This week, the re-release of Homeboy Sandman’s song “Tashay” has set the internet on fire and helped kickstart the Road to the Rapathon. With this year’s event being a special End the Violence Rapathon, the Hip-Hop Culture Center has decided to make the event focus on benefiting anti-gun violence charity Harlem Mothers S.A.V.E. We spoke to Sandman on writing “Tashay,” his thoughts on the gun violence epidemic and his experience in Rapathons past.
“Tashay” was originally on the Anti-Gun March mixtape which saw several rap artists working with different mothers from Harlem Mothers S.A.V.E. to write songs on their experiences with gun violence.
What was the story behind “Tashay?”
Velna was the only mother taking part in the H2C2/Harlem Mothers S.A.V.E. collaboration whose child’s death wasn’t’the result of gun violence, but I guess the nightmare of losing a child is is something that parents can relate to regardless of how the tragedy took place. We met up and immediately hit it off as she’s an amazing woman. The story’s of her 6 week old daughter’s murder at the hands of her own father, and how rather than sinking into despair Velna had the strength and the courage to use the tragedy to bring her and her surviving daughter closer together, and learn appreciate every single moment in her life.
How did you feel upon hearing her story?
I found it to be very heroic. The song was my attempt to make something beautiful out of something horrific, which is what Tashay inspired in Velna, and what Velna inspired in me.
How do you feel about gun violence in the city?
Gun violence anywhere is so shameful. Guns are humankind’s most cowardly invention.
Do you have any favorite memories of the Rapathon?
One time during my first rapathon it was a four man crew. Me and all three members of Triboro; Frsh Aire, Sean Conn, and Elus. All them cats get busy. It was a classic session.
Support the H2C2 Rapathon for Harlem Mothers S.A.V.E.