In our popular 25 facts series, Fliptrix – Patterns of Escapism is the latest feature. Check out the 25 facts from the High Focus general below.
The album was originally going to be called ‘Circadian Rhythms’ until I came up with the name ‘Patterns Of Escapism’ and ran with that instead. (Download here!)
The large majority of the album was recorded by myself in my home studio.
The title track ‘Patterns Of Escapism’ was originally recorded to another beat but I decided to remix it and when I found the beat that we used, the second I heard it, I knew it was the one.
I actually started making the album before I made ‘Polyhymnia’ got sidetracked with that project and came back to this one afterwards, however taking the time with this one really helped me to get all the perfect beats and make a really cohesive album that I’m very proud of.
The ultimate don Chemo mixed and mastered the album all the way from Bangkok.
Ocean Wisdom first rapped me the verse for our collaboration track ‘Burn It’ when myself, him and Molotov were getting high in park in Athens Greece before we had to catch a plane home. The first time I heard the bar I knew it was gonna be a heavy track.
My long time old school homie RunOne played the piano you can hear in the chorus of the track ‘Diamond Tone’.
Often when I was recording in my yard my cats would attack my leg as the headphone cable was flying around whilst I was rapping and they thought it was a fun game. It resulted in me getting scratches on my leg and fucking up takes but it was pretty jokes all the same.
4 of the tracks were recorded in Chemo’s studio in London before he moved to Bangkok.
Street artist Matt Manson from Bristol designed the patterns you can see on the front of the album cover and Mark Shields put the whole product and package together and did the typography etc.
If you stare at the cover long enough you feel like its resonating and start to trip out.
Old school Hip Hop legend Blade pressed up the CD’s for the project. (Purchase the CD here!)
The CD version of the album contains a 12 page booklet with all of my lyrics from the album so you can rap along on a hype.
The double disc vinyls are going to be different colours with 3 different coloured specks running through them creating a mad effected called ‘Splatter Vinyl’ which means every record will be different and have an original pattern on it. There will only ever be 500 made in this style so get one while you can! (Purchase the vinyl here!)
I sent the beat and my vocal to King Kashmere for the track ‘Smoke Lingers Always’ and 3 days later his killer 32 bar was recorded in my inbox. I was overly gassed when I got it as Kashmere is one of my all time favourite rappers dead or alive and I went out and got waved on a hype that night.
AboveGround filmed the videos for the lead 3 singles ‘The Chronic, The Poltergeist & Patterns Of Escapism’, he is a serious problem, anyone taking photos or making videos needs to keep an eye on this man, he is the future.
I fully location scouted, storyboarded and directed the videos for ‘The Chronic’ & ‘Patterns Of Escapism’ with the concept of ‘The Poltergeist’ being a joint collaboration between myself and AboveGround.
Whilst shooting the video for ‘The Chronic’ multiple people stopped in the street including traffic and a woman screamed at the top of her lungs when she saw me dressed as Michael Jackson smashing a watermelon in the street and smashing it in to my face. It was a fun day.
I am very proud of this album and feel that Illinformed is without a doubt one of the sickest Boom Bap Hip Hop producers this country has ever produced.
‘Patterns Of Escapism’ is my 6th full length studio album, plus I have another project ‘Out The Box’ available on CD/digital and 2 albums with my crew The Four Owls totalling 9 full length albums I have put out not to mention a crazy amount of feature verses. I also feel like I’m only getting started with this rap shit so watch out!
Graffiti OG ‘Vodka’ painted the piece in ‘The Chronic’ video and also location scouted the scary looking abandoned cement works factory you see in ‘The Poltergeist’ video.
Graffiti OG and long time homie ‘Pow’ painted the ‘Escapism’ piece you see in the ‘Patterns Of Escapism’ video at Stockwell skate park, I specifically chose that location as I spent a lot of time there as a kid growing up.
The Weatherspoon’s pub in the ‘Patterns Of Escapism’ video is Denmark Hill and I spent many years going there with friends growing up, everyone probably got barred from there a good few times over the years and multiple jokes and madnesses happened so it meant a lot to shoot in there/outside there.
