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Bonded By Beatz, Driven By Legacy

Swizz Beatz shifts gears into car culture with his son Nasir Dean in the driver’s seat.

Swizz Beatz and Nasir Dean Cover

Since the '90s, Swizz Beatz and the Ruff Ryders made their mark on hip-hop culture. Established in 1988 by the Deans – Joaquin "Waah", Darin "Dee" and Chivon Dean – the lineage took the “family first” mantra from the streets to the studio, and bet it all on their nephew, Kasseem Dean, better known as Swizz Beatz.

Kasseem showed an early interest and determination in music that proved his branch in the Dean family tree was as strong as its roots.

“Man, it’s humbling. And I got lucky to grow up in the Bronx, where hip-hop started. My dad lived in Sedgwick Avenue and met my mom in the rec room where they said hip-hop started. So, I'm definitely a hip-hop baby,” Beatz shares.

Swizz Beatz
Look: Pierre Blanc Frames: Strata Hat: Essentials Footwear: Dior

The Dean’s love story and influence ignited a fire in the same birthplace as Hip-Hop. In the streets of the Bronx, the Deans discovered their dreams, each other, and their family legacy that Swizz continues to write.

Selling his first-ever beat to DMX for the Ruff Ryders’ Anthem, Swizz Beatz solidified the Deans’ namesake in music. From a teenage DJ to a multi-platinum producer, Swizz Beatz catapulted the legendary label as we know it with methodic moves guise as #1 hits for DMX, The Lox, Eve, and many others. Scoring tunes outside his “double R” foundation with artists Diddy, Snoop Dogg, Drake, Chris Brown, and Travis Scott, Swizz marks a checklist of influence in music and hip-hop culture.

“[A]nd just to be 25 years in the 50 [years of Hip-Hop], it’s also been a blessing. Especially growing up in the Bronx, coming from low means and turning that into diamond dust, and history and endless memories is also a blessing,” Beatz shares.

Nasir Dean

One of Swizz’s greatest blessings, his son Nasir Dean, reflects a similar parallel. “I think it [Hip-Hop] started from a lot of great soulful roots. And that's also where I come from. I come from great soulful roots.” Since he was very young, Nasir would be with his dad either on the tour bus or in the studio. “[A]nd then growing up in Miami…putting my own twist into it [Hip-Hop]. I'm just grateful to come from such a dope, established culture that is continuously growing,” Dean shares.

In tune to walk past his father’s footsteps, Nasir marches to his own “beatz” inside the Dean Dynasty with a sound that can’t be labeled. Musically known as Note Marcato, Nasir is branded by his signature skeleton makeup and unique style, and like his name…he accents the family. However, his taste in cars leads the tracks in his latest project with his father.

Drive with Swizz Beatz is an all-new series that takes audiences on a journey with Nasir and Swizz as they explore all things automotive through culture, car clubs, and respected car buffs in places like Saudi Arabia, Tokyo, and other car-loving destinations. Coming to Hulu, the series shows the duo at their best, sharing laughs along the way while unveiling a new legacy, and surfacing old memories of family wheels and car ties.

The six-episode series has the twosome dive into the car universe discovering exotic and vintage rides, foreign culture, and other father-son duos along the way. In Drive with Swizz Beatz, the pair gives a unique “Dean-style” swagger to the automotive industry and reminds viewers of their Ruff Ryder roots through a fresh new lens.

Nasir Dean and Swizz Beatz

The Deans drive fun family dynamics to the forefront with a bond beyond music in what Nasir pleasantly describes as the “most fun ever” with his iconic father adding, “We feed off each other’s energy. It’s amazing. Love isn’t measured by money, it’s measured by time.”

Comparing first cars, Swizz reveals the “chicken” he bought when he first had money was a Nissan Z 300. “I paid $6,000 for it and I probably put about $50,000 in it because I had it when I started making paper,” Beatz shares. Complete opposite, Nas adds, “My first car was a BMW i8. I was 18 [years old]. I didn't get my license until I was like 18 [years old] because Uber was very prominent at the time. And that was my baby. In Miami, it was definitely so much fun.”

Swizz Beatz and Nasir Dean
Swizz- Hat:Suiss Knits Coat: Haculla Pant: Amiri Shoe: Giuseppe Nasir- Shirt: Najee Strickland Coat: Haculla Pant:A Paper Kid Shoe: Scarosso

Swizz warns all the dads out there “trying to be fresh” that gifting Nasir that BMW was “the biggest f**king mistake.” Sharing that “he destroyed the damn thing.” But there were no regrets in having Nasir in the passenger seat, and sometimes the driver’s seat, in Drive with Swizz Beatz. Executives suggested a typical superstar co-host approach but Swizz’s chess move to have his son co-star was intentional.

Drive with Swizz Beatz puts the Deans in a different lane and the docuseries produces a B-side of Swizz that viewers have never seen with his son. “I felt having Nasir as a host would make it a family show and show Black fathers and sons moving around the world accordingly. Because you never really see this in our household or promoted. It's always like, ‘Oh, my father wasn’t there.’ It's always these sad stories about people's dads and we wanted to show some different energy,” Beatz shares.

Nasir - Shirt x Coat: Golden Goose Pant: A Paper Kid Shoe: Scarosso

Swizz Beatz has dedicated decades to his craft, consistently marching to the beat of his drum. He selectively embraces opportunities, choosing only those that align with his personal interests and vision. “I'm not saying don't put no skin in the game but once you get to an established place, you should never do what you don’t like…I think it’s bad for your mental health. It’s bad for your spirit…and you can’t get that time back,” he shares.

Drive with Swizz Beatz brings everything Swizz intends and marks another hit for the Dean collective in a new genre. “I always wanted to do something in the car space, I always was approached to do things…But I know that for me, I wanted to do something educational, family, and global.”

Swizz Beatz Cover
Jacket-Marc Keiser

Swizz contemplates, “I think I’ve done what people consider a lot…but I didn’t even start yet. I just feel like I was warming up the oven, they really cook, you know.”

With unparalleled flair and finesse, he continues to outdo himself, setting an example for Nasir and the generation to come.

Nasir Dean Cover
Jacket: Rasta Necklaces: Veert Shirt:Marc Keiser Pant: A Paper Kid Footwear: Golden Goose

Drive with Swizz Beatz premieres on Hulu on Thursday, November 16.

Photographer: J.Monroe of

Creatives: BYoung @BYoungAgency

Stylist: Harrison T. Crite @iamhdiddy

Lighting Assistant: Sean-Michael Thomas @saxumstudios_

Photographer Assistant: Hoshi Joell @HoshiJoell

Wardrobe Assistant: Caylen J. @lordcay_

1 Comment

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