Greedmont Park x Big Krit [Interview]
Friday, August 13, 2010 by Team Greedmont | 3 Comments; | Category: Entertainment
Greedmont Park got a chance to have a sit down with the southern rap artist that has been the focal point of attention and making a lot of noise lately. Ever since the debut of his recent mixtape Krit Wuz Here there has been a climaxing buzz about the new comer and his recent signing with Def Jam has of course helped.
Tell us a little about the track “Children of the World” off of the Krit Wuz Here mixtape…
When it came to writing, I just didn’t want to stop, it was me expressing how I felt about politics, the entertainment industry, spiritual things, financial problems, and poverty. I wanted to touch on all bases. With the song, it was a real personal record for me, it talked about my life, me dropping out of school, being in a relationship and not really being able to focus on it because of financial situations. I also felt like I was overlooked in the game. It was, you know, just me really kind of expressing myself.
Do you try to focus more on the struggle that comes with being an African American rather than the typical lyrics that speak of sex, money and girls?
I really just try to I rap about my experiences and life. Some days you feel clean and fly and I reflect that in some of my songs and some days your down and everything is not working out like you want it to and I got those records too. You go through different emotions in life and different situations. I try to couple them all. I got the “Get Money” record and then I have the songs where its the flipside of getting money, the poverty or the ways that I was trying to get money and the consequences. There are certain things that you do in life and go through and I try to put it all in my music. I try to tell both sides of the spectrum.
With your music, you’ve stated that you are paying homage to southern pioneers…
Yeah, because I was influenced by the golden era, what I consider a great time in southern hip hop. UGK, Outkast, 8Ball & MJG, Goodie Mob, Scarface, all of that is definitely a time when the south was figuring out what we were going to do as far as the game is concerned. Everybody was rapping about their area and where they were from. I just want to take it back to that. Where I rap with my lingo, about putting out my lifestyle and how it was when I was growing up. At times you fall victim to what the industry may say is hot like using this type of track and working with this type of producer, but I’m trying to stay true to my roots.
You actually just got signed to Def Jam, when you first started out did you ever see this happening?
You always dream and pray to be on a major label with some major backing where you can build a platform of millions of people to decide whether they want to buy or listen to your music. It was always a goal of mine. Def Jam has the home of hip hop aspect and to be on a label with this much history is a blessing. There was a point in my career that I thought this would never happen. I was five years in, and was dealing with the pressure of dropping a project that made noise in the industry. Krit Wuz Here exceeded all those expectations. The feedback was amazing.
Tell us a little about The Last King mixtape…
It’s comprised of a lot of records that I’ve done over the years that got slept on or people really didn’t get a chance to hear. DJ Break ‘Em Off, a dope DJ, did the blends and revived the songs. Some of the songs were put out in 2005, but he turned it into a dope project with some of the instrumentals that he put into my acapellas, the track listing, and the flow of it all.
Tell us a little about the Krit Wuz Here mixtape…
It’s nineteen records with different emotions. I produced the whole thing. I think people can see the growth, if you go back and listen to the music I did before Krit Wuz Here. It’s me telling my story and getting comfortable in my own skin and not caring what was on the radio or what was considered a hit. It was really therapeutic to make those songs, because the things that have happened to me lately. I lost my grandmother in January and the song “I Got to Stay” is dedicated to her. I put it on the mixtape, but it was really for her, to pay homage to her. People took to it and the honesty of me telling about my life. It pertains to who I am as an individual and not the glamour and glitz.
What did you do with the first check that you received from rapping?
Really just invested it back into the movement. The only thing I’ve ever done is music. I invested in myself for like five years, buying equipment, cds, promotional materials.
“Glasshouse” featuring Curren$y and Wiz Khalifa is a crazy track. How did the collaborations come about?
South by southwest was a place where a lot of artist would work, I had known both these artist before then. My first time working with them was at south by southwest. I had known about Wiz and had been following his movement. We both started in 2005 so to see him get his response and type of shine is amazing and I’m definitely proud. Curren$y, I’ve known through Cinematic Music Group, he’s like a big brother in the aspect of letting me know about the game and the industry. “Glasshouse” came about, it was all love when we did the song. Wiz put it on Kush and OJ and it catapulted a movement.
“Children of the World” is a dope video that was put together by Creative Control. You’ve collaborated a lot with them. When doing these videos do you have creative input?
It’s a real open thing. They are really dope with on the spot filming. They can really capture the environment. “Hometown Hero” is normal lighting, with good angles and they know how to make the music fit with the visual. They really do it with “Children of the World” with the aspect of me talking to different people while rapping. The simplicity of it all really works.
