The interview is broken into 4 parts and Tech drops all kinds of news on the new collabs album (mentions guests or who he has approached, some will surprise you), kabosh, what he thinks of the music industry, he speaks on Truth, Ill Bill, Twista, Eminem, and even starts beating on his chest and break into some rhymes.
They all work now. Sounds like this year is gonna to be a good year. Strange all year
Q) You have been in the rap game for 25 years. When you first started did you think you would reach your current level of success?
When I first started, I always imaged me be bigger then what I am now, so it’s getting bigger as I go. My expectations are very high. I had, you know when they asked Jim Carrey to do the Batman movie and he got $25 million or whatever he got and they said are you surprised to get that and he said no, I have been planning this my whole life, I actually have been planning this Tech n9ne thing my whole life, you know what I’m sizzling? Even when I was a dancer before I was Tech n9ne, I was always in talent shows, it was always meant for me to be in front of crowds. The longevity is blowing me away though you know what I mean? How its growing rapidly the way it is, with all the fans that stay here, through all the ups and downs, through KOD, through my drug problem in 2004, you know what I’m saying, I think it was 2002, with Absolute Power, you know they have been with me ever since and they haven’t dropped off, the longevity blows me away. You know what I mean?
Q) How big do you think you can get? What is your top goal or aim?
My aim is a pretty high aim. It is to be global, you know what I mean? It’s happening, I am just now about to get over to Japan, I am just now about to get over to Germany this year, I am just now making it to Canada. You know last year on Rock the Bells, now they got me right back here in Calgary in a sold out show, you know what I’m sizzling? My expectation is the Michael Jackson of hip hop, (hahaha). That’s insane, I might be a little too vulgar for that but, I don’t know, maybe my expectation is a little too high. But I don’t think it is ever too high to shot for the stars, shoot beyond the stars, beyond the milky way, beyond everything, you know what I’m sizzling? It’s already crazy, but it’s going to get crazier. MTV is already messing with us a little more, it’s going to take a minute for BET to get at me possibly, I don’t know I was just on BET 106 and Park for the first time, as a judge for Freestyle Fridays . So hopefully that will make them loosen up on my name being Tech N9ne, they think it’s a gun, but it actually means the complete technique of rhyming.
Sorry bout the gum, its rude, but umm, I’ll just put it here till I’m done. (Tech N9ne puts his gum under the table)
Ya man, its growing like a forest fire man and it’s amazing to see, it’s amazing to see the different types of fans, you know to see the technicians, to see the Canada juggalos, the Kottonmouth kings and queens, the metal heads, everybody under one roof man, the gangstas. It’s just all of us on one accord, one nation under groove like George Clinton would say.
Q) Take us through the process that Tech N9ne goes through when making a track?
The beats tell me what to do. Back in the day when we had no beats we came up with the concepts first. Like ohhhh, I got a rhyme and I want to call it psycho solo, and ‘I been mad ever since my date of birth my momma told me I would be a drug player’ (Tech is rhyming banging on the table to make the beat).
You make the beat with your hands. I don’t do that anymore, I still can but I have so many producers that are throwing me tracks, Travis will hit me up and say I have 10 more tracks from so and so, I got 20 more tracks from so and so, I got 5 more tracks from so and so, see if your feeling any of them and the beats tell me exactly what to do , when they are hard hitting, thumping, I love it cus without no pulse there is no life, you know umm it tells me exactly what to do. So I hear the beat, and if it says ‘dum dum dum dum dum, (tech playing air guitar while singing the chorus to his song One More Time) I’m like this is beautiful, ‘ dum dum dum, If I could cry maybe one more time, I could pass away all my pain maybe free my mind, after my show it’s a lonely road so I sit up by myself and try to clear my soul”
You know it’s like the beat gotta say it, you know like this beat makes me want to cry if I could, you know what I mean, so that’s how I do it. David Saunders will send a beautiful beat in called ThatBbox, and I’m like ohhh I gotta talk about some poonani on this one, or Wishmaster will send in one called… that makes me think of a waitress ‘I love my girlie but I’m looking at the waitress’ , you know these producers, these wonderful producers, YoungFyire will send me something that says , “Technicians, whoop whoop, like yeah, yeah, yeah’, so it’s like these wonderful producers have these beautiful pulses, Seven might send me one that says ‘ What if he is what he says he is the king of darkness, its these wonderful producers with these pulses and they tell me what to do and I’m thankful that I have them. I got new ones now like, M80, Demolish Beats ,St-Louis side, Nardonem, Inferno from Oklahoma man and they are just coming in. I get them from everywhere, you know, pretty soon, I’m going to get at Rick Rock again, pretty soon I hope I can get in touch with Timbaland, and Pharryl, and Sick Jack and all these people that do these other wonderful beats, it’s just so many pulses out there and they tell me exactly what to do and they ink my life. It’s like they come in and they make me want to write about what I did or write about what I’m doing, it’s a beautiful thing!
