Thursday, May 23, 2013
Jesus Mason is a moniker and another persona of Hersel “Tre” Best. Whether he has identified himself as Tre Best, Tre-Mons, Agent Xis10s (Existence), or Jesus Mason he has been an artist of that is one of not to follow what is considered standard in today's music. Jesus Mason has a very diverse and colorful background littered with a unique way of expressing controversial topics without force feeding it, that can be understood by the common folks albeit, from streets to the preach, and armed with that alone applied with holding true to the essence of Hip Hop.
The evolution of Jesus Mason has been one of progression and change. Beginning in 1996 as a member of the New York/DC based group House of Representatives the group released their only 12-inch single “Why It Gotta Be Me”. The single was an underground buzz at the height of the wave of the indie Hip Hop movement. Long before the You tube and other internet outlets the 12 inch release found its way on the playlists of such acclaimed radio shows in New York City such as The Stretch and Bobbito Show on WKCR.
Shortly after the release of the single the group members departed and embarked on separate paths. After the success of H.O.R., Mason recorded and released is first solo venture on the Hustler’s Compilation entitled “Jump the Gun” which was mentioned in the 1998 edition of the Source’s Independent Days Column. Around the same time along with his cousin Musa the Penultimate and founding member of House of Representatives formed the group DCNY (Divine Culture Native Youth). The group produced and released their first 12” single “Castles” b/w “Terrorism” on their imprint Wretched of the Earth. The single like the H.O.R. release in the previous year’s received positive responses that lead the duo to create and produced the highly independent acclaimed full-length “Hip Hop for Dummies” on Wretched of the Earth in 2003. The full-length was released very limited and again without any type of promotion or even the use of the Internet the group promoted the full length solely thru performances. The LP drew attention from the Hungry Minds the publisher of the infamous “Dummies” book series that lead to an order of cease or desist. The group repackaged the LP and entitled the new release “No Frills” which included new recordings and very non-descript LP cover based off the 1970s and 1980s No Fills labels utilized by many Supermarkets. The LP once again caught the attention of indie radio and performances. The LP displayed the influences of that Golden Era sound of Hip Hop and Tre’s delivery and topics along with the rich production of Musa the Penultimate and long time friend E the 5th.
With the collaboration of E the 5th adding two additional songs to the LP this collaboration lead to the formation of Sputnik Brown, along with two additional members Oxygen the Architect and Slim-D. By 2004, the newly formed group Sputnik Brown began recording and performing throughout New York City, which caught the attention of Sucio Smash host of WKCR’s Squeeze Radio Show and label owner of High Water Music. The attention led to a 12” single which catapulted the label as well as the group captured the attention of many radio shows, and magazine attention. As a member of Sputnik Brown Mason has opened shows for legendary artist Slick Rick, Camp-Lo, and UK artist The Herbaliser.
Despite the group never released a full-length LP, many recordings have surfaced the internet and numerous guest appearances has led Tre Mons to do collaboration with Howard Lloyd (The Quickie EP-2008) DJ Spinna (Sonic Smash LP-2009), a recent 12” single with DJ Shark Featuring Sadat X, Oxygen (formerly of Sputnik Brown), collaboration with producer Silent Someone, and recently appeared on Gensu Dean’s “Lo Fingaz” LP (2012).
It is at this time that Jesus Mason has embarked on his own path in which he has begun recording new material for future releases. Everything that embodies his experiences throughout his life has all been captured in his anticipated release.