Focus on the « Mixtape Addict » artist of the month : Stranga The Great, originally from North Carolina. Check out the interview below :
- Who is your all time favorite DJ ?
Doo Wop is my favorite DJ of all time. I loved how dope he was as an Emcee as well as a DJ. DJ Juice is my favorite mix DJ. He was hands down the goat with the intros and blending.
- What can you tell us about the hip-hop scene in North Carolina ? (We know you guys are very active !)
The Carolina scene has varied over the years. We don’t have a signature sound. Its split up amongst lyrical rap and trap music. We have tons of talent but in my opinion the regions don’t fully support their independent artists. The DJ’s, club promoters, radio stations and consumers take the artist for granted.
- What was/is the biggest difference between the New York Hip-Hop Scene and North Carolina’s hip-hop scene ?
In NY they are known as the Mecca. With that being said once an artist gains traction the City has influence to break that artist in the tri-state area. NY radio and club scene keeps their artist popping. NC is so close to Atlanta that we seem to just follow whatever comes from there.
- How long have you been in the music industry ?
I recorded my first song in 1995 but I didn’t do anything worth gaining recognition outside of my local area until 2000 so I would say right at 20 years.
- What hip-hop albums did you grow up listening to ?
I grew up a die hard hip hop fan so I listened to everything. I was heavy into boom bap and had a phase where I listened to West Coast rap when Menace To Society came out. I was heavy into lyricism and hard beats so most of my music I was rocking had that sound. Big Daddy Kane was the first album I owned so I studied him heavy. In High School Busta Rhymes, OC, Killah Priest, Inspektah Deck and Nas had an impact on my flow. I used them to create my own style.
- When was the first time you heard about a mixtape ?
First mixtape I can recall hearing was DJ Clue 60 minute tapes. Probably like 1995 or 1996
- How was/is the mixtape game in your area ?
I see a couple mixtapes released here but Its not as big as it was some years ago. In the Carolinas we have two legend Big name mixtape DJ’S Chuck T and B-Lord. The Fleet DJ’s are heavy in the state too.
- What made you want to take your career seriously ?
I was raised into hip hop. My father is Jam Master Jay’s mother’s first cousin. He also raised and mentored a few hip hop pioneers Luv Bug Starski, DJ Hollywood and Kurtis Blow. Growing up aware of that legacy it was always in me to lust for hip hop. I just chose to do it on my own and tried to create my own way. It has never been easy but I have my good moments.
- If you could define your music in 3 words ?
Lyrical, Visual and Versatile.
- What are some goals you strive to achieve with your music ?
I always strive to be heard and appreciated by more consumers and to never lose the respect of my peers.
- What’s your favorite platform to promote your music ?
I don’t have a favorite platform but I believe Facebook works the best for me. I have a stronger presence on there and can directly interact with fans as well as control my ad campaigns.
- Who’s your favorite beatmaker ? And why ?
Alchemist is my favorite of all time. Al is just dope yo! Killer with the samples but does it in a way that you have to be a crate digger to know where he got them from. Preemo, Havoc, Wu Tang Producers and Nottz round up my all time list. Currently I’m really feeling Statik Selektah, Dirty Diggs, Daringer and V Don.
- Who all have you worked with in the industry ?
Over the years I have been on projects with a ton of artists. As far as features the few names that stand out are Fredro Starr, Chi King, Craig G, Guerrilla Aliance, Holocaust, Aztech and Rkitech. I’ve been on albums with Killah Priest, Sean Price, Tone Spliff, Canibus, Chief Kamachi, Rasul Allah, Domingo, Anno Domini and Block McCloud.
- If you had any advice for upcoming rappers, what would you say ?
Stay true to what’s in your heart and make the art speak for itself. Be cautious of anyone looking to get money from you instead of getting it with you. People that want to see you win aren’t interested in charging you to do it.
Follow @StrangaTheGreat :