Busta Rhymes and Q-Tip know the value of a real friendship. The two rappers have spent the past two decades making music as part of the famed Native Tongues crew. Outside the studio, they’ve built a natural bond and camaraderie.
On December 12, the duo will release their first collaborative mixtape The Abstract and the Dragon, which contains classic collaborations, rare recordings and brand-new material.
“I’ve known Tip for about 26 years, I’ve been recording professionally for about 22 years and Tip’s been recording before me,” Busta told “RapFix Live” host Sway Calloway when he Skyped into the show from Miami on Wednesday. “The whole mixtape is basically an embodiment of our whole relationship lifeline — from the very first record we’ve ever recorded together to the very last records we’ve been recording in this last week and a half of exclusive new joints that the world has never gotten yet.”
Q-Tip made his name in the early 1990s as the lead MC in A Tribe Called Quest, while Busta was quickly becoming a rising star in rap quartet Leaders of the New School. In 1991, the two groups collaborated on Tribe’s classic single “Scenario,” where Tip and Busta rhymed back-to-back, exhibiting an amazing chemistry.
Busta owned the song’s stand-out verse and quickly became a sought-after feature for rappers looking to make an impact. “Scenario changed the tax bracket for me,” Busta said, counting the song as one of his favorite collaborations with Q-Tip.