As an artist who grew up in Jamaica, Queens during 50 Cent’s prime, Bas recalled listening to the G-Unit lyricist before the rapper gained fame with the release of his debut studio album, Get Rich Or Die Tryin’.
Prior to the popularity of downloading and streaming music online, the Dreamville emcee revealed that he would visit a local mixtape spot in Queens called 164th Flavor for G-Unit and 50 Cent exclusives.
“The 50 wave hit when I was like a freshman in high school,” Bas said, during an interview with Vlad TV. “At least the big wave. We were all familiar with 50 from like before he got shot. You know, Power Of The Dollar. All of those records, but he didn’t like blow up til Get Rich really. That wave just swept—It swept the boroughs so hard. It was just nonstop. We used to go to 164th Street and the Coliseum block on Jamaica Avenue. And we would just go down there. There was this spot 164th Flavor that would have all the G-Unit mixtapes. This was before like everything was on the internet really. So, you could actually go to the mixtape spot and really catch some exclusives. So, we used to go out there like every day after school religiously. Just trying to see what 50 was dropping or whatever was coming out of G-Unit.”
Bas later spoke on getting his feet wet as a lyricist. After serving as a deejay for quite some time, he says he was encouraged by a friend to pursue rapping. Although reluctant, Bas jumped on an instrumental to Kanye West’s “Breathe In, Breathe Out” and shared that his interest in emceeing grew from there.
“He’d always try to talk me into rapping. And I’d be like ‘Man, I ain’t no fuckin rapper, bruh. I grew up around 50 niggas that been rapping over a decade. That shit is not a viable pursuit in life,’” he said. “And, you know, he just kept talking me into it. And that night we got on Kanye West’s ‘Breathe In, Breathe Out.’ We got on that instrumental. The joint with Luda. And did some—Each did a verse to that. Woke up the next day. Played it for the homies. Everyone was like ‘Yo, this is dope. This is funny.’ It was just something to play for the homies. And we ended up doing another one the next day. That summer I just caught a bug and I just couldn’t stop writing.”