YO! MTV Raps is returning on May 24th as a Paramount+ exclusive. The series played a pivotal role in giving new fans a glimpse of the hip-hop culture. It gave in-depth artist interviews, live performances, premiered new music videos, and held cyphers to spotlight up-and-coming artists throughout the late eighties to mid-nineties. The unique platform gave The Notorious B.I.G. his first TV interview back in August of 1994. It interviewed 2Pac and film director John Singleton while being on the set of Poetic Justice. The first episode will feature Freddie Gibbs and will feature more artists; check out our article to learn more about the relaunch.
When it came to these five artists I chose, I thought of how in-depth their musical content can be. These artists are highly influenced by lyricism; influenced by different senses of nostalgia and think outside of the box to uplift others through their creative demeanors.
Radio B is a Southside Richmond native that is the owner of the Virginia version of YO! MTV Raps, RVA Rap Elite. He is a sharp and witty emcee that made records over the past few decades. He has battled on SMACK URL and rapped on the World Emcee cypher platform (formerly known as Team Backpack). The Brewer's Sessions video above has Radio performing tracks from his All Art Ain't Pretty album painting vivid pictures of black liberation, pushing through adversity, and how to be protectors and providers for black women. Radio would be a perfect fit for the series as he is an old-school emcee that provides a "my bars are the best" mentality when standing out as the best emcee. He can be followed on all social media @RadioBlitz
The Inland Empire emcee by way of San Bernandino, CA is a known "Bar Gawd" in his local rap scene. Kasai is known as the co-founder of the Over Everything collective in 2014, which is filled with several lyricists such as CJ Westley, Joe Sweatpants, Cam Archer, and Nicklaus Gray. He is also the co-founder of the MidnightRun Podcast and an award-winning filmmaker. Jay Kasai is best known for his melancholy Kasai Tape Trilogy which gives listeners insight into his hustles and struggles such as falling off a cliff that influenced the Kasai Tape 3 cover. He spits some tracks from KT3 in the video above. With features from well-renowned battle rapper Daylyt, Kasai is a rapper that can burn down a cypher, and provide intriguing interview content. He can be found on all social media at @JayKasai
G.L.A.M. is an acronym for Good Lyrics And Music. She embodies that acronym as I see her as a rap game's Uno Wild Card. She's a rapper, producer, DJ, and singer that knows how to shift energies seamlessly in songs. The Oakland native drew early musical influence from her mother Nic Nac, who was a rapper herself and is her manager. Some of her other early influences come from the nostalgia of nineties TV shows and production from that era. She has been on the World Emcee platform, Sway In The Morning, and MTV Rapfix. Her song L.O.L. is a remix of Erykah Badu's On & On, which caught the ear and eye of Badu. G.L.A.M.'s confidence and vast skillset can provide YO! MTV Raps with a DJ that can tap into the era the show lived in and give it a modern-day twist with her sets and electronic production. She can be found on all social media @glamishere
Michael Millions is a rapper and engineer from Richmond, Virginia that taps into the sounds that made Richmond known as The Harlem of The South. His sound is a combination of jazz production, soul samples, and blunt storytelling. Michael's last album, Hard To Be King, was featured in XXL Magazine and his video for Sirens was run on Revolt TV throughout 2018. It even gained the approval of Richmond legend D'Angelo, as he himself cleared two samples for the album to be released. In our interview, he defined Richmond's sound as a crockpot of many different influences, waiting to be tried out by the masses. I can see Mike performing his song Wizard with Canada-based producer Chong Wizard and a band in the background similar to Plunky and Oneness, unifying different genres together. He can be found on all social media @MichaelMillions
Habeeb is a highly skilled emcee that has sparred with the best of the best in battle rap from Xcel, Radio B, and Breeze The Poet. He was featured in the RVA Rap Elite and World Emcee Bar Fight Tournament. On the RVA Rap Elite platform, he is a past cypher champion that has shown up time and time again with distinctive deliveries and a keen attention on how to flip syllables to curate intricate rhyme schemes. His past appearance spitting on World Emcee with Cane, Henny L.O., King Fizzle, and O-Z showed he can stand toe to toe with emcees. He can be found on Instagram @habeebami .
Written by: Jay Guevara. @justinhisprime on all social media
Check out our services: themsqshop.com/bookmsq
Submit your music to: theMSQshop@gmail.com