“If you’re original, your work will speak for you. It will come naturally if you let it. If you hone-in on your craft, God will put you in the path of greatness.”
While growing up in Lexington, South Carolina, Rashaun (aka Deadman Rashaun) was always around music. His mother, Pastor Inez Cook used to write gospel music and that craft trickled down to her son. This lead Rashaun to get involved in drama, theatre, and chorus classes in high school. He first wanted to be an actor and wasn’t into rap, even though everything he’swritten and his stage presence made that hard to believe. Around the age of 16, he watched a show for the first time called “In the House,” starring LL Cool J. It was then that Rashaun knew he could be a successful rapper and actor at the same time. Will Smith and Queen Latifah were setting that example for him as well. He always enjoyed listening to different genres of music and this is what later led him to opportunities in the music industry.
As the years progressed, Rashaun took a step back from his craft to support hi family. During this time, he never stopped writing music, making mixtapes, and doing small performances. In the early 90’s, during the big Daddy Kane era, Rashaun, along with Tony Ruth, Pat Williams, Steve Cannon, and Mike Glover formed a group that went by the name 190 Proof. They first started out traveling to different areas to compete in dance battles. Not too long after, Rashaun met a DJ by the name of One Man Gang, who developed artists. One of the members of the group, Step Ready Tony felt it was a good idea for them to stay together. Soon after working with One Man Gang, the group developed skills in rapping back and forth while the others danced in the background. Even though Rashaun continued to get offers from different labels, he remained loyal to his group and the buzz around the group began to grow. “Social medial wasn’t the same back then so we had to rely heavily on the word of mouth of our fans. This is why it was so important for us to put on a good show, so they didn’t forget us,” he said.