The Lavender Pill Mob

'€œCocaine sex is fast and effective'€¦'€, chanted Gary Asquith. when he was the leader of Renegade Soundwave. Cool music can be instantly appealing and somewhat shocking. Gary Asquith has always created music that was accessible but not commercial. For more than two decades, Asquith created intelligent, fun, emotional, catchy, and catchy underground music. As he moved from group to group, the musical styles changed. Originally in Rema-Rema (with members of The Wolfgang Press), Asquith cemented lifetime friendships with many people in the music industry. After Rema-Rema, he helped to create another group called Mass. Asquith eventually left 4AD Records and formed the legendary industrial / dance / hip-hop / electronic group Renegade Soundwave. Their cocaine anthem, '€œBiting My Nails'€ was major hit in the independent music world. Still, the b-side to that single ('€œCocaine Sex'€) earned them more limelight. The controversy of '€œCocaine Sex'€ had people either thrilled or angry. During a time when cocaine was considered a yuppie drug or a crack head'€™s choice, Renegade Soundwave let us know that drugs hit everybody. There was not a brooding message of doom. The song simply suggested that we should all have sex while on cocaine. This one song exemplifies the power of Gary Asquith'€™s music on listeners.

Time has focused Gary Asquith. Renegade Soundwave eventually broke up and Gary Asquith disappeared from the public spotlight. In the new millennium, Gary Asquith formed The Lavender Pill Mob with Kevin Mooney (from Adam And The Ants). Asquith'€™s creativity has pushed into the realm of business and creative control. Asquith created Le Coq Musique, an independent label to create and/or release music without limitations. The debut self-titled album by The Lavender Pill Mob was a low key affair but featured (or used) performances by Rammellzee, Mick Allen (of The Wolfgang Press), and others. Their 2006 sophomore album, '€œMikes Bikes'€ is a mind-blowing treat featuring punk rock music fused with hip-hop and indie pop. Adam Ant contributes lead vocals to '€œBlack Pirates'€.

Gary Asquith has earned a sense of peace with The Lavender Pill Mob and his label, Le Coq Musique. With complete creative control, he has the resources and power to craft his art and help others do the same. The exciting music will fascinate and entertain listeners due to his passion and diverse influences. Asquith and The Lavender Pill Mob have created timeless classics in the styles of Punk rock, hip-hop, industrial, and acoustic ballads. The revolution is both global and personal. Gary Asquith has revolutionized himself and used The Lavender Pill Mob to contribute to an ongoing musical revolution. Take a ride on Mike'€™s Bike and get high with The Lavender Pill Mob.


T.JONES: "What goes on?"
GARY ASQUITH: '€œSince finishing '€˜Mikes Bikes'€™, at the end of June in London, I've been living back in France, renovating my houses, and making my world a better place to live in. All the tracks on '€˜Mikes Bikes'€™ were written in London, except the track '€˜Mikes Bikes'€™, which was recorded in Berlin. Right now, I'm digging out my cellar with the idea of linking it to my main house via a spiral staircase. It's a stunning space where I intend to have my machines gathered for some recording next summer. I've got so many houses and various types of barns. It's hard to keep the place under control. Local cuisine and wines also turn me on, especially when I've some guests.'€

T.JONES: '€œTell us about your new LP, '€˜Mikes Bikes'€™ by The Lavender Pill Mob.'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œIt's a punk rock guitar-fuelled affair with guest appearances from Film 2, Adam Ant, Mekon, and The Detroit Sinner. This is my favorite collection of recordings from everything I've done thus far. '€˜Mikes Bikes'€™ is a super cool album.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhich song on '€˜Mikes Bikes'€™ took you the longest to complete?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œWe work really quickly. It was more a problem of finding a set of tracks that we thought worked well together. Countless tracks were written that didn't seem to fit, so we just kept on going until we cracked it. Some of the free downloads on lecoqmusique.com are songs that we thought might originally make the album but didn't.'€

T.JONES: '€œThe shortest?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œ'€˜Jesus Version'€™ was done in about 20 minutes or so. That's quick on my block.'€

T.JONES: '€œHow did you hook up with Adam Ant for the song, '€˜Black Pirates'€™? Describe the session with Adam Ant.'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œKevin, who's my partner, was bass player with the Ants in their most glorious period. I was in a band called Rema-Rema with Adam's co-writer, Marco Pirroni. This was before he joined the Ants. We've all known each other for a very long time. We just asked Adam if he'd like to do a song with us. A couple of days later, he turned up and selected a backing track that he liked. He sang, '€˜Black Pirates'€™. No complications or traumas. Pure, simple, and wrapped up without any re-runs. Professional style. He has not done any recordings for 8 or 9 years, so I'm very happy that he chose to work with The Lavender Pill Mob.'€

T.JONES: '€œDo you have a favorite song on '€˜Mikes Bikes'€™?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œ'€˜Go Go Go'€™, '€˜1625'€™, '€˜Green Grass Bike Stop'€™, '€˜It Doesn'€™t Matter'€™, and '€˜Black Pirates'€™. I pretty much like it all. How
can you not like '€˜It's A Sure Thing'€™? It'€™s chippa, '€˜Mikes Bikes'€™.'€

T.JONES: '€œHow is '€˜Mikes Bikes'€™ different from the debut album?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œ'€˜Mikes Bikes'€™ is more song-based. I've always thought of the first album as a piece of art, rather than an album.'€

T.JONES: '€œHow did you meet Kevin Mooney?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œWhen I played my first gig with Rema. Rema, Kevin's band was supporting us and playing their first gig. We've been mates ever since. We'll always be mates because we really appreciate each other'€™s talents. Working together is so natural.'€

T.JONES: '€œOn the debut self-titled album by The Lavender Pill Mob, the song '€˜Darling'€™ mentions a name of a certain land. Can you tell us about that land?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œ'€˜Aes sidhe' is an Irish term for 'the witches'€™ pronounced '€˜shee'€™, as in '€˜banshee'€™."

T.JONES: '€œWhat sparked the idea for you Kevin Mooney to work together again and form The Lavender Pill Mob?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œKevin had been married to supermodel Leslie Winer and was living in Boston for many years. I assumed that I'd not be seeing him again when I chanced upon an ex-girlfriend of a mutual friend of ours called Nazrin Montag. She was crossing a zebra crossing on London's Finchley Road. We took coffee together and she mentioned that she bumped into Kevin at a zebra crossing further up the Finchley Road, towards Swiss cottage tube station, some days before and exchanged telephone numbers. She, in turn, gave me Kevin's number. When I phoned a few days later to say, '€˜Hi'€™, he told me to come round to his place straight away. When I arrived, he was recording and demanded that I do a vocal, there and then. That, I guess, was the birth of The Lavender Pill Mob.'€

T.JONES: '€œThe Lavender Pill Mob crosses various genres. The sound varies from punk rock to hip-hop to new wave to something incomparable. Was this intentional?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œTough question this one, Todd. Both me and Kevin listen to a wide variety of music. That reflects on our every moment and breath. I'm not too sure if anything I've recorded with The Lavender Pill Mob is intentional, but I'm sure that it's a natural, instinctive song writing procedure. Musical genre-hopping is in my blood. So, maybe it is intentional. Sorry to be vague. You got me there, Todd.'€

