What made you want to be a DJ? I was always into the idea of playing music to make people feel certain
ways since i was real young, but it was really hearing Funk Flex and Dj Premier
live on Hot 97 in 95... that was it.
What was the
first song that grabbed you?
That's a hard one, but probably Eric B and Rakim "Eric B For President".
did you grow up on?
Krs-One, A Tribe Called Quest, Nas, Pete Rock and CL Smooth, Mobb Deep, Wu-Tang,
Gangstarr, Dr Dre & Snoop, Redman, EPMD.... too many to name.
When did you
make your first mixtape?
around 96 when i started doing radio, but it was horrible.
How have your
mixtapes grown from when you started?
They real thing that made my CDs grow was the amount of little things that i
add in my mixes, along with the original production i add. alot of cats dont
even do their own remixes anymore, but the ones who do just put a beat under
an acapella and think they are ill...
How do you know
when you've made a good mixtape?
When people that have no connection to the industry are telling me how much
they appreciate it. Most the industry cats are Yes-Men.
favorite mixtape that you've done?
Probably the last cd i put out, "The Prophecy" hosted by Nas. I think
your only as good as your newest product.
What's up with
the Smash Squad?
Who's in it and how did it come together? It came together in 2002. Clinton
Sparks called me and told me the idea about making a crew of DJs that are actually
nice at DJing and not just politically connected(Like most the other crews).
I was down and it started with just me, Clinton, and Chubby Chub. Since then
cats have come and gone, but some of the stand out cats in the crew are Dj Rukiz,
Tony Touch, DMC Battle DJ Laz-E-Boy, and the newest member Scram Jones.
What's up with
Thats the big picture right there. At the end of the day im doing most of this
to get ShowOff Records going... and showing cats that we wont be putting out
garbage. Im not focusing on the label for a few more years though. Right now
im just putting the logo on the CDs and 12" Vinyl Singles i release just
to get people to recognize the name and quality behind it.
What's the Boston
Hip Hop scene like?
It is what it is. I moved to NYC for a reason though... to make everything come
together, as far as what im trying to do with Radio, MixCds, Production, etc.
In Boston right now there is a lot of talent, but people's egos are bigger than
their resume. Plus the fact that every Club that gets popular gets shut down
within months because of the same senseless fighting that goes on over and over.
So when it all boils down you got a lot of talent ready to explode but no discipline.
Thats a problem. There is a few cats coming out of the Bean that i really co-sign
though. Termanology is gonna make some noise this year. NBS got some real raw
shit, my man @ The Source called them "Boston's CNN". Dre Robinson
is doing it too. One last note on that question is that EVERYONE CANNOT BE A
RAPPER. If you want someone in your crew to blow up, pick someone and then focus
on everyone else once they get on, IF they get on. I wish the best of luck to
Boston Cats though, and ill always support. Its funny though cause i did the
"Champs Are Here" MIX cd of all Boston Cats and only a few of them
used it as a tool to get themselves out there. The rest of them acted like it
was a given to be on there and it dont work like that.
Let's talk about
your "Prophecy" mixtape hosted by Nas, first off how did you get Nas
to host it?
Basically Nas and i met up this past summer and he saw that i was supporting
him on the radio and on the mixtapes. I asked him for the drops, he did them
on the spot and the rest is history. I put alot of work into "The Prophecy"
and i hope cats catch the little things. Its one of those CDs where you can
listen over and over and find little things different every time. Its doing
real well, sales wise. #1 3 weeks in a row on Mixtapeusa.com, Top seller on
Mixunit.com, Pick of the Season on Blazinmixtapes.com and its pushing lots of
units on the streets and HEAVILY bootlegged.
Your remix for
"Eastside Story" was real dope, how did you go about making that?
I got that Nas Verse over the Game "Westside Story" beat. I added
a Styles Verse and Biggie Verse, and used the unreleased Snoop Chorus, and just
changed the word "Westside" to "Eastside". That was the
first track i put together for the cd.
Theme" remix was dope too, how did you go about making that one?
I wanted to use the new ODB track(Rest in peace playa) and i was gonna help
out this Kid "Low Key" from London, who was part of the Nas TheifsTheme
RMX Contest Sony held in the UK. I made some calls and got the premo instrumental(shout
out to premo), and did a blend with the Nas verse and Low Key verse and just
added in Ol Dirtys. It came together right. I think its good to support cats
from other countries too cuz that expands my fan base, plus adds some different
flavor into the mix.
How do you go
about making blends that are dope?
A lot of patience. You cant just throw a verse over a beat. You gotta have good
ears and catch the way that the MC is flowing on the drums. The original Tempos
have to be similiar, but the actually beldn has to be ON POINT or people wont
check for you again. Alot of DJs make WACK blends and are getting by.
What's the first
thing to listen for to see if you made a good blend?
To see if it actually sounds like the rapper is really over that particular
beat. Also words usually land on the snares so use that as a reference. Most
the time i know right away if the blend is gonna work or not.
What young artists
have you broken?
I was on radio during the underground era from 97-99 so i think i helped break
alot of cats in my own way. I feel i was a big part in Breaking 50 Cent in the
northeast, through mix tapes and my marketing company. i just got a Diamond
plaque for his album. Anyways, I play alot of up and commers on my cds. You
will continue to hear anyone that gives music that i think is dope on my cds.
I just hosted Termanology's new cd and did the intro on his album also. I also
am trying to get producers some shine. Theres alot of dope cats coming up right
now like DC outta New Hampshire.
How do you showcase
unsigned heat and show love to those without the major connects?
It's easy... i play their records.its all about presentation. if you are listening
to a mixcd and one track is mobb deep, one is an unsigned cat, and the 3rd track
is Nas, then people will look at that artist differently.
charge money to play artists?
Only is there shit is so so and they need sponsors or help with something else
on the $$$ side. Just dont hurt the quality of your mixes because of it.
What DJ's do
you respect in the game?
Premier, Funk Flex, Kid Capri, Chubby Chub, Tony Touch, Craig G, and all the
older cats still doing it. As far as the newer generation, Green Lantern, Clinton
Sparks, Danny S, Big Mike(dude is a hustler), Scram Jones & Vin, and everyone
thats really on their grind.
are next to blow?
Hmmm.... I think Saigon is gonna make alot of noise this year. My man Term from
Boston is on his grind. Scram Jones is definately beasting shit and is about
to make it happen as a rapper, along with the production hes been doing. Thats
the next shit really is hitting the industry from different angles.
up for you?
SOME BIG MOVES THIS YEAR. i just started doing mixshow on WBLX in Alabama 5
days a week. Plus i do a syndicated mixshow and still do guest spots on WBOT
in Boston. I will be focusing on Production this year alot too. My Album "Spell
My Name RIght" is coming along and got appearences from Nas, Mobb Deep,
Infamous Mobb, Cormega, Scram Jones, and im planning on doing joints with Black
Moon and getting someone from the D-block Camp. I am gonna keep putting out
CDs at the same rate too. I got a 1990s ol school series coming out in January
thats gonna be real successful i think. im also gonna be featured in a Playstation
2 game thats coming out this year(cant say name yet sorry). Also my ShowOff
Marketing Company in Boston is doing real well and we just won Violator/G-Unit
Team of The Year. I work with Movement in NYC also and we got some big projects
coming up. Last year we handled the street marketing Nationally for Alchemist,
Dipset and Wu Tangs Greatest Hits. so basically i got my hands more than full