In case you haven't been affected, I will warn you. There is a large invasion of Lo-Keys Mania.... and yes, that's actually the title of his previous project hosted by DJ Bski. Now he's released "Glee" and he is EVERYWHERE.
I thought, "Hey I wanna get at this talented Caucasian because his press is BANANAS!". My site was gettin jealous. lol
I got a chance to catch up with Lo-Keys and he took time to answer a few questions for me. You know I had to ask him what many think but are scarred to ask. He was very cooperative and I got much love and respect for this guy. He's mos def grindin!
1. I see you're in Fayetteville. Out of all the artists I know and cross paths with from out of that city, you are creating a big buzz compared to many. The Fayetteville Observer feature... How much of an impact did that have on your drive to stay consistent like you have been?
I think overall it was a great form of recognition from the city, but i don't think it helps or hurts my consistency. I understand the way music is moving right now. Since everything has become digital and moves so fast it has weeded a lot of rappers out of the pack. Right now you have to have a mass amount of material. Reason being is that the music is getting dumped a lot faster nowadays. You can put something out today and it will be old by tomorrow afternoon. Video's last a bit longer but the fact still is you have to have a lot of material and be able to get it to all the right places. I think i just have a better sense of understanding on how the business works. Remember you have to learn what your trying to do before you can become great at it.
2. I know you have an opinion about press. How important is it to have press on projects as an underground artists, in your opinion?
Its extremely important. I think you have to have a fair amount of leaks to build the project up, videos, interviews and promotion before the project drops. Dropping a project without any promotion does not help you at all. I mean say for instance you drop a project with no promotion, then nobody is looking for it. McDonald's does not put a new hamburger on the menu without advertising it on TV, so why should you do any different with your music. Its all branding and promotion. Even if people don't listen to it as long as they see your name on a constant basis your make progress. My suggestion is to watch rappers who are popping. They work their ass off. People like Rick Ross, Wiz Khalifa, and Currensy are always putting things out even when they are not promoting a project. This isn't sports where you can take 6 months off come back and its all good. This is a full time business.
3. You've been around a while, I express my views about press to artists all the time but I want to hear your thoughts on it. Do you think your press buzz has enhanced your exposure? How?
I would say its my work ethic. You might be a great rapper but say i put out twice the material you do, automatically i start to outshine you because i am being seen more. My buzz in the press has helped tremendously. I believe a strong network of people, support, and hard work will take you where you need to go. The only person that can hold you back is yourself. The press really just exposed me to a vast amount of people as well. I went from being on one blog to being on hundreds of blogs and websites. That leads to interviews, bigger collaborations and more support when i drop projects.
4. Not only are you located in a state with many negative titles within the Industry, such as "Coffin State", but you're a white rapper doing underground Hip Hop. Do you think this stereotype is effecting you in any way? Why or why not?
Nah, that race shit is dead. I understand there is still racism but as far as Hip Hop, nah man Hip Hop isn't a race its a culture. Everyone likes Hip Hop. People like Eminem and now Mac Miller, Machine Gun Kelly and even myself are all breaking down the barrier. I myself haven't experienced any hate because im white and that shows that progress is being made. The world isn't perfect which means that at some point and time it could happen but for now it has not and the love overpowers the hate by miles.
5. Your music is incredible. Our Industry has seen Yelawolf take over coming out of the south and Eminem has kept his crown since he came in. Have you had any or many encounters with people within the Industry who you feel may have treated your or music different because of the city you're from of because the color of your skin?
No i haven't actually. At least not where anyone ever said it to me. Im white and i rap (laughs) So what?!?! Its not that big of a deal. That would be like someone black being discredited because they play hockey. If your good at what you do and your a respectable person i think everything else will fall into place.
6. Im done with the race questions. Lol. Dont hate me, I had to ask. I honestly feel like an artist with your talent and creditability will face issues due to stereotypes and I just wanted to know your opinion. The question is will you continue this invasion and when is your next performance?
By invasion im guessing you mean pursuing my music. No doubt im going to pursue it. Im knocking on the door now to major success. I just want people to know that i make music for you to feel good. My music isn't depressing, or boring. My music is the music you put in when your riding out with a fly chick in the drop top, or when you just made some big cash and your about to go blow it, or if your trying to get somewhere and you wanna zone out and dream about it. Thats what my music is for. My next performance is at the GotHaze Music Festival in Fayetteville Nc, and then im at the Crampton Auditorium at Howard University in Washington DC with Big Sean, Akon, Bun B, Jon Connor and Young Gliss.
7. The Glee cover. What inspired it?
Well i caught the show one night, i think i was in Atlanta maybe and i watched a episode and it just reminded me of rap. Glee is a show about school that involves music so the way i looked at it is that Hip Hop is just like school. You have your bullies, the stars, the guys who get fly, the gangsters and so on. So when i put it together i just thought it would be a dope concept and it certainly got a great response.
8. Classic question. Where do you see your self within the next year or 2?
I see myself progressing more. I think ill have a deal within the next year or so but if not i will be closer then i am now to getting one. I think everything happens when the time is right. So i just see myself more aware, positive and productive in 2 years no matter where im at or what im doing.
9. Last question, UNC or DUKE?
Im a Blue Devil fan all day. Go DUKE!!!