Redman Has Released A Series Of Freestyles Over Hip-Hop Classics
Next month will make it eight years since Redman released an album. However, as the Def Squad MC plugs away at Muddy Waters Too and Blackout! 3 with Method Man, he frequently gives his devoted fan-base new music. In 2023, Reggie Noble has teamed with Royce 5’9, Logic, Tony Touch, and Prof for collaborations—along with a BET Awards performance beside Erick Sermon and Keith Murray. The Brick City veteran also created a freestyle series that highlights his propensity for rapping.
This fall, Funk Doc launched a series, “J@Q BOI BE@TZ.” In the collection of nine videos (made into a YouTube playlist, embedded below), Redman is freestyles to classic beats on songs made famous by JAY-Z, Doug E. Fresh & Slick Rick, Nas, Drake, Puff Daddy & The Family, and Busta Rhymes, among others.
In the first visual, Red’ tackles Just Blaze production from Cam’ron’s “The Roc (Just Fire),” featuring Beanie Sigel and Memphis Bleek. “I wake up ready to make paper / I’m yellin from the staircase, like Eddie, ‘Good morning, my neighbors!’ / The crew ain’t gettin’ food / You yell out, ‘Yo, f__k you, Redman!’ And I’m like ‘F__k you too!'” he begins, spoofing Coming To America. Moments later he raps, “Streets sayin’ ‘Red is back,’ I never left / These bars I stand behind, so I call collect,” he says while his crew does pull-ups in a field playground. He also speaks out against vaccination. “People want to know why I ain’t on Power / I ain’t gettin’ the jab, that’s why I ain’t on Power / I been empowered / Give me my flowers.”
When Red tackles Drake and Giveon’s “Chicago Freestyle” beat (as produced by Noel Cadastre), he is joined in the studio by Kid Capri. When rapping to JAY-Z’s “What More Can I Say,” (produced by The Buchanans), Redman stands at the Verrazono-Narrows Bridge in Staten Island. He wears a gold rope chain, rapping, “This is Hip-Hop, it’s like it’s meant for me / And I plan to finish strong, like Mister Cee.”
Rapping to “It’s All About The Benjamins” (as produced by Diddy and D-Dot), Redman raps, “I’m still here, a lot of you not, checkmate / I married Hip-Hop, we both made a sex tape / I kept your head noddin’, for 30 years, to put it clear, your whole city need a neck brace / I talk s__t, but I back it up / No pun intended, but I’m packin’ a MAC in the back of an Acura,” he says, paying homage to his late Rap peer. “None of y’all want smoke, I am a lion / Eating the goats before I fry ’em / Walkin’ in my shoes, you couldn’t, if I untied ’em.” Redman is cocky, and out to prove something.
While rapping to Nas’ “The World Is Yours” (produced by Pete Rock), Redman lays out his fitness regimen. To Chris Brown’s “Look At Me Now” (Diplo and AFROJACK), Funk Doc’s flow goes into turbo mode. Paying homage to “La Di Da Di,” DirtyFace and Redman match the routine the visual. Reg’ spits, “I hit the mall, and copped the Gucci on the belt / But none of that is really generational wealth.” For years, the MC has preached about living within one’s means.
“Heal Yourself” marks a deviation from Hip-Hop classics, on a Chill instrumental track produced by Yaahn Hunter, Jr. On this song, Redman shares about his anxieties, his insecurities, and his deepest thoughts. He also touches on diet and more. Red’ also tackles some Rockwilder production, originally purposed for Dr. Dre and Eminem.
#BonusBeat: A collaboration between Logic, Redman, Statik Selektah, and Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane is currently on the Ambrosia For Heads playlist: