Oakland duo Zion I - consisting of DJ AmpLive and MC Zumbi - became interested in hip hop during its formation in the late 80s, scribbling lyrics during class and playing around with their family radios and computers after school. In 1991, the duo joined forces with a few other like-minded musicians and formed the group Metufour, but after failing to find huge success, AmpLive and Zumbi broke off to form Zion I, releasing their first single in 1998. With AmpLive's futuristic mix of beats, samples and live instrumentation coupled with Zumbi's political lyrics, the duo's music caught on with an underground hip hop audience. After multiple hyphy musicians remixed the duo's single, Zion I received mainstream attention in the Bay Area. Since then the band has grown its fan base, while still managing to remain true to its underground hip hop roots.