Ik ben die nigga in die hooptie / met me seat back / Airmax, paar packs in me eastpack / manne voele als ik shit op die beat zeg
If you have listened to any Dutch hiphop, you have most likely encountered Hef before. If there was an Essentials List for Dutch rap, there would be at least 4 or 5 Hef projects on there. Hef grew up in de Bijlmer & Hoogvliet, two rough neighbourhoods. As a kid of drug dealing parents, he was out on the streets from a young age. His rise onto the scene began in the late ‘00s, dropping videos/singles on YouTube, such as the absolute classics Puur & Luie Mannen as well as the legendary 101Barz with his brothers Adje/Ado’Nis & Crooks.
The first mixtape he released was a collaborative effort with his two brothers, Boyz In De Hood (if anyone has a download for this, please hit me up, I’ve been looking all over and all links are dead). In the same year he released the mixtape/pre-album Hefvermogen, which would later be released as an album with extra tracks through the label Noah’s Ark. Some of the best tracks on this classic project are Op Een Missie, Feunen & Gone. This project is filled with clever lines about weed, girls, cars and money, the four Hef commandments, so to speak.
Ik ben 22, ik heb zoveel dingen die ik wil doen / rapmoney is wack, ik wil een miljoen / Let’s get it in, ik ben down homey. Hoe of wat? / Nog steeds fly van m'n schoenen naar m'n hoodie swa
At this point he had found his place in the game and everybody was checking for him. In 2010 he did a tour and released a mixtape with Murda/Önder/Murda Turk as ‘BangBros’ and promised an album together, which would take until 2017 to be released (BangBros – Bruin Brood). In 2012 his second solo album was released, Papierwerk, with tracks such as Kluis (absolute classic) & Kutleven.
Brief van de deurwaarder, ik zat op m'n laatste kop / Kan niet meer zeggen dat het goedgaat, kan alleen maar hopen dat het goed komt / Ik weet nog toen ik vroeger op de hoek stond, ijskoud dat moet soms / Jullie slapen, blijf denken dat die money naar je toe komt
At this point in his career he ‘modernized’ his sound a bit, starting with the 6,5 EP, which was released in 2015, leading up to an album. The beats were sounding a bit more synth and even trap like, but it was still Hef shit. My favourite track from this EP is 5 Gram. The album, 13, released in the same year, was another step into the ‘modern Hef’ direction. The best track on this project is probably Kofferbak, which has a super dope GTA-video concept.
In 2015 he worked on the Straight Outta Control project with Big2, Cho, Dio, MocroManiac & Adje, an EP inspired by the Straight Outta Compton movie that was released at that time. My favourite track from this EP is Dat Nu.
2016 saw Hef release another album, Ruman. This record featured even more of modern Hef, with quite a bit of singing, and was a good continuation of the evolution of his sound IMO. Favourite tracks: Tien Blokken & Shooter.
M'n bitch is heel de dag boos maar deze zomer kom ik dakloos / Chaiba houd me rustig net als Escobar in Narcos / Kan investeren in een hele, elke acht shows / Shoot out naar Jiggy, ik ben blij dat ik de Ark koos