Update: This is actually an interview I did with Fashawn last year…my very first interview…so take it easy on me. I had planned to bring it back since I thought I was going to finally see Fashawn perform tonight, but it appears he won’t be at the show. I guess the 4th time will have to be the charm like with Yelawolf. I don’t really like doing interview these days even though I love talking to artist and getting to know them because it really sucks typing them up. I think even right now I have 4 or 5 unfinished interview and they’re all great too…fuck my life. I really liked this interview though, plus it was my first one and I mean how often does someone get to interview an artist of the calibur of Fashawn for their first interview. So despite the fact I kept stepping on Fash’s toes it actually went pretty well lol. I was already pretty impressed with him leading up to the interview and I walked away even more impressed after the interview. So hopefully you like it…it’s a bit long though. Also you can find virtually all of Fashawn’s mixtape discography here.
Doc Holliday: So I started listening to your music when The Antidote with Alchemist came out. It was too short though…too many short songs. [I did previously introduce myself outside...that’s whole other story, though, in fact I’m going to write about that as well…eventually. I do have manners in case you were wondering. I will also be narrating parts of this interview as well. What’s that you say it didn’t work for Matt Damon in The Informant and I’m no Matt Damon!!! Whatever fuck it. I absolutely hate the sound of my voice too!!!]
Fashawn: Well we had a short amount of time…we did that shit in like a week. I was just excited to be around Alchemist. This was before like I met him and knew him…before we were cool. I was just like put on a beat I’ll rap to anything. This what I got for this beat…this is what I got for this beat. [I could really how excited he was telling the story, shit I would be excited too. Alchemist holla at me let's do work] When you’re working on albums or anything it takes longer than a week. Especially, if you’re working with someone of that caliber. I really wanted to take my time…I really wanted to take my time with that project, but shit was moving in full swing I had these joints for Alchemist and he was like let me do them. So I let them go for free and The Antidote was born.
Doc Holliday: So I guess that’s a perfect segue, if you were overwhelmed working with Alchemist how did it feel working with Exile.
Fashawn: Man that was cool because I just got introduced to Exile’s music a year or two prior to the album dropping. When I got introduced to Exile music…I was like man no doubt. [You and me both] I was thinking about going to get a beat from this dude…I’m going to a beat from this dude…I never envisioned one person producing my whole album… [Cuts Fashawn off…smh…this wouldn’t be the first time…what can I say I was nervous and excited as hell. My first interview is with Fashawn…I made a special note to self after the interview though…DON’T TALK SO DAMN MUCH or don't try to be so funny.]
Doc Holliday: Especially a producer of that caliber!!! I was first introduced to him with his album with Blu Below The Heavens so when I saw he was working with you after first checking out your mixtape with Alchemist I was excited.
Fashawn: Exile is the man, I would take Boy Meets World and I would just listen to those beats we need to put that shit out on an instrumental album. [I completely agree!!! The same goes for the rest of Exile’s stuff too.] The music…that’s what made me write my lyrics
Doc Holliday: [Rambles] What’s your favorite joint on the album?
Doc Holliday: Yeah there’s a lot of good joints on there.
Fashawn: The Intro
Doc Holliday: Yeah I fucks with The Intro it’s actually on my first mixtape.
Fashawn: That’s what’s up…good shit [Even though we just met a 5 part handshake ensues to show our mutual respect for each other. Real recognize real muthafuckas!!!]
Doc Holliday: Yeah I love The Intro, it’s a perfect setup for the album. It sets the tone and then the beat just drops. I also love Hey Young World, When She Calls…[I really love intros, they really set the tone for any mixtape or album. Sometimes you just know the music is going to be good just based on the intro.]
Fashawn: Oh yeah When She Calls man, I decided not to do that on this tour. I didn’t want to depress the Wiz Khalifa fans, [We both laughed of that one, it’s a really good song though] I hope he’s grateful for that.
Doc Holliday: You gotta do a video for that or something, it’s a great song.
Download: Life As a Shorty f. J Mitchell
Download: When She Calls
Fashawn: That’s one of my favorite songs, that’s the first song I got my sample cleared for. Shoutout Joanna Newsom [Adds to the Doc Holliday queue]
Doc Holliday: What’s the sample from?
Fashawn: It’s a song called Cosmia from Joanna and the Y Street Band. It was incredible, I bought the album when I was like on tour in Nashville or something. I picked up her album and I thought it was like 10 songs, I bought it for like $15. Just to show you the type of person I am I still go to the store and buy shit.
Doc Holliday: Me too, me too. [Well I used to at least…the bulk of my music collection I have bought though. I did want to start buying vinyl after I got my first record player, but then I realized that shit is expensive as hell. So sadly enough I don’t buy nearly as much music as I used to…I like to think writing and doing interviews makes up for that though…and gets me some free shirts. I'm really on this t-shirt thing right now.]
Fashawn: I buy the album and it’s only 3 songs on there…I was like word ok, but I loved it though, incredible piece of work. [Cosmia is featured on Ys (pronounced /?i?s/, EES) the second album by Joanna Newsom. It was released by Drag City on November 14, 2006. The album was named for the mythical city of Ys, supposedly built on the coast of Brittany and later swallowed by the ocean.]
Doc Holliday: So is that your favorite song on the album?
Fashawn: Arguable, arguably my favorite song.
Doc Holliday: It was a good song and a good album too, I give it to some of my younger artists like here this is a good album with different songs and concepts. For your first album I thought it was perfect. [No surprise that is was one of The Best Albums of the Year on a couple sites]. So to take it back what were some of your influences? What kinda got you into rapping?
Fashawn: People like…my first introduction to rap…MC Hammer [LOL]. He wasn’t really a big influence, but that was one of my first introductions to rap. Like what is this guy doing, he’s dancing and like rapping. Yeah MC Hammer man…but I love niggas like Nas.
Doc Holliday: I can hear a lot of Nas in you. [I would definitely compare him to a Young Nas seriously though for you stubborn people he’s that talented, no bullshit. There is no surprise that by the time this is online Ode To Illmatic should be out as well.]
Fashawn: MC Hammer, Nas, Black Moon, Kurupt, C-Bo, Pharcyde, Freestyle Fellowship, Cannibus, Big L R.I.P., Rakim, Big Daddy Kane, Kool G Rap, Ice-T, Ras Kas, Planet Asia, Fat Lip, and PackFM.
Doc Holliday: ….That’s a good list [I pretty much instantly had more respect from Fashawn based off that list. 95% off rappers couldn’t have come up with a list like that and 99.9% of rappers his age definitely couldn't come up with a list like that, but wait there’s more.]
Fashawn: Common, Crucial Conflict, Bone Thugs-N-Harmony, Eazy E, DOC…
Doc Holliday: Lol, you got more.
Fashawn: Yeah man, rap is born, rap is special to me.
Doc Holliday: Yeah you don’t usually see many rappers come up with a list like that especially rappers your age. I was surprised how young you were especially putting an album like Boy Meets World. What would you say is your favorite album?
Fashawn: You see how many artist I named, I guess it depends on what day it is. Sometimes Carol King’s Tapestry is one of my favorites it’s not even rap it’s not even my generation of music.
Doc Holliday: I’ll have to check that out, I’m a digger. [No homo]
Fashawn: Donnie Hathaway, his live album. Illmatic, 2Pacalypse Now, Til My Casket Drops by C-Bo is probably one of my favorite albums. It’s the first album I bought.
Doc Holliday: Mine would probably be The Chronic
Fashawn: Definitely, The Chronic
Doc Holliday: And I’m an east coast dude, so We Are The Streets too, I fucks with The L.O.X. [no homo]
Fashawn: Aww man…is that the album where they had the Go Head song?
Doc Holliday: Nah, actually Go Head is off of the Ruff Ryders album [In Fashawn’s defense I have more L.O.X. albums and songs than almost any other artists. He named a couple artists that I don’t even know that well…and I’m DOC MUTHAFUCKING HOLLIDAY!!! Lol, but like Krondon he put me up on a couple artists and that is no easy task and he’s YOUNGER than me too.]
Fashawn: But yeah I forgot to mention The L.O.X., L.O.X. is the shit.
Doc Holliday: I know one of the artists that you mentioned Planet Asia, that’s who you got your start with. You went on tour with him when you were like 17. How did that feel?
Fashawn: It was dope. [We both laugh, of course, it’s fucking dope] It’s like imagine one of your favorite rappers, genuinely favorite rappers being like hey you come on tour with me. I was like word…ME…I was just like I’m going to go hard. I’m going to rhyme hard every day, that just pumped me up like I’m going to kill the game one day. He brought me into the game so I felt a responsibility to do my thing.
Doc Holliday: Damn, you’ve really been on some good tours with big artists. I know you just came off the tour with Blu and Exile and then you went on The Breaking Bad Tour with Brother Ali.
Fashawn: Yeah, Brother Ali big shout out Rhymesayers. Yeah I went on the European Tour with Blu and Exile, Paris, Russia….
Doc Holliday: Yeah I was mad you guys didn’t come to Philly?
Fashawn: Yeah I was supposed to come to Philly for something…
Doc Holliday: Yeah that’s right for the Wizard of Poetry Tour with Ghostface
Fashawn: Yeah but some shit happened, I couldn’t make it. Yeah but I got love for Philly like a muthafucka. We were in Pittsburg, PA for The Breaking Dawn Tour, a lot of niggas from Philly were out there.
