What Inspires Pete Rock

The soul brother Pete Rock, one of the top producers in hip hop history sits down with TheBeeShine and talks about his upbringing in the hip hop culture and personal stories.

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What Inspires Medusa

Medua is an emcee and motivational speaker from Los Angeles, CA. Growing up as a pop-locking with the Groove-Atrons, she won Best Female Dancer at The Palladium’s 1st Hip Hop Dance Awards. Medusa began emceeing at age 16 and later improved her talent at the Good Life Cafe and the Project Blowed Workshop. She became the first artist in the Los Angeles hip hop scene to perform with a live band and released her EP, Do It The Way You Feel It. She won a Grammy with the band Ozomatli and has landed film scoring, soundtrack production, and acting in films such as Life Is A Traffic Jam, Gridlock, and Moesha. She wrote, produced, and performed “My Momma Raised a G” for the HBO film, Stranger Inside and appeared in the documentary Freestyle: The Art Of Rhyme. Medusa also speaks at colleges and seminars on the effect of hip hop on children and women, relating to culture and life.

What Inspires DJ Enki of Oakland Faders

DJ Enki is a hip hop DJ from Oakland, CA. Growing up on the east coast, he was exposed to Kool DJ Red Alert on the radio. Enki went to college in North Carolina and met Faust & Shortee, who are now members with him in the Citizenz collective. Enki moved to the Bay Area became a resident DJ for the Money$hot weekly in San Francisco for 2.5 years and was named Top 5 Hip Hop Weeklies by URB Magazine. He is a member of the Oakland Faders and spins at an ongoing event, The 45 Sessions, in Oakland.

What Inspires King Kirk of Sporty Thievz

King Kirk is an emcee from Yonkers, NY. Alongside Big Dubez and the late Marlon Brando, he is an original member of the group, Sporty Thievz. The group rose to fame for their single “No Pigeons”, which parodied “No Scrubs” by TLC. Sporty Thievz has been recognized for other hits “Cheapskate” and DJ Quik collaboration, “Can’t Give It Away”. Their debut album, Street Cinema, was released in 1998 and produced by Ski Beatz. Kirk has released a few solo singles including “Fuck Facebook” and “Fuck I Look Like”. The group is finishing their sophomore album, Street Cinema 2, also produced by Ski Beatz.

What Inspires Chali 2na of Jurassic 5

Chali 2na is an emcee from Los Angeles, CA. At a young age, he moved to South Central from Chicago and was raised by his grandmother. In high school, he became friends with classmate Cut Chemist and joined Mark 7 in a seven-man group, Unity Committee. They performed at the Good Life Cafe alongside many other successful artists from the region. They recorded a single, “Unified Rebelution” with Rebels of Rhythm in 1995. The Rebels included Akil and Soup, which later joined Chali in the group Jurassic 5. The group’s self-titled debut album was released in 1998 with popular songs “In The Flesh”, “Jayou”, “Concrete Schoolyard”, and “Improvise”. They released three more albums on Interscope Records; Quality Control (2000), Power In Numbers (2002), and Feedback (2006). Chali is featured on albums by Fatlip, Lyrics Born, Blackalicious, Long Beach Dub Allstars, Black Eyed Peas, and more. He is a founding member of the funk band Ozomatli and continues to collaborate with them. In 2004, Chali released his solo mixtape, Fish Market, followed by a solo album in 2009, Fish Outta Water, and Fish Market 2 in 2010. In 2012, he released the album R.I.D.S. with Roc C, under the group name Ron Artiste. Chali is also featured in the documentaries This Is The Life and Freestyle: The Art Of Rhyme.

What Inspires Z-Man

Z-Man is an emcee from San Francisco, CA. He was raised on jazz, funk, and soul music from his grandfather and mother. Combining that influence with his love for cartoons, Z developed a “zainy”, cartoonish persona as an artist. In 2003, he formed an alternative hip hop group, One Block Radius, alongside Marty James and MDA. In 2005, they released their debut album, Long Story Short, followed by the mixtape, Cut Some Static. Z-Man’s official solo debut album, Dope Or Dog Food, was released in 2004 on Refill Records. Since then, the Hieroglyphics affiliate has released Anti Nerd, Don’t Forget To Brag with G Pek, The Vegetable & The Ferret with White Mic, 4 Hours Of Sleep, and A Verse Or Two.

What Inspires Jawz Of Life

Jawz Of Life is an emcee from Decatur, GA. He is a member of The Dungeon Family music collective, which features Cee-Lo Green, OutKast, Goodie Mob, and more. He has collaborated with DMC, DJ Hurricane, Diamond D, Khujo Goodie, Witchdoctor, and many others. In 2001, Jawz released his debut album, First Breath. He has also released albums with groups Passport, TH5PENTAGON, THE-5IVE, tH_bAsTeRdS, and Dungeoneze. In 2009, Jawz released Mike & Life, a mix CD in honor of Michael Jackson. In 2011, he released Big Luther, a mix CD in honor of Luther Vandross. Also in 2011, he released Greatest Spitz Vol. 1, a collection of his most popular tracks.

Skrewtape describes his album, No Filter, produced by Us Natives

The South Jersey juggernaut Skrewtape talks about his upcoming album, No Filter. The project is produced entirely by Us Natives (John E Cab & Ill Clinton) and it represents Skrewtape writing freely without any limitations on his creative process. The album features Malik B of The Roots, Slaughter Rico, Slim DSM, J.O. The Last Man, Sean Cov, Rich Quick, VAS, DJ Too Tuff, DJ Kwestion, and DJ Soul Buck.

Ness Lee remembers meeting Jarren Benton and the JumpOff WRC rap battles

Atlanta emcee Ness Lee tells the story of how he met superstar Jarren Benton in 2000. After graduating from high school, the two were introduced through a mutual friend at Warehouse Music. Ness was impressed by Jarren’s ability to freestyle better than he could write. The two later teamed up for the JumpOff World Rap Championships’ Atlanta Division and the rest is history.