Joey Batts (born Joseph Battaglia on May 16, 1982) is an American hip hop artist. He got his first taste of studio recording in 2002, and began playing live in CT as of 2004. His first band, Pedagogy, began while he was enrolled at the University of Hartford, majoring in Creative Writing.Regarding his first band project, “The band was raw, man. We just took some ideas in a basement, and went in. Those dudes were great.” Shortlived, only after 6 months, Joey Batts started another project with Matt Zigs, a fellow CT emcee, and in 2005, they formed the band Zigs and Batts Circus (ZBC), named after the duo.
ZBC was an 8-piece band, with drums, bass, guitar, trumpet, saxophone, keyboard, turntables and a vocalist,specializing in funk-based hip hop and dirty underground drum beats. ZBC saw tremendous success in New England, both in bars and clubs and also on college campuses. ZBC was known for playing several shows in a short time span, traditionally Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights, all in a row, traveling great distances to reach several markets, and developing a fan base. Describing his life on the road with the band, “We would play Providence, crash, then drive to Utica and sleep in Albany, to get back and play a show in Hartford. It was crazy.” Playing shows in Upstate New York, Massachusetts and Connecticut, ZBC would spread their music all over Southern New England. And while enjoying an 18-month run as a band, ZBC would take Joey Batts down south to Miami, Orlando, and New Orleans, Southwest Austin, Dallas, and Phoenix and West to Los Angeles, Portland and Seattle. Although, ZBC never put out a full length album,Joey Batts was featured on Superheroes and Villains Vol. I (2004) and co-hosted The Galapagos Project(2005).
Shortly after ZBC disbanded during the summer of 2006, Joey Batts began working on a 7-disc “manifesto” that focuses on the ancient 7 Deadly Sins, made popular in 4th century Greece and later romanticized in the 16th century. Pride was released that summer, Greed followed 2 years later, and after almost a 3-year hiatus, Wrath and Sloth became available to the public in 2011. According to one itunes subscriber, “Joey Batts is not new to the underground hip hop scene, but every time he comes out with new material, he comes out in full force, harder and more clever than before.”
Taking the live hip hop scene by storm, Joey Batts never takes “no” for an answer -you either love his sound right away, or his voice kidnaps you until you change your mind. A lyrical genius, and an amazing front man with impeccable crowd control, rolled into one – Joey Batts has proven to be an asset to CT’s growing underground hip-hop culture.