Camu Tao

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
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
Occupation(s) Producer, rapper, singer
Years active 1997–2008
Labels Definitive Jux
Associated acts S.A. Smash, The Weathermen, Central Services, Nighthawks, MHz
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. In his song, "Racing Stripes," Aesop reflects on Camu Tao near the end of his life. Specifically, Aesop notes Camu's unusual haircut, and the unusual new habits Camu had developed.


  • 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]