Ricky Skaggs got an early start in music. At the age of 5, we woke up one morning to find that his parents had left a pint sized mandolin in his bed. A year later, he played a show with Bill Monroe, the father of bluegrass and appearances with Earl Scruggs and the Stanley Brothers followed. Before the age of 10, Scruggs was fortunate enough to have performed with three of his heroes. “When you learn music from masters like that at such an early age, that I did, those people stay with you,” Skaggs told St. Louis Public Radio’s Jim Althoff.
St. Louis rapper Richard Williams, aka “Prince Ea” discovered hip-hop through the big beats and big egos of his east coast idols—artists such as Biggie Smalls, Mace, and Puff Daddy.
Over the past several years Prince has been making waves developing his own brand of hard-hitting, socially conscious lyrics, often about subjects as varied as Charles Darwin, colonialism, politics or brain chemistry.