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Dälek - conducted by Todd E. Jones  

Hip-Hop Cannot Afford The Absence Of Dälek

March 2005

MVRemix: Where were you on September 11th, the terrorist attack? How did you deal with it? How do you think it has affected hip-hop?

Dälek: I was on my way to work, on the way to Manhattan. The tunnel was shut down. I’m in Newark, which is 20 minutes away from Manhattan. I thought it was a sad thing that so many people lost their lives. Sad things happen around the world all the time. People have dealt with tragedies much worse than that around the world and they did not hype their tragedy up as much as this country hyped that up. It is a shame that it happened but unless you had your head in the sand, you had to see that sh*t coming.

MVRemix: What do you think about Bush getting re-elected?

Dälek: It’s funny. People ask me if the lyrics on the album would have been different if Bush did not get re-elected. The answer to that is ‘No’. It is the system that is f*cked up. It is not because of the one person who got elected or did not get elected. If Kerry got into office, I would not expect radical change. I would have preferred Kerry in office because Bush is an idiot. I don’t think it would have made that much of a difference.

MVRemix: Word association time. I’m going to say the name of an emcee or group and you say the first word that comes to your head. So, if I said ‘Public Enemy’, you may say ‘revolution’. Okay?

MVRemix: 50 Cent.

Dälek: Ill. I think 70% of the sh*t that is doing is pretty ill.”

MVRemix: Eminem.

Dälek: Wack.

MVRemix: Boots from The Coup.

Dälek: They did that Twin Towers thing on the cover. I never heard their music.

MVRemix: Wu-Tang Clan.

Dälek: O.D.B.

MVRemix: Phife Dawg from A Tribe Called Quest.

Dälek: Jazz. I love that song ‘(We’ve Got The) Jazz’.

MVRemix: Brand Nubian.

Dälek: Yo, I don’t have words for these groups. That is what I grew up on.

MVRemix: Del The Funky Homosapian.

Dälek: He’s alright.

MVRemix: Dead Prez.

Dälek: Feeling that.

MVRemix: Common.

Dälek: I was actually in the studio when he was recording ‘Resurrection’ back in the day. I had a little cipher with those cats. He’s definitely a cool guy.

MVRemix: Curtis Mayfield.

Dälek: Dope.

MVRemix: George Bush.

Dälek: F*ck that.

MVRemix: Out of A Tribe Called Quest’s ‘The Low End Theory’ and ‘Midnight Marauders’, which one is better?

Dälek: I would say ‘The Low End Theory’. ‘Midnight Marauders’ had some ill joints on it though. ‘The Low End Theory’ is the kind of record that you were into because you were into it.

MVRemix: What is the biggest mistake you made in your career?

Dälek: Hiring management before we needed it. I just think that it was a waste of time.

MVRemix: In your music, there are many non-hip-hop influences. What are some of your non-hip-hop influences?

Dälek: Obviously, My Bloody Valentine. Also, The Velvet Underground, Faust, and All Natural Lemon and Lime Flavors. I’m just a fan of music in general.

MVRemix: You did a record with Faust. How did that happen?

Dälek: I mentioned him on one of the songs on ‘From Filthy Tongue of Gods & Griots’. He heard it and contacted our agent in Europe. It was as simple as that.

MVRemix: What is your position on the legalization of marijuana?

Dälek: I used to smoke but I don’t anymore. I think it should be legalized, man. I don’t see anything wrong with that at all.

MVRemix: It has been said that ‘The pen is mightier than the sword’. Do you agree?

Dälek: To some degrees but, the sword is still pretty powerful.

MVRemix: Would you ever do a whole record with other producer’s beats?

Dälek: Probably not. I’ll do songs here and there. I’m on DJ Spooky’s ‘Drums Of Death’ album. For the most part, I don’t mind doing a song here and there, but I do not think I would take on another production team. The production team now is me and Oktapus. Why change it? This is my solo project, in some sense.

MVRemix: What can we expect from Dälek in the future?

Dälek: Touring. For the rest of the year, we will be in Japan and Europe. We are recording a project with Wolfgang from Sofa Surfers, a violinist, and another emcee, my boy Oddity. We are trying to see what comes out. That would be out soon. We are doing a collaboration with this Italian band named Zoo. It is a 3 piece with drums, bass, and saxophone. The album should sound something like Melvins mixed with John Coltrane and The Wu-Tang Clan. It’s an ill concept. Still, our DJ, is coming out with a solo record in March. He is producing a new Oddity record, which should be out soon.

MVRemix: Any final comments for the people reading this?

Dälek: Check out our website and support ‘Absence’. Support that sh*t.

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