Identical twins Katherine and Margaret King were born in 1948 and grew up in the north central hills of Oxford, Mississippi - a university town and a place they have always loved. Yet, the King Twins have a penchant for rap music. They have performed at events around the country and they have their own YouTube channel.
In addition to their burgeoning rap career, the King Twins have authored six books including the 2014 release Our Josephine (Deeds Publishing) - an autobiographical novel about their grandmother's African-American caregiver who taught them about love, race relations, respect and so much more in 1957 Mississippi. The twins recently reunited with Josephine, and a feature film based on the book is currently in development.
Q: It's not usual to associate rap with two 68 year-old twins! Tell us a little about yourselves and how did you become interested in rap?
We grew up in the north central hills of Oxford, Mississippi-a university town and a place we have always loved. So exactly how did we become up and coming rappers? Good question. After we wrote our first book Y'all Twins?, we needed a way to market it. Something different! Channel surfing one night, Kat stopped on the Rap Channel. Puzzled, I looked over at her and wondered what in the world she was thinking. "What do you notice about the rappers?" she asked.
I was quick to reply, "Well I can't understand a word they are saying. Why do you ask?" "Listen closely! You don't have to carry a tune in order to rap." And the King Twin Rappers were born. We go by K-RAPPERS, and if you sound that out you will know just exactly what kind of rappers we are. And somehow, in some way, by some miracle...it actually worked.
Q: Do you write your own raps?
We do write our own raps. We also search the internet for funny, clean jokes, then put our spin on them-just to make them our own. One thing's for sure, our creative and original raps tell a story and are guaranteed to make you laugh. Act 2:38 is probably our favorite rap. Raps are relatively easy to write. We've written over 40, but memorizing them is the challenge. At our age, it's a real challenge, and we hope it's keeping our brains active-and young!
Q: You have also made many videos and have recorded a CD. What kind of songs to you rap to?
We will rap to most anything. Pick a subject and we'll write a rap-from cystic fibrosis, think pink (breast cancer survivors) to Peyton Manning and getting our gun permit! But don't expect us to rap to any background music. We're not good at that. Background music confuses us and we forget the words. And don't try to catch on to a beat or rhythm. We don't have either one! But we do have good stories to tell, and that's what our raps are all about! My guess is, we're in a category all our own.
Q: Many of your songs have a spiritual/moral/Biblical core. Tell us a little more about your faith background.
We grew up in the Methodist Church in Oxford, Mississippi and have several stories in our books that take place in church. Our most poignant rap is titled: Go Through Life Color Blind. Our church's philosophy has always been about inclusion of others and we were raised to believe everyone is important. Our personal philosophy is that our paths cross with others for a reason. And for whatever reason that is, we embrace it!
Q: Besides music, you have also written 6 books. What types of books have your released?
The first two books Y'all Twins? and Which is Which? include stories from our childhood growing up in Oxford, MS, being twins and getting away with everything we could get away with. Why? Because we could and we did! William Faulkner lived around the corner in our neighborhood and we have two stories about him in each book. He was drawn to us because he loved to play the 'which is which' game. And he always got it right! He couldn't tell us apart physically but he knew if he got one of us talking, it was Kat! Smart man, William Faulkner.
Book number three, Our Josephine, is our favorite. We met 16 year-old African American Josephine Sanders in 1957 in Vicksburg, MS. We were nine years old, visiting our grandmother. Josephine became our first African American friend in a separate-but-equal society. We soon found out, it was separate alright, but it surely wasn't equal. Josephine taught us many lessons, the most important that of respect one person has for another, regardless of skin color. Josephine 'paid it forward' before the phrase was ever coined. She's 76 years old and our sole purpose and goal in life is for Our Josephine to become a blockbuster film so we can build her a modest three-bedroom house, to replace the home she has lived in her entire adult life.
We have also written three children's books. Two of the books for third/fourth graders, The Backyard Campout and BOO! are on the Accelerated Reader List with Renaissance Learning. These two books are sequels based on our lives with some creative fiction thrown in. The aggravating boys are up against girls who aren't to be outdone. Revenge is, oh, so sweet!
Kicking and Screaming, a book for pre-schoolers, is also based on a story from our childhood, again with fiction thrown in. Five year-old twins have to face getting immunizations before starting kindergarten. How do they go? Kicking and Screaming all the way!
Q: I believe you are also working on a feature film.
We have hopes and aspirations that Our Josephine will be made into a feature film. We think it fits well with Hallmark, Lifetime or The Oprah Network. A made-for-TV movie is the perfect place to introduce Our Josephine to the world. We feel the timing is right-our world needs a feel-good film/movie about race relations. I think we have everything we need to make a presentation to one of the networks. We've also talked to a producer in Memphis and he's very interested in making a movie for the big screen. The screen play is finished, but funding is a different matter.
Q: Where can our readers find out about your videos, music and books?
All of our books and CDs can be ordered from our webpage: www.thekingtwins.com
Facebook: Y'all Twins
We can also answer any questions by e-mail: [email protected]
We are available to entertain, rap and sign books! Our specialty is Laughter in the Workplace seminars and retreats. We would love to hear from you! Guaranteed Laughter! Thank you for expressing an interest in us and we appreciate this opportunity to answer your questions. THAT'S A RAP! LOVE Y'ALL!!