Jin tha MC is no lock

Will he show up? That's the question facing 21-year-old Asian rapper Jin tha MC, scheduled to perform tonight at Volcanoes Nightclub.

Jin tha MC

Where: Volcanoes Nightclub

When: 7 p.m. tonight

Tickets: $15; all ages welcome

Call: 808-934-9889

Born to immigrant Chinese parents in Miami, Jin Au-Yeung got turned on to hip-hop in the early '90s, when acts like the Wu-Tang Clan, Mobb Deep and Onyx began to enjoy mainstream success. He would hang out in his school's cafeteria with friends, learning how to freestyle and getting into battles with other kids from his neighborhood.

After graduating from high school in 2000, Jin knew he wanted to be a rapper, but struggled to find his way in Florida. It was when the United States came under attack by terrorists on Sept. 11, 2001, and his family moved to New York City to be closer to relatives, that he knew it was time to take another step toward his dreams.

At first, Jin spent most of his time soaking up the scene in different neighborhoods throughout the Big Apple. When he was finally selected (after originally being rejected) to participate in the "Freestyle Fridays" segment on Black Entertainment Television's "106 and Park," the rapper realized it was his time to shine.

By the time he was announced as the winner of his final battle after seven consecutive weeks in March of 2002, Jin had already signed with the Ruff Ryders, one of New York's most popular hip-hop labels, and was on his way towards recording his first full-length album.

Over the past two years, Jin finished work on his debut, "The Rest is History," performed at concerts around the country and even landed a role in the sequel to the racer movie, "Too Fast, Too Furious."

But the album, originally set to hit stores last summer, had its release date pushed back to November, then March, before getting delayed once again, this time until July of 2004.

Repeated interview requests made earlier this week to Jin and the Big Island-based promoter responsible for the show went unanswered, so who knows what's in store for tonight.

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