Photo: Courtesy of the artist

In June, North Carolina-native rapper Big Blanco—real name Michael Cruz—released his rendition of Big Pun’s first posthumous single ‘It’s So Hard’ featuring Donell Jones. It has been twenty-two years since the original was released. Keeping the beat similar to the Younglord and Jay “Waxx” Garfield version, he raps about protection (“strapped like a car seat”), conceit (“hard to get them off me”), and more. We’ve got you covered if it is your first time hearing about the Rocky Mount songwriter. He’s been making music since he was in the eighth grade, making it a decade and counting.

When it comes to Big Pun, Big Blanco says, “I looked up to Big Pun because he was a boss! Very lyrical and a big guy that was truly comfortable in his own skin. He commanded any room he was in and the ladies loved him.”

Check out the music video for the track featuring Ricco Barrino below. It’s from his album ‘Blanco’s Way’, available now on all streaming platforms. Reportedly, the music video shot in Miami aired on REVOLT’s ‘Untapped’ and received support from the reboot of the legendary Yo! MTV Raps upon its release.