Christopher Tafoya, better known by his stage name Sleep, will perform on Sunday at Three Rivers Brewery in Farmington.
Christopher Tafoya, better known by his stage name Sleep, will perform on Sunday at Three Rivers Brewery in Farmington. (Courtesy of Christopher Tafoya)

FARMINGTON — It has been a couple of years since Christopher Tafoya, a rap artist based out of Portland, Ore., has visited his childhood home in Farmington.

But Tafoya, who is better known by his stage name Sleep, will return to Farmington today to perform at Three Rivers Brewery to celebrate the upcoming release of his new album, "Oregon Failure." He will be joined by X-Perience, a rapper featured on the album.

Tafoya was born in Farmington and lived in the city until he was 14. He briefly moved back to Farmington at age 17 and then settled in the Northwest, where he currently resides.

He said he misses Farmington and his family in New Mexico. He still considers Farmington his home.

"It just kind of goes with you," he said. "You can't escape it."

His new album will be released Tuesday. The music, he said, is actually a lot more positive than the album title would suggest.

He said his favorite song from the album is "Truth Serum," which is about his wife and being redeemed by love.

When Tafoya writes, he said he is inspired sometimes by a thought that pops into his head and other times by life experiences. After the death of his dog, for example, he wrote a song about loss.

Tafoya said he remains involved in his community and that also helps him write.

"I plagiarize life," he said.

Currently, Tafoya is preparing for a tour with his friend and fellow musician, Sage Francis. Sage Francis earned acclaim in the 2000s after winning highly coveted titles on the emcee battle circuit. Emcee artists use rap to inspire audiences.

This will mark the second tour the two artists have done together. Ten years ago, they also toured together.

"He's my good friend, and I'm excited to hit the road with him," Tafoya said.

While Tafoya now lives in Portland, his grandparents, who helped raise him, still live in Farmington. He said he is looking forward to spending a few days with them.

"Every time I come home, it's like a part of me gets replenished," he said.

IF YOU GO

What: Sleep concert

When: 7 to 11 p.m. on Saturday

Where: Three Rivers Brewery, 111 E. Main St., Farmington

Cost: Free 

Hannah Grover covers news, arts and religion for The Daily Times. She can be reached at 505-564-4652 and hgrover@daily-times.com. Follow her @hmgrover on Twitter.