Hip-hop duo Shaheed & DJ Supreme recently unveiled their single/music video, “Take It Back,” a track tracing the history of hip-hop. The pair have an album, The Art of Throwing Darts, releasing in August 2023.
“Take It Back” kicks off with a bounce as backing harmonies chant the song’s title over DJ Supreme’s classic boom-bap beats, followed by Shaheed jumping in with his typical confident flow. Through hard rhymes that roll off like butter, he tells the story of hip-hop, name-dropping the likes of Tupac and Wu-tang as he reminisces on the purity of the early days of the trade.
The video, shot and edited by Richard Giles, depicts Shaheed and DJ Supreme in an appropriate setting to deliver their rap incantations: Seasick Records in their hometown of Birmingham, Alabama. As the duo drops line after line and beat after beat of praise to the craft, we discover rap’s saintly fraternity plastered over the walls of the record shop.
CelebMix caught up with Shaheed & DJ Supreme to find out more about the inspiration for “Take It Back” and how they first connected.
What three things can’t you live without?
Shaheed: The Creator, my faith, and clean drinking water.
DJ Supreme: Allah and his mercy, a flash drive with some bangers on it, and Oud oil.
What inspired your new single/music video, “Take It Back?”
Shaheed: What inspired “Take it Back” was we wanted to show respect to the hip-hop artists who paved the way for us and inspired us to be who we are.
DJ Supreme: Really it was all about paying homage to the great hip-hop artists we admired that paved the way for us.
Who directed the video and where was it shot?
Shaheed: The excellent Richard Giles and it was shot at The Legendary Seasick Records.
DJ Supreme: Richard Giles is the director, and it was filmed at the legendary Seasick Records in Birmingham, AL.
You have a new album, The Art of Throwing Darts, coming down the pipeline. What can you share about it?
Shaheed: It’s one of the best pieces of work that we have ever done and it features Slug from the legendary hip-hop group Atmosphere. It also features the legendary Akil the MC of Jurassic 5 and the legendary Percee P and Raheem Devaughn.
DJ Supreme: We honestly feel it’s our greatest work. We can’t wait for you to hear it. It’s our classic sound combined with features and collabs with Chali 2na and Akil the MC from Jurassic 5, Slug from Atmosphere, Percee P, R&B star Raheem DeVaughn, and more. The new album will drop this summer in August 2023.
Where and when did you two first connect?
Shaheed: We connected in the late ‘90s at a hip-hop event that DJ Supreme ran called The Eargasm.
DJ Supreme: Shaheed and I met in 1999 when I was hosting The Eargasm, Alabama’s premier ‘go-to’ event for the real hip-hop. I would host recording sessions in my home studio after the show. Shaheed came through and blessed one of the sessions and the rest is history.
How did you get started in music?
Shaheed: I started writing lyrics at a very young age because my mom would make me write a journal every day and I turned that into lyrics.
DJ Supreme: That’s a long story, lol. Let’s just say I came from a musical family. Once I decided that music would be my chosen path for a profession, I got mentored and trained by my father, the late Johnny Malone (songwriter for The Blackbyrds, A Taste of Honey, etc.) on the inner workings of the music business.
What inspires your writing? Do you draw inspiration from poems, music, or other media?
Shaheed: Life and nature inspire my writing along with positive environments. Classic music, like jazz and classic hip-hop, also gives me a boost.
DJ Supreme: I absorb the vibes of jazz, classic rock, and old soul samples. I especially get inspired listening to Roy Ayers, Herbie Hancock, and Steely Dan (my favorite artists).
Which artists in your opinion are killing it right now?
Shaheed: There are so many to name, but I would say Tom Misch and Yussef Dayes.
DJ Supreme: I enjoy listening to TrillStatik (Bun-B/Statik Selektah) and Coast Contra.
How do you define success?
Shaheed: By trying to be obedient to the Creator and helping people.
How do you keep your sound consistent onstage?
Shaheed: By understanding what works and sticking to it. Great beats and great rhymes with energy always work.
DJ Supreme: We describe our sound as “Truth Over Beats”. So with that in mind, we stay aware of our mission and we don’t deviate from the script.
What can your fans look forward to over the next six months? Music videos? Live gigs?
Shaheed: They can look forward to all of the above – new music, new videos, new album, and shows.
DJ Supreme: Our fans can look forward to more output from our Shaheed and DJ Supreme brand as well as more outreach from our nonprofit organization Knowledge Rhythm and Understanding, where we partner with various organizations, schools, and clubs to teach the fundamentals of hip-hop culture to the youth. For more info you can reach out via KRUHiphop.com.
Follow Shaheed & DJ Supreme Website | Instagram | Twitter | Spotify