Singled Out: "The Holes In The Ozone Is Pretty Much The State Of Hip-Hop"

Tuesday, Dec 6, 2011 10:00PM

Written by SOHH for Ras Kass

[SOHH highlights a hot single each week and offers a unique look at the record. After Slim Thug put on for his city with the new "Houston" anthem, West Coast rap veteran Ras Kass diffuses his "Holes In The Ozone" banger.]

First off, let me just give a big shout-out to A Tribe Called Quest. Ever since I was little, whenever that "Bonita Applebum" would come on, I just loved that record. I wasn't a rapper at that time, I was just a fan of rap music.

I really love that beat and I'm not really a big, digging-in-the-crates guy but I would always try to sample it with a mixer. There's mixers with little eight-second samplers on them and so I would try to sample it but I usually didn't have enough time or I would speed it up. So I've been trying to flip that sample since it came out [in 1990].

Finally and recently, it hit me again. I was like, "Yo, I've always wanted to rock that sample" and I had actually written a different song and I wanted to change the beat. So I gave it to Doc Hollywood which is a production team of two people and I told them, "With this particular song, can you flip 'Bonita Applebum.' Can you find the original sample and then produce it?" So the way they did the beat, the song didn't fit to it. The original song I did didn't fit to it, so I had to start over.

I felt like it wouldn't do it any justice to throw any regular verse on it. I kind of let the track tell me what to do. They sent me the beat and I pretty much wrote it that night. I think it was just hot and this whole weather sh*t is f*cked up and everyone's mad because there's record-breaking temperatures and it's finally going to be a longer freezing cold winter. They're saying the seasons are going to be longer.

For me, the creative thing is typically taking that's pretty basic and flipping it on its head. It is hot as f*ck and people tried to say it wasn't global warming but it is and then I thought about how could I apply that to my personal and creative life in the realm of hip-hop. That's what "Holes In The Ozone" really is. The holes in the ozone is pretty much the state of hip-hop.

The reception has been great. I really was happy with the record. I can never guess what people gravitate to but it's been great. The deejay response has been great and it's getting a good response on the grassroots record.

Ironically girls are saying they like the song but nine times out of ten, I don't make songs that girls like. So I find that interesting but subconsciously it's the "Bonita Applebum" [sample].

Ras, a member of the Soleside Crew, is one of the dopest MC's to grace a microphone in a long time. His ability to freestyle combined with his offbeat flow make him almost untouchable on any stage anywhere (East Coast, West Coast, the South, Chicago, Atlanta, Miami, New York, Tokyo, Kyoto, Frankfurt, Paris, etc....). Freeflowing MC's come and go, but the thing that sets them apart as great, lyrical content.

Check out Ras Kass' "Holes In The Ozone" below:

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