Big K.R.I.T. appreciates the foundation created by his musical forefathers. In honor of Black History Month, a February tradition since 1976, the rapper celebrates his African-American roots and the leaders that have impacted history.

In fact, K.R.I.T, who pairs his southern drawl with the perfect soulful beat, attributes a great deal of his sound to great musicians who came before him. “I pay homage and respect to Bobby Womack [for Black History Month] knowing that he passed last year,” K.R.I.T. tells The Boombox. “Him being one of those artists that I have really sampled so much and just been so inspired by... You know, he is the original 'soul man.'"

The Mississippi native is a huge fan of the late singer's work, which spans seven decades. “I wanted to work with him so badly, but I really didn’t have the opportunity to,” he says of Womack, who died on June 27, 2014, at 70. The soul legend suffered from numerous health ailments, including colon cancer and Alzheimer's disease.

Womack, a lauded songwriter and musician, was famous for classics such as the 1973 Billboard chart-topper ‘Across 110th Street’ and the ‘80s hit ‘If You Think You're Lonely Now,’ among others. He was inducted in to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2009.

“I always loved ‘Across 110th Street,’ and ‘Jealous Love,'” K.R.I.T. reveals, describing his two favorite Womack tracks. "‘Jealous Love’ is the record I sampled for ‘King Without a Crown’ on ‘King Remembered in Time.'"

Listen to Bobby Womack's 'Across 110th Street'

While K.R.I.T. says he may release a Bobby Womack tribute this month, he tries to shed knowledge on black history every day, with each opportunity he gets. “On a national scale, people recognizing Black History Month and teaching it in school, I am still excited about that,” he shares. “I am never going to be the kind of person where I am like, ‘Just one month?’ But Lord I am thankful that people are celebrating something like Black History Month period.”

Krizzle points out that as an artist, it's a duty to use his platform to discuss cultural and societal issues. He credits fellow rappers David Banner, Killer Mike and Talib Kwali for “trying to school people every day all day.” “They want to make people pay attention to everything -- what’s going on socially or in the world,” the 'Cadillactica' creator states.

In addition to celebrating black lives and legends of the past and present, for K.R.I.T., Black History Month also means showing some hometown pride. “I am proud of where I come from,” the rhymer explains. “I know what people went through and I would like to shine light on it.  I also want to break some of the stereotypes, which come with people from where I am from, which is Mississippi.”

Listen to Big K.R.I.T.'s 'King Without A Crown'

See Stars We Lost in 2014