Q) You have been a pioneer of using the internet to market your music. In 2002, you put your whole album Absolute power, every track online for free download, and you still managed to sell 250, 000 copies of the album because you believe that if people like what they hear, they will buy it. How do you see the internet now?
I still se e it the same way man, thank god for it, if there was none I wouldn’t be here in Calgary, how else would Canada know about me if I have never been here, you know what I’m saying? Thank god for it man, thanks god for Twitter and Facebook and Mysapce man, where you can really put your stuff out there, and people from Turkey can hear your music, Cheza from Turkey, I did a song with him, I never met him before. Swollen members, man you know what I am saying, how would we even know, ‘Bollywood Chick ba ban da da’, when I first heard that didn’t even sound like Swollen Members to me, I was like wow, Swollen Members going gangsta on em, you know (hahaha) but it was dope . Without the internet or whatever we wouldn’t have that song, we wouldn’t have Swollen Members and Tech N9ne messing together to make something wonderful.
Q) You take great pride in your live shows, why is it so important to put on a great live show?
The old schoolers taught me how to do a show. KRS One, Run DMC, Eric B and Rakim, LL Cool J, Busy B, you know what I am sizzling, even the new school, leaders of the new school, Busta Rhymes and Spliff, can’t nobody mess with Busta Rhymes and Spliff, even though Spliff wasn’t in leaders of the new school, they are the leaders of the new school, and they are on my team. I want the best on my team, and I think it’s important to have crowd participation, I think that what they taught me, they taught me to have the utmost energy and I’m glad I grasped that, I am glad I used to be a dancer and I can put all that break dancing and everything (Tech Starts dancing) in my act. I aunt too cool to not move, you know what I’m sizzling, we move, ‘Don’t be cool, everybody move, don’t be cool, everybody move’. The old school taught me how to do a show and I am thankful for it because a lot of the new schoolers, I love their music, but live you know there is only a handful to me, you know what I mean, but I don’t compare everybody to us though, because everybody can’t do Michael Jackson in the middle of their show and still be cool, even though Michael Jackson is very cool, you know what I’m saying? A lot of hiphop artists ain’t about to break down and go ‘boom cha boomcha boom cha, dodododoodo’ (Tech starts beat boxing Billie Jean and dancing). They can’t do that you know what I am saying? Tech N9ne and them we can do everything, I’m not saying everybody has to do what we do to be good, cus I have seen a lot of shows that are really energetic and really good and they don’t do what we do. What we do is set aside, we over there with Busta and Spliff, you know what I mean, and that s a good place to be.
Q) On the song Holier than Thou on the album Killer, you said that the third verse was intended for the gospel rapper named Da Truth. You called and called him and offered him all kinds of money but you could never get through to him. Have you heard from Truth since the release of the album?
I’ve heard from him through people, I mean he came through Kansas City and unfortunately I was in the studio that day trying to meet a deadline, which sounds like a cop out but it’s not, because I am always trying to meet a deadline, I would have really loved to have met him. He told my Christian homeboys, my Christian rapper homeboys, J-blast and all of them back in Kansas City, that he knew nothing about it, and that means that the lady who was in charge of his business really shunned me for no reason because we really could have got something cleared up with me cus I was reaching out from the Christian community and once again they shunned me. I grew up with Christians, I was raised a Christian, my mom’s a Christian, who married a Muslim when I was 12, you know what I mean, so it’s like I’m hip to their belief and I follow and still pray to god and Jesus name and everything you know what I am sizzling?
