Hip Hop, Politics and Religion are three topics that always create an on-going debate amongst the masses. Especially when it comes to the “Best rapper(s) of all time” debate but no matter the answer it creates dialogue. Hip Hop heads have been blessed with over 40 years of bars, beef, battles and memorable quotables from the illest emcees to ever pick up a mic. Well now some of our most beloved lyricists are ready to pass the torch to their predecessors but to be clear the title has to be earned not given.
October 1, 1996, rap icon Ras Kass dropped his first studio album Soul On Ice through Priority Records. Rewind nine months, to January 4, 1996, Ras’ then girlfriend gave birth to twin boys. Two, technically there milestones happened that year for the Carson native. The mother of the twins, R&B soulstress Teedra Moses, moved the family of three to Miami when the boys were 13. Growing up in Miami the boys have a strong love for the culture especially in regards to music.
Fast forward to 2017 Ras & Teedra’s boys Ras (Junior) and Taj are living in Los Angeles, California following in the footsteps of their Pops lyrically. With the help of Mid-City based producer SoundsByKrock the twins were able to display their genetic lyrical lineage and also pay tribute to their father and rap legend for Father’s Day.
Ras and Taj Austin, who are part of an up and coming rap crew by the name of Coast Contra sampled 2 tracks off their father’s 1996 debut album. The first track Miami Life which coincidentally is the first track off the 20 year old album has a lot of similarities to the original. The hook and cadence are the same and it definitely gives that timeless feeling. The track breaks at a minute and forty five to the second track appropriately titled “Spitting Image” over the Soul On Ice instrumental. The twins are definitely showing some similarities to the Hip Hop veteran but they are also determined to make a name for themselves. The duo briefly introduce the other half of their crew RioLoz and Eric Jamal, which make up Coast Contra. Not to be labeled as a group the best way to explain the foursome is WuTang meets TDE.
When asked the goal of remaking some of Ras Kass’ icon tracks Taj, the youngest of the twins said, “We want to pay homage to the one that paved the way in the most literal sense; As a lyricist and a father.”
Follow Shamika Sykes on Twitter!