Toyota Motor’s Scion brand is making inroads into independent hip hop with a new record label, Scion A/V. The label debuted its first act, Los Angeles’ daKAH Hip Hop Orchestra, at a semi-exclusives showcase at this year’s SXSW music festival. “By partnering with respected companies relevant to the lives of urban youth, and event promoters and radio DJs, we want to uncover a full spectrum of up-and-coming hip-hop talent from flourishing scenes everywhere, hopefully helping to advance some careers along the way,” says Jeri Yoshizu, Scion Sales Promotions Manager.

The daKAH orchestra consists of over 65 musicians and is led by composer Double G. In its 6th year, daKAH is finally traveling beyond the LA city limits, with recent shows at San Francisco’s Palace of Fine Arts and the House of Blues in Las Vegas. The year 2005 sees upcoming shows in Austin, San Francisco, Scottsdale, AZ, and the Playboy Jazz Festival. daKAH’s first Scion release, The Missing 12″, is comprised of three songs, including “Jazz Thing” featuring Guru of Gangstarr.

Scion A/V’s mission is not to cater to consumers but rather to underground artists, and Toyota does not profit from the label’s releases. “We are enabling unsigned artists to get their feet up,” Scion sales promotion director, Jeri Yoshizu, stated.