T.JONES: '€œOne of my favorite songs on '€˜Mikes Bikes'€™ is '€˜It Doesn'€™t Matter'€™. What inspired this track?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œWhen I split with my ex-wife, named Jo, I fell into a sequence of relationships with women called Jo, directly afterwards. That was my inspiration for '€˜It Doesn't Matter'€™.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat'€™s the meaning behind the title, '€˜Mikes Bikes'€™?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œBoth me and Kevin had connections with guys called Mike who had Bikes. We found ourselves having a laugh about it. We decided, way before we'd started '€˜Mikes Bikes'€™, that it was going to be the title of our next album.'€

T.JONES: '€œOn your website (www.lecoqmusique.co.uk), some unreleased mp3'€™s are available. Why were songs like '€˜Rocking Garage'€™, '€˜Line Of Attack'€™, and '€˜Lip Glow'€™ not included on the albums? The song, '€˜Lip Glow'€™ is actually one of my all time favorite tracks by you. Were these songs recently created? Will they ever be officially released?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œ'€˜Rocking Garage'€™ is a version of '€˜Gary's Garage'€™, which was an additional track on my '€˜Dragonbass Soundsystem'€™ version of '€˜Cocaine Sex'€™. '€˜Line Of Attack'€™ and '€˜Lip Glow'€™ nearly made it on the CD. Both tracks were originally going on '€˜Mikes Bikes'€™ before we changed the shape'€¦ again! '€˜Lip Glow'€™ is possibly the most beautiful track that I've ever sung.'€

T.JONES: '€œTell us about this collaboration with Dif Juz, called Tranquil Trucking Company.'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œI've known those scoundrels called Dif Juz for many a good year. Really excellent musicians, top notch. I love Bromley's bass bandit attitude and wanted to collide with the Curtis brothers. Dave Curtis lives around the corner from my mother'€™s. I'd pop in to see him frequently. We started writing some stuff together and it finished up being Tranquil Trucking Company. I haven't spoken with Dave much since my move to France. I hope he's well.'€

T.JONES: '€œYou worked with other artists too. Do you have a different approach for every artist?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œNot really. I like entering people'€™s musical world, if I like their style, that is. It's bliss for me to get involved with musicians who inspire me.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhen creating a track, do you have a set theme or idea first, or the music first?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œIt works both ways, like milking cows. Sometimes, I just write stuff and then, get a lyrical idea. Sometimes, I just go on a pen frenzy and write down what's going on in my head, at that moment. Then, I fit it into whatever tracks that are around. Then, buzz them in.'€

T.JONES: '€œFavorite drum machine / sampler?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œ505, band in a box.'€

T.JONES: '€œFavorite guitar?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œFender Precision Bass.'€

T.JONES: '€œDescribe the creative process. Where do you do pre-production? How long does it usually take to finish a song?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œWhen I worked with my much-respected brothers at Renegade Soundwave Towers, we'd spend ages getting things to sound like nobody else could imagine. You can hear how slick those recordings are still today. With Kevin, it's a different state of mind. He doesn't like to dwell on songs. One-take Kevin. So, my formula has changed since I started working with Kevin, or Special K, as I sometimes call him. When I'm in full writing mode, I like to get a song finished in a day. We have a mobile studio that we cart around London. When we're vibed, we unlock the machines from their cases and proceed with caution.'€

T.JONES: '€œHow and why did you start your label, Le Coq Musique?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œI needed to write songs. I don't like the nerd culture at record companies. They take the piss out of their artists then, dump them on the freeway. Le Coq Musique is about me & Kevin. It's our home and we're perfectly capable of writing songs for ourselves, rather than some fat clueless music industry executives. Le Coq Musique is cool and I'm very proud of having the likes of Adam Ant, Mekon, Film 2 and The Detroit Sinner involved in the projects. We're a good connection and we write good songs. For sure.'€

T.JONES: '€œIs there a deep meaning behind the name, Le Coq Musique?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œNo, it's a play on Le Coq Sportif. Also, Tottenham Hotspurs are my North London football club with a cockerel as their motto. So, it just fit real good.'€

T.JONES: '€œWill there be other artists on Le Coq Musique?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œYep. The Imbeciles & Templeton are our latest additions. We still want more from our Detroit Sinner.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat happened to Renegade Soundwave? Why did RSW break up?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œWe imploded. I never really got on well with Danny. When Karl left, there was a void in our sound. I did most of my writing with Karl. Mute Records dropped us because we were hard work to deal with. Pretty much everything that went wrong at Mute, Renegade got blamed for. If someone took a cab without authorization, you can be sure it would turn up on the Renegade Soundwave account. In fairness, we were no angels, but we didn't give a fuck about what people thought of us. We always made good records and pushed our boundaries.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat did you do between the end of RSW and now?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œI've just continued making records when I like and with whoever was about at the time. I've relocated. I've always got plenty of stuff going on in my houses that keep me occupied. If I only could invent a machine that slows and accelerates time'€¦.'€

T.JONES: '€œThe song, '€˜Cocaine Sex'€™ by Renegade Soundwave created some controversy. What kind of criticism or effect came from this song?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œ'€˜Cocaine Sex'€™ actually charted in the middle week English chart. I'm proud to have that song in my repertoire. I can't remember the fuss, really. We got tons of press and we left Rhythm King Records shortly afterwards. Mark Moore from S Express played it out when it was still a promo and I can remember the whole dance floor erupted into a mass of hysteria. Fantastic vibe to see 600 people gyrating to a song that still hadn't been released. '€˜Cocaine sex is fast'€¦'€™'€

T.JONES: '€œDo you still do cocaine?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œNot today, thank you, Todd. I've done my fair share. The last time I DJ'd in London, I got offered cocaine. I took a bottle of beer instead. It kind of bores me now. I'd like to be a better advert for modern society than a drug-fuelled asshole who can't get his words out quick enough. We've got too many jerks on our planet without me being one of them.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat other drugs have you done? What drugs do you still do?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œI like the liqueur shops still. Fine wines. Chateau Chambert 1998 is a good wine and not too expensive. Pot crops up from time to time. I've done most of the drugs that have hit the market squares of my life. I loved the E thing when they had the MDMA capsules. New York speakeasy'€™s and a magic pill took me to my favorite places in the early 80's. They fucked that drug up when it changed to a pill.'€

T.JONES: '€œThe b-side to '€˜Biting My Nails'€™ is a song called, '€˜Kray Twins'€™. Morrissey also has a song about the Kray Twins called '€˜Last Of The Famous International Playboys'€™. What did you think of his track?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œI've not heard it. I'm not too crazy for Morrissey or The Smiths. All those whining Northern English bands piss me off. An old girlfriend of mine, called Fiona, is now living with the guitarist'€™s family in Manchester. I've heard he's a really nice guy, but that's it for me on Morrissey connections.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat did you think of the film '€˜The Krays'€™?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œCrap. It's a shame.'€

T.JONES: '€œRSW were one of the first electronic hip-hop groups with a white emcee. If Renegade Soundwave came out in 2006, how would things be different?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œI'm not a hypothetical type of wizard. Renegade Soundwave would always be a good band because all of its members have contributed to music through their love of music. Skills in abundance.'€

