Once upon a time in 2016, I received a call from DJ Green Lantern. While Green and I talk quite frequently, rather than speaking in his usual unenergetic tone, there was a touch of excitement in his voice this time. He went on to tell me about an artist named Westside Gunn with a crew called Griselda from Buffalo, NY. As Green and I now reminisce on those days, he remembers, “My boy DJ Chris G from my hometown of Rochester, NY was posting about and playing Griselda music and it caught my ear. I loved it—that grimy fly shit. I haven’t stopped listening since.”
From that moment on, I dove into the Griselda catalog expeditiously. Primarily, Westside Gunn’s Fly God was my introduction, and honestly I was completely blown away. At the same time, Green was working on The Hitler on Steroids mixtape. This was a way to introduce new fans like me to some original preexisting material, which shed even more light on these phenomenal Griselda artists that included names like Conway The Machine and Benny The Butcher. Their mystique and grit was evident, and it had fans like me yearning for more.
As a brand new superfan, I peeped Green was going to DJ their first tour, “Griselda On Steroids,” and the first stop was Webster Hall in NYC. That was the night where hip-hop heroes Styles P and Jadakiss of The Lox, Raekwon of Wu-Tang, and the late great Prodigy of Mobb Deep passed the torch to the next generation. After making my way backstage, I was somehow a fly on the wall in a room full of rap giants, and I mean literally, look!
Courtesy of Seth ZaplinBeyond all of that, Griselda was truly doing something different by keeping it pure, gritty, and …
Author: Seth Zaplin / High Times