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Interview with Motif Magazine -- June, 2014
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Sage Francis
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Joined: 30 Jun 2002
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Interview with Motif Magazine -- June, 2014  Reply with quote

Q: How does it feel to be back on tour after your hiatus? How are your crowds receiving your new album?

A: It feels great to be back in the saddle, especially in support of a new album. A year ago I had no idea that this is what I'd be doing right now, but I'm very happy it's all turned out this way. The reception for Copper Gone has been ultra positive. A majority of people, fans and contemporaries alike, are telling me that they think this is the best album I've ever done, and that's high praise to me considering how much I've done over the past 15 years. Being that this is the first studio album being released on my own indie label, I definitely felt the pressure to have an album that socked people over the head. And in the bread basket. And in the bean bag.

Q: Where does the title “copper gone” come from? What inspired this album? It seems to be your darkest, most personal yet.

A: It's mainly in reference to houses that get stripped for their scrap metal. There was an abandoned building near where I live that had "Copper Gone" spray painted onto it in an attempt to keep people from breaking into it. It was basically a plea to the people. Like, "Hey…there's nothing left. I've been stripped clean. Stop fucking with me now."

Q: Care to share who you wrote ID about?

A: ID Thieves applies to a lot of people. My answer to that question could vary depending on the era you ask me it and the context in which it's asked. I don't have to name names though. If the shoe fits, the shoe fits.

Q: “Cheat Code” is like an annoyed rant about the state of the hip-hop scene; how do you see the future of real, lyrical, hip-hop?

A: That song is curmudgeon-hop. Haha. I wanted to pull rank on the new wave of emcees who think it's cool to rap like they don't know how to rap. Just for the fun of it. It's fun being the crotchety old guy who can also throw down when he needs to. Old man strength is not to be reckoned with. Really though, there's no danger of "lyrical hip-hop" becoming extinct. Rap is obviously word heavy, so I think it will always attract people who have a command of language. These artists and songs may not be covered by the media, but it will be out there. Same with any other genre. People need to dig to find the good stuff.

Q: I understand you've made quite the accomplishment on the Billboard Top 200 earlier this month. Please explain.

A: Well, "Copper Gone" sold well enough to break into BillBoard's Top 200 albums. It's a big deal for a small, indie label. Big shout out to the Strange Famous Records crew, Redeye distribution, and the fans who showed actual support.

Q: Who did you work with on “Over Under?” The sound captures this playfully dark vibe I’m really loving.

A: A French producer by the name of Le Parasite put together that beat. It was actually submitted as part of a remix contest we held on our website a few years back. I liked the beat so much I asked him if I could keep it on reserve for an original song. The beat for "Uncle Sage" also came about in a similar way. In fact, now that I think of it, a lot of the producers on this record got in touch with me from the remix contests we held at Strange Famous. Crazy how that all worked out.

Q: Were you trying to send a particular message with Copper Gone? Or would you consider it more autobiographical?

A: No particular message. Several general messages. A few on-the-nose messages as well, just to make sure people pay attention. And, yes, autobiographical in many ways. Sorry I'm not answering you with specifics, but I don't think this really requires a specific answer. I express myself in my own unique way on this album. Different people will derive different messages.

Q: What’s your favorite track...why?

A: I have many favorites. It depends on the day and the mood. We just played our 17th show on this tour and I must say that I never get tired of performing Dead Man's Float. I enjoy the builds and the fall outs along with the vocal accompaniment I get from Lord Grunge and B. Dolan on stage. I'm not sure the crowd knows what's going on with that song, but it feels like they're with me the whole way through.

Q: Has any artist influenced you especially on this project? I caught that Nas lyric at the end of the album.

A: No, not really. I reference many artists throughout the album. Glad you caught head nod to Illmatic. One of my favorite references is the line I use in Grace when I say, "This is not a love ballad." It's reference to a Poor Righteous Teacher's song. I've been meaning to use it for ages and I finally got the opportunity to make a sneaky chorus out of it.

Q: What can fans anticipate for your homecoming on July 4?

A: These shows have been absolutely insane. The last show is going to be emotional as all hell. I know that right now. As much as I'm excited to be back home, I'm not so sure I want to end this particular run. But, yeah, people can expect pure fucking insanity on stage and a finely tuned performance. We're leaving it all out on the stage that night. If people leave that show feeling like it wasn't the best show they've seen in recent years I'd be surprised. This will be one for the books. No doubt. Medical ones especially.
Post Wed Aug 06, 2014 8:34 pm
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