T.JONES: '€œDo you still listen to hip-hop? What hip-hop artists or albums do you like?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œYeah, I like The Common, Rammellzee's new stuff, all of the old Beastie Boys, and Run-DMC stuff.'€

T.JONES: '€œWill Renegade Soundwave ever release something new?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œI'd love to do a new Renegade Soundwave album. Vinyl for Danny and a double CD for me. Anything is possible, in my world. I'd have to patch up some bad history with Danny, though. That could be difficult. Karl would be the one who I'd love to have another opportunity to write with, Karl and Danny. One playing live drums while the other programs drums. Make sure it's Karl playing the live drums. Gee, I miss those comrades.'€

T.JONES: '€œLooking back, what do you think of the music of Renegade Soundwave?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œClassic and innovative.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat RSW song are you most proud of? Which album?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œ'€˜In Dub'€™ sounds great. So does most of '€˜Soundclash'€™. I'd still love to remix '€˜Soundclash'€™. That would be a good project for Danny & myself. '€˜Bubbaluba'€™, and the track Renegade Soundwave CD with 7 mixes. Wow! That's a great CD. You got me going now, Todd! The '€˜Bassnumb Chapter'€™ is excellent too.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat RSW stuff are you least proud of?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œ'€˜Bacteria'€™ doesn't do much for me.'€

T.JONES: '€œAny regrets from the RSW days?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œNot really. We had our ups and downs. It's a cool mark having been in RSW.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat do you think of the '€˜Thunder'€™ version by The Chemical Brothers?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œI know The Chemical Brothers have a version of '€˜Thunder'€™. It is their '€˜Brother'€™s Gonna work It Out'€™ CD. I'd like to hear a remix. It sounds like a good idea. I wanted to add that I'd like The Chemical Brothers to do a punk rock album. Let me have some details on that, Todd.'€

T.JONES: '€œHow did Rema-Rema form?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œFriendships. I went to school with Michael Allen (from The Wolfgang Press and Genuiser). He's a very good friend of mine. He was pissed off in The Models and asked me to join him on his new adventure. That discussion probably changed the route of my life. You can blame him for all that you don't like in me. My paper airplanes used to whiz pass Michael's ears in our school classroom. We got thrown together through having surnames beginning with '€˜A'€™ chronologically classed.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhy did Rema-Rema break up?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œMarco joined Adam Ant. We couldn't be Rema-Rema without Marco, so we slumped into being Mass.'€

T.JONES: '€œYou worked with Michael Allen on debut Lavender Pill Mob CD. What is he like working with these days, as opposed to the collaborations of the past? How is he different than other artists?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œOh dear, Todd, He used to be a nightmare, always wanting his own way. But now, he's just a regular Lavender Pill Mob misfit, when he wants. Todd, Michael Allen will always have a space on my table. I love that guy. He's the tops. Michael has a bass groove like no other.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat do you think of Michael Allen'€™s new group, Geniuser?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œI really like it. I should drag it back out from my musical vault. He made a small mistake with not asking me to do a number, but besides that, it's a great CD.'€

T.JONES: '€œYou were on the song, '€˜Louis XIV'€™ by The Wolfgang Press from their '€˜Queer'€™ album). You have that famous line. ('€˜'€¦In Venezuela, they have lots of cocaine'€¦'€™) What did cocaine have to do with it? Did you ever do coke with Mick? How did this song happen?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œMichael isn't big with drugs. I'm sure I must have done at some point. Michael likes being in control, so drugs don't show on his CV. Michael instructed me on the Cocaine line on '€˜Louis XIV'€™ because our voices worked so well together in Rema-Rema. I'm Michael's favorite singer on planet Earth and that's a big compliment
from him. Smoked a whole lot of pot with Michael in the 70's.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat do you think of Louis The Sun King?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œIt makes me think of Flamboyance, Todd.'€

T.JONES: '€œLooking back, what do you think of the music of Rema-Rema?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œReally like it still. Especially, the bass grooves. We had a whole album of great songs that never got recorded. Renegade recorded a Rema-Rema song on '€˜Soundclash'€™ called '€˜Murder Music'€™.'€

T.JONES: '€œAndrew Grey (from The Wolfgang Press) produced songs on the '€˜Mikes Bikes'€™ album by The Lavender Pill Mob. What is he like working with these days, as opposed to the past? How is he different than other artists?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œAndrew is so full of enthusiasm and he's a great guitarist. Andrew can nail down a song like no other. He should have more plaudits for sure. I am always happy working with Andrew. We did '€˜Line Of Attack'€™ together.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat did you think of the '€˜Homegrown'€™ LP by Andrew Grey'€™s new project, Limehouse Outlaw?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œSolid and Interesting.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat was it like growing up in England?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œEasy. I'm very lucky to have had a wonderful loving family around me. My father was my hero. I've never met a more generous and stoic man before or since his death. He fought for his country with dignity and charmed the pants off all those that had contact with him. R.I.P. Ronald Bert Asquith.'€

T.JONES: '€œDo you have any advice for someone starting in the music industry?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œWatch out for the worms. Get yourself a proficient partner and do your own thing.'€

T.JONES: '€œWho are some artists you would like to collaborate with in the future?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œKevin Mooney, Andrew Grey, Adam Ant, Mekon, Film 2, Frau Koester of Malaria fame & Detroit's Sinner.'€

T.JONES: '€œWho have you been listening to lately?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œToday, Todd, I've been listening to Jobriath, Film 2 Vs. Sprung Aus Den Wolken, Evil 9, Whitey, Headman, and The Mogs.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat is your favorite part of your live show?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œI'm flattered to have some interesting visuals that give that extra dimension to our shows.'€

T.JONES: '€œHow has your live show evolved?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œI'm happy to still be able to do songs like '€˜Cocaine Sex'€™ with all The Lavender Pill Mob tracks. I guess it has evolved through my time spent writing the songs that we play live.'€

T.JONES: '€œHow do you think you have evolved as an artist?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œWell.'€

T.JONES: '€œFavorite films?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œ'€˜Bonnie and Clyde'€™, '€˜Sexy Beast'€™, '€˜Apocalypse Now'€™, '€˜Left Handed Gun'€™, '€˜Cool Hand Luke'€™, '€˜Casablanca'€™, and '€˜Rebel Without A Cause'€™.'€

T.JONES: '€œAll time favorite albums?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œ'€˜Hunky Dory'€™ by David Bowie, '€˜Harvest'€™ by Neil Young, Roxy Music'€™s first two albums, '€˜Here Come The Warm Jets'€™ by Brian Eno, '€˜The Idiot'€™ by Iggy Pop and The Stooges, Serge Gainsbourg's entire collection, '€˜Love Is The Thing'€™ by Nat King Cole, '€˜Songs For Swingin Lovers'€™ by Frank Sinatra, Def Jam recordings 1985, 2001. I could go on forever with my list, Todd.'€

T.JONES: '€œFavorite books?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œThe Bible, Catcher in the Rye, Flashman at the Charge. Anything on biographically interesting people, like
Alex Guinness.'€

