Today, Winston-Salem’s old-school hip-hop revivalist OG Spliff releases a 2-pack single offering, consisting of the self-reflective tirade “Son of Toga” and its restorative complement, “Building.”
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The poet-turned-rapper’s introspective delivery has a nonchalant swing to it, as his syrupy bars effortlessly marry the soulful, sample-driven instrumentals produced by Argov. Largely inspired by the black experience and the dialogue between himself and the man in the mirror, “Son of Toga” sees the rising artist acknowledge his toxic traits, wanting to change but not ready to commit, while “Building” sees him come to terms with the reality that he will have to live with his scars, searching for a way to move forward. To immerse yourself into OG Spliff’s eccentric world is like watching an artist start with a blank canvas, each verse gliding as effortlessly as a paintbrush’s stroke as the wordsmith breathes life into his colorful soundscape.
He raps: “Buy the whole block not just the building /The intention was a revolution / Couple chains on me now they said I’m losing track / You can’t see the execution, I’ll just hit you back.”
OG Spliff’s life has always been steeped in a variety of musical influences.
“My pops was a DJ growing up, which fostered my love for music, especially house music,” he explained. “He opened my world to all sorts of sounds. Some of my earliest music memories with him are from our trips to the local hood gas station, where we’d go buy rap CDs from the bootleg man, ranging from East Coast rappers Fat Joe and Wu-Tang Clan, to West Coast staples, like N.W.A. and Snoop Dogg.”
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OG Spliff’s melting pot of influences allows him to create without sonic borders, a feat that many artists hailing from Winston-Salem pride themselves in as well. Equidistant from hip-hop hubs Memphis, Atlanta, and the DMV area, the North Carolina city is bubbling with dynamic artists, including producer 9th Wonder (Kendrick Lamar’s DAMN. + more), $hyfromdatre, TiaCorine (featured on OG Spliff’s fan-favorite track “LUV ME”), the late SauxePaxk TB and more.
“Son of Toga” and “Building” are a testament to OG Spliff’s ability to curate a sound uniquely his own, one that is sure to have listeners captivated from the first listen. The rising artist has built his artistry from the ground up; he has opened for MAVI, Lil Durk and Yella Beezy in the past, was featured on Spotify’s Fresh Finds Hip-Hop, and has accumulated an impressive two million streams on the platform along the way.
There is no denying that OG Spliff has solidified himself as one to watch as he continues his run of self-reflective, experimental hip-hop.