I can't complain.
I can't complain. Things are going decent.
been quiet for awhile. What have you been up to?
A whole bunch
of stuff. Pretty much the same thing I've always been doing. I'm trying
to be seen constantly in the underground scene because that's where it
all starts. I did a couple of scenes for "Get Rich or Die Trying."
I've done some ghostwriting. It's all the same thing. I've just been working
up with your group Silent Majority?
Majority! That consists of me and Will Pack. He's like my brother. He's
been down with me for ten years, going on the road with me and getting
on songs with me. We just did this album because he's been down with me
for a long time. I moved out to Vegas and he's been working on the beats.
I thought it would be great to do this album. Silent Majority was my old
group and we're trying to carry the torch. I can do things here that Craig
G wouldn't normally do, like get political.
you looking to drop the album?
should definitely be out by May. You can order copies from redlinedistribution.com.
We're trying to show people that Hip Hop does exist for people over 25
and we just want to say things that aren't being said as far as the music
business is concerned as far as life is concerned. It's a chance for me
to express myself in a way that I've never gotten a chance to.
you reaching for the 25 and over demographic right now?
gearing it towards people who are a little bit older because they've alienated
us. They've made it so youth-driven. Once you reach 26, you're not supposed
to love Hip Hop anymore. We still love Hip Hop, but we don't mind it when
people say something in Hip Hop, like Talib Kweli, Kanye, Common, and
Black Thought. That's the audience I want to reach. It doesn't matter
who you are, everybody's welcome.
harder trying to reach the older generation?
what's sad? It's not that it's harder, but they just wiped us off the
radar. We probably are reaching them, but they wiped us off, so the younger
generation will never know. That's what's really messed up about it.
of MC's that came up when you were coming up sound a little angry with
the game. Do they have the right to be mad?
to keep it 100% real with you. You always have a right to have your opinion.
In some cases, it's absolutely warranted. Our generation doesn't treat
those guys in the same regard as other people in music. The Rolling Stones
can not have an album come out in five years and still sell out a stadium.
They don't relegate that towards Hip Hop music. They have every right
to be angry. But speaking from someone who was angry myself for many years,
it does not help you creatively. I got over it and was like, "Screw
it. Let me try to make some shit that's better."
specific happen to make you lose your anger?
I was just
getting too old to not utilize what I felt already had and what I had
in front of me. At one point, I woke up and realized that I could sit
here and complain all day and nobody would listen. I could make some hot
shit and make everybody listen. I didn't need therapy or a psychiatrist.
It just snapped in my head one day and since then, my pen's been on fire.
I've been in the studio writing fire and I've been doing a lot of stuff
for people overseas. They keep me going and they have a lot of hot beats
over there. It works out.
you think age is so important in Hip Hop?
saddest thing. It shouldn't be. That's not just Hip Hop. It's the way
of the world. When you get older, the young guys want to test you out.
There should be more respect. I understand Lebron James going at Michael
Jordan on the court without showing disrespect. That's just competitive
nature, but you don't have to be disrespectful about it. I'm not going
to sit here and say that without me, nothing would have happened. A lot
of people tell me that, but whatever. Without a lot of these guys, a lot
of these people wouldn't be in their positions.
get the respect you deserve?
used to dwell on it. Now, I just want you to listen to me. I don't care
if you respect me or not. If you like it, go buy it. If you don't, thanks
for listening. That's helping me be more creative these days. Let me just
make some hot shit and at the end of the day, you either hate it or love
it. 2Pac said motherfuckers are going to hate you for whatever you do.
I agree. If you don't like the song, thanks for your time, brother.
to your new music, it sounds like you haven't missed a beat.
now as I'm talking to you, I'm thinking of song ideas. Will Pack has a
song pumping in the next room that we're working on. It stays in me. Not
to compare myself to being great, but it's kind of like a dude going to
Michael Jordan asking him why he's so ill. He doesn't have an answer because
that's just what he does. I've been like this since day one. Ever since
I felt Hip Hop in my soul I've been like this. I'm trying to surround
myself with people that feel the same way and we're just trying to put
out good music.
like it would be tough to stay focused all these years.
a realistic approach to this. People ask me why I'm trying to come back.
I'm not trying to come back. I just want to be taken seriously and heard
as an artist. There are people in my camp that are prepared to be stars
and I'm ready to take them there. I'm also just going to do Craig G. The
pressure is off now. Now, it's just time to make good shit.
feel like you have to re-market yourself to people that have never heard
To the kids
that never heard of me, I kind of like that better because then I can
go into it with that frame-of-mind in my head. I can just go in with some
fresh music and it can be a better way for them to hear me. All that matters
is if the song is hot. That's how I look at it.
is welcome to come along, but I'm not trying to specifically target the
younger audience. I'm really not. At this stage of the game, my shit is
a little more thoughtful, not to be disrespectful to anyone. I'm a little
more thoughtful and anything I'm associated with. Everyone is welcome
to come along for the ride.
changed from when you started to today?
Aw man! A
lot of people don't put as much effort into it as they should. When I
was coming up, not to sound like I'm in a rocking chair telling stories,
but when I was coming up, you had to be really special. You couldn't just
be anybody. It seems like a lot of people get free passes. I like some
of them and I like to have fun, but a lot of this stuff isn't really Hip
your album with Marley Marl coming?