The fact that she didn’t want to help me, because I do secular music kinda threw me for a loop because the song was actually reaching for help. Like I said ‘we’ve been doing this thing a long time, rap and touring, and this that and the other, and I haven’t found one person that can maintain righteousness, and I said, ‘ a wise man told me evil was lurking and if you found it, try your best to not put yourself around it, cus if you win it you tend to push it to the limit then wish that you stay grounded’, I was really actually wanting to hear from Truth to see how he does it. He tours, he has groupie chicks, groupie Christian chicks that would love to get in his bunk, you know, how does he do it? I wanted to hear it from a righteous man, but I didn’t hear from a righteous man, instead I got righteous men on tour with me, right in my face, Krizz Kaliko and Big Scoop, (hahahah) you know what I am saying? They the only ones I know that can maintain righteousness thus far. I wasn’t supposed to say that but I had to put them out there, youknowwhatimean? There is some beautiful women out here dude, I have been pretty tame a lot lately man, you know what I am sizzling, I think it is me being drug free, and not drinking as much and when I do drink it’s with the right folks you know what I am sizzling, that’s what I think.
Q) On the album EverReady: The Religion, you originally stated that you were going to have Eminem on the track My World, and Twista on the track Welcome to the Midwest, but they both were not on the final album. What happened?
Well Twista sent it in but it was too late, Strange music we move, like pissszzooo, kinda like how I rap, ‘pistol packing and money macking, rapping about the city.’ we move like that. Pissszzooo lets go, our motto at strange music is you have to be ready to get up and go, and we have been that way since we started. It’s funny, we always say you have to be ready to get up and go, like strange music we call, you ready, you have to be ready to get up and go, let’s go pissszzooo, we got a plane to catch, we got to get on the tour bus, you got to be at the studio, til 12 midnight, then the tour bus going to be waiting for you at the office you know so you gotta put your bags on the bus before you go to the studio, do the studio from 8-12 midnight, get to the bus pissszzooo, drive straight to Canada. Let’s go, you got to be ready to get up and go, so he sent it in late, Twista did, but it was a dope verse, nobody got to hear it , we still got it, it ain’t like we can just put it out, on mp3. We didn’t want to disrespect Twista or his camp you know what I’m saying and put it out, but we did another one, called Midwest Choppers 2 that Twista was supposed to be on, but Twista sent it in late again, so their camp put it out. Which was cool, cus I figured they wanted the fans to hear what he did, which was wonderful, cus he murdered it , so it’s cool when their camp puts it out, because I don’t want to be the one to be like we did it, we didn’t pay for it and still put it out still, I’m like nahhhh, can’t do that, I think we was supposed to pay Twista a certain amount, to do Welcome to the Midwest and time we lost time, and if we didn’t pay for it we can’t put it out. We do things right.
The Eminem thing, I really wanted him on my world but he was going through a lot of stuff at the time, proof, his wife, you know what I am saying, everything at once, so I didn’t expect him to get back at me. Now, now I am expecting everybody to get back at me, because everybody is back up and running, I just saw a video with him and Lil’ Wayne, yesterday on BET, I was like wow, drop the world, wow, Eminem back and I heard him on Forever, and he is rapping harder than ever. So it’s time for us to really do something, I want work with the dopest mutha fuckers and I think he is one of the dopiest mutha fuckas lyrically, and I think it will really challenge me to do something outrageous, you know what I mean?
Q) When you’re making an album, how do you decide on guests, and who is going to be on which track?
The beats have to say their name. They always say, why haven’t you done a song with Slaughterhouse yet, and the beats have to speak to me they have to say slaughterhouse. I’ve had a beat that’s said Crooked I and Chino XL, I’ve had a beat that has said Joell Ortiz lately, Royce da 5’9, and Joe Budden whoooo, murderers lyrically, I have got to have the right beat for these guys, the beats have to say their name you know what I am sizzling? You know I have a partner by the name of Black Wall in Kansas City, and would always say ‘you don’t want to fuck with me, you don’t wanna do a song with me’ but the beats have to say their name, and I haven’t had a beat that said his name yet, and I think we kinda fell out over it, people don’t really understand it, but I’m a weirdo man, the beats. I just can’t throw anybody on any song man. I would have sent out for Outkast long ago, if I had a beat that said Outkast, I would love to work with them. Krizz Kaliko has a new beat that he would love to have Outkast on, and it sounds like something that they would sound beautiful on; you know what I’m sizzling? But the beat has to say it man, My World, said Eminem and Brotha Lynch Hung, but I threw on Dilemma on it, because I knew he had the ability to keep up, lyrically, and ummm I haven’t had a beat that said Eminem since then, so that’s why we haven’t reached out, the beat really has to say Tech n9ne and Eminem before I say I gotta get him on this song, as bad as I want to get him on a song, the beats got to speak to me, you know.