There are rumors that a collaboration with Cee-Loo is soon to come, is this true?
It hasn’t, but I think it will in the future. There is a gang of other artist that I look forward to working with Killa Mike, Bun B, Yelawolf. Shout out to Cee-Loo though.
What was it like growing up in the deep south of Mississippi?
Where I’m from its not really metropolitan. But people definitely appreciate what they have. Poverty is one of those things, you kind of grow up in. You don’t know how poor you were until you get older. It teaches you how to survive. I was raised by a lot of elders, you know they say it takes a village to raise a child. A lot of my family was around. My grandmother played a major part, she was born in the 20s so the morals she instilled in me where definitely different. I try to incorporate it in my music and perspectives on life. She plays a great deal in how I take on projects, I strive to be 100% honest and give it my all. I got the home-grown aspect, the organic vibe of it. The blues and the soul…I put in my music.
You have been doing a lot of performances lately, what has been the craziest thing that has happened?
The craziest thing is being booed. It was definitely a first time. I’ve performed and the crowd look at you crazy, but being booed was a humbling experience. At the same time it was a motivational experience. To be where I’m from and to be able to perform in New York is a feat within itself. I was excited to be there, I appreciated the people and took the response. Lauryn Hill, Outkast have been booed, some of the great have been booed. I’m not the first. I took it in stride.
What has been the funniest thing that has happened during your performances?
Performing on MTV doing “Sky Born” with Curren$y. I stepped on the mic cord and it came out. I was rapping but you couldn’t hear the vocals. This comes on MTV2 like everyday now, there is a portion where I’m performing with him and I go silent but I’m still rapping. A lot of people were fascinated by how fast I got the cord into the mic and tried to recover.
How was it working with Devin the Dude for “Moon & Stars”?
I didn’t have the opportunity to get in the studio because he does mad shows. Suite 4 20 had just dropped so he was doing his thing. I feel like I skipped a lot of steps to get a legend of his caliber on the record, but I was blessed to do so. Definitely one of my favorite songs off Krit Wuz Here.
What do you want your listeners to take from your music?
They’re not alone. There’s definitley someone in the industry that they can relate to. The industry and majors are willing to invest in people to be themselves and invest in real music. You have to grind and put in the work to brand your sound and yourself as an individual before they come knocking. It has to make sense. I’m going to be myself, I will never change. I droppd a song, “Now or Neva” once I got signed to show that nothing has changed except for me having more things at my disposal. I have access to the dopest singers, dopest instrumentation, you know… mixing better but the content, quality and subject matter is going to stay the same.
You produced, mixed and performed for Krit Wuz Here, how was the process and how long did it take?
A year and some change in the making as far as the songs. Definitely took some time. “Hometown Hero” was a twelve hour track as far as me sitting down making the beat, coming up with what I really wanted to rap about, laying the vocals and mixing. I do my own in house so I can spend as much time that I want on a song in order to makes sure its as perfect as possible I am my greatest critc. I make sure its a hundred percent perfect or as close.
What are some artist that influence you?
UGK, Outkast, Goodie Mobb, Dungeon Family, Scarface, 8 ball & MJG. David Banner also played a great deal in giving me hope that you can make it being from the deep part of the south. Of course Tupac and Biggie Smalls. Also, soul music from the 60s and 70s; Willie Hudson, Curtis Mayfield, The Commodores. These type of artist definitely gave their all as far as music is concerned. You know, really singing about their life and lifestyle and not being worried about sales.These are my influences.
Biggie, Tupac, do you believe that one day your name will be mentioned with the martyrs?
Yeah I pray that I have my own lane and am remember for what I did or contributed to hip hop, the world and how people feel about life in general. I want to give back to the community and to live up to what my name is. To be mentioned beside those artists names would be a flattering and blessing. They were amazing in what they did and they touched a lot of people in a short amount of time.
What are some upcoming projects that we can look forward to? When can we expect your debut album?
The debut album, be looking for that the top of next year. The upcoming projects, Krit Wuz Here, Chopped and Screwed just dropped, its crazy. I’ve got the mixtape project with YelaWolf “Country Cu$$inz”, called “Trunk Muzic Wuz Here”. I’ll be on the upcoming Cinematic Music Group hightimes tour with Curren$y and Smoke DZA. I’m also on Wiz Khalifa’s “Waken Baken Tour” east coast run this fall. Be on the look out for me branding my sound, dropping new music, and working with this new generation of artists.
[ Words by Rose M. Bellefleur | Photos by Evan Brockett]