Big K.R.I.T. @ Mr. Smalls [Giveaway]
As a kid, Justin Smith grew up listening to his grandmother’s soul music and growing a taste for 90s southern hip hop, with musical inspirations ranging from Curtis Mayfield and Bobby Womack, to 8Ball & MJG, to UGK and OutKast. From his hometown of Meridian, Mississippi, Smith made his mark on hip hop culture and the music scene by starting out as many artists do–the mixtape circuit.
Under his new moniker, Big K.R.I.T. (an acronym for “King Remembered in Time”), Smith started producing and writing his own music, compiling his work onto mixtapes that he’d release to his dedicated fanbase. Smith was in the mixtape circuit for several years before he was signed, collaborating with a multitude of producers and up-and-coming artists like himself. In addition to his own works, he was also featured on several notable artist projects, including a track from Curren$y’s major label debut, and a guest appearance on Pittsburgh’s own Wiz Khalifa’s revered “Kush & Orange Juice” mixtape.
Smith’s projects like “K.R.I.T. Wuz Here” and “Return of 4Eva” were critical, as they paved the way for his future success by bringing him into the public eye; more specifically, to the ears of the A&R department at Def Jam. Shortly after, he was back to work on his first full-length album and major label debut, “Live from the Underground.” Smith’s released a handful of works since then, featuring a roster of heavy hitters in hip hop, including producer Mike WiLL Made, and artists like Wiz, Bun B., Yelawolf, Future, Smoke DZA and Trinidad James.
His sophomore album, “Cadillactica,” was released last November, taking him a bit further out of his comfort zone. As opposed to previous years dabbling in multiple endeavors, Smith had time to focus solely on the album. There were no tours or other mixtapes that had his attention; it was only this.
Play “Cadillactica” all the way through, and it’s evident the rapper put much thought, time and dedication into the multifaceted project, from the production quality on tracks like “Mind Control”; to highlighting his strengths in “storytelling” hip hop and lyricism; to maintaining his Southern flow and roots on tracks like “Saturdays=Celebration” and “Soul Food.”
Persistent as always, Smith still hasn’t let up in regards to his work ethic. In addition to a recently released anthem dedicated to his favorite car (below), he’s hinted on his Twitter page that he’s got a project in its final stages and “working on something special for the fans” for his upcoming national tour.
Big K.R.I.T. is heading out on his Kritically Acclaimed Tour this fall, and you can catch him in Pittsburgh on Thursday, October 29 at Mr. Smalls. Tickets ($18) are available now and can be purchased online.
Additionally, we’re giving away a set of two tickets to one lucky fan. You can enter to win them in the Rafflecopter below: