Just last week we got a taste of some visuals off rapper Awon’s recently released EP For the Grimy (Searching For Soulville). The video contains the intro to the album ‘Broken Hearted Blues’, followed by ‘Pimp Talk’. This is the first video we got off the album since the drop in the beginning of March. Awon has collaborated with some great producers over the past few years including, Thomas Prime, Soul Chef and Kameleon Beats. With the success he’s achieved we couldn’t pass on the opportunity to sit down and chat with him about the new album.
Could you introduce yourself to our fans? And how you got started in Hip Hop?
Peace, my name is Awon. I’m from Newport News, Virginia via Brooklyn, New York. I got my start in Hip Hop in New York during the Golden Era when I was just a kid. I attribute that to having such a youthful family who were involved in the culture early on. Whether it was my dad or my mom, I would always hear Hip Hop. Even with my aunts and uncles it was all Hip Hop.
Who’s your biggest influence, and your favorite rapper currently out?
My biggest influence would be Big Daddy Kane, but I am inspired so much by that Golden Era I would have to include the entire class of 87-88 because those years changed Hip Hop. My favorite emcee out now is DOOM. The reason I love DOOM is because he gives you every era of Hip Hop he has been through in his production. While people may think his ideas are simple, he acts illy has many hidden layers and meanings to his oddball lyrics that work so well.
Tell us a little about the new track ‘Pimp Talk’ and the EP For the Grimy (Searching for Soulville).
The track Pimp Talk is a tune I cooked up over a cover of Walk on By by Isaac Hayes by a band called the Equatics. I just went in over the instrumental because it was so raw, I wanted it to sound like your uncle dropping gems putting rookies in check. The conversation on the track is really pointing out who I am as an emcee to those who don’t know. Spitting game is the reason I call it Pimp Talk. For the Grimy (Searching For Soulville) is an extension of the EP I dropped as a tester back in October of 2012. I remixed everything and added new tracks. Tiff The Gift arranged the order of everything to be consistent with a journey. Based on the production and instrumentals it was very laid back on soulful. I chose the subtitle Searching For Soulville because I wanted to imply that I was taking the listener on a soulful journey. The production was done by AK, JR Swift, Rashard, and myself.
I just went in over the instrumental because it was so raw, I wanted it to sound like your uncle dropping gems putting rookies in check.
What are your plans for 2013?
My plans for 2013 are to continue working in visuals for For The Grimy and to release a new mixtape over the summer. I would like to do some shows and begin working on a LP, but I’m taking it one day at a time.
Is there an overall message you put into your music that you’d like the listener to ‘take home’?
I would just like to entertain. The message will vary on every effort because I write from an honest perspective so it is based on how I’m feeling. While Love Supersedes II is very personal For The Grimy is more creative and fictional.
Speaking of Love Supersedes II, what’s it like working with Thomas Prime? The album is hella dope.
Thank you. Love Supersedes II really deserved that title because the remixes felt like completely different songs. Thomas Prime’s production added to what Kameleon and I did chemistry wise in a way I can’t describe. He really is on his vibe and I must say that you have only heard a taste of what his potential is. Thomas Prime has become family. His honesty and openness is really helpful. He is the type of producer to get the fullest potential out of anyone he works with. He has truly been a blessing and you can expect to hear more coming from us in the future.
Can’t help but notice the Supreme sticker in ‘Pimp Talk’. You got a favorite streetwear brand?
It’s funny because that was an old 190 E Benz parked in my moms neighborhood. I saw the box logo and I was wearing a tee and I told the director Dephlow to get a shot there. I love Supreme, but street wear is a long story for me. I have friends who design so I’m a bit biased to everyone’s shit. I would say Supreme is my favorite to play it safe.
Go to awon.bandcamp.com to get all my releases. I am enjoying independence at the moment and it seems to be working out. By the way the album is free until the downloads run out.
Finally, any shouts regarding the new album?
Yes, I would like to shout out AK, Rashard, JR Swift and Tiff the Gift for their contributions to the project. I would like to shout out my homie Dephlow Denero for the visuals, props to the homies Ninety One for the artwork. Big up to Thomas Prime, Kameleon Beats, and my man Kaveen. Much thanks goes to you and TheWordIsBond for the opportunity to speak to the people who make this all possible whom are my loyal family who has been listening since Goon Trax.