THE GUESTLIST NETWORK | APRIL 2010
Chiddy Bang Interview
Speaking with one half of Phillys up and coming rap/sample duo Xaphoon (real name Noah) not only gives a little sneak peek at what to expect from the album but how the duo got all over our music channels and in to the charts.
PIC BY JAY BROOKS
Where does the Xaphoon come from?
Haha, well umm. Basically when I was a fesh- men in college me and my friend Pat would play like open mic bars and little shows and we we’re both trying to come up with like really weird em- barrassing names for each other and he came up with that one and it just kinda stuck, weird.
You and Chiddy both live in philly have you always lived there?
Yeah I was born in West Philadelphia and then I grew up in north west and now I live in south. So my entire life has been different parts of the same city.
What’s the music scene like?
Amazing! Its Amazing! Like the Jazz scene is HUGE, there’s a huge Jazz scene. There’s like amazing Reggae and Dancehall scene in West Philadelphia in Baltimore and Lancaster ave- nue. There’s the Mad Decent headquarters, so you’ve got like Diplo and everyone. And like the Hip Hop scenes amazing like, Joey Jihad, Meek Millz, Peedi Crakk . Its just a fun musical city.
Do you feel your music is at all a product of your enviroment?
Oh completely. Completely, completely. Chid- dy, his whole lyrics come form his childhood and what not but I kinda of do the same thing with the background music, I’m just putting in different elements of stuff I grew up on. defi- nitely the whole electronic and Hip Hop scene has forged me into what I am now
Your described as indie hip hop, two very
different genres where do your musical roots come from?
It’s funny you should mention that cus my mu- sical roots are like Soul and Jazz that’s kinda what I grew up on, and thats what I learnt to play when I was learning instruments. So that might be kinda far removed, but like with Soul I kinda got in to Soul sampling, like Old School Hip Hop. Then when I started recording, I start- ed out as an engineer, so I started recording like Indie bands. Some how I got opened up to that whole world and kinda put the Hip Hop drums on the.. I’m not sure how to describe it. When people ask me I just say ‘Oh it’s like Electronic but it’s Hip Hop but it’s Club but it’s Rap you know.’ There’s no real way to put it yet.
I didn’t really get that indie feel from your single, what would you label it as?
Well yeah, that song is definitely a Pop song. Some people are calling it like Hip Pop instead of Hip Hop. Ha ha. But like, that song is like one song, you can’t really say that we’re more of a Hip Hop band just from that one song. All of our other songs are a huge range, there’s Afro Beat and there’s Old School Hip Hop and stuff. On one hand your right your can’t call it Indie Rap but on the other hand Opposite of Adults is no way to judge our sound.
I’m sure your gonna get or have already got a load of critics going well they’ve just
calling it like Hip Pop instead of Hip Hop. Ha ha.
Some people are
taken a massive hit from a few years ago and sampled it, what would you say to those people about your music?
I would say listen to the album. Cus Opposite of Adults was the single, that was like our foot in the door. In our days people are buying less and less music and the music industry are trying to figure out where to find its feet. people are very hesitant to sign anybody. Think about it if your in AR and sign someone and they don’t do well that’s your job, if you don’t find any- one you just keep hunting. Opposite
stuff with no samples. The reason we couldn’t do that before was because we didn’t have any money and couldn’t get in a studio. I would also say we’re gonna sample a lot less well known people as well, people you would have never of heard of. Some of the samples we’ve been working on are strange Swedish electronica, old school film scores form the 1950’s. I’m a sample freak!
Although you haven’t released your album yet you have made a mixtape that helped get you signed, what’s the story behind it?
The whole thing about Chiddy Bang is that ev- erything we do in terms of releasing and plan-
Adults is really our foot in the door our album is A) going to have way more originals,
ning and writing and stuff is very strategic. We would play shows, we would sign kids up for Hype Machine accounts at our shows, so that our song would go straight to the top. When we we’re at school we’d made songs and re- lease them on Mondays and Tuesdays so that on Wednesdays and Thursdays they’d be on peoples iPods so that when the parties came round everybody would be listening to it. So yeah we have been so strategic about it. Right away sending stuff to bars, everyone we’d meet we were putting out and we had all kind of strategies. Major labels picked it up in a second and they were a bit hesitant at first be- cause they were like ‘woah who are these guys’ and we had a full on band and we were doing samples and we were like the most confusing band ever. So ChiddyExpress [the mixtape] is like all the songs we worked on that time period where we were like missing class and going to New York then coming back and realising we’d missed an exam.
You two where living the cool kids dream then?
Yeah it was the best until they wanted us to stop sampling. We were like ‘Uh Oh maybe they don’t get it’. Thats why we took our time and played more shows then thats when Parlo- phone came along.
Britney or Beyonce?
Beyonce, no question.
The boys are set to do a UK tour in May.
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