Celebrate Redman’s Birthday With This Rare 1995 Funk Doc Prescription (Audio)

Today (April 17) is Reggie Noble’s birthday. The man better known as Redman has been giving Hip-Hop Heads quote-worthy verses, one-of-a-kind charisma, and sheer originality for more than 25 years. In all of that time, he has been one tough mudder on the mic.

In 1995, Funk Doc was in between two of his most beloved LPs, 1994’s Dare Iz A Darkside and 1996’s Muddy Waters. A rising star on the Def Jam Records label, the Newark, New Jersey lyricist would not let trends dictate his own style. That year, joined by The Artifacts’ Tame One and a then-little-known producer/DJ named Rockwilder, “Smoke A Blunt Too (The Promo)” was a cool-out track that never made an album or soundtrack. Channeling the Gap Band, Parliament Funkadelic, and the Steve Miller Band, Redman presented an unpredictable, diverse pastiche. Meanwhile, the MC used the free-form approach to boast about his bedroom tactics, lambaste trigger-happy police officers, and unify the coasts at a time when that appeared against the norm by some of Reggie’s closest homies. The song is purely original, with the imagery and flow threading the needle, as Red’ went from topic to topic.

This track has lived on its own, and captured what’s made Red’ great then, now, and always. Whatever you choose to raise, raise one for Redman on his born day—and to many more.

Related: This 25-Minute Redman & Method Man 1999 Freestyle Shows How High They Fly (Audio)