The first time I ever performed the title track ‘Patterns Of Escapism’ was at the last High Focus night in Brighton @ Concorde2 before I dropped the video, as soon as I heard the beat drop I knew it was going to be a track that will be in my set list for years to come.
If you cop my album you will enjoy it, I have infinite love for all my supporters, creative heads and High Focus fans world wide! (Order on Bandcamp here!)
‘Patterns Of Escapism’ is the third single and title track from Fliptrix’s upcoming 6th studio album entirely produced by Illinformed. The ‘Patterns Of Escapism’ LP features guest appearances from The Four Owls, Ocean Wisdom, King Kashmere, Verb T, Dabbla, Life MC, DJ Sammy B-Side & Jazz T. The highly anticipated album will be released on High Focus Records on the 25th of November 2016 on CD, limited edition vinyl & digital and is available to pre order now!
Here is the latest in our ongoing exclusive series “25 facts”. We have 25 facts from Tone Chop and Frost Gamble for their Veteran EP.
1. The concept for the “Veteran” EP was based around growing into adulthood, fatherhood, etc. – while experiencing the changes in Hip Hop music over the last 20 years.
2. Honesty is also a main theme in Veteran! We don’t glamorize negativity or materialism.
3. The name “Tone Chop” actually comes from an old Kung Fu classic called “Assassins”. One of the characters was named “Tong Chop” and he was very skilled in martial arts – just as Tone is very skilled at emceeing.
4. The “Gamble” in Frost’s name comes from being a pro poker player for 3 years. He used to travel the tournament circuit and make beats on a laptop in hotel rooms every night.
5. Chop writes his rhymes in pieces and puts them together like a puzzle – there might be one rhyme written across five different pages!
6. Sadly, Chop’s mother and father each passed away at a young age, from cancer – just 3 months apart.
7. When Chop met Frost, he was a rapper and had just started making beats. All he had was a drum machine and a four track.
8. Frost learned how to make beats and use the MPC by watching his neighbor DJ Spinna and others create beats for us to rhyme on.
9. Chop’s favorite rapper of all time is Lord Finesse – because of his crazy punchline style.
10. 5 rappers that Chop feels are very under-rated: Ransom, Fred Da Godson, Conway, Joell Ortiz and Joe Budden.
11. Tone Chop and Frost Gamble are both big fans of battle rap, from URL to KOTD. Frost often acts as a judge at local battle events.
12. We don’t really mess with keyboard beats. To us, sampling = Hip Hop
13. The bassline in “Step Up” was sampled from a 1996 cassette recording of a Tone Chop freestyle performance at Frost’s birthday party.
14. Tone Chop and Frost Gamble both enjoy fatherhood, and often use it as a theme in their music. Chop is a father to two boys – Anthony (age 8) and Vincent (age 5).
15. Frost has a 7 year old son, Thaddeus – named after one of his heroes, the 1800’s era abolitionist and US congressman Thaddeus Stevens.
16. Frost’s favorite producers of all time include Marley Marl, Just Blaze, the Beatnuts, Diamond D, Da Beatminerz and Preemo.
17. Chop’s very first Hip Hop tape was “Criminal Minded” by Boogie Down Productions. His all-time favorite is “Funky Technician” by Lord Finesse and DJ Mike Smooth.
18. Frost learned how to loop drumbreaks with pause tapes and tape splices – manually creating tape loops that could run on a reel-to-reel.
19. Chop is a big fan of graffiti art; he takes pictures anytime he sees something fresh!
20. Chop is also in a group called “Binghamton’s Most Wanted” which consists of Big Drew, Kizzle, Awful P, Weegee, T-Y, Trek, Flow and DJ Waxamillion. Both Awful P and DJ Waxamillion appear on the new EP.
21. Frost frequently collaborates with ZotheJerk (Detroit), White Rhino (Canada) & producer S.One who also appears on the EP.
22. Chop’s top favorite producers besides Frost are The Alchemist, DJ Premier, Pete Rock, Stu Bangas, Jake One and Marley Marl. He has used some of their beats for freestyles on previous mixtapes in the Chopper City series.
23. Frost moved from NY to Minneapolis, then onto Kentucky, Kansas City, Vegas, LA and Arizona before settling in Canada.
