MP3: Kool John – “Bang Bang Bang! (Feat. Chippa$$) Prod. Jay Ant
The FADER Premieres First Single for HBK Member Kool John Who Announces Upcoming Mixtape Shmop Life on April 7th
Critical Praise for Kool John:
- This tape is very very Shmop and that’s one of the highest compliments I can give. – PassionWeiss
HBK Gang’s Kool John is from a part of the Bay Area that’s often overlooked but provides the backdrop for many of its members. Although one of Richmond’s claims to fame is that it’s the largest city in the United States served by a Green Party mayor, the reality for most of its residents is grim. With one of the highest unemployment rates in the country (11.9% as of June 2013) and one of the highest murder-rates per capita in the country, Richmond is notoriously treacherous. Documenting his local soil is Kool John with the release of “Bang Bang Bang!” featuring Chippa$$ of NHT Boyz, produced by fellow HBK Gang cohort Jay Ant of The Invasion. His upcoming mixtape, Shmop City, is being released on April 7th for free download.
With its sinister tone and a chorus rhymed in a triplet format, “Bang Bang Bang!” illustrates reality in Richmond, California, but the truth is, the same scene is being played out in countless cities across America. The mob-life mentality can quickly turn something trifling into a murder scene. “Somebody whipped out / now its time to run,” summons Kool John. “When you come to the Rich you better duck / because they go ‘bang bang bang.'” As the song fades out, a soundbite plays from “Boys in The Hood.”
Despite having grown up in that climate, Kool John is credited with possessing an incredibly positive outlook and is one of the most animated members of HBK Gang. He invented the idea and mentality of Shmop, a combination of smack x poppin, “a rare energy only found at the $hmopfest aka THE $HMOP, where all the party animals come from all over The Bay and beyond to get TOGETHER for a GREAT MEMORABLE SPLENDID POSITIVE time.” Shmop is both a way of life and a mentality. As defined by Kool John, it’s “living every day like a Saturday night.” Kool John’s mixtape Shmop City will feature production by The Invasion, YPonthebeat, and more.
Check out The FADER premiere here: http://www.thefader.com/2014/02/20/stream-kool-john-bang-bang-bang/
Read The FADER’s extensive feature on HBK Gang here: http://www.thefader.com/2014/02/11/hbk-gang-iamsu-sage-the-gemini-interview-kind-buds-2014-fader-feature-story/
Listen to the accompanying FADER mix by HBK Gang here: http://www.thefader.com/2014/02/18/fader-mix-hbk-gang-download/
Listen to the newly released HBK Gang Camo EP, which Iamsu! handed out to fans at the release of his limited-edition 8-piece Pink Dolphin capsule collection release event last weekend here: https://soundcloud.com/thehbkgang/sets/iamsu-camo-ep
HBK Gang Background:
If you haven’t yet heard of the HBK Gang, it’s time to get acquainted. Producer and rapper Iamsu! is considered one more of the most critically acclaimed and commercially successful young independent artists in rap with his hits with E-40 (“Function”), Wiz Khalifa (“Bout Me”), 2 Chainz (“Livin'”), LoveRance (“Up”), and more. Producer P-Lo (of The Invasion) has the driving force behind the West Coast’s current, radio-dominating sound; he’s produced singles for Yo Gotti (“Act Right”), Wiz Khalifa (“‘Bout Me”), and more; Sage The Gemini has been equally prolific, with the above-mentioned single, “Gas Pedal” and now “Red Nose,” which was certified gold and is charting on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart. The rest of the crew includes members Skip, Rossi, CJ, Jay Ant, and Kool John, who were all featured on the recently released crew mixtape, Gang Forever.