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interview with alphabeats.com, aug 22, 2002
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Sage Francis
Self Fighteous


Joined: 30 Jun 2002
Posts: 21620
interview with alphabeats.com, aug 22, 2002  Reply with quote  

1. How long have you been rhyming kid?

"for a minute yo."

2. Did you begin with poetry or rapping? And what inspired you to start?

"I rapped first. but it was poetic rap. It was on some next level hallmark moment type ish."

3. What were your influences musically? Outside of music?

"Almost all of the hiphop that existed between 1978 and 1996. Outside of music...ninjas were my main influences."

4. How do you differentiate yourself as an emcee from other emcees?

"Well...my voice is different. My thoughts are different. My approach and presentation is different. This is the reality of what I do...I don't have to think much about it."

5. Being from RI, How does it feel to be established…RI isn't known for producing a lot of emcees

"It feels like my swimming legs have developed well beyond the muscles of a body that has never resisted a current."

6. Hip Hop culture roots mostly from minorities from the inner city. Coming up have you came across any criticism or negative vibes for being a "suburban white boy"?

"Does James Brown get down?"

7. When you are writing, is there a difference in your process between your
poetry and your raps? Do you start out with an intention for one or the
other, or do you just start writing and then assign them to one or the
other, or is there no separation for you? Do you think your audience can
tell a separation? Is there a tendency to be less humorous or misogynistic
in your poems?

"All of it is written with the same audience in mind. I am under the impression that the same audience who digs my poetry also digs my raps...and vice versa. It is all coming from the same source with the same destination in mind."

8. In your song "narcissist" you are making fun of people obsessed with
commercial fashion. Have you always had this stand point, or is the
character in the song you, the way maybe you used to be, and then you
realized how superficial it all is and now you are rejected commercial
clothing?

"No, I didn't always think that way. I don't think I would be able to drive the point home if I didn't understand both sides of the argument. I grew up on hiphop....Adidas and Nike are COOL! I wouldn't be caught dead wearing no-name brands. Actually...I was caught alive wearing no-name brands...but I hated it. Eventually we must all come to the conclusion that our actions directly/indirectly support SOMETHING...and it is up to us to bare that responsibility. I don't support slave labor...I don't care to advertise for corporations who contribute to the destruction of a world I try to positively operate within. It's as simple as that. If you want to fight the "man" then you can start by removing his name from your underwear."

9. You write a lot of songs about respecting women, not eating meat, not buying commercial clothing, and dissin other emcees for using pop cultural references etc. Do you feel it is your responsibility to educate? Or simply entertain? Or Both?

"It is my job to entertain. I am an entertainer. The other things just make sense within the context of the entertainment. If I am in a position to raise consciousness in one form or another, then I accept the responsibility to do so...because people are LISTENING. I'll be damned if I don't have something to say while I already have their ear. Especially since...nothing much is being said anywhere else. But I don't care to use this mic as a soap box specifically."

10. I see a lot of materialistic and hedonistic kids at your shows... do you
ever feel like your messages are too coded for them to "Get educated"
through your music?

"I respect that some people can disgree with my points but still enjoy the music. That's why I am an entertainer first and foremost. I don't think I am too coded for people to understand my point. Those who don't, eventually will...if they don't then they will be too stupid to live so I won't have to worry about them for much longer."

11. Lets talk about tha album…. what producers did you work with on 'Personal Journals'?

"Mom and Dad."

12. There are a few guest appearances by "Lil Sage" on tha album…how old were you when that was recorded?

"L'il Sage ranges from age 8-12"

13. The title 'Personal Journals' sounds like some meaningful…something from tha heart and soul of Sage Francis…How long has it been in the making?

"32 years."

14. It's obvious that 'Makeshift Patriot' is a very meaningful and dope track. It has received love from everywhere. How long after the event did you make the track, and what are your feelings on the event since that date?

"It was released exactly one month after 9/11. My feelings have not changed...much like the world around us."

15. Did the fact that September 11th is your birthday play a role in your inspiration to write the song? And do you think it will mentally affect future birthdays to come?

"of course."

16. For those that might not know tell me a lil more about the Non-Prophets, what's been going down lately?

"The Non-Prophets consists of Joe Beats and myself"

17. Can we expect any more material in the near future?

"In the works are the Makeshift Patriot EP (only available on vinyl), the Known Unsoldier CD, the Non-Prophets LP entitled HOPE, a live album with a band, and a couple books that probably won't be finished until 2010."

18. What about AOI and The Orphanage? What's going down with them? Are there projects planned for the near future?

"No. AOI will play one final show, which will happen within the next few months. I am not in the Orphanage, but as far as I know there will never be an Orphanage album...I'm sick of people asking about that damn thing. heh."