24. “Veteran” was completed by emailing audio files back and forth – we were never in the studio together even once.
25. Tone Chop and Frost Gamble can appreciate any style of Hip Hop – so long as the mic controller has skills. But our favorite will always be gritty NY style street rap.
We are proud to share a Hip-Hop Kings exclusive. Here is the Epic Beard Men Interview (Sage Francis and B Dolan) that we filmed at the Brudenell Social Club in Leeds, as part of the duo’s UK tour.
We have interviewed both B Dolan and Sage Francis individually in the last couple of years, when they’ve stopped by Manchester and Leeds respectively. Following their nine-day date at Ed Fringe, the Epic Beard Men added a string of UK dates to their schedule which saw them perform at the Brudenell Social Club in Leeds. The Epic Beard Men Interview was everything we hoped, and we spoke about the single “You Can’t Win” along with some previous tracks (2 Bad and Heart Failure). Shouts to DJ Focuz who’s now a target.
Hip-Hop Kings blogged the video for You Can’t Win which has seen some great reviews from fans and critiques since it’s release, and also marks the start of an Epic Beard Men project. Sage Francis and B Dolan confirmed they’re working on creating a project but are in the beginning stages, so there was nothing concrete to share at the moment. We’ll of course be keeping an eye on the development of the full length (hopefully an album) record, and will be sharing when the news becomes available. In the meantime, make sure you’ve watch our interviews with Sage Francis and B Dolan and check the back cataloge.
You can watch the Epic Beard Men Interview (Sage Francis and B Dolan) on the YouTube player below.
In our ongoing series, we’re proud to present Izm White – Wildlife 25 Facts.
Izm White made his debut on Hip-Hop Kings with the track “Nod Ya Head” ft Prodigy of Mobb Deep. Check out the 25 facts on his album “Wildlife” which can be downloaded from iTunes. Izm White – Wildlife 25 Facts are below.
1. Wildlife was released on the legendary Tommy Boy Records
2. Wildlife is my official debut album
3. I shot 6 music videos for the album
4. I recorded “Nod Ya Head” feat Prodigy in Queens NY at Mobb Deep’s studio
5. The music video for “Nod Ya Head” feat Prodigy was filmed at The Garden Of The God’s in Colorado Springs and has a cameo from Alchemist
6. Sheek Louch recorded his verse in Denver at Conway Sound (my go to studio) with Ghostface Killah in attendance
7. The music video “Signs Of The Times” feat Sheek Louch, was filmed in Denver and has cameos from Jadakiss and Styles P
8. “Top Level” feat Big Twins of Infamous Mobb Deep was shot in Miami by my brother who is also my DJ
9. I picked up Agallah in Compton the day we shot the music video “Battle Scars” in L.A
10. I recorded and mixed 90% of Wildlife at Conway Sound in Denver, CO
11. Ghostface Killah has been a mentor to me since I was 17 yrs old and is a big reason I got my record deal for Wildlife with Tommy Boy
12. I had the idea and mocked up the original design for the album cover art.
13. The music video for “They Say Yeah” looks like it was filmed in Morocco but was actually filmed in South East Colorado at the Great Sand Dune national park
14. I originally recorded around 30 plus songs for Wildlife before narrowing it down to 15.
15. My original 1st verse for “Nod Ya Head” feat Prodigy was more about partying and women, but after hearing Prodigy lay down his verse, I changed up some of my lyrics to be more aggressive.
16. The lyrics on Wildlife is 95% factual
17. I wrote 100% of all my lyrics on Wildlife with absolutely no in studio help
18. I over saw the mixing of each song in studio.
19. I had to have a few of the original beats re- worked before the Tommy Boy release
20. Wildlife is one of the first albums from a Colorado based MC released by a label with such stature as Tommy Boy.
21. I invested 100% of my own money to fund Wildlife and the music videos
22. I was 32 yrs old when I recorded Wildlife
23. Approximately 1lb of cannabis was consumed during the making of Wildlife
24. The album title can be interpreted in couple different ways, all are true to who I am where I’m from and what the music is about.
25. I passionately put my heart, mind and soul into this record.
You can watch the video for “Nod Ya Head” ft Prodigy below.
