Tell us a little about yourself. Where you are from? How long have you been making Hip Hop?
Well I go by the name Granddad Woolly and I’m originally from The Region, Northwest, Indiana but now I stay in Atlanta, GA. I’ve been making hip hop music since I was 17. I started out under the name Tuskus Woolly or T-Woolly for short but as I evolved so did my name. I’ve been making music for about 9 years now though it seems like a lot less.
What influences you in making Hip Hop?
I’ve always listened to hip hop since I was young. But it wasn’t until I got into underground hip hop at 14 that I really fell in love with the music. Talib Kweli and MF DOOM are the 2 responsible for me wanting to actually get on the mic and create hip hop. My influence now is just the music. I love hearing a dope beat and some ill rhymes. Nothing can top that feeling.
Describe your music, and what separates you from other MCs?
My music is sort of like a fine stew with all the right ingredients if that makes sense. It contains elements of the Golden Era, the Boom Bap but I have extensive knowledge in other elements such as history, sci-fi, pop culture from many decades ago to now. It use to be useless knowledge now I incorporate it into my music. I think the main thing that separates me from other emcees is the way I create my music. I don’t have a limit. There’s nothing I won’t try as long as it feels real and unique. I literally crafted my career in the form of a novel. My albums are all chapters of an actual story that I am continuing to create.
Who have you collaborated with? Who would you like to collab with in the near future?
I tend to collaborate with up and comers like me who are hungry and have a genuine love for the art form. I’ve worked with guys like Evolve of Boom Bap Masterpiece Records, The Bizarro Records crew, DB The Database, DJ Eric Danger & soul singer CocoaRed. All these guys are crazy talented we’ve created amazing work together. I would most definitely like to work with DOOM, Kweli, the new kid Bishop Nehru is dope & everybody on the Rhymesayers roster for sure.
Your definition of “Underground Hip Hop”?
Basically that, hip hop that’s underground. The stuff you don’t see everyday on tv and radio and isn’t pushed down your throat by these corporations who care nothing about the culture. But also Underground Hip Hop to means something raw, filthy and unpolished. Music that just connects with you and stays with you for the long run. Mainstream music today doesn’t contain that element of longevity that underground hip hop possesses.
Production wise, who are your influences? Who does your production?
I listen to all genres of music so production wise I just go for what catches my ear and has feeling & character to it. I’m a fan of the 9th Wonder & DJ Premier sound but on the other hand I’m also a huge fan of the production done by guys like Madlib or RJD2. I also get influenced by other genres such as classical, opera, rock, jazz, soul, etc…, so when that is incorporated into a hip hop format it makes the production better to me. Right now I have a team of go to producers who have handled the majority of my recent works. Chikano out of Portugal, Hostile Product out of Ireland, Causmic from California, Linn Mori from Japan & Vanilla from the UK. I call them my starting 5 because they are all well-rounded and amazing producers and they are the first ones I go to when starting a project.
And who would you like to work with?
Production wise I really would like to work with Madlib, DOOM, Ant of Atmosphere, DJ Premier & 9th Wonder. I have tons more but those are the top right now.
Any current or future projects you are promoting?
I just recently released my free project “The Vanilla Tape” in April which is getting a lot of positive response. I’ll be promoting that for the rest of 2014. As far as the next project I’m hoping to have an album with Me and Chikano ready in 2015 but we have a long way to go with it so it’s not in stone. But right now, its year of The Vanilla Tape.
Can you give us a brief description of the creative process of “The Vanilla Tape”? Also/ what was the idea or concept description about your Album Art Cover.
The creative process was actually pretty easy this time around because it all flowed naturally. The Vanilla Tape stemmed out of necessity for me. The whole process took about a year to create. It’s literally a self-reflection record. Every song has something to do with me in some way, shape or form. It’s basically me getting out everything that myself as a human being was keeping inside. That’s also why the songs are short & there are no features because they are actually my personal thoughts and those only last for a few moments at a time. The Vanilla Tape is a series of thoughts in my head being put on record. The cover art came from the producer of the record Vanilla’s tumbler page. It’s a remote mountain area in Tuscany and it just seemed to fit what I wanted the project to be visually. That cover embodies self-reflection. Just you, your thoughts and the world, nothing else.
Where can we find your music and info?
All my music is available on my Bandcamp site or Soundcloud. You can also get my previous albums on ITunes. You can also see all my music video on my youtube. Just google Granddad Woolly, it will show you the way.
Any shout outs?
Shoutout to all my supporters out in The Region and Atlanta. Also shoutout to my producers, fellow emcees and people behind the scenes making me look and sound good to the world.