19. I had a chance to check you out live for the first time at the Gastoff and at tha RSE store 5th element in Minneapolis…It was def dope…I loved your energy…Do you put a lot of practice into your stage shows or do you just go up and rock naturally?

"I rock naturally...but every time I rock naturally it's practice for the next time I rock...naturally."

20. I also seen you battle one of your biggest fans (Ice-Rod)…Are you still on the battle scene or have you lost the interest in battling?

"I'm not a huge advocate of the battle circuit, but I can hold my own (as any emcee should.) Having fun or ruining someone's life should be the only two reasons we do anything."

21. A lot of cats have a misconception of what a freestyle is…from one of the dopest off the top out there what is this are called "a freestyle" to you?

"My definition has changed through the ages...because my use of the word depends on people's definition...right now I can definitively say that freestyle is a big lie."

22. What advise would you give heads out there trying to perfect their freestyle? Do you think you should go public (open mics, shows, etc.) with it if its not hot?

"Study your surroundings...make sure no one in the crowd was present the last time you kicked all those wack lines."

23. What do you think about tha online hip-hop scene?

"I don't consider anything online to be a scene."

24. I noticed that you are a moderator on the non-prophets.com forum. Do you network a lot through the website?

"Non-Prophets is my group. I pay for that website. I moderate the messageboard to keep it condusive to interesting conversation. No, I don't network much through the website. Yes, I network a lot on the internet."

25. I see you are really open with your E-mail address…how often do you check your mail…do you get a lot mail from cats trying hate on what you are trying to do?

"Emails are free and they can be accessed at all times without an absolute need for response. I check my email many times a week. It is rare for me to recieve hate-emails, but it happens."

26. For cats more in tha "lil sage" stage of rhyming reaching out for advice what would you tell them?

"Keep writing and rhyming. Make each rap better than the last. Kick your own ass. When it's time to go public...be so sure of yourself that negative feedback won't matter."

27. Looking back on your life would you say that you live with any regrets? If you could go back and change anything what would it be?

"I don't have many regrets. Any changes I would be apt to make could drastically change the person I am today and I don't want to do that. I would probably make myself more social in highschool. I would have done a better job at exposing a lot of my teachers and surrounding community leaders as the racists and homophobes that they were. I would have kissed my girfriend goodbye when I left for college. I wouldn't have paid so much for college. I would have confronted daddy. I would have went the independent route with my music much sooner than I did. In the end...I am thrilled to be who I am and I don't think much about regrets because those changes can't happen."

28. Say word…well sage….is there any shout outs, plugs, last words…anything you wanna say to your fans or enemies?

"Consider a vegetarian diet...it works. Thanks for spreading the word. sagefrancis.com"
Post Thu Aug 22, 2002 9:17 pm
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amano



Joined: 04 Jul 2002
Posts: 992
Location: exiled in Cackalack!
 Reply with quote  

if bob shot the sheriff, but didn't shoot the deputy. Who did? Do you know?? How do you know?? What's your association with the deputy's killer?!? Was it you?!


fess up.
Post Thu Aug 22, 2002 9:45 pm
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duke_city



Joined: 05 Jul 2002
Posts: 3208
Location: San Diego,CA
 Reply with quote  

This is one of the best online interviews I've ever read. When they ask good questions its funny how good answers are returned.

Brian
Post Thu Aug 22, 2002 9:50 pm
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FoNiKs



Joined: 30 Jun 2002
Posts: 339
 Reply with quote  

i thought this was one of the most stiff corny boring (but informative) interviews I ever read. There was absolutely no personality in the questions....
Post Thu Aug 22, 2002 11:15 pm
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He Hate Me



Joined: 01 Jul 2002
Posts: 162
Location: under your bed
yeah  Reply with quote  

that's because dude knew the answers to most of his questions. kinda came off like a tool. but it was a good interview nonetheless.
wait, who the fuck am i siskel and ebert and shit?
Post Thu Aug 22, 2002 11:40 pm
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cresmizzle



Joined: 16 Aug 2002
Posts: 87
Location: brooklyn, ny
holy fuck  Reply with quote  

sage-
its ya boy crescent (this ones for the ladies), my birthday is 9/11 too motherfucker! what the deal? wanna hit up chucky cheese? get at me.
lex diamonds
Post Fri Aug 23, 2002 7:44 am
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Clame



Joined: 24 Aug 2002
Posts: 1
Location: Sweden
Sage!  Reply with quote  

What do you mean with corporations contribute to the destruction of a world? I just want to hear your opinion about it.
Post Sat Aug 24, 2002 1:46 pm
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