High Focus artist and Problem Child member Dabbla, has released his new album “Year of the Monkey” Here is Dabbla Year of the Monkey 25 Facts.
1. According to the Chinese zodiac and Chinese Five Element Theory, each year is associated with one of five elements (Gold, Wood, Water, Fire, and Earth) as well as an animal. This means that there are five types of Monkey year, and Monkey years of each element come once in a 60-year cycle with their own characteristics. 2016 is a Fire Monkey year, which will not be seen again until 2076.
2. ‘Psychoville’ was recorded in a house bang in the midst of the 2011 tottenham & Enfield riots with an Audi A3 burning outside at the end of the road throughout the night.
3. The guy playing pool in the ‘Get It feat: Ocean Wisdom’ video is three-time European Pool Champion and trick-shot master Rico Diks.
4. Not one song on the album was written or recorded on a Tuesday.
5. A Monkey year begins on Chinese New Year’s Day and ends on the last day before the following Chinese New Year (2017 will be a Rooster year). However, the Chinese New Year is based on the lunar calendar rather than the Gregorian calendar. Therefore, the starting dates of each Monkey year are different.
6. ‘Cheers’ was the first Ghosttown beat I ever recorded on, the baseline momentarily reminded me of the jungle classic Super Sharp Shooter.
7. Randeer doesn’t have a UK passport, he also doesn’t have underwear on most of the time.
8. The colour scheme for the album artwork was modeled on Aesop Rock’s ‘Skelethon’.
9.YOTM survived 2 macbook pro’s and a PC desk top computer.
10. The album was going to be called ‘Something Else’ before it was going to be called ‘Smell My Chi’ before it was finally named ‘Year Of The Monkey’
11. This is Dabbla’s first solo album and at the same time, sixth official LP he’s appeared on.
11. This is Dabbla’s first solo album and at the same time, tenth official LP he’s appeared on.
12. Y.O.T.M has the numeric value of 3 which is strong in the realms of numerical values.
13. Almost every family in China will put up New Year decorations before New Year’s Day comes. In a year of the Monkey, decorations featuring monkeys can be seen everywhere, including households, shopping malls, parks, and streets. Decorations are generally in the form of paper cuttings, New Year paintings, couplets, etc.
14. It took approximately 2 years for baxter to write his verse for ‘Vomit’ after insisting he was better suited to a slower bpm. In the end he wrote it in 20 minutes in Bangkok off his face.
15 A year of the Monkey is believed to be an unlucky year for people whose birth sign is the Monkey. According to Chinese astrology, in their Zodiac year people are believed to offend Tai Sui, the God of Age, bringing nothing but bad luck.With this in mind, according to folklore, those born in a year of the Monkey should be more careful in Zodiac year 2016. This includes taking caution across a range of aspects, including fortune, career health, and love.
16. Sumgii mixed and mastered 70% of the album with one hand in a bucket of Adobo Chicken.
17. The song ‘Butterfly’ is almost twelve years old.
18. Approximately 7.665 kilos of marijuana was consumed during the making of this production
19. ‘Incomparable’ was recorded in one take at SMB studios and Pete Cannon pressed the record button.
20. ‘That There’ was the last track to be added to the playlist and was spot-written in 6 hours.
21. The vocal for ‘Life Line’ sat on eight different instrumentals until Chemo nailed it.
22. The lyrics for ‘Get It’ were originally written to the instrumental for ‘Stupid.
23. Pterodactyl’ was sped up by 4 BPM after it was recorded because Ghosttown forgets to speed up his Instrumentals by 4 BPM after he writes them.
24. The cuts from frosty would be the first time he’s ever appeared on vinyl.
25. Pterodactyl is my favourite track on the album which doesn’t feature another rapper.
Make sure you download Dabbla Year of the Monkey from the links listed above. You can also check out a day in the life of Dabbla on the YouTube player below.
1. “Lost In Translation” was the only song we recorded together on the album.
