Killah Priest conducted by Hugo Lunny  

Killah Priest Interview

May 2003

These are the transcripts of an interview conducted with Killah Priest. The interview was conducted on May 21st, 2003 by Hugo Lunny.

Killah Priest is best known for his solo efforts and his position in the Wu-Tang affiliated group, the Sunz Of Man. From "Heavy Mental," through to "A View From Masada" through "Priesthood," Killah Priest has shown his lyrical skill and thoughtful introspection. He's set to release his next album; "Black August" this July.

MVRemix: How do you feel about your current label situation given the fact that 'Black August' has already appeared online?

Killah Priest: I mean, shit happens. There are certain songs that I wanted to appear, like the song 'Big World.' I don't know who leaked it, but that's how this industry is. Somebody gets their hands on it, and...I don't know who did it. But it's sickening. But, what the fuck am I gonna do? I've just got to make more new songs.

MVRemix: How do you feel about ODB signing to Roc-A-Fella?

Killah Priest: Oh wow. I think it's good for him. He's just doing him. I mean, I'm not hating on him or anything. As long as ODB is ODB. I'm not one of the one's to hate on him, because he's doing his thing. It's kind of weird though.

MVRemix: Yeah, I heard Raekwon and a couple of other members weren't even informed about it before the press conference...

Killah Priest: Right, right. I mean, ODB's been locked down for a minute. I guess nobody came to see him and he felt like "Yo, I've gotta get my paper" and it's by any means necessary. I've been doing my own thing.

MVRemix: What are your thoughts on the mixtape circuits? Your track 'Come With Me' appears on the new J-Love tape. Are you for this sort of promotion or do you feel like some labels do that it's profiting from you work?

Killah Priest: That's what the streets want now. I think DJ's are part of Hip Hop too, so they can get their money as long as we can get ours too. It's just a way of reaching music out to the people. It becomes too crazy when everybody's becoming a mixtape DJ because they get their hands on a couple of exclusives. Let me hear you cut! You know some of these DJ's that be coming out these days haven't even heard of a "mix" or a "cut," or doing some DJ'ing - or rock a party. So it's not real Hip Hop to me. I want to hear a real DJ cut shit up. You get your hands on stuff because you know 'em and you're respected by the artist. That's more beautiful.

MVRemix: Tell me about your "Day In the Life" DVD.

Killah Priest: Oh, that's out?

MVRemix: Yeah...

Killah Priest: I had no idea. Haha, word. "A Day In The Life" is "A day in the life." My man Saadiq (Inspektah Deck's manager), he hooked that up. We got together, he put some films on it and I just basically took him through the streets of Harlem. We never even got to Brooklyn (where I'm from), but it was just a busy day. It's just what Priest do. I got to go to the studio, he saw me record. My idea's for my next album; 'Black August.' It was kind of fun doing it. You should see it, I jumped on the train - I kept it as real as possible. I jumped on the subway train; how many rappers are doing that now?

MVRemix: What can you tell me about the Four Horsemen album and the status of the group due to Ras' "fugitive" situation?

Killah Priest: Ras Kass is a fugitive? Ras Kass is a hero! Haha. He's doing it! Running away from the industry...

MVRemix: No, you know what I mean...

Killah Priest: Killah Priest interviewThe Horsemen...we recorded songs, about fourteen altogether. But nobody pin pointed what we were going to do with them. Canibus, I think, was going through some things. Then Ras Kass, with his label. was fun doing it and shit. I did it with Kurupt; we all sat down there and I was telling them, "Lets put this album together." They called me in late. I came through, we did it and the shit came out alright.

MVRemix: Is it likely to surface at any point? Or is it just kind of waiting?

Killah Priest: When we did it, we just went in the studio and we just recorded songs. There was no pinpointing of you go in there, and you just do this. If you've got a 50-bar verse, you just go in there and lace it. That's how we'd do it. If someone could top it or get on it, or match it, you just knock that out. It's time for Hip Hop to be on some straight "Hip Hop shit," like my album. It's like on this album - I'm just emceeing on it. I'm showing cats artistic views and putting thought provoking back into Hip Hop music (rap). That's what it is...

