I’m okay. It’s shitty weather, but it’ll pass.
Your mixtape, Foul Monday Country, is going to drop soon. Are you happy with how it came out?
I am. We got it done pretty fast. I’m happy about that. Hopefully we can create a nice little buzz off of that and hit the world with another one.
What are your goals for Foul Monday Country?
Right now, I’m just trying to establish myself as an entity in the game. I’m somebody that’s out there grinding. I’m trying to build a nice pedestal so that when my album’s getting ready to come out, it’s not news to anybody. Everybody should know it’s coming.
Who helped you on the mixtape?
DJ Absolut helped me out. I tried to get a few unknown heads on there like Ryan Perfect and Ace Fontaine. Starvin’ B is on there too. These are no-name cats. The only big names I have are Juvenile, Absolut and of course Ron Artest. The lesser-known cats on there are people I promised I would look out for if I ever got the opportunity to.
How far back do you go with Ron?
Back in high school he used to run around with the ball players and I was more with the music heads and the knuckleheads. Ron didn’t really mess around with the knuckleheads even though he did dumb shit that any kid would do. As far as me and him go, he was somebody I knew from the neighborhood. We were cool with each other. It was hood love.
Why did you want to sign to Tru Warier Records?
I saw what he was trying to do. He has money, but at the same time, he’s still grinding. He has to get his respect in the game and I feel that because I’m trying to do the same thing. I feel that with his connections and my talent, we can make something happen. I think I can definitely work some things with him and it’s definitely vice versa with me.
Are you happy on Tru Warier so far?
It’s been great. It’s been a blessing. Ron’s been taking care of me. I’m about to go meet up with him in Sacramento in a few days. We’ll probably cut some new joints and work on my album or his next album.
How do you feel about Ron’s debut album, My World?
It definitely came out good. I was there from the beginning. I don’t know if it was the first time he ever picked up a pen and pad, but I was around the first time he had ever been in the studio. I know there’s been a growth from then until now. There has definitely been a big growth and the album is definitely a big surprise because it was rough in the beginning. Ron had his rhymes, but he had never been in the studio and expressed himself as a musical person. He kept his rhymes to himself. For somebody to get that confidence to kick it and rock over somebody’s beat, that’s a big task alone. I definitely congratulate the big homie. He made the progression rather fast, I would say.
How do you feel about the criticism surrounding Ron making music?
I think most of it is hypocritical. With the guys out there who are claiming to be actual MC’s, they’re not good. T.I. isn’t necessarily putting out the best music. Jay-Z isn’t necessarily putting out the best music. But they’re musicians and they put their time in so they don’t get criticized as much. I think they should check Ron’s background before they start criticizing, because from what I know, Ron always wanted to do music. He’s not doing it because he has money now. Basketball was his way to get money. Who wouldn’t have done what he did?
Half of the stuff out there is garbage and people are accepting it. I’m not saying Ron’s shit is garbage, but he hasn’t been rapping for a long time so it’s not the best stuff out there. I think fans should give Ron the same ear they’re giving everyone else. Forget that he’s a basketball player. Let the music speak for itself.
Does Tru Warier Records slow down during basketball season?
It slows down a little bit because some of the same people who help Ron on the basketball help on the recording tip. Things slow down some but not much.
When will you drop your album?
Hopefully we can get it out next year. Hopefully we can make it as big as it can possibly be. I’m trying to make a statement and change in rap. Although I’m not hating on the South, I’m really tired of hearing that twang on songs. It’s gotten to the point where East Coast dudes are doing the same thing on records. That wouldn’t have been acceptable ten to fifteen years ago. That’s the era I come from.
I’m definitely not mad at the South. Their time was now. The reason they still have a grasp on the game is because the dudes outside of the South are trying to do what they do. That’s bad. I’m definitely trying to put a halt to that.
What are your goals for your debut album?
I would like to have a summertime release. But considering how Ron is in the middle of the season and all that, there are a lot of factors that have to be considered for that. Hopefully we can have it ready for the summer or winter next year. I’m hoping it’s big. I’m crossing my fingers. This is a dream for me.
You were also in the group Killa Kidz. How do you feel looking back on those days today?
I wouldn’t change none of it. It was all basically a learning and growing experience. There’s a lot of pitfalls you can fall into in the music industry and the Killa Kidz definitely had a strong foundation for that. I learned a lot from that experience and I wouldn’t change none of it.
Do you see a Killa Kidz reunion happening?
I hope so. I hope so. All the Killa Kidz are scattered, doing different things. That will be a matter of us getting together and figuring out what we can do. I know the hood would love that. We were heroes out here for a second. Nobody was touching us. As far as Queensbridge, that will be as big as the Wu reunion.
What kind of impact could Killa Kidz have made on the game if things were right on the business tip?
I think we would have made an awesome impact on the game being that we were so young and we were able to bring it to the table like grown men were doing. We were making better music than grown men going platinum three or four times. We definitely would have made our mark on the game. Unfortunately that opportunity never presented itself.
Are you still in touch with any of the Killa Kidz?
Yeah. I see everybody. Me and Killa Sha live in the same building. He’s doing his thing. Ruc comes back and forth to the hood. He has family out here. The only person out of the Killa Kidz I really see is Baby Cham. He’s doing the Flipmode thing and he’s trying to get his label together. He’s staying busy. We stay in touch and I’m glad to see everybody is all right.
What do you think of the QB scene today?
I think there’s a lot of talent out here. There’s a lot of cats out here with a lot of potential. It’s either nobody wants to come back here or we’re not making enough noise. There’s rappers every five feet out here. We are like crabs in the bucket though as we just try to get our little light. This is like an A&R or producer’s dream out here. That’s why I don’t understand why there aren’t labels out here every day listening to ciphers and seeing what’s new. There is so much talent out here. It’s ridiculous.
How involved do you stay in the QB scene?
I don’t do too many shows, but I got mixtapes circulating out here. I’m getting decent feedback from the community about that. As far as the music scene, I can only do me. If somebody wants to collaborate with me on something, I’m more than willing to.
What’s going to be your focus heading into 2007?
To try to make better music. I can always get better at it and I can always step my game up. At least by the time my album comes out, I’ll have something that I’ll feel is undeniably hot. That’s all I can ask for. Sales and money are secondary to me as long as the product is good. If the product is good, everything will fall into place.
What do you want to say to everybody?
Look out for Ron Artest’s album. It’s hotter than you think. I’m coming soon. There’s a lot of underground and untapped talent that people are not checking for that’s hot. The mainstream artists are not doing it right now. Stop giving them your ear and give everybody your ear. Hip-hop ain’t dead. It’s just stuck right now. Let’s get it unstuck.