We haven’t spoken since the Heatmakerz’ album The Rush album dropped. What have you been up to?
I’ve basically been trying to put everything for my album together. I’m still working with the Heatmakerz. We actually just started working on the second Heatmakerz compilation last week. Other than that I’m just putting everything together. My official album is coming out next year and I have some local projects with some DJs. I’m just trying to get this money.
What kind of exposure did you get from working with the Heatmakerz on The Rush?
I mean, it was definitely, definitely a good look when you work with that type of caliber producers. People that came up in my era, when Dipset was first getting their movement up, that type of music was definitely a good thing. As far as other producers, they heard my name from me working with Rsonist. Producers that I’ve never been able to get to, I’ve been able to get to like Buckwild, Charlemagne and J. Cardim. Besides doing business with the Heatmakerz, they’re good peoples, so it’s a good situation for me. And beyond that, just me being in stores and people being able to go and see my face on CDs, that let them know that my movement is serious. To be underground and nationwide is a good thing.
How is your debut album coming?
That’s looking good. I just actually started it probably two weeks ago. I’m already a few songs deep and I plan on doing 40-60 songs by the end of the year. I’m looking at it being done in the early fourth quarter. I’m just giving myself time to breathe because it will probably be done before that. The songs are coming out crazy. The official project is also going to be more focused and it’s going to be more of a concise album. The mixtape I dropped was more of a compilation of songs that I’ve done over the years. I’m focusing on this project as being more of an album. We’re already 10-11 songs deep so far and the album is sounding crazy. By the time I’m done with the album, I’m planning on it being a 5 star album. I’m planning on nothing less than that. It’s going to blow the mixtape outta the water.
What’s the most difficult part about recording as an unsigned artist?
Money. I got producers and they’re all heavyweights. I’ll never run out of material. Every day I live there’s a thousand more things to talk about, so I’m never going to run out of topics. I keep challenging myself lyrically and to come up with different flows and different content. The main obstacle right now is the revenue. At this point, we’re trying to get everything together so we can really push this album hard. Everything is on my own right now and trying to put that money together is the main thing. If anybody wants to send a check over, please do!
How does being signed to the Heatmakerz benefit you as an artist?
It’s definitely, definitely a plus. Also shout out to the Heatmakerz. They set up their official studio in Manhattan. I got free studio time whenever I need it and another creative head I can bounce ideas off of. But pretty much as far as this album is concerned, it’s really what’s going on in my head. Shout out to the Heatmakerz and everybody who’s going to help me on this project, but I already got a vision for how I want this project and this album to sound already.
What other producers do you want to work with?
This one, I’m probably going to get some other producers. Of course the Heatmakerz will be on there heavy. I’m going to have a lot of different producers on there like Cardim and Buckwild. Everybody knows who Buckwild is. Shout out to Buck. I’m going to have Charlemagne and some local producers I’m working with like Choir Boy. He’s already got a crazy following. I’m still in the process of reaching out to various producers. Whoever’s got that heat, they’re going to end up on there. I don’t want it to sound like anything anybody’s heard. And the level that people judge underground artists on is already different from artists who are in the mainstream and I’m trying to have it to where there is no difference. The only difference is that I don’t have that mainstream budget. I’m just trying to get as many different sounds as I can right now.
One of your recent leaks was “Live Like Me”. What inspired that song?
Rsonist brought me the beat when I told him I was about to go back in for the album. I knocked out seven joints and that was the first one that I did. There wasn’t no rhyme or reason to that one. When the hook came on, I knew what it would be and the rest is history. It’s one of my favorite joints. It’s that rider-type music. Probably by the time I’m finished doing everything for the album, it won’t be at the top of my list, but right now it is.
Is coming out of Jersey today more of a challenge than it’s been in the past?
It’s really no more of a challenge as it is for me than it would be for a New York nigga, honestly. The whole East Coast area, as far as originality and good music coming out, it’s in kind of a pinch right now. We all go through the same things. The South has it on smash right now as far as getting artists out right now. It’s really no different for us. We’re all in the same ballpark as far as treeing to get heard. It’s really no difference to me. It’s really the same shit.
What artists from Jersey do you like right now?
