Thirstin Howl The 3rd has always gone above and beyond to represent for his two homes in Brooklyn and Miami, and his latest video is no different. Born in Brownsville, Howl spent the first half of his life going back and forth from his birthplace in New York to his grandparent’s home in Wynwood, FL, who relocated there after his father passed when he was 3.
During his young years, Howl founded the Lo Life crew, who became icons in New York hip-hop for their gritty rhymes, graffiti and of course dedication to Polo Ralph Lauren clothing and accessories. After he dominated the art of emceeing in Brooklyn, the Polo Rican brought the culture with him down to Miami.
“In the early 80’s I was already in New York involved in the culture but I never tried to break dance. When I came to Miami, we started practicing and I learned my breakdancing here. People in Miami were no joke when it comes to breakdancing.”
You won’t find Howl, aka Big Vic Lo, busting out moves on the cardboard box for his new “Old Gold Cipher” video. Instead, you’ll see how he makes Brooklyn and Miami appear so similar. In the music video, which is the first he edited himself, Howl rides his bike through the design district of Wynwood and also flaunts his Lo Life clothing line at “Grandma’s House” and in Downtown Brooklyn.
Over the years, Howl’s Wynwood home, also known as “Grandma’s House,” has been a hot spot for hip-hop with its artistic outdoor décor and popping annual parties for events like Art Basel. A portion of the video was shot in the backyard of Grandma’s House while the rest was shot in Downtown Brooklyn. “You just can’t tell,” Thirstin said about blending both locations together. “It really looks like the same place. It kind of looks like I connected both places in the video. People many didn’t know it was in two different locations.”
The video comes fresh off Howl’s most recent album Skillmatic, which dropped back in May. “Olde Gold Cipher” appears alongside major collaborations with Meyhem Lauren, his Lo Life crew Dak Lo and Rack Lo, and the late Prodigy, who raps on the title track. Howl had recorded their joint record just eight months before P died after sickle cell complications. He was caught off guard when his people began asking him about the Mobb Deep rapper’s sudden passing. But at the end of the day, he’s blessed that he got to work with him.
“We did that shit together,” said Howl. “One day he came by the crib in Miami. We been connected in New York talking about doing something but when he came out here, he actually came through to the spot. I had already did “Skillmatic” by myself. But when I was playing him beats and stuff… Even when I did “Skillmatic” I said to myself that it sounds like a Mobb Deep song. So when he came over, I took off one of my verses and put him on. He did the hook. I already had one but I let him spit the hook too. I was blessed to be able to work with him.”
Catch the world premiere of Thirstin Howl The 3rd’s video for “Olde Gold Cipher” below. RIP Prodigy.