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Inspired by the legendary emcees of the 90s, Pierre Bless says he learned the power of words a long time ago.
The Black Wall Street Times spoke with the Winston Salem State University graduate about how words have shaped his world.
Born with bars and with the trophies to prove it, Bless has been honing his gift since way back when.
He reminisced, “One day I started freestyling in seventh grade class. Me and my friends were beating on the table to Cash Money [Records] and I remember seeing the look on their faces. They was like, ‘Yo!'”
In honor of hip hop’s 50th year anniversary, Bless offered up his most influential spitters.
His Top 5 Hip Hop Influences: 2pac, DMX, Nas, Notorious B.I.G., Jay-Z
Honorably mentioning LL Cool J and Nelly, Bless says “I always respected dudes that had style.”
Pierre Bless states, “Pierre comes from my first name Peter (in French) and Bless is a play on my brand with how I see every day as a blessing.”
As a college student he continued to rap, even winning a live battle at a nearby rival HBCU. “I still got that trophy.”
Proudly repping Albemarle, North Carolina, Bless says his earlier self was motivated to achieve by watching those around him.
“I come from a city of winners, that’s what we do.” Pierre Bless
He continued, “When I played football, ever since fourth grade, our team had only lost one game all the way through high school.” He continued, “I’ve always had a competitive spirit.”
Though he’s shared the stage and studio with the likes of DJ Drama, Quality Control, Soulja Boi, Lute, and many others, Bless says his blueprint never changed.
A member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Incorporated, Bless says his life’s endeavors have taught him to appreciate patience, “I’m a late bloomer in a lot of things.”
He continued, “I used to be shy in social situations, less athletic than my friends, but it all comes together with growth. By the time you get it, it’s like ‘wow, I did this.’ You have to give yourself grace.”
Bless says 2020 changed his life in more ways than one
After riding the highs of touring amid the global pandemic, Bless says a difficult split between he and his child’s mother made 2020 a year unlike any other. “I was winning even though I was losing.”
Asked what advice he would give to someone trying to execute their path, he said, “The hardest thing to do is start. So just start.”
He elaborated, “Nobody’s holding you back but you. Do things that scare you sometimes. I’m still scared of heights, but I’ll ride roller coasters with my daughter.”
After his producer recommended Bless go on tour, he says what he’s brought back home is the importance of community collaboration. “I always thought I could do it by myself,” Bless stated.
“When I travel, I come back home with a different energy.”
He continued, “But working with people has put me in another light. A better light.”
While Black folks in other states have long known the power of unified action, Bless mentioned that the same village love is often absent in the Cardinal state.
“North Carolina has so many talented artists. There’s no other state like this,” said Bless.
“It’s like New York or something.” He continued, “It’s like we have our own boroughs. No other state has places like Charlotte, Winston Salem, Wilmington, Greensboro, 919, and Fayetteville. People come here to do their whole tours.”
Though born and bred in Albemarle, Bless has made a name for himself worldwide. He’s currently cooking up “The Pressure Tape” which will be released in 2024.
Keep up with his latest moves and news on Instagram.