All the ones I’m feeling will be on the album. The only mainstream feature will be a Styles P joint. Besides that, it’s going to be all the Jersey artists that I respect like Stress and Tom Gist. He’s been living in Jersey for awhile so I include him in the Jersey circuit. Choir Boy will also be on there. Scripture will be on there. My R&B artist, who is down with my team, Daria Jones, she will be on there. I’m going to keep the guests real minimal besides the Styles P joints. By the time you hear the album you’ll hear all the Jersey artists I respect.
Why does it seem like artists in Jersey aren’t as unified as they could be?
That’s bigger than Jersey. I think that’s a lot of the problem in the whole East, in New York, Philly…That’s a lot of the problem. The reason we’re in the predicament we’re in, if you look at the whole South map, it’s easier for us to pop. We can take a 30 minute train ride and be in somebody’s office with a demo on the table. These southern dudes are grinding on their own. I think a main reason why these Jersey artists can’t do that at this point is you have to understand the content. If it ain’t your man or your dude, it doesn’t help. I don’t even do showcases no more. You have 20 artists and they all bring their 20 or 30 closest friends and those people are only coming to hear their artist. It doesn’t matter how much you murder the show or how much you go in lyrically. They’re only coming to hear that one dude. We don’t come together. Southern artists hop on the same show together and rock and I think that’s what’s missing and that’s the feeling I’m trying to restore right now and bring that back. I’m basically trying to connect with the hottest artists that are in Jersey right now. That is the movement right now and that’s what’s going on. People don’t want to fuck with you if you’re not with their team and that’s crazy. That’s why the South is popping, because they’re all helping each other. It’s not like that over here, man.
How much have you been working with Stress lately?
Me and Stress go way back. That’s one of my O.G.’s as far as the music is concerned. We grew up together and he just finished his album, which is a classic album in my opinion. We also just put out a local mixtape, P.S. 2, which is the sequel to Perfect Strangers, our mixtape from four or five years ago. He’s supposed to get me some new beats. We never stop working. If we just feel like doing a joint, we get in there and bang out just for the love. Definitely be on the lookout for that P.S. 2. I definitely plan on moving over 20,000 of my mixtape and 15-20,000 of the P.S. 2. Both of those projects will be out this summer in a ‘hood near you, especially in Jersey. You can go out there and check it out for yourself. It’s going to be a classic. We never stop working. That’s my brother for life. Shout out to Stress. I’ve also been working with Doe Boy. He’s out in Delaware. He’s one of the dopest I’ve heard. That’s also Stress’ cousin.
Are you guys still working with Spencer4Hire as The East Flatbush Project?
We’re supposed to be recording, the last I heard. Spence was supposed to be hooking up some new beats. I think Stress was with him a couple of weeks ago and he’s got something on the backburner for us with The East Flatbush Project. I think something is coming. We’re just trying to work out the kinks. That project should be out this summer also. I’m just trying to get the whole Jersey on my back basically.
What’s the next move for Dox?
The next move is to get out as many of these projects as I can closer to the summer. I figure if I do 15-20,000 of each, at least in Jersey, then I’ll have the buzz to get myself to the next level to start getting money. I’m not really looking for a deal unless somebody’s going to make that deal right that’s beneficial to me. If you’re in the game and if you know the climate of the game, the dudes who have been in the game for a long time are the ones aren’t the only ones making the money. It’s at the point now, where it’s the information age, it’s so easy to get a song done and for producers to send you a beat. It’s at the point now where guys are taking it into their own hands and that’s the point where I’m at now. If I can do well with P.S. 2 and Dox Landing, I’ll be set up for this next project and make some money. I need a lot of people to know in a short amount of time that Dox is there, basically.
At this point, I’m not really doing it to trying to get a deal or to try to get rich. That’s not really the climate. If you’re not making a song to dance to or if you’re not from the South, it’s not a good look to get a deal. It’s in my blood and I’m not quitting. We’re just trying to make ourselves self-contained at this point. Escobar, my manager, and my music team, we’re just trying to make ourselves self-contained so we don’t have to rely on a label at this point. All the artists I mentioned are doing the same thing. I’m looking to put my album out at the end of the year and if these labels want to mess with me, they’re going to have to come at me correct. That’s where we’re at right now, man. We’re just trying to put everything in order and get this money right.