Ras_G, the Crate Creator, Admiral of Bass and NETERU Beat God, has been creating amp-blowing, trunk-rattling, outer-space beat compositions humbly and on his own terms for years. Since graduating from the turntables at Leimert Park’s famed Project Blowed open mic to an MPC, _G has come into his own. Following the footsteps of his Space Uncle Sun Ra, _G has released a variety of physical and digital projects on various labels, but he is first and foremost a pillar of the Brainfeeder collective. No one commands the bass like _G.
This past October, I had the pleasure and privelege of accompanying our extraterrestrial sound programmer on a mini-tour of Ireland. From Belfast to Dublin to Limerick, Ras pushed sound systems to the limit with a performance of original compositions that he delivered with the agility and improvisation of a master jazzman. Most of the tunes were the same for all three nights, but each was a unique experience.
The track I share today is a special one for a variety of reasons. Before our cross-Atlantic trek, _G was feeling the depths of intergalactic heartbreak. In this state he created the ainaT EP, which he recently delivered for free fitty on his b-earth day as a gift to the world. The EP is a audio reflection and collection of emotions.
“Lentil Quesa-DILLA” is _G’s flip of Miguel Atwood-Ferguson and Carlos Niño’s orchestral interpretation of “Nag Champa,” a J Dilla produced song featured on Common’s 1999 LP, Like Water For Chocolate. Ras’ version is simple and to the point, but as beautiful and engulfing as any of its original sources. As _G himself said during a Q&A in Belfast, “Everything I do is based on feeling. I’ve never learned an instrument, I’ve never taken a class. Everything you’ve ever heard me do is based on feeling.”