2. The title for “Gilbert’s Grape” was inspired by the time Twizzy had Haemorrhoids.
3. Twizzy & Jinxsta wanted to call “To The Slaughter”, “Lamb Shanks” but M.A.B said no.
4. On “Be Careful”, Jinxsta discovered his inner Barry Half-White. Soul.
5. We were going to do one solo track each on the album…but didn’t. Deep.
6. The album was entirely funded by people buying music / merchandise from our Bandcamp & at live shows. Thank you!
7. M.A.B wants to do a world tour in 7 days off the back of this release. It can be done.
8. Cheba who did the album art work, played Mobb Deep at his wedding reception. Mosh pit.
9. The title track “Time To Feast”, was the last track to be finished on the album.
10. Twizzy had to record his vocals twice due to his PC crashing, losing all of the original files.
11. Jinxsta recorded every verse on the album with a bottle of Supermalt in his right hand. His left hand never knew.
12. Together, the Beast is 87 years old.
13. After every show, M.A.B eats between 20-25 chicken nuggets.
14. Billy Whizz is our DJ and also delivers our CD’s.
15. Diligent Fingers produced “Marching” but also came up with the concept for the track as well. Boss.
16. All tracks were mixed and mastered in Bedminster (Bristol) at Rola’s Studio.
17. The Beast have a tie aside from music on a certain date. M.A.B, Twizzy’s Dad & Jinxsta JX’s Mum all share the 29th of June as their birthday…strange but true.
18. The tour bus (Twizzy’s car) is named “Wong Chong Silver” due to the copious amounts of herbal remedies enjoyed within it.
19. The sample used for “Set You Free” was originally flipped by K.Bourne on another beat, to be used on M.A.B’s first project (aged 16) but the recording was lost. Years later the beat was recreated with the help of JCA and is now featured on our album.
20. We started working on the album in 2013. It’s been a slow process due to us wanting the content to be the best we could bring to the table…no pun intended.
21. With that being said, our second release “Self Driven” consists of the tracks that didn’t make the album for various reasons.
22. An early version of “Dead Man’s Shoes” appears on the “Real Talk” compilation, put together by Chester P to raise money for the homeless. Check it out HERE
23. Cheba filmed a video for our first EP but when it came to the editing process, we realised it didn’t look as great as we pictured in our heads. It was later scrapped and never released. (The photo proof can be found online)
24. We once performed at a Weapon of Choice Halloween event dressed as Saddam Hussein (Jinxsta JX) Osama Bin Laden (M.A.B) & Muammar Gaddafi (Twizzy). (Photo proof of this can also be found online)
25. “Time To Feast” is our debut album as a collective and is available now! Have a listen and grab it from our Bandcamp as well as most digital stores, including Spotify. Respect!
Chillman Abstract Patterns 25 Facts is the latest in the Hip-Hop Kings 25 facts series. Also contributions by High Focus and Four Owls member Verb T
1. Abstract Patterns was recorded at the legendary Kilimanjaro studios
2. The colours on the cover represent the Eritrean flag
3. Funk Dialect is essentially a Verbal Highz cypher + The man, the Ked that is Joe Publik
4. It was definitely inspired by someone’s nan
5. The first verse off “Royal with Cheese” was written whilst waiting for my chicken pitta meal at Herefords Go Peri and is the best chicken shop in town, the owner Tanveer loves me because I sort him the good weed
6. “Defeat Stress” was one of the last tracks written
7. Entra P who has the last feature verse on the album actually taught me English
8. I have a huge collection of the prank calls that were featured on “Funky Drifting” on my hard drive
9. I think “Hi Lo” was the first track written that made the album
10. The Defeat Stress EP features a remix off Leaf Dog as well as his brother Illinformed
11. The videos for “You are You” and “Defeat Stress” were shot in London and “Say” in Cardiff
12. The album was done over about 2 years
13. Weston’s is a lovely 8.2 % cider that you should probably try
14. I will definitely be working on another with Verbs in the future
15. Running out of facts so Verbs will take over
16. Album artwork was done by Sam Marsh who also did my ‘Medicated Dreams’ cover
17. I met Chillman at an open mic competition, Chillman missed his performance time, he was getting stoned in his mates car
18. I made most of the beats on the album specifically for this project, a couple of the beats were ones I had in the stash
19. It’s the first full album to drop on “In The Balance Records”
20. At the end of “Hilo” when we were recording, Lukas from Aboveground walked into the room and said “general selecta!” in range of the mic and everyone laughed, you can kind of hear right at the end of the song
21. We wrote and demo’d the album before recording it properly, the main bulk of the tunes were done over two days in April 2015
22. The song and the video for “You are You” were recorded in the same day, part of the video was filmed on a wet roof where I kept falling over and everyone laughed at me, luckily I didn’t fall off the roof
