Shinobi Ninja: Eclectic Musical Warriors Pool Their Talents
Duke Sims of Shinobi Ninja tells Brooklyn Roads that he never made a conscious decision to play music for a living; rather, “It’s the journey,” he says. “I always followed the path and followed the joy and the party.”
Helping the Bensonhurst native on that journey was Z100. He grew up listening to that station back when New York radio was a little less segmented. “They played such various music during that time — Led Zeppelin, The Beatles, Tracy Chapman, KRS One, Wu-Tang Clan, Ace of Base, Boyz II Men, 80s metal, grunge and much more,” he says. “It made me a person who doesn’t really vibe with genre as much as I vibe with great melodies, artistry and creativity.”
While Sims may be the spokesperson for Shinobi Ninja, he’s quick to point out to Brooklyn Roads that the group’s latest album, Bless Up, like all of their endeavors over the past nine years, is truly a collaborative effort. Sims shares vocals with Baby G and guitar duties with Kid Shreddi, complemented by bassist Alien Lex, drummer Terminator Dave, and DJ Axis Powers on turntables.
“Any music we make as a collective is coming from so many pools of water. Bless Up is that ocean of love,” he says. A bigger pool, a borough-sized one, also contributes to their creative process.
“Brooklyn is all people…from everywhere,” Sims tells us. “Brooklyn is diversity and so is our music. They are one and the same.” Not surprisingly, Shinobi Ninja’s favorite venue is right here in our borough – namely, Brooklyn Bowl, where they’ll be playing their eclectic brand of music on Sept. 13. “We love rocking Brooklyn Bowl. We love to bowl and rock,” he says emphatically.
Beyond Brooklyn, there here are some high-profile creative people with whom Sims would like to collaborate. Working with uber-producer Rick Rubin is high on that list and he’d also love to hear one of his songs covered by Rihanna, Beyoncé or Metallica. Not a bad pool of folks to welcome into your ocean.