MVRemix: I have a few word associations for you to react to. Tell me the first thoughts that come into your head and anything else you'd like to add...

Killah Priest: Alright...

MVRemix: RZA

Killah Priest: Just give you a word?

MVRemix: Nah, just when I state a word, you tell me what thoughts enter your head to do with the artist or whatever...

Killah Priest: RZA. Control.

MVRemix: Care to elaborate?

Killah Priest: I mean, when you think of RZA, you think of the Wu-Tang Clan. Most of the beats coming, besides Ghostface's last album - you always see RZA on there. Controlled, he's just like that. RZA's in control.

MVRemix: What about Nelly?

Killah Priest: Slick singer/rapper.

MVRemix: MCA

Killah Priest: MCA Records...don't know what they're doing.

MVRemix: Did you hear that they're actually going to be disbanding at the end of this year and they're going back to Geffen?

Killah Priest: Haha, they're going back huh? I knew that because they fucked up my "View From Masada" album. They just lack vision. I think MCA is more of an RNB label than a rap label.

MVRemix: What about the Sunz Of Man

Killah Priest: Sunz Of Man is a group that need to be noticed more.

MVRemix: Hip Hop as a whole...

Killah Priest: Re-educate the audience.

MVRemix: Drugs with regards to creating music. People that smoke to write or whatever...

Killah Priest: Whatever it takes. That's not my rap.

MVRemix: Tell me a bit about 'Black August'...

Killah Priest: 'Black August' is basically me coming back out. It's to do with my struggle. I was born in August and it's telling you about my life and what I like to do. My artistic views on everything.

MVRemix: How does it compare to "A View From Masada" and "Heavy Mental"?

Killah Priest: It's totally different. A lot of emcees that make records can't switch up. Mine, I switch up on each album. This album is about painting pictures for the mind. It's me showing my artistic level on "Yo, I was always one of the nicest emcee's." So, I was always like that. But they'd sleep on it because certain cats at the record label didn't want to push it like that. This time I'm expressing that no matter how long, I'm always nice. I never quit. Nobody taught me how to do this, this is in my blood. Hip Hop has been in me.

MVRemix: Would you say it's more deep?

Killah Priest: Yeah, it's more real. It's real deep man. When I talk about 'Black August,' you can see my life as a whole. You can see everything in there and then catch a deep point. I challenge the listener. I have certain tracks on there that go back to deep concepts that regular artists can't do.

MVRemix: Will there be any Wu-Fam related guests like Tekitha or...?

Killah Priest: Hell yeah, I mean Tekitha, she's my girl. She sung on my first album and I haven't seen her in so long but, as always, I can't wait to see her so that we can do another song together. As far as the rest of the clan, the rest of the clan members; when everybody comes together and we can sit down and talk because everybody's doing their thing right now. Of course I'll do songs with Clan members, but right now I'm just gonna concentrate on doing me. I'm reaching out to all artists. I would never diss one and one little thing because that's how it all is for me. As Killah Priest, as Priest coming up in the music industry - I always had to do my own thing. I couldn't do many things with anybody, I was just riding on the Clan, on Wu-Tang, because everybody knows I'm affiliated. Me, I held me down.

MVRemix: What else are you working on? Collaborations/guest appearances that have yet to be released or are in the works...

Killah Priest: Not really. I'd like to get with Dead Prez though, I like them. I think the brothers are very artistic. Also Erykah Badu, I'm supposed to be doing a tour with them (Dead Prez) soon. Also Israel, I'm going out there.

MVRemix: Any last comments for your fans/potential fans that are going to read this?

Killah Priest: Yeah, Priest is back. I'm stronger than my first appearance. Like Moses from the mountains or the Pilgrimage of Malcolm.

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