Doc Holliday: So with all that said you got on The XXL Freshmen List, I don’t really consider you or Wiz Khalifa Freshmen. [Wiz Khalifa was touring with Fashawn while out in LA]. Because yall have been putting out music for awhile, I knew about The Antidote but until I started doing my research I didn’t realize exactly how much you had put out. I think you have music dating back as far back as 2006. I don’t know if you saw the stuff I sent you from my blog on our website I had a good amount of your mixtape but I didn’t even have everything. [Past Tense]. So do you really consider yourself a freshmen?
Fashawn: Yeah…in college and shit. I graduated from high school and now I would consider myself a freshmen in college, but I’ve been dropping shit all throughout high school. Freshmen, sophomore…killing them every semester. I’ve graduated, I’m a freshmen in the game, my shit is on shelves next to Jay-Z and Pac. I graduated from that game, I remember going to the store years ago like I can’t wait until my shit is in here while I had a CD out in the streets. So yeah Freshmen in the game and I got a long way to go. [If he is in fact a freshmen in the game and has a long way to go I don’t know what to say about some of these Sophomores and even Seniors in the game]
Doc Holliday: So what’s up next?
Fashawn: The Ecology Executive Produced by my man DJ Khalil, that’s going to be amazing. I’m still going to have beats from Exile and maybe even Dre. I actually had the chance to work with Dre.
Doc Holliday: When is that coming out?
Fashawn: The Ecology is serious I’m going to take my time with that, but until that Ode To Illmatic which is this mixtape…[Fashawn notices Mischa Barton from The OC nearby] She doesn’t even know me…lol…I’m a rapper, she’s an actress probably doesn’t even know my name. [Or my name for that matter] Ecology, Grizzly City 3…I can’t wait for that. I started with Grizzly City 1, that was the one I dropped in ’06.
Doc Holliday: Yeah that was the one that got you the buzz that got you on the tour with Planet Asia right?
Fashawn: Yeah that was the one that got [Planet] Asia’s attention. Grizzly City 3 is going back to that, the Young Fas, Young Sean Stacks, back on the block. That’s that flavor, I got so many different styles… I got as many styles as Cali got weed.
Doc Holliday: I guess that sets up my next question. Does Cali have the best weed?
Fashawn: Yeahhhh, I’ve been all around the fucking world, I’ve been to Amsterdam, it’s cool but Cali’s is like Baskin Robbins.
Doc Holliday: Yeah…I don’t do drugs, never have and never will. Drugs make me sick, they’re bad for your body no offense. Up with hope, down with dope that’s what I always say…So what else are listening too?
Fashawn: Joanna Newsom, Ratatat, Javelin…besides rap you said?
Doc Holliday: Nah anything, I always ask a lot of rappers and it’s just like my shit, my shit
Fashawn: Oh, Lupe Fiasco is dope, Lil Wayne, Pill, Wiz Khalifa, Kurupt…man that list is about as long as the first list I gave you.
Doc Holliday: Lol yeah…so I know you skateboard…is that what you might be doing if you weren’t rapping?
Fashawn: That’s just a hobby, that’s California shit…I’d probably be trapping…lol. That’s a mediocre answer, but niggas don’t know what I’ve been through. I don’t know…I’m a real productive person and I think anything I put my mind to I can do it. I always wanted to be like sponsored by like a shoe company, did it. I always wanted to be like a “rap star” and look at me now, I’m in LA rocking to a sold out crowd. I’m getting it no deal, and I’m only 21. Other than that I love writing, I would probably write novels. I love writing stories, I love reading.
Doc Holliday: Yeah I read that you love to read. Read any good books lately? What’s your favorite book?
Fashawn: My favorite book…[Fashawn liked that question, hey I did my research. Almost gave myself a nervous breakdown preparing for this fist interview, but it was worth it] Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell… The Tipping Point, that’s one of my favorite books. It talks about epidemics, it’s a good book. I like The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho. Fools Die by Mario Puzo, incredible piece of work makes me want to go to Vegas when I read it. I got a cool Novelist name Santiago Leyva. [Damnit he does.] I can just see it on the side of a book like who wrote that.
Doc Holliday: Yeah my name is not nearly as cool, I’m still getting used to calling myself Doc Holliday. Yeah man I really appreciate the interview [Another 5 part handshake ensues and then Fashawn does my first drop. Finally, finished that first interview I hurry off to see Wiz Khalifa perform who is midway into his set, but I get there just in time to catch him peform Up. I didn’t realize it at the time but perhaps that was a symbol, hopefully things continue to go up for both Fashawn and myself]