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Sadat X (Brand Nubian) - conducted by Todd E. Jones  

Locked Up With Sadat X

March 2007

MVRemix: How did you meet Puba and Lord Jamar, and eventually form Brand Nubian?

Sadat X: I met Puba and Jamar in New Rochelle, New York. Puba was trying to get myself and Jamar a deal.

MVRemix: Musically, what else have you been working on?

Sadat X: I've been musically stagnant right now due to my incarceration. I find myself writing in spurts whenever I get the feeling.

MVRemix: Do you think that success and credibility are mutually exclusive?

Sadat X: I think success and credibility are exclusive. You can be musically successful and forfeit your credibility.

MVRemix: What solo song are you most proud of?

Sadat X: I am proud of all of my solo songs. To pick one is like choosing from amongst my children.

MVRemix: Spirituality has always been an element of Brand Nubian's foundation. When and how did you get enlightened?

Sadat X: I was enlightened into The Nation Of Gods & Earths in the early 90's.

MVRemix: What was the last dream you remember?

Sadat X: The last dream I remember was of myself, taking a hot bath with my girl.

MVRemix: Who are some artists you would like to collaborate with in the future?

Sadat X: I would like to work with Eminem, Gza, Vast Aire, Kool G Rap, O.C., and A.G. Basically, some of my favorites.

MVRemix: On the 'Black October' LP, you have a song called, 'The Post' and on the 'Experience & Education' album, you have a song called, 'The Daily News'. On both tracks, you take elements from the newspaper and implement them in your rhymes. Were these songs done in one take? Were they free-styled or written first?

Sadat X: The songs, 'The Post' and 'The Daily News' were taken directly from the articles in those papers on the said dates. The songs were all done in one take.

MVRemix: Will you create a new news/freestyle song using The New York Times or a different publication?

Sadat X: There will be a Spanish newspaper version done.

MVRemix: How did you get the deal with Female Fun Records?

Sadat X: I got the deal with Female Fun Records and Riverside Drive Records through a personal friend, Peter Agoston.

MVRemix: I feel that the Brand Nubian album, 'Everything Is Everything' did not get the deserved credit, or the airplay. How do you feel about that album compared to the other Brand Nubian LPS?

Sadat X: On 'Everything Is Everything', I feel that myself and Jamar tried to expand on different genres of music and people weren't ready for it.

MVRemix: Please, tell us, in detail, about the incident that led to the arrest. What was the charge?

Sadat X: I got into a money dispute with some Dominicans on Broadway over some money. They were adults, not kids!

MVRemix: Please describe first day of incarceration.

Sadat X: Rikers Island is a jail, not a prison. My first day in jail was basically getting used to my surroundings and letting it sink in that I was here.

MVRemix: What is the key to survival in prison?

Sadat X: There are 3 keys to survival in here. First is to obey the rules. You don't want to get the C.O.'s against you. Second, mind your f*cking business. Don't be M.L.K. in here. Let the C.O.'s do their job. They are getting paid for it. Third, stay busy. Make the time. Don't let it make you. Don't watch the clock or calendar.

MVRemix: What is a typical day like for you inside?

Sadat X: A typical day for me is 5:30 AM wake up for work. My work is construction from 6 AM to 1:30 PM. Then, rest. Then, the yard, exercise and walking. Chow. Watch a little TV, the news. Lights out at 11 PM.

MVRemix: Obviously the show "Oz" is purely fictional, but what are some of the most glaring aspects of prison that the show lacked?

Sadat X: There is not the freedom to roam around in jail like it is on 'Oz'.

MVRemix: What LPs have you been listening to before you went inside?

Sadat X: I always listen to oldies R&B and rap.

MVRemix: Guns have been a prevalent part of your music, but you always handled the topic with realism and honesty. What kind of gun did you get caught with?

Sadat X: I was caught with a 40 caliber gun, heavy fire.

MVRemix: In your opinion, what is the most reliable firearm?

Sadat X: The most reliable gun to me is a revolver because it doesn't jam.

MVRemix: Final words to end this first part?

Sadat X: The rest of this will be done shortly. Pardon the delay. My property was just returned to me.

Related content:
  • Sadat X (Brand Nubian) 2007 Interview by Todd E. Jones
  • Lord Jamar (Brand Nubian) 2004 Interview by Todd E. Jones

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    "Rikers Island is a jail, not a prison. My first day in jail was basically getting used to my surroundings and letting it sink in that I was here."