Panamanian at heart, but located in Oakland, Los Rakas might be the duo that’s having the most fun in the hip-hop world right now. The cousins, Raka Dun and Raka Rich, met up with us for a chat on the beach in Miami last week. They were making a pit stop after their first show in a cross-country tour with reggae superstars SOJA. “They’re a dope group. Their fans come ready to party, so it makes our job easy,” laughed Raka Dun. “We just bring new energy every night, it’s all about the energy.”
Los Rakas’ brand of hip-hop takes its style from reggaeton and dancehall. Their rap verses cross back and forth between English and Spanish, making it easy to pinpoint their sound on a map somewhere in between Panama City and Western California. After filming their brand new video, “No Tan Listo,” in the Bay Area, Raka Dun and Raka Rich two-stepped in unison across the sand, excited to share the visuals with us.
“It just came out last week, so you’re right on time,” said Raka Dun. “No Tan Listo,” is the first video anticipating their dual-album release this summer, El Negrito Dun Dun & Ricardo. Riding the independent wave, Los Rakas has built their following without the backing of a major label.
Incorporating their own flavor into everything they do, from the music, to the visuals, to the merchandise that goes along with it, they say hip-hop right now is all about dynamism. “You just keep evolving. We’re bringing a little bit of a different flavor to hip-hop too. Coming from Panama and the West Coast and putting those influences together is new. You have to keep evolving.”
For the coming months, the major focus is going to be making this tour a memorable experience for their fans. Raka Rich extended a personal invitation to everyone across the US: “We’re going to bring the energy every night so come to a Rakas show. And don’t forget to get your Rakas smiley shirt!”
Check out more photos of Los Rakas’ trip to Miami shot by Raka Pitufo here, and check out the schedule for their tour with SOJA.