23. Leaf Dog was the fastest of all the features to get his verse recorded and sent back.
24. Chillman’s second album will be produced by me and a 2nd secret weapon beat maker who will amaze the world
25. The best life advice I ever received is … be as nice as you can without compromising your dignity and definitely try your best not to be a dick
As part of our popular 25 facts series, we have Hey Zeus.I – I Aint Apart of This EP which is now part of the legacy. Hey Zeus.I releases I Aint Apart of This and gives Hip-Hop Kings readers 25 facts about the E.P.
Hey Zeus.I I Aint Apart of This EP (25 Facts)
Contradiction has been 6 years in the making. Anyone who listened to MixxNutts radio show on rinse.fm when i was hosting Alex Nutt’s show should be very familiar with the 1st verse
The first verse on Contradiction is an ode to the american comedian George Carlin and is a reference to his opening piece “I’m a modern man” in one of his stand up routines.
The Beat for Contradiction was meant for someone else but he slept and i stay woke
‘I a’int apart of this’ was a piece originally written to be performed in an abandoned church
The hook “I a’int apart of this I a’int involved…” is also inspired by George Carlin but this time his views on voting.
For ‘I aint involved’, I wrote the hook, sent the acappella to Blue (Daisy), he built around that, then sent me back a tune arranged waiting for verses. I recorded on shitty Mac Mic. Never re-recorded against Blues judgement cause i really like the shitty sound. Tickles my inner punk 😉
Nothing came from lucid trip thoughts contemplating what nothing is or is not
There is a version of ‘nothing’ with 24 bars from Blue Daisy somewhere in the archives over a next beat
Bioniq who did the artwork has also designed me a couple of tattoos which i have on the back of my right arm. its in a style of blaxploitation movie posters but of futuristic matriarchs!!
Nick Blatantly Blunt used to be a rapper and around 10 years back he recorded at my old studio in Tottenham Hale and its pure coincidence Par Excellance got him in to do the promo
I first met Blue daisy at a remix contest where we had to flip Katy Perry “i kissed a girl”acappella. i won he still cant admit defeat!!!
i have mostly been smoking Lemon, on rare occasions when available – grapefruit sour diesel, O.G Kush and girl scout cookies.
through the course of this project i have lived in north, west and east London. touching south soon….
Contradiction was recorded at zip lock studios which is ran by Bad Fx who i have known since 4 years old.
Original cover sketch featured a pig head, which i didn’t get so Bioniq flipped it into a lion head
Bioniq also designed the previous project artwork for Obba Supa
I’m not sure if its deep thinking or procrastination but i like to take at least a week to write a verse or song. that includes a couple days contemplation of what I’m trying to say and the subject I’m approaching.
My favourite line on the project is “I’m a in denial Nihilist dreaming that i got hope”
While following Alex Nutt about, hosting at a rinse.fm bash when Pay as you go was reuniting for a one off speacial, as a host warming up an empty room i stole the mic and it turn out to be (veteran grime MC) Major Aces, he wasn’t happy. I still use it to this day. nudge nudge wink wink…..
“how far can you run into a forest? answer – half way. the other half your running out. this my favourite little riddle I like to tease brains with. Take it as a gift to you to amaze your friends with as i have……
I have no direct internet connection or own a smartphone, tablet etc. making me quite a frustration to get hold of.
Been working on a project with Snow Ghost producer Throwing Snow and also some new material with my group Obba Supa
I don’t smoke or drink and like to be 100% sober when recording verses. Chants, hooks or chorus’s is another story though, same with writing.
This is the first project I have recorded wearing shoes.