Q) You were featured on the first version of the Anthem by Sway and King Tech, as well as on the new 2010 version. How did that come about?
It makes me smile, of course you see me smiling that they would have me back, you know? The first infantry baby you know I was one of the first on it, and King Tech and Sway you what I’m saying, that’s my family and for them to even, still think I’m on that level lyrically, I really adore them for it. I mean I think I’m still on that level lyrically, I think I’m past most levels lyrically, but ahh, it’s like a good feeling, like validation that you are doing the right thing when King Tech and Sway call you, Sway and King Tech, that is.
Which version did you like better?
Ahhhhh, the first one was murder man, I’m sorry, the second one is dope, it’s got a lot of cats on I don’t know, but that cats that were on it went. It made me wish. every time I do the anthem, I do me, but I only do me, you know what I’m sizzling? I should try to do above and beyond me, but in 8 bars, I just do me, do my style ‘ dadadadd’, every time I hear it and I hear everybody else, I think damn I should have came harder. But I am me and that all I can be, but I can go above me, next time he call me I m going to go above and beyond me, I am going to go out of this world me, you know what I mean?
Q) You are working on a Rock album with Krizz Kaliko called Kaboosh. How is that coming along?
It’s not coming yet. Because it’s taken more time. It’s going to take us a lot of time, we found the band and everything, Dirty Worms, watsup, but it’s going to take us awhile man with a band, we might have to push it out of this year, because it’s going to take us a awhile to really sit down and create this music, piece by piece, instrument by instrument with a band, it’s not going to be like rap, it’s going to be like, A, A, C minor. I don’t know all that shit, hopefully Rob Rebeck will be there to help us out, and I’m sure dirty worm know a lot, me and Krizz Kaliko have a lot of ideas in our head that we put on our little recorders, but we have a lot of ideas and it’s a big project, so you may have to wait a little while for Kabosh, guys I’m sorry, but we have to do it right. We can’t just throw it together and have bullshit you know what I mean, you can’t, I won’t do it.
Q) There is rumors that another Collabs album is going to be released this summer.
I’m doing it right now as we speak, its coming.
How do you decide who you gets on that?
The same way man, the beats have to say there name. A beat just said Joell Ortiz and we just sent it to him, one said Devon the Dude, you know what I’m saying, another said Glasses Malone and Big Scoop, ummmmm, what else do I got, I forgot what else I got, ohhh one said Stevie Stone from Ruthless Records, possibly Nelly or Chingy, one said Ludacris for real, but I don’t know if I will get it, ummm, the beats are talking to me man, and I’m doing my solos. I’m on my last collab, writing, I have 8 more bars to write for my last collab, then I’m doing 5 solos that I start tomorrow, I think, 5 solo songs on the album, I’m writing those on the bus, I hate writing on the bus, it’s too much of a distraction, so many of us on the bus, some of the guys like watching movies in the back, I like writing in the back, some of the guys are up front, if I had a bigger bathroom, I’d write in there, but people need to use the restroom too. it’s hard to write on the bus but I’ve been doing it and its been working, I’ve been writing some really astronomical shit, and ahh, as soon as I get back April 5, I’m flying back from Grand Junction, Colorado, and straight into the studio to finish, I got a week to finish and I got to really hustle, I have to have everything written, and I will, and we are going to bang it out. The mix plate, it’s going to be beautiful.
Q) You are releasing a new cd called The Lost scripts of KOD at the end of the month (March)
They just got shipped to me yesterday.
Are those just the left over tracks from KOD, or are they new?
No man they are new, because when I choose beats for an album, sometimes I choose too many, you can only fit, like 72 minutes on a cd, we usually push it to 78, and sometimes it can be defective. But I give my fans a lot so, a lot of my cds are in the 76, 77, 78 minute range, you know what I’m saying, minutes on a cd, so after we filled that 78 minutes or whatever KOD is, there was still 5 beats that I hadn’t written to, and I already had titles for them. Stress relief, Double 0 Nina, Pain Killer, Like I Died remix, this the first time telling anybody this, and Last Sad Song. So I had already started writing, my lighter material, cus I’m trying to come out up the darkness, cus after KOD, I was done with the darkness, am I like I cannot be in this hole like this, I’m a fuckin die in this hole, and I had already told the fans on the website that I had 5 extra songs that I had to get out of me. Why’d I do that, cus I was already in the light writing the collabs, like parting, kickin it more caribou lou, fuck it more chicks, let’s go. So strange music said, my partner Travis was like, so those 5 songs you promised your fans, ummmm do have a name for it? I’m like ya they are called the lost scripts of KOD, we have to do it.
