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1) Do you remember the moment you wanted to be a hip-hop artist?

I don’t remember the exact moment. I know it was some time around 2007 or 2008. I’ve always been one of the biggest hip-hop fans, supporters, or students that’s I’ve known. I had been writing raps and poems since middle school, but I never considered recording any of those until my Junior year of high school.

I had just transferred schools, and I got introduced to a local artist in the area. I’m not sure how the conversation really started, but after a few weeks of coercing, he convinced me to start recording and making tracks. From that point, I loved hip-hop too much too be anything but an artist.

2) What was it like creating your latest project?

The most recent project I released was Heart Shaped Box. The title and theme stemmed from Nirvana, one of my biggest influences.

I was originally working on a completely different project, until I noticed that a majority of my songs were based around the same subject… my twisted version of “love”, and the experiences I’ve had with it.

I had come off of a crazy 5 year relationship, and wound up in another extremely unhealthy one. The project started to form itself, and here we are. I released it on Valentine’s Day, fittingly.

3) What are you trying to achieve with the project?
Heart Shaped Box is another early step in my career. It’s my second official project, and is different from my first project, The Waiting Room, in a lot of ways.

Of course my style remains the same, and I made sure it was another complete package, but I felt like I was taking a risk with this one. Thankfully people enjoy it, and I’ll be using it as another building block in my career. I’m happy it’s in my catalog

4) What are your thoughts on staying independent or signing to a major label?

I’ve weighed both options. As of right now, I’ll stay independent until the perfect and most fitting deal comes my way. If a deal I approve of never comes, then independent it is.

5) How do you feel about the independent hip-hop industry right now?

I’m undecided about it. Half of me feels like it’s over-saturated. The other half of me feels like this is where hip-hop is headed. Regardless, I applaud those that are making the absolute most of it.

6) How do you think you’ve grown as an artist?

I think I grow as an artist every time I write, create a new song, or put together a new project. I’m always learning more about myself, my talents, and where I can improve. I’m very self-critical. With that being said, I try to grow in every possible way I can.

7) How do you feel about hip-hop today?

It’s different. There’s a lot that I like, and a lot that I really don’t like. Good or bad, that’s where I’ll leave that.

8) What artists in the game today do you look at for inspiration?

I’m still a big Wayne fan. I always have been. Other than that, I still want to work with Ricky Hil and a few other northern artists. As for inspiration, I try not to draw off of newer talents.

I focus a lot on classic albums and classic records. Other than that, I just try to pave my own lane, create my own sound, and fill a hole that’s missing in hip-hop.

9) Who are your top 5 rappers dead or alive?

That’s a great question. I debate that pretty often. I’m still working on my 5th, but I can give you a top 4. A lot people are going to disagree with me of course, but here they are, in no particular order:

  • Lil Wayne
  • Eminem
  • Biggie
  • Jay-Z

I’d give you my reasoning for each one of them, but we’d be here all day.

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Written by Hao Nguyen
Stop The Breaks is an independent music marketing company focused on showcasing independent hip-hop artists. Our goal is to help motivate, inspire and educate independent artists grinding around the world. We provide branding, content marketing, social media, SEO and music promotion services.