You will never catch BLACASTAN rocking a mullet or a neon cardigan. Blacastan will never duet with a boy band or auto-tune his lyrics. His sound is not only the past, but a glimpse of an unpaved lane on the highway to hip hop's holy land, the physical embodiment of this rap shit the way it was meant to be heard. The second coming of the shit you used to watch @ 4:30 PM on BET in 1994. Classic material.
Hailing from Hartford, CT - Ira Osu aka Blacastan was raised in an environment of thieves, addicts, crooks, and liars. Brought from the essence by a mother who herself had every intention of raising Ira as a model citizen soon found herself a victim to the struggle and drug fueled environment that was Hartford in the 80s. Blacastan was also born of an affair. Both Blacastan and his step father thought they were related biologically until Blacastan was approximately 6 years old. According to Blacastan, "My step pop was a good guy. Even after findin' out that I wasn't his kid he still showed me the same love as he showed my brother who was actually his real son". But like any relationship built on lies, eventually the situation got really sour between Blacastan's mother and his step father. Blac explains, "Nah mean, who blames the guy? Thats alot for somebody to swallow." With a family structure under constant strain and an environment that bred mischief, Blacastan quickly fell victim to the pitfalls of the Hartford ghettos. Gangs like Los Solidos, the Latin Kings, and 20 Love were warring for control of every corner of Hartford and drugs quickly soaked into his reality. Not only being forced into selling the the poison simply for survival, Blacastan soon became a victim of the substance as well.
By the age of 15 and now living with his grandmother, Blacastan had already lost his way to the venom known as Angel Dust. Wet controlled everything he knew and eventually the minor arrests and misdemeanors began shifting to felonies. Having dropped out of school, Blacastan learned the harsh reality of life's lessons from the streets and through the social scene of the penitentiary. By 16, Blacastan found himself in the clutches of the Connecticut correctional system. Not even old enough to vote, Blacastan was tried as an adult and convicted of armed robbery, kidnapping, car jacking, and a host of other charges.
Jail became his reality for the next six years. While 90s hip hop radio stations began shifting away from playing the likes of Smif N Wessun and Jeru The Damaja, Blacastan began to gravitate to the bootleg underground hip hop tapes smuggled in to the prison. While others were knocking Puff Daddy & Ma$e, Blacastan found himself primarily rocking to the likes of Blackstar, Pharoah Monche, Common, and the Wu-Tang Clan.
His desire to contribute to the genre only grew as the hip hop songs the radio began to embrace slowly lost the essence of what rap music was intended to deliver.
Ironically, since instrumentals were almost non-existent in the confines of government sponsored captivity, Blacastan was forced to write his lyrics to the self despised songs that these commercial radio stations were playing. Hence, this became the concept of Blacastan's 2006 critically acclaimed and heavily bootlegged Mix CD: "ME AGAINST THE RADIO".
Upon his release from prison in the early 2000's, Blacastan vowed to commit to a life of sobriety and the pursuit of the goals he set for himself on the inside. His purpose was now clear; he was waging war against the bullshit music he believed was quickly destroying his culture.
While recording his debut Mix CD, Blacastan sought the guidance of CT hip hop legends DOOLEY-O and STEZO to help procure his vision. Blacastan also enlisted the help of his crew, THE BRANCH DAVIDIANS. With their combined efforts and the talents that Blacastan honed surrounded by concrete for six years of his life, there was no way they would see a path to failure. Sure enough, the response was incredible. Connecticut immediately embraced their newfound rap messiah, and a video filmed from the project became an internet sensation on UNDERGROUNDHIPHOP.COM.
Since this time, Blacastan has been in hiding, perfecting and fine tuning his debut release the BLAC SABBATH, which he recorded with a virtually unknown producer and SP-1200 prodigy known as COLOMBEYOND. He has emerged only for select involvement on hand picked projects, such as; BABYGRANDE RECORDS' JEAN GRAE X BLUE SKY BLACK DEATH album, and an upcoming KRUMBSNATCHA project. The album is slated for a fall 2009 release on BRICK Records, the label which helped launch the careers of 7L & Esoteric, Statik Selektah, MF DOOM, and more...
Colombeyond and Blacastan also have another completed album they are sitting on; The COLOMBIAN BLAC LP!. Blacastan promises to deliver hip hop fans what they've been waiting for since Pro Tools, Fruity Loops, and Serato made this shit accessible to any asshole with a voice, namely; The Return of Real Rap Music. Fuck The Radio!