One of the main reasons why it didn't work out for me and Aftermath is because I felt my music should sound one way, and they felt it should sound another. But, I learned a lot from watching Dre, and when I left California, I knew it was time for me to get my own label.
The golden age was when people were starting to understand what hip-hop was and how to use it. I was lucky to come up then. Everybody wanted to be original and have substance; it was somewhat conscious... There was an integrity that people respected.
You grow, you mature, you live, and you learn. You get a little wiser, and you learn better ways to handle things.
I had a lot of respect for Prodigy. He brought the hood to the booth. When we were trying to shape this rap thing into something, he was one of the cats I respected for bringing the hood into the booth.
Age don't count in the booth.
Jada, Styles P, the LOX, period. You throw on one of their joints... I'm in the whip; I try to keep my cool in the whip. I don't like bouncing around, getting my crazy on, but it's certain joints you gotta wild out. Roll the window down, blast the joints, let it be heard. That's one of them groups that bang it out.
Back in the day, rappers were 'bump bump bump ba bump ba bump.' They was rhyming like that, but I was like, 'bababa bump bump babum ba babump bababa bump.'
I can't look at TV without seeing something that's been influenced by rap. Even commercials for cereal. When I was small, I was a fan of cartoon characters - now the cartoon characters are rapping!
I love, you know, a lot of jazz, John Coltrane.
I try to make my flow sound like a John Coltrane solo.
My thing was, I loved music. I played music: I played the saxophone. So the little bit of music knowhow I had, I tried to implement that in every thing I did, from my style, my cadence, the way I tried to pause and stagnate it; that all came from John Coltrane and listening to jazz albums. Trying to rhyme like a jazz player.
My aunt Ruth Brown was a jazz musician. I got hooked on it at a young age, understanding what John Coltrane was doing playing two notes on the saxophone at the same time, which is impossible.
When I started rhyming, my favorite rhythms were from John Coltrane and some of the things he did on sax. And certain rhythms that I hear on drums, I try to emulate with my words, dropping on the same patterns that them beats or them notes would hit.
I was an underground artist, but the underground status was successful. Coming from where I came from to see where rap is now, now artists are selling from a million to eight million copies.
I try to stay true to my style, and I understand the foundation of my style and where it came from. But at the same time, you take that experience and learn different ways to write, different ways to turn on that creative energy.
Without no disrespect to any artist, there's a lot of degrading music out there as far as degrading the culture and degrading society as well. That's individuals that choose to make that kind of music.
We gotta let hip-hop grow. We gotta let it go through its different phases throughout the different places that's accepting it.
Subconsciously, Islam took over me, so it was like eighty or ninety percent of the fabric of the person I was.
Eminem is a master.
When me and Eric did songs back in the day, we didn't go and sit down in front of no A&R. We made our album, and then, when we finished, we handed it in, and then we picked the best song for the first single.