"…I still hustle just like you, but it just so happen that Big Pooh’s doin what he loves to do…"

21 Feb

For whoever didn’t know already, I’m relatively new to this hip-hop journalism thing. I did my first interview in my freshman year of college, when the webmaster for RapReviews.com linked me up with Drag-On’s publicist. I remember being excited as hell – I wasn’t even a huge Drag-On fan, but I was honored that the webmaster trusted me with the interview, and since I was interviewing an artist who had been on BET, I figured that I was really breaking through. I read the article now and cringe at how cliche my questions were, but I had the best time during the interview – I was participating in the continuous documentation of hip-hop culture, I was doing the same thing that I’d praise the writers in XXL and The Source for.

Interviews have essentially become a normal part of my normal life since then, but I had one that I really enjoyed last week. I interviewed Apathy, an artist I’ve become a big fan of over the past year or so. All the web sites I write for had already assigned writers for his press day, and editors at the magazine I was going to write the article for assigned it to someone else (and assigned me an article with Apathy’s group, Army of the Pharoahs), so I arranged to interview him for RapReviews, which I formally left years ago because I was expanding my work elsewhere. The article is completely voluntary on my part (which isn’t a new thing for me, but it’s rare nowadays with my schedule), but it was worth it.

The interview went really well. I had already chopped it up with him before at this concert a month or so ago, so I’m sure that added to the comfort level. He was incredibly open, answering every question with real answers instead of the pre-written bullshit that other artists offer, and I have some juicy quotes from him as well, which always keeps things interesting. We talked about his new album, label problems, his shoe collection, etc.; the article balances the prerequisites and the new information really well, and it should really help the reader get a sense of who he really is. Plus, at the end of the interview, he spit one of his verses that’s going to be on the Army of the Pharoahs album, which was really dope as a fan. This was the best overall interview, from the professional and fan standpoints, that I’ve ever had.

(By the way, it’s OK to be a fan of an artist. With today’s obsession of being hard, people always connect fan with “groupie” or someone who’s smothering the artist. Liking all of an artist’s music doesn’t make you a groupie – it makes you a fan.)

My mans at KING magazine, Matt Barone, told me one day, “Sometimes, I love my job. Sometimes, I really love my job.” I feel the same way.

EZ

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