Hailing from Houston, Texas, RiFF RaFF is an unstoppable Youtube force to be reckoned with. The majority of his online back catalogue easily exceeds the 1 million views mark, and with his anywhere-any-time freestyle ability, Riff is a real breath of fresh air in a scene filled with too many ‘bang-bang’s and ‘no-homo’s. RiFF (aka Jody Highroller) is a sight to be seen with his unique dress sense, Paul Wall articulation (of whom he used to purchase his grills from) and unusual collection of tattoos. Frequently referencing his appreciation for polar bears and anything neon within his artillery of bizarre lyrical content, RiFF RaFF’s music appeals to those who appreciate fine jewelry “diamonds dancing on my fist / look like a blank disc” and designer labels – his first viral hit was an ode to Marc Jacobs.
Having gained fierce momentum throughout 2012, Riff’s career boasts a recent slew of collaborations with other notable rappers such as Chief Keef and Action Bronson, a video shoot rap-up with A$AP Rocky and talks of recording with Drake – not to mention sponsorship deals with Neff, front cover spots and a signing to Diplo’s label. He is set to take the rap game by storm in 2013 with his very own flavour of southern rap, love for Bon Jovi and unrivaled collection of blang-blang. Even one of Riff’s earliest appearances in the spotlight, as a contestant on MTV reality show ‘From G’s to Gents’, allowed his talent and personality as a musician to come to light with his frequent outbursts of on-air, unrehearsed freestyles.
If you want to see RiFF RaFF in the flesh, he will be performing at Camden Barfly on Saturday night (09/03/13) with DJ Semtex. Taking place in such a small venue, it’ll no doubt be an intense and intimate show – sure to be filled with die-hard fans (myself) and others who have only recently caught onto the hype - but still a guaranteed great night out with the recently dubbed Rap game Tom Hanks.
Words by Shawn Correia