Tech N9ne and the Strange Music family's 55-show Independent Powerhouse Tour pulls into Tucson's Rialto Theatre on Tuesday.

Since co-founding Strange Music, an independent recording label, in 1999 the rapper from Kansas City, Mo., has recruited artists and built an independent empire.

This tour showcases the roster's talents.

Tech N9ne, its headliner, is known for his technical lyrics, chopperlike rhyming style and his white face paint.

He is anything but your stereotypical rapper who only raps about sex, drugs and partying - and that's what makes his shows exciting.

His creativity, on-point delivery and passion for rhyming and performing make him stand out.

During his shows, he involves the crowd by starting chants, waving his arms back and forth, and encouraging fans to get into the music.

We couldn't get Tech N9ne on the phone, but fellow independent rapper and hip-hop artist Murs tweeted on Feb. 25 that "in my humble opinion, Tech N9ne is the BEST performer in hip-hop PERIOD."

"God bless Strange Music," Murs, who lives in Tucson, tweeted nine days later.

Not only will fans hear Tech N9ne's top hits, including "E.B.A.H.," "Am I a Psycho" and "Caribou Lou," he plans to draw from his new album, "Something Else," scheduled for release on June 25.

The six other Strange Music artists are Brotha Lynch Hung, Krizz Kaliko, Kutt Calhoun, Rittz and Ces Cru, which consists of Godemis and Ubiquitous.

The tour started Friday in Oklahoma and will play Tempe's Marquee Theater on Wednesday.

While it's been more than a decade since Tech N9ne started Strange Music, remaining independent is gaining popularity among hip-hop artists. Rappers who are becoming famous without major record label contracts and support include Mac Miller, Kendrick Lamar and Atmosphere.

If you go

• What: Tech N9ne's Independent Powerhouse Tour, featuring Tech N9ne, Brotha Lynch Hung, Krizz Kaliko, Kutt Calhoun, Rittz and Ces Cru.

• When: 7 p.m. Tuesday.

• Where: Rialto Theatre, 318 E. Congress St.

• Tickets: $35 in advance, $40 day of the show.

• Details: 740-1000

Drew McCullough is a University of Arizona student who is an apprentice at the Star. Contact him at 573-4117 or at