Finding a balance between the insightful and the nonchalance, the mainstream, and the underground, rapper TassNata is an Independent solo artist.
Early Life: Born Justin Nerling in Vernon BC Canada, TassNata grew up under the care of his father who was an avid music collector and audio engineer turned carpenter to better support the family. As a child, Tass would spend time digging through his father’s records and listening to albums while his Dad explained meanings of lyrics and concepts of each song. “ My Dad used to take an hour sometimes just to play one song since he’d pause it so many times to explain what it meant, I was like 6 haha” – (Interview with The Come Up Show Radio). From that collection some of the biggest influences came from artists such as Bob Marley, The doors, Nina Simone, & bluesmen like BB King, and John Lee Hooker.
Performance: Later on in elementary school (Grade 1), Tass did his first performance at a talent show, singing “Under The Bridge” by Red Hot Chili Peppers. A few years later he was introduced to hiphop by a friend’s older brother via mixtape which had songs by Jay Z, Big L, & Wu-Tang. By grade 11 TassNata began writing songs and spending time learning how to record from friends Sketch1, as well as SonReal & Renaissance who were pursuing a music career under the group name of BurntRoots. Since beginning to perform live in 2005, Tass has since been on tour with, or opened for artists such as The Game, Daz n Kurupt, Raekwon, Mobb Deep, Bone Thugs, as well as a headlining cross Canada tour with friends Rochester aka Juice, and DMC world champion – DJ Dopey.
TassNata recently released his sophomore album titled "Before Mourning" premiered by The Source Magazine on December 16th 2014. The nine track album features singles with friends such as Danny Brown(Fools Gold), Andreena Mill, Junia-T, Rich Kidd, & JD Era. The album is produced by Canada's finest in Rich Kidd (Drake, Kendrick Lamar), Pops(Drake, Bun B,The Game) & Superville (Boi Ida selected Team Toronto SXSW battle member). Before Mourning became evidence that the emcee had found his sound, and will become one of the leading new school rappers in North America. The first project which garnered attention internationally for Tass was titled “Between Planets” which was released in 2011 and featured singles with elZHi of Slum Village, Black Milk, DL Incognito, and SonReal.
In November 2016 TassNata released his biggest single to date “Let’s Go” ft Rich Kidd & Tona, produced by Grammy/Juno/MMVA nominated Tone Mason. Since its release, the video has racked up over 1.5 million views between platforms such as Facebook (1.5m) and Youtube (100k), received moderate rotation on MUCH as TassNata’s first video to air on the network, played throughout the 2017 World Junior Hockey Championship including the gold medal game on TSN, and has been Played at many Toronto Raptors NBA games. Let’s Go was also named on many international lists as a top video of 2016, notably by AUXTV placing 12/40 and receiving better reviews than The Weeknd, Alessia Cara, and Phantogram.
Upcoming Projects: TassNata is currently in studio in Toronto/LA with Juno winning producer and rapper Rich Kidd, working on a new untitled EP for early Summer 2017.
Photographer: Lee Watkins
Location: Vernon BC