T.JONES: '€œRammellzee is on the debut CD by LPM. How did this happen? What was he like to work with? What character was he in?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œKevin recorded a couple of tracks in New York with Rammellzee in the 80's. So, we lifted a vocal and put it on a backing track that had a Rammell feel to it. I like his graffiti art as well as his diction. We pasted and peeled that track together.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhere were you during September 11th terrorist attack?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œI was having a coffee in Belsize Park when the owner brought it to my attention via his TV. I lived through the IRA bombings, so I know what it is like to have the bombers on your doorstep. It made me think about a journey I had to New York and going to the World Trade building with Danny Briottet. Also, about the photo's we took. It made me think that nothing is permanent. Like the sands on the beaches, we have to live with the movements of peoples who we really don't understand. Nothing is forever. What's happening now, in our world, has a bearing on all our souls. I love New York and shame on those who commit such catastrophic carnage to our civilization. Sort the wankers out, George!'€

T.JONES: '€œDo you think that success and credibility are mutually exclusive?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œWow, Todd! That's a deep river flowing through your mind! Credibility is often aligned to hard work. Success can, in my opinion, miss some of the stars that shine in our world. Too many cheap TV shows make people famous. Clowns don't get the respect they deserve, yet there are more clowns on TV than at the circus.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat was the worst mistake you have ever made in your career?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œGetting married to someone who didn't get what I was doing. Teased and tied to a bad experience.'€

T.JONES: '€œObviously, technology is an important factor in modern music. What do you think of these new machines and programs like Pro-Tools or Live?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œI think it's great. People get a different start from what is available on the shop shelves these days. More options have got to be good.'€

T.JONES: '€œWord association. When I say the name, you say the first word that pops into your head. So, if I said, '€˜Flava Flav'€™, you may say '€˜Clock'€™ or '€˜Crack'€™. Okay?'€

T.JONES: '€œThe Wolfgang Press.'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œMichael's dreams.'€

T.JONES: '€œEminem.'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œShady.'€

T.JONES: '€œElbow.'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œClockwork Orange.'€

T.JONES: '€œBeastie Boys.'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œPimps.'€

T.JONES: '€œWu-Tang Clan.'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œTough toes.'€

T.JONES: '€œMeat Beat Manifesto.'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œGroove City Microphones.'€

T.JONES: '€œGil-Scott Heron.'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œPoetry.'€

T.JONES: '€œPixies.'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œFat Frank.'€

T.JONES: '€œFelt.'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œJunk.'€

T.JONES: '€œThe Fall.'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œWhimsical.'€

T.JONES: '€œHappy Mondays.'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œBez Is Black.'€

T.JONES: '€œThe Stone Roses.'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œPainted faces.'€

T.JONES: '€œThe Chemical Brothers.'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œGroove machines.'€

T.JONES: '€œDJ Krush.'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œDrug rush.'€

T.JONES: '€œMoby.'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œBaldy pants.'€

T.JONES: '€œMy Bloody Valentine.'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œBlack Dior.'€

T.JONES: '€œThe House Of Love.'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œHappy house.'€

T.JONES: '€œClose Lobsters.'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œPink coconuts.'€

T.JONES: '€œTrisomie 21.'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œGerms.'€

T.JONES: '€œSevered Heads.'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œBollocks.'€

T.JONES: '€œCurtis Mayfield.'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œFly.'€

T.JONES: '€œGeorge Bush.'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œOil. I'm getting the hang on this, Todd.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat are some major misconceptions do you think people have of you?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œNo Idea. Self-analysis hurts too much.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat are some future collaborations fans should look out for?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œAdam Ant and my regular crowd, I hope.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat is next for you, The Lavender Pill Mob, and Le Coq Musique?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œRecording with Berlin-based, Film 2.'€

T.JONES: '€œFinal words?'€
GARY ASQUITH: '€œI Like being Gary Asquith and I want to be the last man in the graveyard.'€

Thank you Gary!!!


Interview by Todd E. Jones aka New Jeru Poet
toddejones@yahoo.com


NOTICE: This interview is property of Todd E. Jones and cannot be duplicated or posted without written permission.
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OC

O.C. personifies epitome the perseverance of an underappreciated, independent, & underground hip-hop emcee. Born as Omar Credle in Brooklyn (New York), O.C. was given the chance to rhyme on '€œJudge Pudge'€ by Organized Konfusion (Pharoahe Monch & Prince Po). O.C.'€™s debut album, '€œWord'€¦Life'€ is regarded as a pure hip-hop classic. Every classic album has a classic single. Released on Wild Pitch Records, the '€œWord'€¦Life'€ LP included O.C.'€™s signature song, '€œTime'€™s Up'€. Using a Slick Rick vocal sample and a hypnotic bass line, O.C. rocked the mic with an individuality and hardcore street sense. The LP included other gems like '€œBorn To Live'€, '€œGa Head'€, and '€œPoint Of Views'€. The stellar production was handled by Buckwild, Lord Finesse, DJ Ogee, and Organized Konfusion. Gritty & aggressive, '€œWord'€¦Life'€ is a perfect representation of early 90'€™s hip-hop. These early days created the foundation of O.C.'€™s career.

O.C.'€™s sophomore effort, '€œJewelz'€ was considered somewhat more commercial. The first single, '€œFar From Yours'€ featured Yvette Michele singing the R&B chorus. Regardless of one song with an R&B hook, '€œJewelz'€ possessed tight production and skillful performances. DJ Premier (from Gangstarr) produced the magnificent tracks '€œMy World'€, '€œWar Games'€ (featuring Organized Konfusion), '€œM.U.G.'€ (Featuring Freddie Foxxx), and '€œWin The G'€ (with Foxxx as Bumpy Knuckles). Lord Finesse, Buckwild, and DJ Ogee also contributed production efforts. After almost 10 years, many people have gained a deep appreciation for the album'€™s flows, lyrics, and beats. In 1997, some thought '€œJewelz'€ to be a more commercial album that showcased a flashy side of O.C. If '€œJewelz'€ was released today (in 2005), the underground hip-hop lovers would consider the LP as a modern classic.

Every hip-hop artist has a crew and O.C.'€™s membership in the Diggin In The Crates crew has supported him in a myriad of ways. D.I.T.C. is one of the most respected collections of consisting of producers in the world. The various members have contributed to some of the biggest hits in hip-hop. (Many people do not even realize that some of the massive hits were produced by D.I.T.C. members.) Producers in the crew include Buckwild, Showbiz, and Diamond. The emcees of the crew are O.C., Fat Joe, Big L, A.G., and Lord Finesse. While each member is unique, they share an intense chemistry and deep-rooted love for hip-hop. Their debut album, '€œD.I.T.C.'€ (released on Tommy Boy Records) included classic tracks like '€œEbonics'€, '€œDay One'€, and '€œThick'€.

The tragic death of Big L forever changed D.I.T.C. and O.C. In the song, '€œTribute'€ (from the '€œD.I.T.C.'€ LP), O.C. performed a heart-rending verse about the last time he heard Big L'€™s voice on his answering machine. After Big L passed, some say, O.C. has never been the same. How could he be? As a friend and fellow hip-hop solider, O.C. will always keep the memory of Big L alive through the power of music.

O.C.'€™s following LP, '€œBon Appetit'€ (released on JCor Records) included D.I.T.C. production, but was panned by critics and fans. '€œBon Appetit'€ remains '€œthe most hated album'€ by O.C.

