imperfekt – Beats & RapsYou just dropped the new album “Beats & Raps” what was some of the inspiration behind that?
The main inspiration was that I went out on the road in August of 2013 and did quite a few shows and sold quite a bit of merch but I felt bad because what I was selling wasn’t what I was performing. I was performing a lot of stuff I hadn’t recorded yet, so when I got home from that trip on the road I decided I was going to record everything that I had been performing and put it out for free since some of that stuff is several years old. It’s new to a lot of people, but it seems super old to me.
So, that was your first time touring out of the state alone, correct?
Yeah, it was just a couple dates in Missouri and a few spot dates here and there. Going down to Missouri was the first time I’d ever driven several hours by myself to do a show. Alone, no roadie or anything with me.
Also, on that tour, you played live sets on your MPC board, how was that transition into performing like that and can we expect to see more in the future?
I decided to start doing some live beats because I’ve been rapping for a long time with a dj playing behind me or sometimes playing a cd or mp3 player and I wanted to try and do something a little more involved. I’ve always had an MPC in the studio but I’ve never wanted to take it out and take the chance of a beer getting spilled on it, cause you know they’re not cheap. But I found a cheap one at a pawn shop so I got that and started doing the beat stuff and it’s been received real well; especially at places where I’ve never been and people don’t know who I am, except from the person who introduces me. When I start doing that stuff it really grabs their attention and really brings them up to the front of the stage. It’s been a lot of fun and I really enjoy it.
Something that I find really cool on “Beats & Raps” is that you decided to add a little background information for each track. I feel with so much music being released digitally these days, it’s sort of a rarity. What made you decide to do that?
That kind of spawned from being an overly honest person, some people cringe at my honesty (ha), but I put out this album and I’m promoting it and I want people to get it and I don’t want them to assume its brand new and since some of the songs are so old I just want to put the background story on them. I like the thought of paying homage or giving the credits to the albums when I can remember and I’m not in that mad scientist mode. I like giving credits to the records I might have sampled drums from or whatever. I include the different types of equipment that I use, I always think that’s cool. I’m kind of a music nerd, and I enjoy reading, and the people I’m a fan of, I like to know their equipment that they use and their process in the studio. It’s just something that doesn’t come with music anymore. You used to be able to open a CD and have the whole experience; you know the new CD smell, looking at the book, the cover art, all that stuff. It’s something I’ve gotten some personal messages about thanking me for doing this. I’ve printed it out and put it on my website, giving a little more detail about each individual track.
Just a moment ago you mentioned being a music nerd and just today I saw on Facebook you posted about recently checking out a lot of different genres of music that your friends are sharing, something maybe out of your normal zone. Who are some people you’ve recently discovered outside of your genre that you think we should know about?
Well the one I played today was a group called Far Fetched and the album was called Prologue III. I don’t even know what they would be considered as a genre. I just pushed play because I get annoyed that this day in age of internet promotions that people get too lazy to click on stuff, I mean, I can be the same way, but someone took the time to make this music and post it online for us to hear so I’m just trying to play it. I just like to listen to all types of music. In my form of sampling, I’ll get all types of weird records and I’ll just sit and play them. Anything from Russian folk music to China folk music. Anything that’s got an interesting sound, I’ll play from start to finish and I get to hear a lot of really interesting things.
Shifting gears here, coming up on April 26th, you’ve got the 3rd annual Super Fresh Culture Fest in Cedar Rapids, give us a little history on SFCF and what do you have in store for us this year?
The first year we did it, we kind of threw it together, we had an interesting opportunity to get the legendary Ras Kass on the bill and we formed it around that and we started reaching out. The only place we could really do it was a good sized place so we decided to book a festival instead. We got a lot of local talent and midwest acts that we’ve been working with for a lot of years, got artists and vendors and just put it all together in literally 5 or 6 weeks. It was such an ENORMOUS success here in Cedar Rapids that people talked about it for months. It was really interesting when it was happening, to go outside and see groups of people walking to the door and parking blocks away, it was really a cool thing. After that, people were so happy that the next day they were already asking when the next one was. When it came time to start doing it again, we booked it for 1 year and 1 day after the previous year. I booked a nice lineup with some midwest heavyweights we’ve known for a while, we booked C Rayz Walz, and he unfortunately ended up not being able to make it, but there was absolutely no bad blood, everything worked out. It was still an excellent time. This year we decided to move to a new location that is much larger which is outdoors with a giant pavilion, playgrounds for kids, we’ll have a graffiti wall, working on a car show for this year, and more vendors. We really depend on our local support as far as music and businesses, we have a lot of local sponsors that we work with. Our main presenting sponsor this year is Neon Dragon Tattoo and Piercing. They are one of MicHand’s biggest sponsors and helps with all of our musical endeavors. We’ve booked acts from MN, IL, MO, NE, SD. But we’ll be releasing our official lineup shortly. All of the locals however are already posted on our website. We’ll be giving out some tickets and hopefully trying to take this to the next level.
To find out more about SFCF, check out the Facebook Event: https://www.facebook.com/events/623646757692949/
Other than SFCF, do you have any plans for other festivals or what other major shows are you looking forward to?
I really need to make it back to Soundset again this year. I missed it last year and it hurt, it hurt my heart. I actually went 3 years in a row before that. I came up when Scribble Jam was a big thing and when it died out I was really sad because we had decided we wanted to go every year, but never made it. When I went to Soundset in 2010, I decided that I never wanted to miss a Soundset ever since I never got to make it to Scribble Jam. And where else can you go and be a hip hop head like me and just feel welcome? Everybody there is essentially the same as you and just getting along. Especially being from Iowa, there really isn’t any place like that in any city that is just catered to us. Its just so cool to go there and be in it. Being a musician I go there and I get to see people I know and we kind of model some of the festivities at SFCF after what goes on at Soundset.
Keep up with all of the latest iMPERFEKT and Mic Hand happening by checking out their website at: http://www.michandrecordings.com/