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interview with Stranger magazine 2/14/04
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Sage Francis
Self Fighteous


Joined: 30 Jun 2002
Posts: 21597
interview with Stranger magazine 2/14/04  Reply with quote  

01 Emo hip hop—albatross around your neck or savvy marketing term that’s
helped you beyond your wildest imagination?

"Hahahaa. I was thinking about this yesterday while riding in the van. I don't like emotional people unless they are very intelligent to balance out the stupid shit that comes from emotions. So...wait....i dunno, yo. Fred Durst is emo on some, "Gimme something to BREAK' shit. It's a misnomer."


02 Is “Different” sarcastic? Part of its genius is that it seems to be both
boastful and scornful of its boasts at the same time.

"It is very self aware. Talking how you are different makes you just like everyone else.
But ME....ME...I am different in a DIFFERENT way. Ah, who the hell cares."


03 Wordplay and the clever twisting of cliches figure heavily in your
lyrics. It sounds as if you take great pains to write your verses. Is this
the case or did you freestyle the lyrics on Personal Journals?

"I freestyled a lot of what's on Different, but everything else took meticulous writing."


04 Did you ever battle Eminem, like Doseone did? If so, how did it go? Do
you think you could handle it if you became as popular as he is?

"No, I never did. I definitely don't want to get even CLOSE to as popular as he is. He handles it all rather well, but I have some major issues with too many people knowing who I am while trying to pry into my life. I have an infatuation with shadows, so living in obscurity is almost a necessity. Until its time to tour. I don't know what kind of balance I am trying to achieve but it's working out. I still get to sell out shows all around the world and I only get recognized in record stores. Sometimes."


05 You worked with a lot of great producers on Personal Journals. Do you
listen to their tracks first before writing or do they build tracks after
hearing your words? Some other method?

"I do every combination possible. For Personal Journals, I mainly had a concept that I knew I wanted to tackle and then waited for the right beat. Once I find the beat with the right mood I just wrote to whatever sequence the producer already had. It gives me limits and structure. I am fine with that. For HOPE, Joe Beats would give me the instrumentals and I dipped into my notebooks and found the stuff that worked best."


06 Do you see yourself as following in a tradition of MCs or as an
innovator?

"I don't consider those things. I don't think I am a traditional emcee in many respects, but I definitely fulfilled all my requirements. I follow my gut and do what I believe is necessary."


07 Will your new album differ from Journals? If so, in what ways? Who’s
producing it?

"Do you have your late pass? Hahaa. Joe Beats produced all of HOPE. It is a very different album. It's more of a traditional sounding hiphop album than PJ is."


08 “The Non-Prophets are a couple of straight-edge disaholics who have
nothing better to do than create amazing hip hop.” How’d you come to this
lifestyle?

"That shit was a joke. We wrote that on our website in 1999 and people ran with it. God damn my inability to work html. I need to remove that stupid shit. How's I come to this life style? I have no desire to be a socialite."


09 What’s the impetus behind the Fuck Clear Channel tour? (Besides taking a
jab at one of the most evil corporations ever?) Does political agitation
come into it? Have you heard from CC reps concerning your “blasphemous” use
of the company name?

"I like doing 41 shows all across America, selling out shows being thrown by local promoters, and telling Clear Channel to fuck themselves in the process. I live for shit like that."

10 Do you think race is still a factor with regard to how your art is
perceived? (Do Vibe, The Source, or XXL show you any love or even
acknowledge your existence? I know, I should do more research, but I’m
swamped now, so please cut me some slack.) A lot of white hip-hop artists
have an almost apologetic demeanor, as if they’re intruders in the genre.

"Those publications do not give me any burn. They'll catch on though. I am not upset or sweating the fact that they don't have their ear tuned into the indie scene. They have bigger budgeted artists to worry about."


11 What’s your Gimme Fund project like? Who’s in it?

"The Gimme Fund consists of two acoustic guitar players and Joe Beats on the drum machine. It is a bare bones crew. I wanted to strip everything down for a moment and play with new sounds. I am thrilled with it. Some hardcore hiphop heads are all in a huff about it, but fuck em. They weren't there when I toured with my DJ and now they have a bone to pick. Late pass. Get one."


12 Are you going to engage in corny audience participation rituals like
almost every other hip-hop crew I’ve ever seen? Call me an asshole, but this
shit gets annoying really fast.


"That is the worst kind of show ever invented. Some field trip sing along shit. Very annoying. I do it in jest sometimes. Or when I want to get yelled at I'll tell them what to yell and see if it works."
Post Sat Feb 14, 2004 7:21 pm
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