I read that fellow Staten Islander Raekwon’s solo debut album “Only Built 4 Cuban Linx” inspired “The Amethyst Tape.” That album is turning 20 years old in August. What about the tape inspires you 20 years later?
I think all the beats on that tape are insane. To the point where in almost every set that I have, I do a Raekwon throwback. I play one of the instrumentals from The Purple Tape and I just either freestyle or do a verse over it to mix my set up. I remember when I bought that tape. It was at Sam Goody in the World Trade Center. I remember that I had a Walkman and I played that tape out. At the time I was going to school in Manhattan and I remember being like, ‘I’m from Staten Island. I’m from Stapleton. I’m actually where these people are from.’ It made me feel like a part of something. All my life I felt like an outcast. Being Chilean and Irish, people always asked ‘what are you you?’ and ‘what is that?’ This made me feel like, ‘I’m from somewhere that means something now and I’m cool.’ From there I was a really big hip hop head and then I really started getting into writing rhymes and rapping. READ FULL
“Nani Castle is a dancer, teacher, rapper, activist, Raekwon fan (her mixtape’s title is an homage to Raekwon’s 1995 release Only Built 4 Cuban Linx, aka “The Purple Tape” due to the color of the cassette version of the release), and ex-rocker/rave fanatic swept into the not-rap/not-dance “post-EDM” world. Below, you’ll get not just a sense of her passion about music, but also her community and her role in it all.” READ FULL
“This Staten Island native just dropped her newest project, The Amethyst Tape, and it is nothing less than, how she’d say, “Pink Gold.” Her enticing lyrics mixed with producer, Udachi’s, psychedelic beats remind me of MIA on her rooky album: bold, passionate, and not of this world. In the song, “Pink Gold” she says, “This is my town and I’m comin’ to ruin ya’. Didn’t know any sooner that the powers were lunar.” In this sentence alone, she is exuding confidence, proving loyalty to her city and its people, and then tops it off by throwing a little consciousness in it…just in case her listeners try and dismiss her elevated mind power. Nani’s tape is rambunctious and bitterly awe-some; her sound is more poetic than the typical music that appeals to the masses.” READ FULL