Admittedly, I wasn’t too surprised when I couldn’t find a good FM radio station with the local hiphop artist being broadcasted due to the fact that I’m in the whitest city in “progressive” America. Outraged and determined, I started my search for good rap music in the City of Roses. Much to my hallelujah, I came across 24-year-old PDX native Tre Redeau.
Not only was I relieved that I found the small percentage of African-Americans in this eco-friendly city, I was also relieved to learn that there is actually quite a bevy of hiphop talent in Portland. At first glance, Tre seemed like a regular Black Portlander: Stylish clothes with a rain jacket (it rains like crazy here in the Pacific Northwest). When I took a seat and popped my ear buds in with Redeau’s most recent project “Kool-Aid Stand”, I was immediately hit by lyrics from the first song “Rounds” where the Rose City emcee reintroduced himself. Before deciding to take his given name for his stage name, one could have found Tre under the alias of Blaze (pronounced BLAH-ZAY).
What was equally impressive about Redeau was his record label Soar Losers. The PDX super team consist of artists Myke Bogan, Manny Mondayy, T $poon and Vinnie Dewayne with producer Stewart Villain. Their most notable collaborative song to date is “The Anthem” with a memorable opening line from Tre: “If the Blazers been winning, who the losers? Wait, that’s us”.
The song from the 45 minute project that started to garner Redeau some national notoriety and gave him more ears was his track “Doja“, with a feature from Funk Volume founder himself, Dizzy Wright. Tre’s style seems effortless as he weaves syncopated rhymes in and out of each other. By listening to him, it’s easy to tell that he is not only an artist, but a fan of past and current artist as well as the culture of hiphop itself.
My personal favorites from Tre’s project was “The Anthem”, “Catch Me/Hell on Earth”, and “Definition of Real”. The latter two tracks shows the lyrical depth and transparency that Redeau possesses. It’s been a year since the 503 lyricist has let go of any new tracks or anything of the like, but two weeks ago a simple Instagram post leaves us on the edge of our seats with a one word caption: “Coming.”