O.C. redeemed himself in the eyes & ears of his fans when he released the magnificent '€œStarchild'€ LP on Grit / Nocturne Records. Although O.C. claims that the album is not the finished product, '€œStarchild'€ includes the thick production and skillful performances. The LP was produced by Locsmif, Vanguard, and Soul Supreme. Fans may not recognize Pharoahe Monch'€™s voice when he sings the hook for '€œEvaridae'€ (the LP'€™s only guest spot). Known and appreciated by only the true fans, '€œStarchild'€ is considered to be the '€œWord'€¦Life'€ of the new millennium.

A new chapter in the life of Omar Credle began when he signed to Hieroglyphics Imperium. Married, sober, and mentally refreshed, O.C. released '€œSmoke And Mirrors'€ on Hieroglyphics Imperium. The East Coast emcee linked up with the West Coast crew that gave birth to legendary emcees like Del The Funkie Homosapian, Souls Of Mischief, and Casual. Like the hip-hop albums from the golden era, '€œSmoke And Mirrors'€ has one person handling the production for the entire album. Mike Loe'€™s electronic sound creates a glossy yet raw background for O.C.'€™s performance. While the album showcases a mature emcee, his confidence is prevalent on songs like '€œMy Way'€, '€œI'€™m Da Boss'€, and '€œChallenge Y'€™all'€. Just like the O.C. albums of the past, '€œSmoke And Mirrors'€ includes songs that are fueled with emotion. The introspective nature of O.C. can be felt in '€œEmotions'€, '€œGoing Nowhere'€, and '€œThis Is Me'€. In many ways, '€œSmoke And Mirrors'€ is similar to his '€œBon Appetit'€ LP. Even though many of the underground fans loved '€œWord'€¦ Life'€ and '€œStarchild'€, they may have to give '€œSmoke And Mirrors'€ a few extra listens to fully appreciate the album. Regardless of the music, '€œSmoke And Mirrors'€ by O.C. is symbolic of the underground bond within underground hip-hop as well as an emcee'€™s perseverance.

Most emcees can only wish to have a career last as long as O.C.'€™s. Omar Credle has not only maintained a successful underground career, he made the music he wanted to make. Like the 1st song on his debut album ('€œWord'€¦Life'€), O.C. has kept his '€œCreative Control'€.



T.JONES: "What goes on?"
O.C.: '€œCan'€™t call it. I'€™m packing for this Tokyo trip.'€

T.JONES: '€œHow are the Japanese audiences different from the audiences in the United States?'€
O.C.: '€œWell, I'€™m a star over there, to put it technically. I'€™ve always been.'€

T.JONES: '€œThey have a different appreciation of hip-hop.'€
O.C.: '€œYeah, overseas, period. I'€™m a Joe Schmoe over here, but overseas is a different story.'€

T.JONES: '€œTell us about your new 2005 album, '€˜Smoke And Mirrors'€™, released on Hieroglyphics Imperium.'€
O.C.: '€œThere is really nothing to tell, as far as that it'€™s no big mystery about how I did the album. I'€™ve been doing records over the past two years, prior to thinking about releasing it. It was just therapy for me. I really wasn'€™t trying to make records anymore.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhy weren'€™t you trying to make records anymore?'€
O.C.: '€œI just felt like I was doing it for nothing. I didn'€™t feel that mad love. You know, Big L was gone. We buried people who weren'€™t emcees in our crew too, over the past few years. We just felt that there was a black cloud over the D.I.T.C. thing. Just personally, I was dealing with personal problems. If you listen to '€˜Smoke And Mirrors'€™, the album will tell you.'€

T.JONES: '€œIn the album, you state that you are now sober. When and why did this moment of clarity happen?'€
O.C.: '€œI stopped smoking weed and cigarettes. I do drink red wine. That'€™s a new thing for me right now. I'€™m trying to be a connoisseur of red wine. I'€™m trying to know about Cabernet and which Merlot should I drink with dinner. I lost weight. I'€™m just taking care of myself. I'€™m 34 now. I may look the same, but my body is not the same as a 24 year old.'€

T.JONES: '€œHip-hop is an industry that tends to focuses on the younger generations. As a hip-hop veteran, how do you think you have matured as an artist? Has your age changed things?'€
O.C.: '€œI feel like age comes with wisdom and wisdom comes with age. I always felt that, for the past 10 years, there have been artists from my era who are still holding it down. Dmx, Jigga, Nas, Snoop, and them are not really old-school.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhen I think of the term old-school, I think of Melle Mel, Sugerhill Gang, and Afrika Bambatta.'€
O.C.: '€œYeah. The youngins, who look at me and know me, think of me as old-school. You know and I know that, after 4 years, if you aren'€™t selling many records or a key factor in the industry, you are old. You'€™re out of here. The people from my era are the ones who are still holding it down up to this point. I look at it like it is anybody'€™s game. That'€™s what I always say.'€

T.JONES: '€œAs an emcee from New York City, how did you get involved with the Oakland label, Hieroglyphics Imperium, for the release of the '€˜Smoke And Mirrors'€™ LP?'€
O.C.: '€œI was recording music. It was like a little aromatherapy for me. You know what I'€™m saying? My partner, Lamonte and Mr. Dave knew that I have Mushine Entertainment, Next Mill Entertainment, and Re-Up Recordings. They somehow bumped into Domino and Casual. They got to talking. My name came up. We always had mutual respect for each other. They have a situation with Red Distribution, which goes through Sony. Hieroglyphics, these dudes, for what it'€™s worth, sell a lot of records. They have a following. They have a fan base. They have quality material and they headline their own tours. It just made sense for me to do a record with them and hit the road with them, just to get back into it. I look at Dom and them as cats who were pulling me back into the game. They are the reason I'€™m back in the game. Don'€™t ask me how. They didn'€™t say anything special to me to start thinking like that.'€

T.JONES: '€œI love the songs on the '€˜Starchild'€™ album (Grit Records / Nocturne Records). That LP was an overseas release, right? Tell us about that album.'€
O.C.: '€œIt was a work for hire record I did for this cat that I know. The record is not a finished product. What you hear is not the finished product. It'€™s not. I really don'€™t like the record, but people like the record.'€

T.JONES: '€œAs a complete album? Maybe not, but I think that many of the songs are excellent.'€
O.C.: '€œThat'€™s dope, Todd. I appreciate that. History goes back. I didn'€™t like '€˜Times Up'€™.'€

T.JONES: '€œEverybody loves '€˜Times Up'€™ and the '€˜Word'€¦Life'€™ LP. I like that album, but honestly, it'€™s not one of my favorites.'€
O.C.: '€œYeah, I'€™m glad to hear you say that! You know what I'€™m saying? People really base my career around that record. I understand that is what people know me for, but I have better records than '€˜Times Up'€™.'€

T.JONES: '€œMany fans want you to stay like '€˜Times Up'€™, right?'€
O.C.: '€œYeah! Man! It'€™s like, '€˜Come on, man!'€™ You can'€™t do that!'€

T.JONES: '€œI know. You can'€™t make the same record every single time.'€
O.C.: '€œYou can'€™t make the same record over and over. It'€™s not possible for me.'€

