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B.E.N.E.F.I.T. - conducted by Frank White  


B.E.N.E.F.I.T. Interview

2002

These are the transcripts of an interview with Benefit. The interview was conducted by Frank White. It's been a while since we last heard from benefit. Rumors were flying, fans wanted answers...

MVRemix: It seems like you have been gone for a minute. Lots of rumors floating around...a few say you have been killed in Brooklyn, anything you would like to respond with?

B.E.N.E.F.I.T.: I haven't put anything out in a long time, but I'm not dead. I'm still working on music as well as other things. I'm extremely busy right now, and I didn't get shot in Brooklyn.

MVRemix: How is the new LP shaping up, will it be a full album or a compilation of older material (EP)?

B.E.N.E.F.I.T.: The new LP is shaping up really nicely production wise, I have a lot left to record, and I've been waiting to do that because I had a problem with some equipment that I have to replace. The album will be a full length, but I have enough material already done to put out an EP as well. I'm not sure yet how I will go about doing that though.

MVRemix: How do you manage to go to school full time, and work on new material at the same time? I imagine it's pretty tough?

B.E.N.E.F.I.T.: Right now I'm juggling a lot of responsibility, and its only going to get harder very soon. I'm going to be making music my whole life though, so I'm not too worried about rushing music out. Even though its been a minute since my last release, I want this next project to be extremely professional. I'm in college right now trying to get a really difficult degree, and it's hard to keep moving with everything, but I try to stay focused.

MVRemix: Can we expect to see you perform live anytime soon?

B.E.N.E.F.I.T.: When the LP is completed, pressed, and promoted, I will do a small US tour, and I'm going to try to hit up most big cities, so you can catch me then.

MVRemix: Have you heard of an MC "Scram Jones"? He seems to have a flow very similar to yours, and also produces his own beats?

B.E.N.E.F.I.T.: I heard Scram Jones. Personally I don't think his flow is similar to mine. I respect any emcee who makes his own beats. In fact, when my label gets going I want any artist I pick up to be a good producer as well.

MVRemix: What kind of equipment/programs do you use when producing?

B.E.N.E.F.I.T.: I'm about to get Pro Tools, right now I use Propellerhead's Reason, mainly for drums, and bass tones, and I do a lot of linear wave editing with SoundForge, as far as sample placement. I record in Acid or Vegas on a condenser.

MVRemix: On the topic of beat production, any luck selling them over the internet? Don't you think you're limiting yourself a bit by not letting a different sound appear on your album?

B.E.N.E.F.I.T.: I put about 20 beats on my site a few months ago, and more than half have been sold, and that is without really promoting my site at all. Beat sales are going good. As far as limiting my sound, I produced my first album and the sound was different throughout the whole thing. I think as long as you keep variety in mind when you're putting together the production aspect of your album, it won't be monotonous. Plus I feel that emcees should produce their own music, besides compilations and what not. Saying words you wrote down over music someone else created isn't all that impressive to me. For instance, look at Jay-Z's new album. I could write the lyrics for that entire album in one day, and rhyming them well is difficult, but it's not that difficult. In my opinion most of the beats were great, so I thought the album was good, but if Jay-Z would have made all of the music as well, instead of just saying words over someone else's music, I would have more respect for him as an artist. Production is just another aspect of personal expression in Hip Hop. If you're a true artist why not produce and rhyme. It just lets you express yourself better.

MVRemix: Can we look forward to a few more of your creative interludes of future "Benefit" LPs?

B.E.N.E.F.I.T.: Yeah there will be more interludes. One of the best parts of producing is going through records, and when I find something hilarious, or really good on an old album, sometimes it works perfect for an interlude.

MVRemix: What were some of your early musical influences?

B.E.N.E.F.I.T.: My earliest influences were probably Run DMC, and the Fat Boys. Then as I grew up my influences changed with the times. I love so many different kinds of Hip Hop its hard to say exactly what influences me. I am influenced by any music that has soul in it. From the soul in Tupac's delivery, to the soul in the old music RZA used to sample for his beats. I'm drawn to anything soulful. Most Hip Hop today is soulless. You can put your soul into something if you really believe it and feel it, and when you really feel something that you create, people who listen to it will feel it. That's the way soul travels, from creation to appreciation. Nowadays most art forms I see lack soul. From Hip Hop to films. It's too bad.

MVRemix: I heard your next project will be distributed by an actual company, can you tell us which one you chose and why? I heard Landspeed does a pretty good job...even though Necro would strongly disagree

B.E.N.E.F.I.T.: I'm releasing my next album independently, and I've had some distribution offers, but I'm not sure yet who I'm going with.

MVRemix: If you have anything else you would like to mention, now is the time....

B.E.N.E.F.I.T.: If anyone needs production, go to www.sosickrecords.com Keep an eye out for my new album, and like my man Dutch Massive says, make more classics.


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