By Darin Gloe
ï»¿So what’s been going on?
I’m really excited right now; we just dropped “P’s and Q’s” on Up Above Records. It has a great production team and some nice little features. It was a fun process and a long process, but it was all worth it.
Other than music, what are your passions?
I love living life man, anything involved with living. That’s what I try to bring out in the music. I try to stay neutral and not get to passionate about one certain thing, I want to be universal.
Before we get into the album, is a Visionaries album on the horizon?
Yes, for sure. It is a few miles ahead of us, but the point is that it is ahead of us. Us being optimistic we are in the works. It’s like any good home cooked meal, it takes time. We are marinating and cooking up something nice.
“P’s and Q’s” is your 3rd solo effort; would you say this is your best work thus far?
Thus far, definitely. If it wasn’t I should just call it a day, as an artist you need to be progressive. I feel like it is an improvement from the last project. Not to take away from the last project, but I’m really excited about this one. I won’t denounce the other projects, but I can speak on this one as a shiner.
On the track “Drop That” the legendary Supernatural makes a guest appearance, what was it like working with him? Does he write anything down?
I’m not going to blast out his craft, but that particular song he mixed it 50/50. Half was written and half was off the head. He was just in town and we recorded a song and came completely off the head, it was crazy. He’s definitely a well rounded artist, he’s not stubborn or prideful, like..”shit, that’s all off the head” (laughs). He is a true artist, whatever vibe he is in he can do it all. He shows his genius and shares it will all of us.
It seems to those that don’t live on the west coast that the entire “indie” scene is a big family; would you say that is the case?
Definitely, southern cali is so spread out. We have a lot of comfort pockets or bubbles. With the Visionaries, we are trying to pop our own bubble and make it a bigger bubble. We are very proud of the west coast and we are proud of our origin. We also know that we are just a spec of dust on the grander scheme of things and we are trying to broaden our horizons and break that bubble together.
The title “P’s and Q’s” has an obvious meaning, explain that to the people that don’t know.
Basically in my household we were raised with two phrases, “grin and bear it” and “mind your P’s and Q”s. Big up to my grandma for fueling the fire..(laughs). The term P’s and Q’s to me, is staying on top of your stuff and making yourself accountable for your actions. The information that I gathered about P’s and Q’s, the original concept was based in taverns. They would say “mind you P’s and Q’s” when a fight would break out. They tally up your drinks and whether your drink was knocked over during that fight, you are still responsible for that drink. So I take that theory and add that to day to day living and that is the premise of the album.
So the album is a book of a way of life?
It’s not on a preaching level, but it’s what helps me prosper. Not necessarily financially, but in a peace of mind state, which is very important to how I live.
I’m sure you have been told your voice is unique, do you feel that your unique sound and flow contribute to your success?
Whatever it takes for people get into the message is fine with me, whether it’s my voice or my flow or whatever I’m cool with it. I don’t take it as shallow if they like my voice or dislike my voice. Ultimately it’s about the message.
Up Above is an independent hip-hop label through and through, would you ever consider signing with a major label if the opportunity presents itself?
We pose the scenario and we test ourselves with that. It’s not a “selling out” issue. Brothers like us don’t have that insecurity of integrity, we will always bring honest music. What we want to do is bring Up Above to a higher level, by making the label act as a major like Koch or TVT. We know we will also be honest and we go out swinging. I can’t see myself going to a major to collect dust, that would be wretched. I would never leave my family to go to another family. Sure, it’s business but I think that is what separates us from others, we do stick together and stick it out.
Do you think that the Indies are coming back, because commercial music is so bad right now?
Sometimes it’s good that we have over saturation. Because when the public is so fed up they will look for alternatives.
What’s in your cd player / mp3 player right now?
I listen to a lot of J-Rocc mixes; within a span of one cd he gives you a lot. I listen to a lot of Quincy Jones and talk radio. I listen to KBFK and KWAV which is like a gospel station out here. Of course I listen to a lot of Visionaries stuff and our studio works. Honestly we constantly stay recording, I don’t have a lot of time to dwell off into other people’s music. I try to monitor myself and not flood my mind with stupid music.
Anything else you would like to say?
I feel like we coved it nicely, “P’s and Q’s” is officially out. I have always had an issue with that “Go Buy It” stuffâ€¦.but for real it’s an honest album and it was fun to make, so sure after 10 years in the game “Go buy it”.
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