Flying Lotus has paid tribute to the late Ras G, sharing a new song they worked on together titled “Black Heaven”. The producer says he recorded the song with the late beat scene pioneer the last time they saw each other – Ras tragically passed away at the age of 40 last week.
The track was previewed on a special edition of BBC Radio 6’s Gilles Peterson show over the weekend, called Celebrating Ras G, on which Fly-Lo joined as a guest. Introducing the track, Flying Lotus explained that “Black Heaven” was a product of an impromptu sesh at Ras’ home studio Spacebase in LA. “The last time I saw G was really special to me, and there was something about the timing I just felt was really urgent to go see him… I went to go see him and I told him a bunch about this idea that I had, and he started kicking over some cool ideas, and we started just going back and forth about it. It was really, really cool. He even gave me the title for it, in the end, called ‘Black Heaven’,” he explained.
Describing Ras as his “ally in sonic warfare”, Fly-Lo continued: “We started messing around with some music, and I pulled out my little keyboard from my backpack and I just started playing some stuff and told him to record it. And he was saying, you know, ‘We don’t even need to record no drums. You just play that stuff. It sounds like movie scenes. It sounds like scenes in your mind. What does this scene sound like to you?’ I just kept playing, and then he started recording. The next day, he sent me something back, and it was titled ‘Black Heaven’.”
Ras G, born Gregory Shorter, passed away last Monday, July 29. While no cause of death has been revealed, Ras confirmed last December that he was suffering from diabetes and pneumonia. On the day of the producer’s death, FlyLo tweeted: “Ras G has left the planet, far beyond the galaxy. Show us the way to the cosmos my friend. I will love you forever.”