emcees: Emcee Schwartz and HiL, and one DJ: TiZ. HiL and Emcee Schwartz originally met in high school in 2000, would freestyle and beatbox in between classes, and meet up after school as they were introduced to computers and digital recording. The two would go on to record nearly 40 songs worth of material using their bedroom closet as a mic booth, all of which would never see any kind of official release. The two emcees would continue to hone their craft by participating in monthly emcee battle competitions, corner freestyle cyphers, and local hip hop shows.
After finally deciding it was time to leave the shadows, HiL and Emcee Schwartz formed their group, The DysFunktional Family, in 2007 and would release what they consider their first official studio album, self titled "The DysFunktional Family." Their unapologetic style, and politically charged lyrics, allowed them to gain popularity in their midwestern college hometown, Athen, Ohio.
The group would take time practicing their cadence and delivery as emcees at their own local shows throughout the next three years, until they released their second official album, "The DysFunktional Family Feud." This album contained what the group sometimes considers their break out song, "Letter to Hip Hop," which defined the group as emcees and what they stood for:
"This is hip hop. This is not rap. Rap's on the radio and this is not that."
Gaining popularity, The DysFunktional Family was able to perform and play out songs from their second album all over Ohio, and started going on tours playing all over the midwest, New York, and Florida.
In 2012, The DysFunktional Family decided to pay homage to all of the great artists and musicians they had worked with throughout the years, and released their third album, "The DysFunktional Family Reunion". The Album contained 21 tracks, each that included at least one musician that the two had collaborated with throughout the years. "The Reunion" also allowed the two emcees to work with some of their favorite emcees they were inspired by, including Sadat X, Soul Khan, and Copywrite.
Both members of The DysFunk Fam released solo albums which allowed them to explore their own style in depth, and also began work on an ongoing project called "The Adventures of Shermlock Poems," which is currently on it's 4th chapter.
In 2017, the two emcees came together again to release a project that would test them as emcees. The album, simply titled "IV", would see the two emcees going back and forth during each song, seamlessly finishing each other's sentences. Thought of as a concept album, the two emcees shy away from full "verses" in the traditional sense of the word, and instead trade words back and forth throughout each fast paced song. From the album description:
"Taking inspiration from iconic groups like RUN DMC, and The Beastie Boys, HiL and Schwartz deliver their rhymes in a back and forth style throughout the entirety of the album."
Most recently, The DysFunktional Family has just released their fifth official studio album in 2019, titled "DysFunk 2020". While the name was originally inspired by Schwartz and Hil's childhood imagination of the future, the album does seem to reflect a "future" version of The DysFunktional Family, showing how their style has grown as their lyrics seem wiser and more personal. The album consists of solo songs that the group worked on collaboratively, and takes you on a path into each emcee's mind at the same time, and concludes with a finale, "Nowhere to Hide," featuring the legendary emcee, Canibus.
With their DysFunk 2020 album having just been released, and the year 2020 just on the horizon, The DysFunktional Family plan to continue performing all throughout Ohio and the midwest, and continue to upset the hip hop establishment with their unapologetic rhymes.
The world might seem a little crazy. This family is making it a little more DysFunktional.