T.JONES: '€œThat is a cool aspect of your discography. Every record is different.'€
O.C.: '€œYes. Even if it is something you don'€™t like, every record is different. That'€™s how I fell about it. I'€™m a fan of the game. I buy people'€™s records. If my favorite artist has an album where every song, from beginning to the end, I don'€™t like, it doesn'€™t mean I don'€™t like the artist. You are not going to like every song you hear all the time. I love Nas. I love Jay. I don'€™t like everything they make. I love Cube. I love Dre. Dr. Dre is probably the top producer in the game up to this point, but I don'€™t like everything Dre makes. That doesn'€™t mean he went wrong. That'€™s just him being a human being. He'€™s going to have a flaw.'€

T.JONES: '€œMost of the songs on the '€˜Smoke And Mirrors'€™ LP were produced by Mike Loe, but your other albums had various producers like DJ Premier and D.I.T.C. Why did you choose just one producer for the '€˜Smoke And Mirrors'€™ LP?'€
O.C.: '€œIt'€™s always been D.I.T.C. One record was Premier, but for the most part, it'€™s always been Buckwild, Finesse, and Showbiz. For this record, I just chose Mike Loe. I'€™m a fan of the game. I was tired of buying records, CDs, wax, or whatever have you and hearing the album going off in 20 different directions with a million guests. Just because you have Swizz, this one, that one, and whoever on your album, it does not mean that the record is going to be dope. That'€™s not to say that their beats are wack. I'€™m not saying that at all, but if you have Swizz, Jazzy Pha, Manny Fresh, Premier, Nottz, and Madlib, the album may have no direction.'€

T.JONES: '€œYeah, many albums with a different producer on each track, usually do not have a running theme or connecting vibe.'€
O.C.: '€œYou are absolutely right, but you can go in a direction that has no direction. Bruce Lee said, '€˜My style is not having a style'€™. I wanted to catch it like, not so much sounding like Slick Rick, but I wanted to catch the essence of having one producer on the record. I had to stick to one sound and not confuse people.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhy did you choose Mike Loe to produce the album, as opposed another producer?'€
O.C.: '€œWell, he'€™s been around for years. Honestly, Buckwild and Finesse were busy. This is my crew, so you know. Mike Loe has been around the crew, so he'€™s practically fam. He'€™s practically D.I.T.C. He has dope records.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat'€™s the correct state of D.I.T.C.?'€
O.C.: '€œWe are still Diggin In The Crates. We'€™ll always be D.I.T.C.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat is the difference between Wildlife and D.I.T.C.?'€
O.C.: '€œWildlife is newer artists. You know, you have to change it up a little but, you can'€™t just bore people with the same stigma of being the same old D.I.T.C. It'€™s like 50 Cent. If he kept making records only featuring Lloyd Banks, he would have been '€˜Alright, Lloyd Banks'€™. So, G-Unit came.'€

T.JONES: '€œEven though many years have passed since his death, I want to pay my respects for the tragic loss of Big L. He was an emcee in the classic sense. I still think his music sounds just as fresh as when I heard him for the first time. Hip-hop lost a son. How has his passing changed you?'€
O.C.: '€œNo doubt. As far as musically, I'€™m not speaking for everybody, but he made the group. Solo-wise, he was a star. I always visioned him and Fat Joe as the breakout stars of the group. Joe is doing his thing on the commercial level. I saw Big L doing his thing on that level too, probably like Jay-Z.'€

T.JONES: '€œYes, if Big L was still here, he would have been huge.'€
O.C.: '€œYeah, he would have definitely been on that level as Hova and Nas, as far as walking that fine line. He could have done both. Personally, it was a tragedy for me and D.I.T.C. We don'€™t celebrate his death anymore. We celebrate his life. We do shows and stuff every year. It threw a wrecking ball into us for a long time. Big L was a major part of making the records. We didn'€™t have a set formula but, a lot of the hooks and set themes for the songs were created by Big L.'€

T.JONES: '€œI actually thought you and Big L, as emcees, stole the '€˜D.I.T.C.'€™ album (Tommy Boy Records). I love that song, '€˜Day One'€™.'€
O.C.: '€œRight. '€˜Day One'€™ was a mistake record for me because I wasn'€™t there to record my verse. I heard the record after they recorded it at Diamond'€™s house. Show was about to mix the record when he was like, '€˜Hold up, something is missing. Holy shit, O.C. isn'€™t on the record!'€™ So, I came in did it. That is why you don'€™t hear Big L say my name. He say, '...Peace to D-I-T-C, Show and AG, Fat J-O-E / Diamond D, Lord Finesse, and me...' He didn'€™t mention me on the record because I wasn'€™t there.'€

T.JONES: '€œWill there be another D.I.T.C. full-length album?'€
O.C.: '€œYep. We just came off the road maybe a few weeks ago. This is the first time I have been out with everybody collectively. I'€™ve been out on the road with Ness, A.G., and L but, I have never been on the road with Diamond, Showbiz, and Fat Joe. The main emcees have always been the ones who went out on tour. It was always me, Big L, and Lord Finesse, or a different combination. But, I have never been on the road with Diamond D, so it is something special for me.'€

T.JONES: '€œMany of your songs have specific themes or stories. ('€˜Shorty'€™, '€˜Stronjay'€™, '€˜Story'€™, etc.) Do you work with pre-written lyrics or a set theme, or do you write to the beat?'€
O.C.: '€œIt depends. You know, from speaking to other cats, some songs come easier to others, while some songs, you have to take time to think about. It depends. It depends on what the situation is. If it is something that I'€™m really thinking about, it will take a little more time for me than just hearing a beat and coming up with a quick 16.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat approach did you take with the '€˜Smoke And Mirrors'€™ LP?'€
O.C.: '€œLike I said, that was a therapy album. I was just recording songs when I felt like it. I was chilling. I stopped for a while and said that I wasn'€™t going to make anymore records. Then, I got the bug back a little bit. So, I started going back into the studio. I started getting beats from Mike Loe. Me and him never worked together before. I was coming in from the night before, with him giving me beats. I would come in with the whole song written from the night before. I was ready to lay it down. I laid some songs down in 15 minutes. Mike was like, '€˜Damn! It'€™s like that?'€™. I was like, '€˜Yeah! I'€™m hungry!'€™'€

T.JONES: '€œDo you have a favorite song on the '€˜Smoke And Mirrors'€™ LP?'€
O.C.: '€œProbably, '€˜Emotions'€™.'€

T.JONES: '€œOut of all of your albums, which LP are you most proud of?'€
O.C.: '€œProbably the album that most people hate, '€˜Bon Appetit'€™. I like the challenges on that. I think people will come around to '€˜Bon Appetit'€™ like they did with '€˜Jewelz'€™. Some people didn'€™t like '€˜Jewelz'€™, at first.'€

T.JONES: '€œI actually liked '€˜Jewelz'€™ as soon as I heard it. I especially loved '€˜My World'€™ and the two joints with Freddie Foxxx.'€
O.C.: '€œYeah. People actually thought that I was on some sell-out shit on that record. I'€™m like, '€˜How?'€™ They thought that about the '€˜Far From Yours'€™ record. I'€™ll break it down to you real quick. That record, '€˜Far From Yours'€™ is not a commercial record. It'€™s too long and complicated. The lyrics are too complicated. It'€™s too long of a song to be on radio. People are crazy.'€

