Myka 9 - Influence

Influence

As one of the most stylistically advanced rappers at the Good Life Cafe, Myka 9 has had a profound influence on Los Angeles underground hip hop and freestyle rap in general. Discussing the influence of Myka 9's song "7th Seal" on Freestyle Fellowship's first album To Whom It May Concern... (1991), Ellay Khule said, ""7th Seal" blew everybody's mind for at least 2 years straight. People studied that shit backwards and forwards -- even we don't know all those words. That made everybody say like 'I gotta get a tape out' or 'I can't rap like so-and-so no more. I can't be in 80s, now we movin' to the 90s.' That totally transferred our musical thought." Drummer and producer JMD said, "Mike was like the Charlie Parker of all these motherfuckers."

Myka 9's style has been an influence to musicians far beyond the West Coast. In an interview, Pigeon John said, "For me Mikah 9 was like Miles Davis. He was a tall good looking dude, the girls always liked him and this dude just went on stage and there was no effort in him. He was a genius in what he did. He effected and influenced so many people in hip-hop including Mos Def, Talib Kweli, that whole scene. Years before Leaders of the New School, there are stories where Freestyle Fellowship, when they first came out and they went to New York. That whole shouting stuff, they had this ingenious way to do it and they had a backing jazz band before Digable Planets. Busta Rhymes ran up to him (Mikah 9) afterwards and said “dude what kind of style is this,” and then low and behold Leaders of the New School came out. So there’s plenty of stories like that, but that’s just like a taste of how potent that scene was at the Good Life."

In 2008, José James performed Myka 9's song "Park Bench People" with a full orchestral backup.

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