Thrust into the limelight with the Internet sensation “Combination Pizza Hut and Taco Bell,” Das Racist infiltrated the music industry unexpectedly.
“That was a Trojan horse that broke us into pop culture,” says MC Ashok Kondabolu, aka Dapwell.
Brooklyn, N.Y.-based hip-hop group Das Racist — Dapwell, Himanshu Suri, aka Heems and Victor Vazquez, aka Kool A.D. — headlines Friday’s S.F. Rap Fest at 103 Harriet in San Francisco’s South of Market district.
Also on the lineup: Blue Sky Black Death & Nacho Picasso, Main Attrakionz, Western Tink & Beautiful Lou, SuperVision (Pretty Lights Music), Antwon & Shadow Runners, Mykki Blanco, Physical Therapy, Friendzone, and RnB Millionaires.
Since the explosion of “Combination Pizza Hut and Taco Bell” — a catchy rap song about hanging out at the split franchise — in the summer of 2008, Das Racist has had many opportunities to succeed — both together and individually. Heems, Kool A.D. and Dapwell all have seen their fame balloon.
Kool A.D., who grew up in San Francisco, couldn’t escape Bay Area hip-hop. “You just can’t avoid it,” he says. Although he was influenced by E-40, Kool A.D. never thought he’d end up a professional rapper: “I didn’t think I was more suited than anyone else for being a rapper.”
Working on a mixtape of Bay Area artists, Kool A.D. wants to represent for his background, especially because Das Racist is such a New York-centric act.
Dapwell is using time off between albums to work on creative endeavors on chillinisland.com. He says the website is a “catchall” for all things media — music videos, radio and TV shows.
Heems is managing acts and working on his independent record label Greedhead Entertainment, a Das Racist imprint.
In a few months, Das Racist, which released its debut full-length album, “Relax,” in September to critical acclaim, will gear up — “picking beats and reaching out to producers,” Dapwell says — to record more.
The group is slated to work on a “highly experimental, long overdue” EP with Prince Paul, says Dapwell, adding “I want to make something we can firmly stand behind.”
“It’s a fun job,” Kool A.D. says.
IF YOU GO
Presented by S.F. Rap Fest
Where: 103 Harriet, 103 Harriet St., San Francisco
When: 9.m. Friday
Tickets: $15 to $20