Like a rap Roadrunner, Twista has the verbal velocity to spit several hundred words in under a minute. His lightning quick verses scored him a record deal in 1992 on the newly formed Loud Records as well as a Guinness World Record for Fastest MC.
Despite encountering industry resistance mostly due to his rhyme style and Chicago roots in a largely East/West dominated era, Carl Terrell Mitchell has remained relevant for over two decades. You’ll know him for several hits including the Kanye produced “Slow Jamz” and “Overnight Celebrity,” but he’s also preparing to release his 9th solo album The Dark Horse.
During our chat, the enthusiastic 40 year old openly discussed his musical origins, almost quitting after his second album, hanging out with Dame Dash as well collaborating with Lady Gaga, being labeled a novelty and why he’s never left Chicago.
Tell us about the impact of Chicago house on developing your double-time delivery?
Really just the way the beat moves. I can do my lyrics to my Adrenaline Rush album or a lot of my songs I can actually rap them to the tempo of a house beat. So I think in that aspect, just growing up to the music and it holding me to a certain tempo or feel of the music I liked. It was just natural for me to develop to a rap style that was in that same rhythm.
Chicago DJ Fast Eddie rapped over a lot of house tunes and was one of your early influences?
Yes that’s one of my buddies right there from the past. Fast Eddie was definitely a big influence on me. I remember looking up to him like “wow, it’s an actual rapper from Chicago.” So Fast Eddie is definitely one of the guys that played a big part in me first hearing rap and house music.