Whats up Xtortion Tha Don! We see that you making some big moves moving forward into this Hip Hop business. May we ask how long have you been making Hip Hop. Also what inspired you into becoming a Hip Hop artist?
I started rapping in 97′ honestly I was a freestyle artist, it was something I could do, i loved to freestyle!! About the year 2000 is when I became an actual artist, going to studios, writing actual songs, so its been about 19 yrs in this game for me.
My inspiration for getting into hip hop, was the fact that I love it, I love music, I came from a musical background, my mother would sing around the house, so music is in my blood!! Plus besides basketball, rap is one thing im good at.
What are you PRO’s and CONS’s when it comes to being a hard-working indie Hip Hop artist.
Being an indie artist means i can make the music I want to make, I don’t have to report to a label, i can actually keep creative control over all my music, and that’s what its supposed to be to me, make the music that appeals to the masses!! But also the downside to it is creating a fan base, being independent you don’t have the promotion and advertisement to reach a broader audience, but I feel my music will speak for itself and bring the people to my music.
Feel free to breakdown the creative process of your latest album.
Smoke in the City took me two years to record, there was so much that went into the creation of this album, ive re-written songs, ive trashed songs, ive taking features off songs, and added different features, it was a hell of a process. I had a lot of producers submit music to me and i honestly just wrote what the beat made me feel.
Who are you Hip Hop influences?
My biggest influence in hip hop is The Notorious B.I.G. I’m a huge, huge fan of Big’s music, the flow, the swag, and just the all around entity of his music is just a huge lift for me! Now don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of other artists that i love, but Biggie is that one that puts me in a total zone!!
How many music videos do you have under your belt?
I actually have 8 videos under my belt, with more to come from this album.
How often do you perform live and tour?
I performed a lot during the promotion of my “Product of my Environment” mix tape series. But its been slower since ive been recording my album, but we’ve got some shows planned, plus a few shows centered on the release of this album.
What is your opinion on collabing with other MCs, is it a good thing or bad thing for you as an indie artist?
I love to collab, I think there is so much talent in my town that should be heard, and i have no problem sharing the light with anyone. For me its a good thing, ive had some collabs that brought out the beast in me and helped some of the songs on the album become more than I intended for them to be!!
Here it is! Our most popular question! What is your definition of “underground hip hop”?
To me underground hip hop is that love for music, not the love of the money, not the love of the fame that comes from making music, but that love of hearing a beat and just putting bars on top of it, ya know. Todays hip-hop has lost that passion for bars!! Some of the best mcs are “underground artists” they may not have that allure of the bright lights and fame but they love what they do!! They love the whole musical process! I feel the whole “underground” movement should be immortalized!
Where can people find you on the web? Drop all the vital links.
I can be found at these 4 sites: www.xtortionthadon.com
Lastly, and shout out? (friends, family, management, etc)
First I want to give all the glory to God, without his blessings I wouldn’t be where i am today. Id like to give a big shout out to my parents Gabriel Owusu Sr and Charlotte Owusu, may they rest in peace. They instilled in me the work ethic and drive I possess for success, without them i would be nothing. I want to thank my family at home who are my #1 fans and the reason i do this in the first place, just to know that they are proud of the work ive put in makes me feel like it’s all worth it. I also want to thank my AMG/Blackhood Ent team, im surrounded by talent everyday when it comes to them, and swear we gonna eat!!! Lastly i wanna thank my fans, all the ones who have supported my movement from day one, the ones that have had undying love and loyalty to Xtortion Tha Don, you make this fun, and it is my pleasure to make a product you enjoy, and I will continue to rock with every last one of ya’ll.