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Saint Cassius has arguably to been one of the most iconic rap stars of the decade. The Harlem based rapper has enjoyed massive success and popularity, thanks to breakout singles like We Make It Look, feat. Jadakiss and his latest song and visuals for Brown Skin Girls.
Raised between 2 major music-based cities New York and Atlanta, Saint Cassius has hip hop instilled within him. Through his songs he tells his tale of everyday life. When he was growing up, music was an integral part of his family and culture.
“I moved to Atlanta at 15 and attended South West DeKalb, which boasted the largest high school marching band in the country at the time. I became a drum major and participated in the movie Drumline, which led to an internship at Arista Records. I stepped away from music for a short time to try something different, but music has always been a gift I was given to share with the world,” he explains.
Music didn’t only play a role in his day to day life, but it also played a big role in his upbringing. He’s been interested in music since the age of 6. He recalls when his grandmother and him were at a grocery store and his dad’s former piano teacher approached her to say how much Cassius favored his dad.
“She wanted to teach me how to play the piano for free,” he said. “At my first recital, an open window caused the wind to blow the music off the piano while I was playing. I kept playing unbothered because I had practiced so much I committed the piece to memory. That’s when everyone realized I had a real gift.”
His hip-hop melodies feel like a representation of his past. Saint has experienced so much from attending 13 funerals before he graduated high school, (including his mother’s) to having been held at gunpoint not once but twice and surviving a severe car accident. Through his trials he only grew with grace.
Many unique events encompass his childhood. He and his father were both adopted by the same family. As a teenager, he was kicked out as his grandfather alone could not handle Saint. He then moved to Atlanta and began to pursue his career in music. Despite all the challenges, he found his strength in rap music. He had his headphones in all day listening to rap songs. The love he had for the art form led to creative expression, and soon, he started creating his own verses.
He is one of the few rap artists who describes himself as free, honest, and anxious to get genuine messages across to the masses. Saint infuses his love for hip hop melodies with long smooth-flowing mixes of jazz and soul. He has already begun to define his culture’s sound. Right now, New York is known for drill music, a hip-hop offshoot that captures the aggressive aspect of rap culture. Saint, on the other hand offers a soulful and lyrical approach to his music.
In addition to being a creative, Saint is also a beast on the business side. He established Vinyl Crown in 2013, which was based on the concept that music was branching into three categories: Urban, Artistic, and Popular. Through his company he’s been able to contribute over 20 million singles and has had the opportunity to work with many impactful artists in hip-hop history. Among them are; Bruno Mars, J. Cole, Justice League, Needlz, Lupe, Fiasco, Jean Baptiste, Bryson Tiller, DJ Toomp, T.I., Keyon Harrold, and Macy Gray.
“My vision was that a company built on the cool of being authentically urban with high-end artistic taste always had the opportunity to mold popular culture. I think we proved that with “No Role Modelz” and are working to shape culture consistently,” he says. “Honestly, I was always going to be an entrepreneur with or without music. It’s just who I am, but the biggest reward for me has been the ability to empower other entrepreneurs.”
Through his career he’s helped many people fulfill their dreams, helped others move from places with little opportunity to New York City, and started multiple businesses with associates who have become family.
“Now that I have a daughter, I’ll have something to leave for her.”
Saint Cassius is just gearing up for this year. He’s already had great success in the first quarter as he was highlighted on Spotify’s “Black Lives Matter,” playlist for Black History Month. He’s also been featured in Billboard, Elevator, Yahoo! News and The Source. He’s releasing his song and visual for his next single “Westside,” in April and his project “Good Ass Job.”
For more on Saint Cassius, make sure to follow him on Instagram @SaintCassius_