Toney Rome and Large Professor go way back, and share a lot more history than simply a production credit on the b-side of ‘Mad Scientist.’ Toney talks about growing up in Flushing, Queens, facing music industry hurdles and memories of having the hottest tape in school.
Robbie: How did you first get involved in hip-hop?
I grew-up in New York in the 70s and the 80s, when hip-hop was just getting started. I can remember before there were records, used to be chasing tapes, trying to find the hottest tapes and also trying to get to the Bronx to hear the music.
You were in Flushing at the time?
From Flushing, Queens. It was a really organic thing. I was hearing the music out here on the streets, then they started doing jams out here and eventually I started deejaying.
Where were you getting your records? From the city or locally?
It was the era where DJ’s was really secretive about the breaks that they had. Some of the stuff you would know, but you would have to be a sleuth like Sherlock Holmes to figure out what breaks. First you raided your father’s record collection, and you found the old funk and soul records from there. Of course I didn’t have a lotta money back then, so I used to go to stores in Jamaica, Queens and places that I knew out there that had record shops. (more…)
New track from the latest Large Pro solo album, Re: Living, which is out 9 June. Fat Beats are doing a bundle including the CD, tape, vinyl and sticker, which is limited to 100 packs and available here.
United Crates has assembled some of the Outdoorsman’s older work to mark four years since Dr. Lecter dropped. Who knew that this Flushing, Queens rapper dude would turn out to be the Hipster Music Mafia’s pin-up boy? Regardless, dude can rap and ‘Shiraz’ is still my shit.
Rocksteady member DJ JS-1 has been putting it down in the DJ, mixtape and production game for years, as well as getting busy with the paint as JERMS since his school days. We caught up last November to discuss the sorry state of modern rap, the trials of making compilation albums and tips copping vinyl on the sly.
Robbie: How did it start for you?
DJ JS-1: Growing up in Queens, New York – I was born in the mid 70’s – so by the time I was old enough to look around and know what’s going on, you’re six, seven, eight years old. It’s early 80’s and hip-hop culture was everywhere. My grandmother lived near Lefrak and I first remember them doing a mural on the side of pizzaria there when I was really young. I always loved to draw, and I got into graff from watching these guys do that. By third or fourth grade I was trying to draw my name and do stuff, and in sixth grade we stole some spray paint and went to the schoolyard to try and write our names. That was 1986. I was always listening to hip-hop and started buying vinyl as soon as I was old enough to get on the bus or the train by myself to get to the record stores. Then I saved up to get turntables. (more…)
Superbad Solace and Oprime39 first made some noise with their Brugal & Presidentes EP in 2012, and followed-up with their debut album Rock-It Science the following year. With a new EP and album due soon, it seemed like the perfect time to build with these two brothers from Flushing, Queens to talk about music, their iconic neighborhood and the importance of dressing fresh.
Robbie: Did you both grow-up in Flushing, Queens?
Solace: We moved out here in in 1988 because my father was a building superintendent and he landed a gig right here. We were living in Corona before that and that was a dream job back in the day, so he took the whole family out here.
Oprime: He was a super out in Lefrak at the time and an opportunity popped up in Flushing. We’ve been out here ever since.
Solace: The ill shit with a superintendent job is you also get the rent-free apartment. (more…)
Royal Flush – who hasn’t missed a step in terms of that buttery Flushing, Queens delivery since he dropped the amazing Ghetto Millionaire in 1997 – is finally dropping a new album next month called Grand Capo. Shit sounds correct based off of this video, especially the first track…
New Action Bronson tape with Party Supplies is available here for free ninety nine. Unclear at this stage why Action is listed as a guest on his on project on track 16. Also, sad face that the Cam’ron feature didn’t happen.
Marlon Williams, Jr. is the son of the greatest hip-hop producer of all time, Engineer All-Star Marley Marl. That’s a lot of pressure to deal with. Nevertheless, this classically-trained musician eventually found himself drawn into the world of beats and rhymes. His last couple of instrumental projects – dedications to Dexter Wansel and Alan Parsons demonstrate that he’s been able to develop his own individual sound. We discuss Future Flavas, his relationship with his dad and of course that elusive TJ Swan album!
Robbie: What part of New York did you grow-up in?
M. Will: When I was 5 or 6, we moved to Flushing, Queens. I lived in The Bronx for a little bit and went to school in Manhattan forever.
What made you want to make music?
I was into classical music as a child, and I was around my dad a lot when he was making a lot of stuff – late 90’s, early 2000’s – when Future Flavas was wrapping up, at the height of that. There was a lot of beats going on. I would be in a few sessions, just staying at my dad’s for weekends. They would record Future Flavas there live, every weekend when it was broadcasted on Hot 97. I wouldn’t necessarily be in the studio but I would be in the house. Those experiences steered me in the direction I’m going in now. (more…)