From having roots in Los Angeles to becoming someone to root for, Kevin Casey is a rising star in both the mixed martial arts (MMA) and music fields. Casey, 29, brings a hard edge to both his Gracie form of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu as a fighter in Strikeforce MMA and his hip-hop/rap music with a polished smoothness in between.

Growing up in Torrance, Casey happened to live near a great Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu master in Rickson (pronounced HICK-son) Gracie and developed into a prized pupil for the undefeated martial arts master.

Casey took to the training ring for the first time himself in 1999 while still a student at Southern California’s West Torrance High. The tragic death of Rickson's son -- and Casey's good friend -- Rockson Gracie in 2001 drove him further into competition.

As a fighter, Casey has competed at Japan’s K 1 event. He has also fought on Strikeforce main events featured on Showtime cable network. But Casey has another love –- music.

Casey is developing a style of music that fits his persona –- tough on the outside with a smooth touch inside. His first single, “No Surrender, No Retreat,” quickly became an anthem for several fighters on the MMA circuit and also gained popularity as a viral video on YouTube with over 230,000 views to date.

Casey, who resides in Hawthorne, is giving back to the community by being a prime supporter of CHAMP. Founded by his brother Keith Casey, CHAMP is a non-profit organization is working to build the minds and bodies of inner city youth through mixed martial arts.