May 12, 2009

A Night With The CLIPSE!

Honestly y'all, my dreams came true last night. I got to politic with the CLIPSE-- one of the best rap groups in history... And I'm picky. That's sayin a WHOLE LOT... Shoot. "Grindin'" changed the [rap] game. Period. No questions asked.

Anyway, back in 2003 I met with Rob Walker (A&R for Star Trak), and he heard a demo I did where I covered Clipse's "Gangsta Lean". He liked it, and liked me, and things seemed promising but shortly after things went south with Star Trak and Arista. With that went my dream. I always wanted to be able to say I mingled with these cats. It was my dream to be on that label, but I guess it just wasn't meant for me. Shoot, what would have become of CCW? If anything? I guess all things for a reason? But I digress...

Pharrell, Chad, Kelis, the Clipse? I seen em all, met them all in the past, and they are all so humble and chill... And amazingly talented. Did I mention stupidly talented? Truly ahead of their time in every way, and they all continue to be in very individual ways. The Clipse did a free concert at Webster Hall last night. I finally got to sit down with the dynamic duo. You wanna hear it? Here it go:

Cocoa B. : How old were y'all when you started in the business?

Malice: When we started professionally?

Pusha-T: Like... 21

Malice: Well, I always said that if I wasn't in the industry by the time I was 25, I wasn't going to do it. It wasn't going to happen. But it happened, so I'mma say around 24, 25.

Cocoa B.: So you're age difference?

Pusha-T: 5 years.

Cocoa B.: Ohhhh, me and my sis are like 6! Cool. (laughs) So out of the both of you, who's the shy one?

Malice: I think I'm definitely more the shyer one out of us.

Pusha-T: (nods)

Cocoa B. : So tell us about your relationship with Pharrell? How'd you all get together on this music thing?

Malice: Well, we all grew up together in our area-- Virginia Beach, and Pharrell was just known around to be really talented with music-making and I think we were known around as being really talented lyrically, so eventually we all bumped heads...

Cocoa B. : True.... There are some massively influential artists that have come out of Virginia for example: Timbland, Missy, Teddy Riley, Neptunes, You all, but besides those was there a more local talent in VA that you drew your influences from?

Pusha-T: Like, definitely Mad Skillz. He's definitely an influence. He's one of the first rapper, no he IS the first rapper out of Virginia. And just to watch him, and watch him doing it all, like his drive... You know?

Cocoa B. Yessssss. Yes I definitely agree.

Pusha-T: When stuff like that happens? Like when you see people out of your area really doing it, it's almost like shit... that can really happen. You know? Like yes, you can REALLY do it.

Cocoa B. Yes, that's so true. An inspiration indeed... Can you tell your fans and my readers a little bit more about your new project? I know you've been doing mixtapes in anticipation...

Malice: "Til the Casket Drops" is definitely going to be the best Clipse album out yet. Ummmm. It's a blessing. Kanye West, Cam'ron, Neptunes, Khalil, Chauncey and LB. It's just hip-hop. Hip-hop on STEROIDS [laughs]!

Cocoa B. Ahhhhhh love it! That's a hip-hop quotable right there... For each of you just out of curiosity, if you could collaborate with any person dead or alive, who would it be?

Malice: Man, I gotta say BIG.

Pusha-T: Hmmmm, dead or alive.... And I can't say BIG he just said it (laughs), lemme see... Jay-Z.

Cocoa B. Ah ha. I see good choices. So I heard a little rumor that you all collaborate with Rick Rubin. How true is this rumor? LOL

Malice : Rick... wow. What do you say about Rick? He's a guru.

Pusha-T: Yesssss.

Cocoa B. : Agreed. Double R is definitely the man. For real. And he's a little crazy-looking too! LOL

Malice : (laughs)

Pusha - T : (laughs)

Cocoa B. : But that's a whole other talk show.... Haha, anyway what is your favorite Clipse track to date? Mine will probably always have to be Gangsta Lean-- especially since I did the ill re-make! Hahaha.

Malice: I'd have to say, "Hot Damn"

Cocoa B. : Yessssss! "Hot DAAAAAAYUM! it's a new day!" LOL

Pusha - T: Mine is definitely, "Mama I'm So Sorry" -- you know, KEYS OPEN DOORS?

Cocoa B. : Yessssss, I was just listening to that today!! It definitely goes hard. OK-- good choices, good choices. Now comes my firing-squad final few questions. Although you kinda answered this first one, but y'all ready? Ok. TUPAC or BIG?

Malice : Biggie

Pusha-T: Yes, Biggie!

Cocoa B. : Mc Donald's or Burger King

Malice : Burger King

Pusha-T: Burger King!

Cocoa B. : KIM or FOXY?

Malice & Pusha-T (IN UNISON): FOXY!!!!!!!

Cocoa B. : HAHAHAHAHAHAAAA! YAY! Good answer, good answer. I love her and she's cutie-pie dark skinned girl such as myself... J'yeah! Ok... I'mma calm down now. Beamer or Benz?

Malice: Benz

Pusha-T : Yeah.

Cocoa B. Platinum or Gold?

Malice : Gold

Pusha-T: (thinks about it.....) Platinum!

Cocoa B. (laughs) T-Pain vocoder or acappella?

Malice : acapella, meng!

Pusha-T : definitely acappella. (laughs)

Cocoa B. : Timbaland or Dr. Dre?

Pusha-T & Malice (in UNISON) : TIMBALAND

Cocoa B. Yes! He's my favorite. Ok now, boxers, briefs or boxer-briefs?

Pusha-T & Malice (in UNISON) : BOXERS!

Cocoa B. : Hahahahaha! I think that wraps it up. Thank you so much for your time and contribution to rap, seriously though. My photographer, Jeff and I are really big fans, and we always support good music and will always support y'all. Fa real!

...And by taking this time out I really appreciate them. Plus, these dudes are smart-- see how they co-signin?:

The show afterwards was awesome. They played some of their new-new and the oldie but goodies. I went nuts when they did "Clap That Boy", and I definitely lost my voice after "Grindin". People were turning around like "Damn, shorty knows ALL the damn words!" I guess people just didn't expect that, but I'm a fan, what can I say? I go hard, lol. When they started "Kind Of A Big Deal", I really lost it. These guys tend to have that effect, the crowd was LOVING them! And so was I. It was dope. In fact, my voice is still sore this morning.. Orange Juice anyone?

**During the VIP session before the concert, T was nice enough to bless me and my photog with some dranky dranks, so I have to give a big shout-out to him for that! Thanks, meng!**

So in the end-- the interview went just as I expected.... Cool. Extra cool. These two are the epitome of cool. Laid-back, but business-oriented and fierce on the stage. They draw you in, and you don't let go til the very end. There was a pocket of quick-silence between songs and I said, "CLIPSE 4-EVER MY Ni**as!" I dunno y'all it just came out! But T turns around and goes "Ya damn right", and we all felt it!

These fans are devoted. There's no duo quite like them. Although they do have a 5-year age difference, it's hard to tell-- homeboy's got those GOOD genes! LOL. And if you didn't know better, you would barely be able to tell that they are one of the most sought-after and well-respected rap groups out. They are approachable, humble, honest and engaging but not over-bearing. Well-seasoned industry vets. In this business it's always a pleasure to see. People can get gassed real easily when they have a few fans. But not these guys. And their fans know that, and love them for it! Peace to Malice & Pusha-T. The true examples of a gangsta and a gentleman. PEACE!

1 comment:

  1. This is dope!!!! Great interview too. Make those moves, get them dollars!


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