We have eight
or nine joints done. It's fire. I'm sure everyone's heard "Letter
to New York."
you want to drop that?
In the Fall.
changed working with Marley today?
got heat! Marley's sitting on heat! Marley's got the same attitude as
me. At the end of the day, it's about the music. Don't even think about
what we've both accomplished when you hear our new music. The album is
75% done. He only did one joint on my last album and we were talking about
doing some other shit. It's coming out nice. I've always had respect for
him and it's coming out crazy now.
happy with how "This is Now" did?
have done better, but it was a great album. At the end of the day, that's
all I could do. To me, it was some of my best work and I'm really glad
that I did it and that I did it with D&D. The day the album dropped,
the studio closed. Technology changed things because now people record
from home. There also wasn't a lot of marketing. In the independent game,
you can sell a certain amount and drop two albums a year. That album gave
me an opportunity to let people know that I was still here. If you didn't
get it, you should. That album is crazy.
doing anything differently on your new album that you did on "This
No, not really,
I'm not doing too much different. I'm Craig G. I'm not trying to reinvent
the wheel. I'm speaking to my people on my albums. Everybody is welcome
to come along on the ride. My last album was really nice.
feel like you've shut up the critics that say battle rappers can't make
can never shut up critics. They're like the balance of nature. You can't
shut them up. They're always going to be there. As long as ten people
disagree for every one of them, I'm good.
is everywhere right now. How do you feel about how these new battles are
being presented to the public in DVD form?
The problem is that a lot of rappers think that after they battle, everything
will be all good. You have to have the balance. That's only one element.
Some of the battles are over the top. Waving your pistol around has nothing
to do with how nice you are. At the end of the day, the battles are a
way for you to earn your stripes and it's good for Hip Hop because it's
getting the music out there. A lot of dudes came from the battle circuit.
Out of everyone in the battle circuit, two or three of them might become
a great rapper.
pay attention to the battle scene?
cool, but I've been there already, so it doesn't really pique my interest.
I'm too busy working on songs.
the kids battling today give you a run when you were heavy in the battles?
nicer than me. I don't care who they are. It doesn't matter where they're
from or who they're with. That's just my attitude. I don't feel I have
to prove anything anymore except to make good music. A lot of them are
good, a lot of them are really, really good, but none of them can beat
me. That's what keeps my lyrics sharp. I have to feel like someone's chasing
me even when they're not.
No. I'm in
the corner watching.
it take to get Craig G in a battle now?
even tell you. It would have to be how I feel that day. I'm always ready.
have a different perspective on music being in Vegas?
I have a
nice house and I really like the atmosphere. I don't really party too
much. I'll be on the mic rocking the crowd and I'm usually just out there
chilling. Most of my time, I'm at home chilling, writing, and listening
to new joints on HipHopGame.
the internet changing things for you?
I got a song
coming out in every part of the world because of the internet. I'm working
with a lot of people overseas. A lot of people utilize the internet and
I'm getting a couple of dollars out of it. If you want to get at me about
doing a joint, hit me on the MySpace.
like you still have a lot of fans checking for you.
I love every
single fan, wherever they're at, on the computer, in a cab, driving a
I feel so fortunate and blessed that people are still listening
that you get play on the internet, do you even worry about getting play
A lot of my fans don't even listen to the radio unless it's Future Flavas
or shows like that. Satellite radio is getting it cracking. Shout out
to Lord Sear and the Wonder Twinz.
just throwing the songs out and seeing who catches on?
it is. It's about seeing who's sincere. Sincerity is what's missing.
up with the new Juice Crew that's forming?
I don't know.
I heard about it, but I haven't spoken to anyone on it.
you're not involved in the Juice Crew right now?
of in my own world right now. No disrespect when I say that. I'm just
not really involved in that right now.
like the idea that they're adding new members?
nice on the mic. If they stink, I'm not going to like it. Everyone in
the Juice Crew could hold their own at a particular moment. A lot of people
have misconceptions about the Juice Crew. I was 13 when I was doing that.
I never hung out with anyone except Marley and Masta Ace. I was a young
kid. We'll see if I have something to do with it. Right now, let me see
what they got.
you think of Marley Marl and KRS doing an album?
respected KRS-ONE's mic skills. At the end of the day, how could that
is it for guys like yourself, Marley, and KRS to set an example for the
I just hope
that some people hear it and are inspired when they do joints. It's not
about keeping people out of the game. It's about letting people in with
the right stuff. Not all of Hip Hop sucks. There's a lot of good albums
out there. Slum Village's album is bananas. Medaphor's album is nice.
Kanye and Common are nice. Jay Dee, rest in peace. Posdonous and De La
Soul are still nice. Black Thought is nice. There is still a lot of hope
for the game. Everybody has to try and learn from it. Nas is still sick.
I hope people learn from it and Hip Hop becomes better.
you want to say to all your fans?
listening. Look out for the Silent Majority album and the Marley Marl
album. Thank you to everybody, my family, my peers, everybody.
with Craig G at www.myspace.com/craigg
To stay in tune with Silent Majority, check out www.redlinedistribution.com