Many time I’d go to the Gas Chamber to record and end up just talking about any and everything
We hope you enjoyed reading Hey Zeus.I Contradiction EP (25 Facts) – please make sure you share the article and let us know your thoughts on Twitter (@HHKMag)
Next up in our 25 facts series, we have Visual giving us 25 facts about his upcoming project “The Ambassador”. Visual The Ambassador 25 Facts can be viewed below.
Visual The Ambassador 25 Facts (iTunes)
1. The Ambassador was started in 2013
2. The Ambassador songs were all recorded by 2014
3. The album was recorded at 5 different studios
4. 3 different engineers mixed the album
5. Most of the songs were recorded and mixed in a home studio
6. “Not enough” was recorded at Soundscape studios where Chief Keef, Chance the Rapper, Freddie Gibbs, Action Bronson + have recorded
7. The album was originally digitally mastered but later re-mastered in analog before the release
8. There are 16 featured artist
9. There are 7 different producers
10. The album features 3 female mc’s
11. 1/2 of the 16 featured artist have never released an album
12. All featured artist and producers are from the Midwest
13. 3 tracks with 5 different artist were cut from the project because they did not fit the overall theme
14. The video for Sand in the glass was shot by German film maker and hip hop enthusiast Arvid Wu just a few days after we met, while he was in Chicago visiting friends
15. A video for “Break Away” was shot that may never be released
16. There are already a few songs set for volume 2
17. Volume 2 will feature an artist who many think should be a member of Slaughterhouse
18. The Ambassador is my 12th release
19. “Hollywood” has audio clips of Joakim Noah of the Chicago Bulls referring to the Miami Heat during the 2011 playoffs as “Hollywood as hell”
20. I went to elementary school with Chi-Ill who is featured on “Matter of fact”
21. My ideas for photography and artwork for the project were made a reality by my good friend Mo Parker
22. The original title I had in mind for this album was “Chicago Renaissance”
23. I paused work on The Ambassador to work on “Supreme Science” & “ILL VISUAL”
24. A LONG TIME AGO I did an interview with Stuart from HHK via AOL IM
25. I stood up till 4:00 am writing this list.
Thank you for reading Visual The Ambassador 25 facts. Please make sure you support by downloading the album.
Our mate Rob Kelly has provided 25 exclusive facts about the upcoming album Kel Jefe. Rob Kelly Kel Jefe is now available to pre-order from iTunes with the single “Eff Mitch Green” available now. Enjoy our Rob Kelly Kel Jefe – 25 Facts and follow him on Twitter (@RobHKelly) for new music.
PREVIOUS | Rob Kelly Kel Jefe Artwork and TrackListing
The album is title ‘Kel Jefe’ because Rob Kelly is from Wexford in Ireland, locals often refer to it as ‘Wexico’ Kel Jefe is a character, part of the Jack The Ripper persona. The Character Jack The Ripper was born out of not wanting to chase radio air play and just make straight up raw hip-hop music.
‘Eff Mitch Green’ was originally called ‘Smash’ as a loose title, it was changed to ‘Eff Mitch Green’ as an ode to the late great Sean Price who due to appear on that record after Rob had already recorded a verse for Sean’s album. Mitch Green the boxer had a famous fight with Mike Tyson outside of Dapper Dan’s in Harlem and Mike Tyson was aka Mic Tyson. It features Rim from Sean Price’s protege group ‘Da Villinz’.
The artwork, by talented Leeds based illustrator Peter O’Toole, is inspired by EPMD’s ‘Business Never Personal’ and Ice-T’s ‘Power’.
J57 who exec produced and A&R’d the project,first submitted beats to Rob when he worked in Fat Beats, his meteoric rise has prompted Rob to nickname him Big Baby Ronson, because he believes J57 will eventually end up wearing 3 piece suits and A&R ing Rita Ora’s 70’s disco throwback album.
The entire album was recorded, mixed and mastered by Terawrizt who also appears on ‘Russian Mafia’ with Jonnie Darkko. The three have a project together in the works.
‘Dessie’s got the shooter in the Van’ was written from the perspective of Tommy from the movie ‘Snatch’ if he lived in Wexico. The character ‘Dessie’ will re-appear in future projects.
The hook from ”Air Max and Cash” came from the time Tabatha Cash wore a pair of air max when being interviewed by Jean Paul Gautier on a TV show called ‘Eurotrash’ in 1997.
