Usually, it takes more than eight months of dues-paying to get on the bill with a platinum-selling hip-hop artist, but local sons O.T. and Young Jay are rewriting those rules. The two Western Montanans shot from obscurity to a recent slot opening for Young Buck at The Other Side in less than a year, a rise they aim to cement on their upcoming album Just Released
Photo by Sarah Daisy Lindmark
O.T., left, and Young Jay.
“We’re the new blood in the Northwest hip-hop scene,” says Young Jay, speaking before the duo’s April 29 night set.
, the debut effort by O.T. (Tyler Sant) and Young Jay (Jay Jordan), features 15 tracks on which they “represent the 406” and “clown on all the 406 rappers that get on a mic and talk about how they are gang bangers packin’ heat…and never been to the hood,” as O.T. puts it on his MySpace page.
O.T., 22, grew up in Missoula and teamed up with Young Jay, 18, who moved back to Missoula, where he was born, from Yakima, Wash., last fall. Many of the duo’s rhymes are fueled by O.T.’s recent two-year stint at the Montana State Prison in Deer Lodge, which supply hard, gritty lyrics like those on “Pimp Thang ft. LeJit”: “Too many bitches to decide where the fuck I’m gonna be / But you know one thing it’s gonna be in MT / I’m gonna rap where I’m from, yeah I’m proud where I was raised / I’m a balla, mothafuckas, ain’t a damn thing to change/Whatcha wanna do? Whatcha wanna do? / Take a shot at me, mothafuckas, I eat you like piranhas do.”
Last Sunday, after an audience of 300 took a listen, a couple dozen fans liked O.T. and Young Jay’s style enough to purchase an album, which is just gravy after the plum opening spot, says O.T.
“Being up there on stage feels like being on top of the world,” he says as someone sticks an album in his face and asks for an autograph.
O.T. and Young Jay play a CD-release party Thursday, May 3, at 9 PM at The Other Side. 10PM. $7/$9 18–21.