After years of being one of the West Coast's best-kept secrets, underground favorite Murs is stepping into the spotlight in a major way, declaring his candidacy for the top office on his major label debut, 'Murs for President,' which features some of hip hop's finest, including Snoop Dogg and Will.I.Am. "I'm nervous to talk about it, but I've worked with everybody from DJ Quik to Snoop Dogg to Will.I.Am, Three 6 Mafia, 9th Wonder, Terrence Martin, Scoop de Ville," he tells the Boombox.

Murs admits some anxiety about how his longtime fans will respond to his entry into collaborating with big-name stars. "I don't know how my fans are gonna react to some of the sounds," he says. "They're used to me and an old sampled record chopped up. We'll see what they think."

Still, anxiousness aside, Murs followed his own vision, including embracing his love of punk to record a cover of Rancid's 'Time Bomb.' He collaborated on the track with Florida-based punk band Whole Wheat Bread. "I saw them on Warped tour, man," he says of how he ended up working with them. "There's Dishashi [Lumumba-Kasongo] from Gym Class Heroes and other than that you don't see anymore black people playing guitars in young bands."

Ironically the track didn't even make the record, but it did lead to a new band for the rapper, called Invincible. "I don't even know if that's gonna see the light of day now. That was like the gateway drug; now we're doing crack," he says.

Of the new music he says, "As bad as it sounds it's rap-rock, but hopefully we can be respected and do it right. It's been tried and tried and tried and there's Linkin Park, and if anything I'm hoping to be the polar opposite, as successful, but a little more hip-hop than rock."

While his focus right now is on 'Murs for President,' he is excited about touring down the line as part of Invincible. "For me it all stems from my interest from doing anything with a live band; my energy on stage is more punk," he says. "I like jumping around, I like being loud, and now I have three motherf***ers to do it with on stage."