Peshy Kruger Rap Battle Warrior: Rap Battles and Hip Hop Have Evolved Over the Years. So Has Peshy Kruger. By: Rob Smittix
Written by Staff on November 12, 2021
On Friday November 12th at The Madison Theatre in Albany #25toLIFEEE and Peshy Kruger present #LIFEEE Behind Bars 2. For those that aren’t fluent in Rap music lingo, bars means musical bars. The event is a rap battle that will entertain the masses and there will be times the punchlines will make you spit your drink out all over the floor. Today I am speaking with the man himself. Ladies and gentlemen, I bring you Mr. Peshy Kruger.
RRX: I’ve been a fan for quite a while. I’m from the South End (Albany), I believe you are too.
PK: Yeah definitely. We’re from the same hood bro.
RRX: I enjoyed my time growing up there. It’s a character-building neighborhood.
RRX: You have a rap battle coming up “LIFEEE Behind Bars 2.”
PK: This event that’s taking place I tried to get my birthday but I couldn’t, so I got the night going into my birthday. The event takes place November 12th and we’re going to be there at midnight so…
RRX: It will be your birthday, nice! I brought up being from the same hood, from the same area because I really find I love listening to local rap music more than any other rap music out there.
PK: There’s not too many of you guys though. I’m starting to garnish the attention but what I had to do to get the attention man. I’ve been rapping probably since I was eight.
RRX: You and me both.
PK: I started taking it really seriously when I was in high school. At Albany High we had the courtyard and that’s where all the rappers would come together. You know what a cypher is?
RRX: I do.
PK: And that eventually comes to, we’ve got a lot of nice dudes on this cypher, let’s have a battle. And battling back then was different from what the culture is now. Spitting some rhyme that you have rehearsed, not on a track but you had them down and had a couple of punchlines. Now it’s a whole art. People are crafting and getting real good with it. Definitely has evolved.
RRX: Hip Hop has always been a competitive sport. Like you said you were rapping since you were young. Me too. I was the kid with the turntables in the neighborhood.
PK: A turntable in the hood was like gold.
RRX: Oh yeah those were the days man, we used to hit Music Shack on Central Ave for the records and if you wanted a great mix you had to purchase two of the same record every time.
PK: How about the tissue on top of the tape?
RRX: Oh, my God yeah to re-record over it. Now me being an older cat a lot of the newer stuff that the kids are putting out, just doesn’t do it for me.
PK: I’m not gonna lie, I pride myself with adapting to mad different flows, it almost hurts my brain to dumb it down. I enjoy being lyrical and have somebody else spin it back like oh damn, I hear something different every time. You know what I mean?
RRX: I feel like a lot of what’s coming out now is from a generation that never knew the world without an internet or social media. They all sound alike to me; they’re all talking about the same thing. It’s an oversaturated market. That’s what I like about what you’re doing man because you do have some of the newer beat style and choruses, but your flow is very similar to us old cats.
PK: Yeah, I do that on purpose too. It’s almost like a breath of fresh air when you’re rapping how I am rapping. Before it was almost the opposite. Everybody feels like they’ve got to adapt to the new sound and I’m doing my own thing pretty much and it’s cutting through.
RRX: There’s so much talent here. I mean your brother (Eighty Gee) is one of them.
PK: That’s my older brother by the way. We started at the same time. When I said I started at eight, he was nine. He’s one of the few that can adapt that new flow but actually can sing something too. That’s why he cuts through, it’s actually lyrical, you feel me?
RRX: It is, he pulls it off very well. Now this is the second Life Behind Bars battle and the first one I believe was also at the Madison Theater. Correct?
PK: We made it hot now. I see everybody at the Madison Theater but I ain’t mad at it.
RRX: It’s good to see a venue that supports it. As you know it’s tough to get Hip Hop into venues.
PK: I had to win their trust to be perfectly honest with you. I’d be lying if I said there isn’t a dark cloud around Hip Hop because so many shows were shut down with violence. We make sure none of that happens. We have metal detectors and I’ve got my own security. Battle Rap is so diverse for fans, we have moms coming out, you know what I mean?
RRX: Well, I’m not taking no sides, but I see my guy Rich Millz is there.
PK: Yeah, Millz man, I definitely had to put Millz on. He was battling when I was battling.
RRX: I had a friend that got pretty far in Battle Rap and it got ugly sometimes, I mean you could tell they were stalking each other’s Facebook pages. I’m like oh man leave his little sister out of it.
PK: The gloves are off. The more you show it’s hurting you… you gotta act like none of it fazes you bro.
RRX: I call it boxing with microphones.
PK: It’s not even boxing, it’s UFC, because with boxing the ref is going to come in the middle when he hits the floor. In the UFC when you hit the floor, they’re still punching you bro.
RRX: Well, I know at the end of a match it’s nice to hit the gloves together or shake hands or something like that.
PK: That’s the awesome thing about it. There’s respect. Back in the day when we were rapping at each other in the courtyard and you say somebody’s mom’s name, it’s liable to be a riot (laughs). With the growth of the sport and the growth of sportsmanship, it’s more of a salute, like, “yeah you’re nice”. They understand why you have to go after that battling. That’s the beauty of it.
RRX: So, I know this is just the beginning.
PK: The sky’s the limit. That’s why we have to make sure we’ve got a good reputation and remain incident free. Nothing is unattainable, just gotta stay positive, stick to the plan and not try to take any shortcuts. Put the work in and I feel like we’re doing that. We’re doing what we’re supposed to and I’m doing it at the right time where my music is in order, it’s lined up, I’ve got a lot of eyes on me. I’ve got a lot of content building because of my music. Busta Rhymes even hit me up, you know what I mean?
RRX: And he didn’t have to do that. That’s amazing.