‘Death By Gold Chain Rap’ replaced a song called ‘Disco’ that didn’t make the album. The album had already been completed until Rob heard the beat and wrote it on spot.
‘Morphene’ was the first track rob laid for the album after signing the contract and it set the tone for the entire project.
The four albums that were on steady rotation while ‘Kel Jefe’ was recorded were ‘Monkey Barz’ by Sean Price ‘Muddy Waters’ by Redman ‘Operation Doomsday’ by MF Doom and ‘Don Dada’ by Supercat.
‘Morphene’ references characters from ‘Marked for Death’ and ‘Carlito’s Way’ – 2 of Rob’s favourite movies. It also references the BMW chase scene from the former.
Rob originally sang the hook on ‘too good’ ala Erick Sermon but the engineer cut the vocals out in the mix.
‘Jefelogue’ the final track on the album is the 6th record J57 and Rob have worked on together. He also produced ‘shook crews runnin’ featuring Reef The lost Cauze, ‘Badman’ ‘These Days’ featuring Timeless Truth. ‘Air Max Killer’ off the collaboration EP between Rob & S.A.S and ‘Sam Kinnison’s Revenge’ with Soul Khan and Juan Deuce.
Almost all of the tracks on the album were written on spot in studio.
One of the first rap songs Rob ever heard was ‘children’s story’ by slick rick. To this day Rob tries to reference or name check the ruler as many times as possible, there are two references to Uncle Ricky on this album.
Irish author Roddy Doyle who had his Barrytown Trilogy of books adapted into a series of movies in the 90’s. He regularly references and even names songs after characters from the films.
Joey ‘The Lips Fagan’, Sharon Curley, Georgie Burgess have all previously been mentioned in Rob’s work. ‘Kel Jefe’ is no different and contains a reference to ‘Jimmy Rabbitte’ and ‘Imelda Quirke’ from ‘the commitments’ which was directed by Alan Parker in 1991.
‘Kel Jefe’ is another Rob Kelly character or alias, when Rob creates these characters, he gives them theme tunes which is what the title track is.
‘Eff Mitch Green’ is the third collaboration between Rob & Rim from Da Villinz, they first worked together on ‘Jimmy Jump’ from the ‘Black Irish Rogue’ album, they again linked on ‘the wicked’ from Rob’s collaborative project with S.A.S ‘No Blacks No Dogs No Irish’ Their first effort was featured in ‘The Source’ Magazine.
The production on the album comes from London’s ‘Tony Mahoney, California’s Tranzformer, Mook from an Irish group called Sons Phonetic and none other than the ubiquitous J57.
Rob makes reference to the Jay-Z owned Cognac Dusse on the album and although Dusse is not yet available in Ireland, Rob drank it in NYC while attending his good friend Memphis Bleek’s wedding in 2014. The two met on the Jay-Z water for life tour in 2006 and became friends, Bleek has regularly visited Ireland and invited Rob to the side stage when Jay Z performed in Ireland and the two had a record that was on Westwood’s ‘hot 6 at 6’ called ‘Game Over’. Bleek who was Sean Price’s cousin also invited Rob to guest on a track with P called ‘RNS’ which prompted Sean to find out who Rob was and they worked on more music together which Rob lists as his greatest achievement to date.
‘Eff Mitch Green’ contains an LL cool J reference because Rob bought ‘Mama Said Knock You Out’ with his confirmation money at 12 years old.
On Black Mass Rob flips a Public Enemy line from 1989’s ‘Fight the Power’ from ‘it takes a nation of millions’ which was heavily used in Spike Lee’s ‘Do The Right thing’ that album and movie heavily influenced Rob’s journey into hip-hop culture.
The video for ‘Black Mass’ is the first Rob Kelly video ever filmed entirely in Rob’s home town of Wexford. It was directed by local director James Bell.
There is a heavy wu-tang influence on the title track, a reference to ODB & method man the later of which worked with exec producer j57 on his Tommy Boy album last year.
Rob is heavily influenced by the chopper read books and movie and tried to write some of the tracks from this album from the perspective of the lovable rogue.
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