T.JONES: '€œLook at M.O.P., they are still considered hardcore and they have R&B singers on their records.'€
O.C.: '€œM.O.P. always had someone singing on their record. This is not something we just started. We'€™ve been doing it. There'€™s a little generation gap with different writers and such. People, kind of, bug out and don'€™t do research. They don'€™t know what they are talking about.'€

T.JONES: '€œWho are some producers who you would like to work with in the future?'€
O.C.: '€œProbably, Just Blaze.'€

T.JONES: '€œWho are some emcees who you would like to work with in the future?'€
O.C.: '€œI don'€™t know. This may strike you as funny, but I always bring up Fabolous. I'€™m not talking about me doing a record with him. I think that he plays like he doesn'€™t know what'€™s going on. Notice that he never gets into beefing or lyrical shoot outs. He keeps to himself. Yo, he'€™s dope. I think he knew that it was almost time for him to be up out of here, but Just Blaze saved him. That '€˜Breathe'€™ record is a hip-hop record. Listen to the record. I think shorty did his homework and studied hip-hop and all of that. I just think that Duro and all of those dudes, did not make him, but they told him what was popping and what to do to sell records. I'€™m not mad at him. He'€™s not the only one. There are a lot of cats out there who do these kinds of records, but I know that they can spit.'€

T.JONES: '€œThese days, what have you been listening to?'€
O.C.: '€œI listen to everything from Immortal Technique to Jeezy to MF Doom to Coldplay. I listen to everything, man!'€

T.JONES: '€œAre you going to do any collaborations with Hieroglyphics?'€
O.C.: '€œI'€™m actually started on my new record right now. '€˜Smoke And Mirrors'€™ is my back on the scene record. My new record will be a straight up-tempo record. I'€™m shooting for a theme of no cursing on the record, period. The powers that be are making it like people can'€™t make records without cursing.'€

T.JONES: '€œShit, I'€™d rather have an emcee who does not use profanity at all than listen to an edited version of an album.'€
O.C.: '€œRight, right, right! I just want to do an up-tempo record without sad songs. Different chapters, man!'€

T.JONES: '€œWho will be on this new record?'€
O.C.: '€œMy new record will have production by this kid called Frequency. He'€™s next. He'€™s basically doing the whole record, besides maybe something from Domino, A Plus, and Finesse.'€

T.JONES: '€œAre you still cool with Pharoahe Monch and Prince Po of Organized Konfusion?'€
O.C.: '€œPharoahe is my dude. That'€™s my mentor, right there. I bow down to that cat. That'€™s no secret. He'€™s like extraordinary dope. That'€™s my dude right there, holmes. The other cat? Me and him don'€™t really get along. I give them love for putting me on, but it is what it is. The dude? I come from the school where you don'€™t put your business out there. He put our business out there one time. It was a different story when we saw each other, but that'€™s that. I'€™m glad that nothing really came out of that. But, Pharoahe is my dude.'€

T.JONES: '€œHow has your live show evolved?'€
O.C.: '€œI'€™m a seasoned vet. It'€™s never a problem for me. I was on a 43 city tour with Hiero this summer. It was just 2 turntables and a microphone. No hype man, not of that. It was like my boot camp for a couple of months.'€

T.JONES: '€œDo you have a favorite part of your live show?'€
O.C.: '€œI just keep it simple, but I usually make sure that I spit. I do an a cappella leading up into something. I really lead up into something so the people don'€™t get bored. I make sure of that. I make sure what songs should go first and what songs should go in the middle. This is so the show won'€™t take a dive. I'€™m on stage by myself, so you know, you got to keep the people'€™s attention. The people'€™s attention span is very short if you are wack. For me? I'€™ve been doing this for over 10 years. I learned. Like I said, I'€™m healthy. I don'€™t smoke no more. The Henny? the Remi? None of that is in me anymore, so I can perform an hour straight without being winded, easy.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat was the last incident of racism you experienced?'€
O.C.: '€œRacism? I experience that everyday! Driving in my car, I experience that. You know, a cop pulling me over. '€˜Whose car is this?'€™, they say. '€˜This is my car!'€™, I go. I go through that every week.'€

T.JONES: '€œYou still live in New York?'€
O.C.: '€œYeah, yeah.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhere were you during September 11th 2001? How did you handle it?'€
O.C.: '€œI was in New York actually. I actually woke up. I sleep with my TV on. I stay with my TV on day and night. I woke up looking at a plane hitting a building. It wasn'€™t for real. I thought I was bugging, like '€˜I'€™m tired. What movie is this?'€™ Then, I saw the 2nd plane make a turn into the 2nd building. I was like, '€˜Oh shit!'€™'€

T.JONES: '€œI thought I would have to unlock the safe and get the guns out.'€
O.C.: '€œFor real! (Laughs). It bugged me out! I wondered if we were about to get bombed. It startled me to see that. I knew that what I was seeing was real but I was like, '€˜I hope that was a dream'€™.'€

T.JONES: '€œEach O.C. record was released on a different label. Which record label treated you the best? The worst?'€
O.C.: '€œUnfortunately, yeah. All the labels treated me bad. My records always promoted themselves. So, I really didn'€™t need a label. If I knew then what I know now, I would have never signed to a major label. I will never sign to a major label. This thing with Hiero is more of a partnership. It was more lucrative doing a deal with them than me doing a deal with Wild Pitch, Payday, Universal, JCor, or anything. Dom and I did a venture together. He was like, '€˜Yo, you need money?'€™ I was like, '€˜I don'€™t need money for nothing. I got all of this.'€™ I did the album out of my pocket. It wasn'€™t like Dom and them were impressed. They were like, '€˜I expected that from you because you have been in the game so long. You sure you don'€™t need help?'€™ I was like, '€˜Nah, duke. I'€™m good.'€™ When the momentum on my record slows down, I get every cent off of this record. They didn'€™t have to give me any money.'€

T.JONES: '€œDo you think that success and credibility are mutually exclusive?'€
O.C.: '€œI think too much success probably throws your focus off at a certain point in time. I never really heard of someone having too little of success. I think everyone wants to be successful in anything they do. You have to really be focused. For example, I had a chance to sign with Puff, years ago. In his exact words, he told me, '€˜We will fuck with you but I want to remix ?? Word'€¦ Life?.'€™ I told him, '€˜No'€™. If I knew who he was going to be when we were that young, I probably shouldn'€™t of said, '€˜No'€™. It wasn'€™t it for me to be on Bad Boy. That'€™s why it didn'€™t happen. You know, Jay-Z was my man! I never stepped to Roc-A-Fella. Up to this point, I haven'€™t seen Jay in a couple of years but, anytime he saw me, I was always chilling. He was like, '€˜What'€™s going on? What you want to do?'€™ I wanted to come up how he came up. He did this on his own. I don'€™t want a hand out. I had a chances to deal with dogs. That'€™s my man. He did my record for free when '€˜Hard Knock Life'€™ was at $3 Million.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat was the biggest mistake you have made in your career?'€
O.C.: '€œProbably not taking control of my career early on. Business-wise, early on. I probably shouldn'€™t have trusted people to handle what I was supposed to handle. You know what I'€™m saying? Business sense.'€

