On April 11, 2012 at 1PM CST, Bernz from ¡MAYDAY! was LIVE on the air to take your calls and answer your questions!
As one of the original founders of ¡MAYDAY!, Bernz has a lot to share about the group and how they got to this point. Here’s some highlights from the interview.
I know you guys did like 40 tracks for this album, is there any chance that the ones that didn’t make the cut will see the light of day
Yeah man, songs never die, you know, things have a life of their own. You will hear them when you’re supposed to. That’s how I feel about that.
The group started with you and Plex, how did you guys link up and what was the common ground that brought you two together?
Me and Plex met when we were pretty young, actually I was about 15 years old. We got together because I’ve always been interested in music and at the time I was messing around with DJ homies. I was rapping at the time. I was doing stupid little all-ages parties – just stupid shit like that with them and Plex had just moved to Miami from Chicago so we linked up. We ended up doing a stupid little talent show together, like he was the DJ and it was the first time I tried to rap or whatever and from there on since we were both into music. We just kind linked together for a long time. We went through all those stages of buying our first beat machine together and going to the studio for the first time and recording a song together. We went through that whole thing.
We were in a few groups together and around the time for college we kind separated. He went off to college and I went off and did my own thing. We both got into other bands and spread our wings in different directions. Then, a few years after that, when we were 22-23 we linked back up again and started ¡MAYDAY!. It was just me and him rocking away.
We moved to New York for a little while and while we were in New York a small label that had just started in Miami wanted to sign us. So they moved us back down to Miami and we worked on our first album together and while we were there we met Wrekonize. When we got our first record deal is when we decided to pick up instruments. We were like “Shit is getting serious. We better starting some music theory” and shit like that if we want to be able to compete, you know? So that’s kind of where the live process began for ¡MAYDAY!.
What’s the first bit of advice you would give to aspiring emcees?
Write everyday. What you do is write. Be a writer, don’t be a emcee. The best emcees, in my opinion, you could probably have them write you an essay and it probably still would come off. Be a visual writer rich in the things you write and do rough drafts. Don’t go with your first fucking verse all the time bro. Rewrite that shit. It would probably come off better. It’s easy to dial it in, especially when you’re a gifted emcee – for you to just make shit rhyme, you know what i mean? So a lot of times do a rough draft. Write a verse and go back and everything you did scrutinize it: has it been said before, has it been done before and how can you make it better?