NEW YORK De la Soul members Trugoy the Dove and Pasemaster Mase marked Tuesday's (Aug. 8) release of Art Official Intelligence: Mosaic Thump by hand-delivering the album to a lucky fan.
The duo visited Evan Narcisse, 28, a fact-checker and reporter for Teen People, at the magazine's Manhattan office after his name was drawn randomly from among entries to a contest.
The bandmembers hung out with the Brooklyn resident in a conference room for about 10 minutes, chatting about hip-hop and the new album while several other Teen People employees came in for autographs and snapshots.
De la Soul's third member, Posdnuos (born Kelvin Mercer), was scheduled to be on hand but canceled to tend to family matters in Long Island, bandmates Mase (born Vincent Mason Jr.) and Trugoy (born David Jolicoeur) said.
Art Official Intelligence: Mosaic Thump, the trio's first album since Stakes Is High (1996), features such guests as Busta Rhymes, Xzibit and Beastie Boys Mike D and Ad-Rock. Redman raps on the bouncy single "Oooh" (RealAudio excerpt) and Chaka Khan sings on the funk-inspired "All Good?" (RealAudio excerpt).
"We look up to her, and to have her working in the studio with us in was cool," Mase said of Khan. "It's a good marketing strategy to have guests on the record, but we learn, too, from these performers. We're students still, we're learning and we're inspired by their raps and what's out there."
Art Official Intelligence is the first album in a planned trilogy. Mase said the second disc likely will be released next spring, with the third following four to five months later.
In the meantime, De la Soul plan to tour the United States and Europe beginning in October with some dates scheduled alongside Busta Rhymes, Mase said.
"I was a little nervous," Narcisse said after meeting the band. "I just wanted to tell them that I was a fan from way back. There isn't anyone like them around anymore; they're innovative, continually pushing the envelope."
The giveaway was a joint promotion of De la Soul's label, Tommy Boy Records, and the delivery service Kozmo.com. After making their delivery, the band invited Narcisse to attend an in-store performance Tuesday night at a Virgin Megastore.