Born Jamel Hampton, Sav Killz is a Brooklyn-based emcee, who grew up in both Flatbush and Bedford-Stuyvesant, and initially was involved in the city’s hip hop scene as a graffiti writer, known for his tag Savage. In 1997, Hampton started rapping on the block under Savage Killa, based on his graffiti tag, which he later shorted to Sav Killz. Interestingly, Hampton got his professional part as part of the Wu-Tang Clan cypher, honing his skills at 36 Chambers Studio and Restoration Plaza, and he was part of the Sunz of Man and Brooklyn Zu cyphers.
Since the early 00s, Hampton has released a number of mixtapes that have received attention both across the city’s indie hip-hop scene and the blogosphere. And building upon a growing profile, he has opened for the likes of Kool Keith, Jadakiss, Slick Rick, Saigon, AZ, The Beatnuts, Rakim and Foxy Brown. Earlier this year, Sav Killz released his Bangers and B-Sides 2 mixtape, “hosted” by his longtime producer and collaborator DJ J-Ronin — and the mixtape’s latest single is the Camouflage Monk-produced “Brooklyn Summer,” which is centered around a looped, slow-burning, Roy Ayers-like jazz-fusion sample featuring twinkling Rhodes electric piano, big horns and a sinuous bass line over which Sav Killz rhymes about how Brooklyn always keeps it 100 every single day; but underneath that there’s a nostalgia about hanging out in the park on a glorious summer day with your homies, listening to your favorite tunes, while someone barbecues.
Directed by R.Hendrix, the recently released video was shot at Brooklyn Bridge Park during the Team Magnificent Get Low photo shoot and evokes summer days hanging out in the park with the homies.