Art imitates life, and so does rap. And more than anyone else, beatbox legend Doug E. Fresh understands this idea.

Sitting for a painted portrait wasn’t enough, so Fresh beatboxed while his likeness was created using cassette film tape— in true superstar fashion. As his own cassettes are un-spun, the picture of him begins to take shape with a microphone in his hand and his trusty sunglasses in tow.

The icon’s true story began back in 1985 when his beat boxing backed Slick Rick‘s rhymes on “La Di Da Di.” The fun track is recognized as an early hip-hop classic, has been sampled umpteen times, and launched the career of the two young and hungry New Yorkers.

Doug E. Fresh’s art has influenced many other musicians, and his portrait created with cassette film reminds them of his incredible career.

Watch the unique portrait being created in the video above.


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