Interview With Big Pooh
Big Pooh just gave the people four versions of his new album Delightful Bars so he could save his abundance of rhymes from dusty inertia. It was fours years ago when his first album Sleepers came out and furthered his cocky diction outside of Little Brother. Rap critics were receptive to the effort and fans labeled him as one of a few chosen rappers to make ‘real hip-hop’ from the heart instead of being a singles-oriented ringtone rapper. Pooh who likens his rap style to a heavyweight boxer appreciates the recognition but like any other artist he wants the love to grow. Sleepers set the standard for a solo Pooh that Delightful Bars surpasses with his growth on the mic. Ambitious rhymes and purposeful perception prevented any possibility of a sophomore slump but the ubiquitous respect he seeks is still a goal contested by the mores of the typical rap market.
What’s the difference between Sleepers and Delightful Bars?
I would say that Delightful Bars is more confidence in me as an emcee you can hear the growth as an emcee growth as a songwriter just those different things. You can hear me starting to experiment a little bit more with flows experiment a little bit more with the production well not even experiment but branch out more with production than I did with Sleepers. Where Sleepers was me it was all 9th and Khrysis I just decided to branch out more and you can hear all that.
Why are there 4 versions?
Four versions because I had so much music over here that I wasn’t using for anything I had about forty songs total that I wasn’t using for anything. I just wanted just share all of that with the people to create a way that I thought the people would order four different versions instead of having to have bonus tracks for all the different territories and you know Best Buy iTunes you have to have bonus tracks with them anyway I just thought it would be real creative to come up with a different version give each version its own artwork its own track listing.
Who is on this album? Did Young RJ do this project or is it a variety of productions?
Young RJ he did one song on this project it’s actually something we didn’t end up using the other producers are 9th Wonder, Khrysis, Phonix, IllMind, Jake One, Oh No that’s most of the producers on this one.
I know you are from Virginia but most people think you are from North Carolina was there a scene in Virginia when you were coming up?
Where I lived at in northern Virginia at the time I was there it definitely was not a scene it was all about go-go music. I know down in the present time they have a little scene now the northern Virginia the D.C. and Maryland area has a budding music scene the seven cities that’s down in Virginia Beach, that’s Hampton, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Newport News that area they have a budding thing especially with Timbaland, The Neptunes, so forth and so there is definitely a scene now at the time I was back in Virginia it wasn’t a scene at all.
What kind of sound were you going for?
Just something more edgier than what people are accustomed to hearing me over
When I worked within Little Brother just something that’s more I think were I am as an artist right now and that’s more aggressive sounding you know the more edgier sounding beats it also fits some of the topics I wanted to discuss.
When I listen to the album it seems to be a lot of verses without a concept?
You hit the nail on the head right there that’s basically what it was I gotta lot of verses I got a lot of music that I wanted to share with the people that’s how I presented it to them.
What happened to Dirty Pretty Things?
Still in progress we kind of I actually started working with Young RJ on that we kind of went back in and revamped the whole album the way I was doing it and we kind of put it on pause for a minute so I could work the Delightful Bars album cause it was some delays in that and he also had to finish the Slum Village album. So we gone come back together in a month or two and start back working on that project. I hope to get it ready to go by the end of the year.
Do you feel like you are receiving recognition for your work yet?
A little bit you always want more you know you always want more people to respect what you do and more people to give you props on what you do I can’t really worry about that I think that’ll only end up hindering me in the long run cause I’ll be thinking more about that than the task at hand and that’s making dope music so I just prefer to concentrate on getting better I do what I need to work on and trust me I’m more of a harder critic on myself than anybody could be I know myself better than they do. So I’m just continually trying to get better trying to become a better songwriter better artist and make better songs.
What makes this project significant?
It’s right in the middle of what’s going on in music right now it’s honest, it’s to the point, it’s something that people should hear I’m not going to tell you that you need to hear it. I think it’s something that everybody should hear if you’re a fan of music you should hear it I think you’ll enjoy what you come away with it ain’t groundbreaking I ain’t out to save the world I’m just out to make dope music and I just think that’s what I did.
Are there any Emcees that have influenced what you do?
Yeah Ice Cube, Outkast, Biggie, Rakim, all of those guys like to this day I still listen to their records and just try to pick up certain things that they did you know the average listener may not be able to catch and try to use you know some of their techniques and add of course my own flavor to it make the style all mine.
How would you describe your style?
I’m probably like a heavyweight boxer and the reason why I say this like I said before I’m straight to the point like I’m not gone to try to dance around things I’m not gonna try to dress nuttin’ up I’m just straight to the point and I’m just going to give it to you like they way I think it needs to be heard.
So is there a chance that Little Brother as a three-man group might reunite ever?
I doubt it I don’t want people to get they hopes up I don’t want them to hold they breath I think that that time has passed and we’ve all moved on we’ve all realized that it probably even if we were to get back together that it wouldn’t be what it should be and I don’t think nobody wants that to this day people still wishing for us to come back together but that magic that we had I don’t think it’s still there anymore because we’re not where we were personally anymore to try to force that we’d just end up tarnishing what we left for the people already.
Do you feel any frustration about Little Brother?
As far as frustration with Little Brother nah I mean there’s always a little I think we left things together I think it’s more personal frustration than frustration with you know the way we make music now not having three members in the group now anything of that nature I think Get Back was just as good as or better than the albums we had before but I think it’s just the way we ended the way we left things I think it kind of left a window open for the people not for us but for the people to believe that you know that we were going to come back together when that’s not the case.
What should we be looking out for next?
I would say thank the people for supporting rapper Big Pooh from Little Brother throughout the years next is the North American version of Delightful Bars that’s the second version in the series it should be in stores very soon it’s actually coming on May 5th I’ll be at a city near you. That first part we’ve got an EP that’s going to be coming out hopefully by the end of the year called Leftback songs that didn’t make Get Back and a couple of remixes along with a DVD and then after we both put out and then he puts out his solo album then we’re going to sit down and discuss another Little Brother record.