Three years ago today, Hip Hop lost one of the most influential A&R, managers, tastemakers and creative directors this culture has seen in the new age, Steven Rodriguez a.k.a. A$AP Yams. Despite his untimely passing, Yams left a legacy that inspired not only New York as a whole, but the creative souls of countless artists today.
As the leader of the New York rap collective A$AP Mob, he was a key player in establishing and pushing the success of Mob members such as Rocky and Ferg – as well as recognizing potential and promoting the careers of other names in Hip Hop such as Jay worthy, Peewee Longway, A$ton Mathews, Joey Fatts, Retch, Flatbush Zombies, Bodega Bamz, Da$h, and Lil B – among countless others. Not only did he spark the careers of countless names in the industry, he also helped create a union between the A$AP Mob and Florida’s rap collective Raider Klan alongside Spaceghostpurrp; a collaboration that was met with conflict, but nevertheless created a sound that would change new age Hip Hop forever.
As a bridge between industry and culture, he left an everlasting mark on the game to recognize potential and create something of it from the ground up through hard work, authenticity, and a genuine passion for the culture.
When asked about longterm plans for album releases in an NPR article with Eric Ducker:
“You have to sacrifice a couple things for the bigger picture.”
Today Steven will be honored at the annual Yams Day Festival in the Bronx featuring live performances by the A$AP Mob, Lil Yachty, Retch, G Perico, among others. A portion of the proceeds go to the Always Strive And Prosper Foundation, a charitable organization addressing issues of substance abuse.
Rest in power, A$AP Yams.