Monday, August 16, 2010

Interview Transcript: 2MEX

Catching up with 2MEX prior to his performance last week in Monterey. Transcript below.

Q: I guess some time last year, it was announced you reached some sort of an agreement with Strange Famous records. Is that still in place?
A: Yeah, we just turned in a record a couple of months ago. And we're finishing up art work, I think, for a release at the end of the year.
It's on two labels. It's on Strange Famous on the east coast, and then we have an imprint out here out of San Bernardino called Grimm Image, and that's basically our label.

Q: When you say ours, who is included in that?
A: It's various guys. Myself, xololanxinco from OMD. Different people like Existereo of the Shape Shifters.

Q: Is there anything you can tell me about the record at this point.
A: Yeah. The record's called “My Fan Base Will Destroy You. ”It took roughly three years to make. It kept having different incarnations, titles, and names. Basically, we ended up making 37 songs before shooting it down to 15.
Half of it is produced by Busdriver of Project Blowed. And the other half is produced by Deeskee from L.A. to the Bay. He's my roommate and longtime producer. Together they probably made 90 percent of it.
It's coming out. It's really, really good, and we're really proud of it. I've never taken this long to put out a record. It's the first time I've ever taken this much time to put out a record. It's really worth it. It's kind of personal. There's a lot of personal songs on it.

Q: Talk about the wealth of output you've put out in your career and then stopping to make this one record. How big of a shift was it for you creatively?
A: It was big, actually. I'm happy doing things the way we're doing them, where we just keep recording songs with a friend, keep making side groups to work with my friends, whether they come out or not, whether people know about it or not.I'm real happy to this day doing that.
In this particular instance, it was different in the sense that I had got the record funded by this label called Grimm Image. I started getting funded for it. And then we needed distribution, so I went to Sage (Francis, owner of Strange Famous Records). He picked it up, and it became this ongoing thing that took two-and-a- half, three years, where I would make a couple songs, sit on them, and then six months later I'd say “I don't like this collection of songs, lets do some more.”
And some things from three years ago made it to the end, and a lot of things didn't.
It just progressed and progressed, and some point about six months ago, I said “Let's really put this thing together.” And the last six months, we've put together the songs, and it was interesting.
I'm ready to go. I'm waiting for this to come out so I can go back to my schedule of putting out things every month (laughs).
Out of respect for Strange and Grimm, we're waiting to put this out, and then after that, we'll go back to putting out a ton of random groups.
I don't really conform to the way the record industry is. The idea that you're putting out too much stuff. You're clogging the market. I never look at it like that. I just look at it as art, and you just put it out. It's a weird thing when art and having to pay bills crash into each other.

Q: Tell me about the title of the album and your relationship with the fans, because you've been able to cultivate them one at a time and they're so loyal to you and your brand and style.
A: The album is called “My Fan Base Will Destroy You.” It's the belief that, even though the contingency of people that follow me is small, it's strong. And I get funded by our fans. Our fans take care of us.
My fans make me food and bring it to my house. Right now we're doing this thing where I'm doing this festival, and I've made a bunch of t-shirts, and I've told the kids, I will deliver the t-shirts to your house if you live within a 40-minute radius of my house. I have t-shirts in the back of my car, and I just drive around to the fans, rolling up on them, and you know, selling them a shirt or two, you know, invite them to the festival. Talk to them, smoke a bowl with them. I'll have food with them.
If I were to go to the internet and say, “Hey, I'm fucking hungry, bring me a pizza,” then I'd get four pizzas delivered to my house. And we'd hang out. I wouldn't have an attitude like “Thanks for the pizza kid.” I'd be like, “Hey, let's eat this pizza. Let's hang out, watch a Dodgers game.”

Q: I know Low End Theory and Flying Lotus and all those DJ cats have been getting a lot of media attention the last year. What's your take on that scene and how it's influencing L.A. right now?
A: I have a lot of respect for the Low End Theory. I'm a fan of Flying Lotus.
DJ Nobody, who is one of the residents there, me and him are working on a new record. Back in the day, me and him had a group called SunGodSuns. We only ended up doing a 12-inch and some other stuff, but me and him kind of reunited and started working on a record that has that L.A., forward-sounding, Low End Theory sound. We're working on that right now.
But I love Gaslamp Killer and Daedelus and all that stuff. I'm happy L.A. is getting recognition for its producers who have arrived and stuff like that. It's a beautiful thing. L.A. is such a melting pot of electronica, hip-hop, rock, you know, everything.
I think that Low End, I've always been impressed with the sound of it. I like Exile and Free the Robots and all those cats, and I think it's great.
I do everything. I make a song in every style, all the time. So if I hear something that gets my attention, I'll make a song like that. I'll make a song that sounds like 50 Cent, and then the next song sounds like Freestyle Fellowship, and then the next song sounds like Le Tigre, you know what I mean? It's beautiful to be able to do everything and try it. So I try everything, man.

Q: How many shows are you rocking a year or month these days? Are you still as ferocious with your touring schedule as you were in the past?
A: Yeah. We're already in what, the eighth month? I've definitely played 60 shows already this year, and before the year ends, I'm probably going to play another 50. I probably play every four days, year-round. Whether it's a house party or 10,000 people attend. We play house parties, we play bars, we play clubs, we play everything. I'm still active.
My body feels different. I can't run around on stage and rap for an hour and then think I'm gonna hang out for three hours. It doesn't work like that anymore.
I'm 37. After the show, it's straight to the hotel, with some ESPN, and a sandwich, you know what I mean (laughs). A slice of pizza, a little ESPN, and you call the girlfriend up, reassure her you're not cheating on her, and go to bed, man.

Q: How much more of this do you think you have left in you? You say you're 37, and in rap years, thats supposed to be 100, right?
A: Yeah. You know what. It's funny because the older I get, the more I stand behind the shit I say. What I said when I was 19, and what I say right now is just so much different.
I feel like sometimes I was saying non-sense, or I wasn't being as educated on what I'm talking about. Whereas now, everything I say, I stand behind.
I don't know. I've gotten into some other side businesses, as far as like throwing festivals and promoting side things like that. There's still a contingency of people that support me. I don't know, man.
Everyday when I check my email, somebody's like “Hey, you want to play in Greece? Do you want to play in San Francisco? Do you want to play in Tennessee?” I think I'm going to let the people dictate that right now. I'm very happy and humble that I get to do that right now.

Q: A couple of years back, Snoop Dogg shouted you out on the song “My Peoples.” Did you catch that?
A: Yeah. My homeboy called me and told me. I was honored, like, that's Snoop Dogg, you know? You're just like, yeah, that's dope.
I have a part in my routine where I lie and say I did a song with Snoop. I'll be like, "I just did a song with Snoop Dogg/ But I'm hanging right here with you dog." And I think that line always works real good because he shouted me out.
Aesop Rock was like, I think he was more impressed than I was. He was like “Rakim would never shout me out son. That's amazing.” I was like “You know.”
That's why Snoop is Snoop, you know. Because he knows what's up. If he's giving you a shout out, that goes a long way for a Mexican rapper. But I appreciate it.
I met the man once. And all his bodyguards were rushing him along, and I reached out my hand, and he bent over backwards to say whats up. I was like, that's why he's the man. He don't diss the fans. I was like, that's why he's a G. He saw me and took one second out to say hi to a fan. He's pretty dope.

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