Ruggid Real, born James Long started doing music at a young age and didn’t get serious until he was 16. Since that time he has done many shows over the years and been involved with several projects. From McKeesport PA, Ruggid grew up just like any other kid from the urban city around drugs, violence and poverty. I confess I’m not a big fan of rap in general, especially modern rap, but there are a few rap artists I enjoy.
Ruggid Real is one of them. I can’t explain what it is about his music that I like more than other rappers, but perhaps it’s his sense of old school melody. A sparse, yet beat-heavy, arrangement lends, the single “Piece Of Me”, a raw stripped down feeling, which is enormously appealing compared to the almost laughably grandiose production that plagues much of today’s hip hop. The best aspect to this minimal production is that it puts Ruggid’s voice into the foreground, and lets him loose to do his thing.
Compared to the current young rappers, not only is “Piece Of Me” more complex, but it trumps a lot of the stuff being put out now. This track is a very solid effort, and after listening to what’s on the airwaves right now, “Piece Of Me” has an effect comparable to when you open up a window to a room with stagnant air. Not only do you feel refreshed, but you regain some of the brain cells that you lost when you turned on today’s radio. All rap fans should do themselves a favor and put this one in their players every once in a while. It’ll renew your spirits and help you remember why you loved hip hop in the first place.
“Piece Of Me” is a self-explanatory song, but it is great nonetheless. The days of hip hop being about the rhymes are long gone and hip hop is declining more and more each year. Eventually it will disappear altogether but at least we have artists like Ruggid Real, working tracks like “Piece Of Me” and reminding us of how wonderful hip hop used to be, when serious rhyming was a thing and rappers like L.L.Cool J were able to rap over ballads. Cocky and confident, Ruggid Real’s rhymes stay real. He is serious, vengeful, and humorous – all at once, and his beats and effortless lyrical flow will set any house on fire!