Camu Tao

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Camu Tao
Birth name Tero Smith
Born (1977-06-26)June 26, 1977
Origin Columbus, Ohio, United States
Died May 25, 2008(2008-05-25) (aged 30)
Genres Hip hop
Occupations Producer, rapper, singer
Years active 1997–2008
Labels Definitive Jux
Associated acts S.A. Smash
The Weathermen
Central Services
Website Definitive Jux - Bio

Camu Tao (born Tero Smith, June 26, 1977 – May 25, 2008[1]) was an American rapper and producer who was signed to the Definitive Jux label. He was a member of several groups: S.A. Smash (with fellow rapper Metro), the underground hiphop supergroup Weathermen, Central Services (with fellow producer El-P), and the music collective Cardboard City.

He was also part of Columbus, Ohio's MHz crew with Copywrite, RJD2, Jakki Tha MotaMouth & Tage Proto. Partnering with Cage to form The Nighthawks, the two crafted an album during a single-three day creative session.[2]

Smith died on May 25, 2008, after a two-year battle with lung cancer.[1] At the time of his death, he was producing a song for Cage's I Never Knew You EP and working on his first solo for Definitive Jux. On July 9, 2009, El-P announced via Twitter that the album, King of Hearts, was finished, and would be released on October 20, 2009.[3] King of Hearts was released on August 17, 2010 by Definitive Jux in collaboration with Fat Possum Records along with a free download EP from Central Services.[4] About the album, El-P said:

We all expected to get Camu in the studio and go as far as he wanted to go with the record. The songs are bare, but then again a lot of them are just what he wanted. A lot of them wouldn’t have changed much. Knowing Camu, he had a lot of talented musician friends he would have liked to have collaborated and have involved. I do think the album would have been different had he lived to complete it.

Aesop Rock, also on Definitive Jux, stated in a 2008 interview with The A.V. Club that his next album may contain "a couple of songs about my friend Camu.".[5] El-P, founder of the defunct Definitive Jux label, dedicated his album Cancer 4 Cure to his memory.


  • Presents Blair Cosby's Cape Cod (Going For De Gold) (Smash Bros., 2004)[6]
  • Presents Blair Cosby's Cereal Carpens '97 Season
  • Presents "Blair Cosby II: The Wali Era"
  • King of Hearts (Definitive Jux, 2010)

With Central Services[edit]

With MHz[edit]

  • Table Scraps (2001, Man Bites Dog, 2009 Re-release)

With The Nighthawks[edit]

  • Nighthawks (Eastern Conference, 2002)

With S.A. Smash[edit]



  • "Hear Me Talking to You" (B.U.K.A. Entertainment, 2001)
  • "Hold the Floor"/"Wireless" (Definitive Jux, 2001)
  • "WMR" (Camu Tao & El-P)/"Homesickness"/"Life with Snarky Parker" (Despot) (Definitive Jux, 2004)


External links[edit]