T.JONES: '€œWord association. When I say the name, you say the first word that pops into your head. So, if I said, '€˜Flava Flav'€™, you may say '€˜Clock'€™ or '€˜The Surreal Life. Okay?'€
O.C.: '€œMy last show was with Public Enemy.'€

T.JONES: '€œPublic Enemy.'€
O.C.: '€œRevolution.'€

T.JONES: '€œLittle Brother.'€
O.C.: '€œRevolution.'€

T.JONES: '€œPep Love.'€
O.C.: '€œReally revolution!.'€

T.JONES: '€œPhife Dawg.'€
O.C.: '€œBaseball.'€

T.JONES: '€œFreddie Foxxx.'€
O.C.: '€œBumpy Knucks.'€

T.JONES: '€œDJ Premier.'€
O.C.: '€œClassic hip-hop.'€

T.JONES: '€œPharoahe Monch.'€
O.C.: '€œThe Bruce Lee of rap.'€

T.JONES: '€œPrince Po.'€
O.C.: '€œPrince Po.'€

T.JONES: '€œJay-Z.'€
O.C.: '€œWow! The Jim Kelly of rap.'€

T.JONES: '€œBig L.'€
O.C.: '€œPhenomenal.'€

T.JONES: '€œSoul Supreme.'€
O.C.: '€œCredible.'€

T.JONES: '€œEminem.'€
O.C.: '€œPhenomenal.'€

T.JONES: '€œGeorge Bush.'€
O.C.: '€œDickhead.'€

T.JONES: '€œOn the '€˜Starchild'€™ album (Grit Records / Nocturne), were most of the songs done with you and the producer together in the same place? Or, were they done through the mail?'€
O.C.: '€œThey were actually done with the producer.'€

T.JONES: '€œWere most of your albums created with you and the producer in the same place?'€
O.C.: '€œYeah. I usually like to be hands-on with the cats who I'€™m working with. The mailing thing? Only unless you are real busy. You have to be one of my crew members to mail me a beat. I'€™m not taking that shit otherwise. Unless you are Madlib or one of them and they are on another coast or the other side of the globe. I'€™ll take it and I'€™ll know it is genuine. At some point, we got to meet.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat are some major misconceptions do you think people have of you?'€
O.C.: '€œBackpack rapper. I don'€™t know what it is with people. I don'€™t wear thick jewelry or shit anymore, but I drive Benzes, Jags, and Range Rovers. This is something I really don'€™t talk about, but this is my life. My first car was a 190-E before I had a record deal. I always wore jewelry. I don'€™t wear jewelry any more. I'€™m married now. I wear a wedding ring.'€

T.JONES: '€œHow has being married changed your approach to hip-hop?'€
O.C.: '€œIt changed my approach to women differently. I can'€™t cheat and shit like that anymore. There is a difference between cheating on your girlfriend and cheating on your wife. It'€™s a big difference. I'€™m not perfect. I still look at chicks, but at the same time, it'€™s a big difference.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat are some future collaborations fans should look out for?'€
O.C.: '€œProbably me and Pharoahe Monch. We'€™ve been talking and discussing doing an EP together or something. So, probably me and him. I'€™m definitely doing this new Diggin record. I'€™m definitely looking forward to that.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat label is the new D.I.T.C. record going to be released on?'€
O.C.: '€œI don'€™t know. We'€™re going to sit down after this year is up. At the top of the year, we'€™ll see if we will collaborate with Dom and them. We may do the record on Hiero so we can all tour together, probably in May.'€

T.JONES: '€œIs your next solo album going to be released on Hieroglyphics Imperium?'€
O.C.: '€œYeah, I got one more record to do. I love those dudes. They really didn'€™t have to reach out, definitely not financially, so I could be down with them.'€

T.JONES: '€œDel is one of my favorite emcees.'€
O.C.: '€œYeah, his next record is coming out in January.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat will your new album be titled?'€
O.C.: '€œI don'€™t know exactly. That changes up. I really don'€™t know.'€

T.JONES: '€œAny future Hieroglyphics collaborations?'€
O.C.: '€œI guess I can start leaking this. Me and Causal will be probably working on a record too. I apologize to him every time I see him because I missed getting on his record. They sent me the track, but I was going through some problems at the time. I'€™m dealing with demons. I apologize to him every time I see him. That'€™s my man, right there.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhen putting an LP together, how many songs do you usually have to choose from?'€
O.C.: '€œEverything that I recorded for this record made the album with the exception of only one or two. That was only because I didn'€™t finish the song. Everything I recorded actually made the record.'€

T.JONES: '€œWhat advice would you give to somebody coming up in the hip-hop industry?'€
O.C.: '€œBe true to what you do. Be original! Definitely be original. At this stage in the game, everybody has the business side down pat, but they forgot how to write rhymes. I listen to Immortal Technique and Jeezy. I listen to everybody. I know Jeezy well too. Jeezy is not a lyrical dude, but I still like what he does. It just lets people know that they have to be different. Like Cam'€™Ron said, '€˜You got to have style.'€™ Just be original.'€

T.JONES: '€œYes, if you just be yourself, no one can take that away from you.'€
O.C.: '€œNobody! It will shine through. Jeezy? If he read this, this is not a disrespect. Jeezy is not an emcee. He'€™s a rapper. But, I love his records, as opposed to Jay. Jay-Z is an emcee, but he knows how to straddle that line. Nas is an emcee. He knows how to straddle that line.'€

T.JONES: '€œDo people constantly ask you when you will work with DJ Premier again?'€
O.C.: '€œYeah. (Laughs). I always work with people who are interested in working with me. Preme is my man. Don'€™t get it twisted. With the artists he has worked with over the years, he has a little more rapport with them. Me and Preme don'€™t hang out or get high together. He is big now. He'€™s doing the next Nas record. It would be all love to work with him, but I'€™m not stressing it. I'€™m waiting for no man! I don'€™t care who you are.'€

T.JONES: '€œHow is DJ Premier'€™s creative process different from other producers you have worked with?'€
O.C.: '€œPreme is a funny dude. You know, '€˜My World'€™? Preme didn'€™t actually like that record. Preme does his music right on the spot. He doesn'€™t give people beat CDs, at least up to this point that I know about. He'€™s never given a beat CD to me or anyone I know. Preme didn'€™t like '€˜My World'€™. He ran through a few joints and I was like, '€˜That'€™s dope!'€™ He was like, '€˜Nah! I got something better.'€™ I was like, '€˜Hold up, dog! I want that right there. I'€™m going to rock to that!'€™ He was like, '€˜You sure?'€™ I rocked it! I wrote the song in 10 minutes.'€

T.JONES: '€œDo you usually write most of your songs quickly?'€
O.C.: '€œMy first album maybe took me 2 months to do, if that. I know what I really want to do with this next record, once I get the chance. I'€™ve been a little busy, going on the road. Once I get the chance to lock myself in somewhere, I'€™m going to record the album. It'€™s going to take me no time to do the next record. I really don'€™t want to over-think the record. I just want to go in and have fun with it. I want it to reflect that in the songs.'€

T.JONES: '€œAny final words?'€
O.C.: '€œFrequency is going to be the next producer! Trust me! Diggin In The Crates record! Casual'€™s record! Me and Causal! It'€™s on, man! I'€™m not going anywhere! I'€™m here till I'€™m dead!'€
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