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Gabriel Teodoros - conducted by Todd E. Jones  

Gabriel Teodros Loves His Work

January 2007

MVRemix: What do you think about U.S. and the Middle East?

Gabriel Teodoros: The U.S. needs to stop tripping and we here within the U.S. need to seriously unplug our televisions and stop buying newspapers that are feeding us distractions instead of what's really going on. Support independent media. Be your own media because it's been 3 years and the U.S. is still in Iraq? Over 650,000 lives have been lost and we act like nothings happening. It's sick.

MVRemix: Abortion. Pro-choice or pro-life?

Gabriel Teodoros: See Digable Planets, 'La Femme Fetal'.

MVRemix: Euthanasia, for or against?

Gabriel Teodoros: At first I thought you were talking about my home girl from Living Mechanizm. Man, I'm pro-choice.

MVRemix: What was the last incident of racism you experienced?

Gabriel Teodoros: I don't know. There are little things that happen in Seattle everyday. It's more subtle here because Seattle's supposed to be PC, but really everyone is just passive-aggressive. I appreciate the more overt in your face kind of racism that happens in New York. At least then I know who I'm talking to.

MVRemix: You are a political minded emcee. With the myriad of issues that we face these days, which are the top 3 that you think are the priority?

Gabriel Teodoros: That's a hard question and I can't just give you 3 issues. I will say look at who you are, where you are at, and how your life is affected by shit that keeps us from being human. There are different forms of oppression that all work together, that we are all affected by, from race, gender to class. Just by living in this country, we all benefit from oppression, the price we pay for our food and clothes, people in the third world are being forced to make for little to no money. So recognizing we got problems and seeing that a little girl on the other side of the planet, who works her fingers to the bone instead of going to school, is our problem too. And men? Seeing that 1 in 4 women right here will be raped in their lifetime, is our problem too. Seeing that all those lives lost in Iraq is our problem too. Taking accountability, recognizing our privilege, and just doing something about it. Starting at home. That's real important.

MVRemix: What is your opinion on MySpace?

Gabriel Teodoros: It was cool for like a year or so. It definitely helped me get my music out there and I didn't have to spam nobody. Stop copying and pasting messages, jerks! I was blessed to meet some amazing people through there. I was in everyone's top 8 for minute just cause I signed on to that shit so early. I don't think it's going to be around for too much longer though with Rupert-Murdoch now controlling it and all the censorship and profiles being deleted. I think it's on its way out.

MVRemix: Word association. When I say a name, you say the first word that pops into your head. So, if I said, 'Public Enemy', you may say 'Revolution' or 'Chuck D'. Okay?


Gabriel Teodoros: Slug's everywhere.

MVRemix: Dead Prez.

Gabriel Teodoros: It's bigger than hip hop.

MVRemix: Happy Mondays.

Gabriel Teodoros: Who?

MVRemix: Kool Keith.

Gabriel Teodoros: Mr. Hill.

MVRemix: Necro.

Gabriel Teodoros: That package you sent to the house wasn't cool homie.

MVRemix: Wu-Tang Clan.

Gabriel Teodoros: Ain't Nothin Ta F*ck With.

MVRemix: Eminem.

Gabriel Teodoros: Slady Shim.

MVRemix: Public Enemy.

Gabriel Teodoros: On tour with X-Clan this week!

MVRemix: Little Brother.

Gabriel Teodoros: The Listening.

MVRemix: Phife Dawg.

Gabriel Teodoros: Is In The House.

MVRemix: MF Doom.

Gabriel Teodoros: MMmm Food.

MVRemix: De La Soul.

Gabriel Teodoros: Is Dead.

MVRemix: Serengeti.

Gabriel Teodoros: The plains?

MVRemix: Spank Rock.

Gabriel Teodoros: Is that a new genre? Like a slowed-down speed metal?

MVRemix: Curtis Mayfield.

Gabriel Teodoros: Almost impossible to do.

MVRemix: Billy Holiday.

Gabriel Teodoros: Strange Fruit.

MVRemix: Gil-Scott Heron.

Gabriel Teodoros: Pieces Of A Man.

MVRemix: George Bush.

Gabriel Teodoros: Is a dipsh*t.

MVRemix: Who are your biggest influences?

Gabriel Teodoros: My mom, little cousins, everyone I ever made music with. It's a long list, like everyone I shouted out inside the liner notes.

MVRemix: What is the biggest lesson you have learned in your career?

Gabriel Teodoros: Follow your heart and not what anybody else says or thinks about it. Practice is even more important then god-given talent.

MVRemix: These days, what is a typical day like for you?

Gabriel Teodoros: I'm up too late, so I watch the sunrise and then sleep for a few hours, wake-up, drink coffee, walk or ride the bus, attend to whatever business the day calls for, whether it's record label stuff, recording or engineering people at my house, internet stuff, promotional work, booking shows for people. I do the programming for a radio show every week, sometimes two. I'm also performing somewhere every week, the random workshops and school appearances. There always seems to be somebody from out of town, spending the night at my house too. I try to spend time with the homies who keep me grounded and feeling like a regular person. Sometimes, I flake and feelings get hurt. I drink more coffee. Sometimes, I eat food. Before you know it, I'm up till the sun rises again.

MVRemix: What are some major misconceptions do you think people have of you?

Gabriel Teodoros: That I'm really serious.

MVRemix: Did you get along with your parents? What do they think about your music?

Gabriel Teodoros: Yeah I get along with my parents. You really get personal don't you? I grew up at my mom's house and really got to know my father as an adult. My mother is one of the most supportive people in my life. There have been times when her faith in me was stronger then my faith in self. It's really because of her love and support that I'm still here, able to make music. My pops, what he thinks about my music, is a mystery. He says sh*t like 'Music is a pipe-dream'. He'll encourage me to work at a fast-food restaurant before acknowledging that I'm already working full-time. I don't know if he knows I made up my mind before I even got to know him.

MVRemix: When you pass away, would you like to be buried or cremated?

Gabriel Teodoros: I've never been asked that before.

MVRemix: What would you want on your epitaph?

Gabriel Teodoros: I'll have to get back to you on that one. That's like asking me to decide on a tattoo. I know I want some, just haven't decided what to get yet.

MVRemix: Are there any collaborations fans should look out for?

Gabriel Teodoros: Good Medicine, Abyssinian Creole. More songs with Blue Scholars & Common Market. There's a feature on Moka Only's next album 'Vermilion'. DJ T-Bone Steak's project, out of Japan. Toni Hill's solo project, Khingz Makoma's solo project, Amos Miller's solo project, Manik 1derful's solo project, Sista HailStorm's album, and Macklemore's album. I'm probably forgetting a bunch.

MVRemix: What's next?

Gabriel Teodoros: Trying to connect with all the East African artists in the Diaspora. Go back to Africa, make hella music that feels good, and help raise some kids, write a book or something. Who knows what tomorrow will hold? Oh, and I'll be on your block in 2007.

MVRemix: Any final words?

Gabriel Teodoros: Keep living.

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"My mother is one of the most supportive people in my life. There have been times when her faith in me was stronger then my faith in self."