K.E.L.L.S (Oakland, CA) – “Q&A Interview”


Tell us a little about yourself. Where you are from? How long have you been making Hip Hop?

Well I’m from Oakland, Ca and I’ve been making hip hop music since I was about 17 or 18.

What influences you in making Hip Hop?

My biggest influence when it relates to making hip hop is really my city and life in general. I know they say it’s wise to see pass where you’re from but images and stories from where I’m from have taught me a lot.

Describe your music, and what separates you from other MCs?

Some would call my music conscience because labels are just something we’re use to as a society , but my music is really just something the everyday person can say they’ve been through. I think what sets me apart from other MCs is relatibility .  I’m not trying to be something I’m not I’m not trying to be different I’m just being me.

Who have you collaborated with? Who would you like to collab with in the near future?

So far I’ve really just collaborated with other local artist from Oakland and the Bay Area. No major names but definitely some talented individuals, artist such as R.O. Tudda from a collective group known as E-Team to name one of few. It’s hard to say who I would like to collaborate with in the near future seeing that I’m still working on branching out myself but working with GQ of Jamla records, and Kendrick Lamar one day would be pretty ill to me. Just a bunch of big dreams I’m working towards.

Your definition of “Underground Hip Hop”?

My definition of underground hip hop would be called “The Heart” of hip hop. A lot of our favorite artist to this day started underground or began with an underground push so definitely have to pay respects to the roots of hip hop. We all start somewhere

Production wise, who are your influences? Who does your production, and who would you like to work with?

Man production wise there are really too many influences but Dr.Dre, 9th wonder, Mannie Fresh, 40, J-Dilla, Timbaland, DJ Quik, and Kanye West are the ones that stick out too me first. I’m one of those people that really likes to hear different ranges and different sounds in beats. I feel like all the producers I mentioned came in the game revamping the game and provided listeners with a new sound to catch on too. I work with a few producers at the moment. One is an up and coming producer by the name of White Dave from Richmond and my engineer Anthony Petty also makes beats so I would have to say those are the main producers I work with. I’d like to work with everybody honestly but at the top of the list 9th wonder and DJ Quik just for the fact that their not only legends at what they do but they’re knowledgeable people. Might catch an epiphany or two talking to them.

Any current or future projects you are promoting?

Right now I’m promoting my 2nd tape that I dropped in October titled In The Mean Time as well as my most recent EP I just dropped called Black Tequila EP.

Can you give us a brief description of the creative process of “In The Mean Time″? Also/ what was the idea or concept  description about your Album Art Cover.

When I was working on In The Mean Time I was going through a lot in my life. A close friend of my had passed as well as my father in a short period of time and I found myself on empty streets just writing in my car or just found myself with a ton of thoughts sitting on Bus benches or just walking around my city and thoughts would hit me. Oakland has had a negative light shed on it for some years now I just figured I’d give people perspective on the day to day things I see in Oakland as well my life thrown in the mix. The clock on the cover was really just supposed to symbolize that change is all a matter of time. The way people view things will change with time. In The Mean Time really is helping me set up for my 3rd tape I plan to release mid-way or towards the end of 2014 so I’m excited about what’s in stored for the future.

Where can we find your music and info?

You can find both of my tapes on kells1.bandcamp.com. You can also listen to more of my music via soundcloud https://soundcloud.com/k-e-l-l-s

Any shout outs?

I’d like to shout out Anthony Petty for all the mixing and mastering work he’s done on my projects. Real talented dude fareal. I’d like to also shoutout the CRU aka Creating Realties Unknown and all my friends and family who believe in me when it comes to this music. I appreciate you guys as well for conducting this interview and the opportunity to be on your site. Definitely means a lot.

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