Mista & Mrs. Taylor
Derek & Teresa under the artist name "Mista & Mrs. Taylor" have produced 6 studio albums, done countless collaborations with artist all over the world and have shared the stage with both secular and Christian artist. In 2003 they formed the music production company called "THA MASH UNIT" that has now morphed into a artist collective that creates content to shift the culture. For three years(2013-16) the duo took a brief hiatus from producing and performing music to be the directors/road pastors for the wildly popular production called "Epic Assemblies" made up of twelve urban missionaries from the artist community. THA MASH UNIT is a known outlet for Biblical Teaching, Discipleship and Artistic Expression.
Mista Taylor has clocked in over 34 active years in the Hip Hip game. Raised in Chicago Derek at the age of 15 knew that music would be an escape from the cold streets of the Windy City. In 1986 at the age of 17 Derek begged his mom to send him to California to pursue his dreams of being an MC. His mom saw in his eyes a desire to make something out of his life and she finally gave in to his request. Derek hit the streets of Cali like a bomb dropped from the sky and waisted no time connecting with others that were just as passionate about music as he was. It was also at this time that he met his future wife Teresa. Derek (aka Shakespeare) hooked up with rapper/ DJ Andrew Holiman (known at the time as DJ Arabian Night a KDAY Mixmaster) along with Henry Martinez (aka DJ Streek) together they formed the group "His Majesti". With the help of Recording Artist Rodney O and Joe Cooley they signed With Egyptian Empire Records in 1988 and released their first single called "Armed and Dangerous" with B side cuts "Slow And ILL and Mobb Style Chronicles". After a short run the group split and Derek connected with producer Matt Theriault aka The Lumberjack. Shakespeare & Lumberjack signed with Hip Hop Mogul Paul Stewards management company alongside Coolio and The Pharcyde. The duo with the help of Paul Stewart eventually signed with Scotti Brothers Recordsand released a single called "Preachers Daughter". Shortly after the release of this song Derek became a Christian and everything in his life changed at this point...
Teresa was born in Downey, CA but spent most of her time growing up in The O.C. At a very young age Teresa knew that she wanted to sing and so she pursued her parents for voice lessons. She ended up being classically trained by Christen Cornell for 10 years and had the honor of taking vocal direction from the late great Maurice Allard (director of the Orange County Master Chorale and was a previous instructor at the French Conservatory and the world famous conservatory, Juilliard).Teresa is also an alumni of the world renown song and dance company known as "The Young Americans". This group with an emphasis on music education afforded Teresa the opportunity to do high-end productions that advanced her ability to perform at a professional level. In 1993 Teresa along with then her boyfriend Derek became Christians and pursued a life through Jesus..