Music starts playing Tech Starts Dancing
‘It won’t be over until the fat girl in Dacata sing, east point police don’t know a damn thing.’ What was I saying before I was so rudely interrupted by something beautiful.
Ohh ya, ya ya, so Travis says, you have to do this you know. And I was like yes, so you know what this means? I have to go back into my darkness; I did not want to go back. Like I died was easy, ‘play my music like I died’, just write another fire ass verse, ratartartrta. That was easy. 00 Nina was easier, you know what I’m saying, but I had to talk about all my life’s, ‘It feels like I’m a quarto, triple double agent, double 0 Nina’, just talking about how. its crazy, but anyway, when I got to pain killer, arghggh, it took me right back to where I was, like when I wrote Low, when I wrote the Martini, the songs I was running from man, you know what I’m saying when I wrote KOD, cus I know it was going to take me down in that hole. You know you get in that suicidal hole, you know what im saying? Don’t worry, I’m never going to go into a suicidal hole, I’ve been there before so I know what it feels like and I know what it’s capable of. And it was like arggghghh pain killer, talking about a gun man, it’s like ewww, thing about it it’s like ewww, when you hear it you will hear all the emotion, argghgh man, whooooo. Then I had to write last sad song, and it’s not that sad, just talking about how I want to come up out of this darkness, and I know my fans are going to hate me for, trying to kill the darkness, cus I know they love my pain, but fuck that, I can’t have pain just all the time, be woe is me and down all the time it has to truly be there for me you know? Who’s to say this is my last sad song, I hope it is, but some shit can happen tomorrow that can fuck me all up mentally and I will be back, argghgh these mutha fuckers don’t understand me and dadadada, but right now I really want to party. So the lost scripts just got here yesterday, like 2600 of them and I’m signing them and I have to have them done in a couple of hours, there is like 12 boxes of 200 something like that. 13 boxes of 200 I think and I have done 4 boxes.
Q) On the Strange Music sampler that came out a couple of years ago, Ill Bill was heavily featured on it and his album was supposed to be released on Strange Music. Why did he end up releasing it on another label?
I guess they found something better for them, they are still my family, La Coka all day you know what I am saying, I don’t really know the depths of it, but we all good, like a mutha fucker. We did Rock the Bells, it’s a wonderful thing. La Coka , House of Pain you know what I’m saying, everybody down with them, Hooligans, man what up , DMS crew what’s going on, Ricco, salute. You know what I mean, but ummm, ya they found something different, I hope it is working for them.
Q) did you really used to bang on your chest and rap in the middle of the lunch room?
Ya , (starts beating on chest) I just did it on ‘Whhudtup, sit up, get up’, you know what I’m saying on My World interlude you know what I’m saying?
Is that what you used to do when you were young?
Yaaaa, I used to have this rhyme when I was in school, and they used to trip cus I used to rap for a whole 4 bars, (Tech starts rapping and beating on his chest)’So that’s why they say there a lot of me from London England, they say they straight out of Compton California, but no one they straight out of Granoda. Show tour but they wanting me cus they know its dark and damp, see how LA I am, Kansas City.’ you know what I’m saying? I used to do that and they was like do that again! You know what I’m saying, that’s how I made my beat. I started doing it around 6th grade when this song came out called beat box. ‘Bobbout bout bout’ I was trying to tell somebody how the beat went at school, I was like it goes like this (starts beating on chest). They was like whoa, what was that you just did, and I was like I don’t know just making a beat, I could just rap and do that at the same time, people thought that was crazy.
Q) When did you come up with What’s sizzling?
What’s Sizzlin… it came from … hahaha, me being out in LA, fucking with the Lunies, Yukmouth, Knumbskull. They was doing music with QD3 back in the day and I was staying at Quincy’s house, and that’s how I came a part of the regime, being around Yukmouth. Yukmouth dug what I did and that like bay area terms , like fo shizzle my nizzle, and all that and this was like 97 before Snoop made it popular you know. It was like they was calling me Tech Nizzle back then. “TECH NIZZLE!” what is it. That’s how they talked in the bay area, fo shizzle my nizzle all that. You know E40 all that’s bay area talk, and that from hanging around Yukmouth and Fats Bossolini used to always say what’s sizzlin Tecca Nina, and I’m like what’s sizzling and it just caught. I came back to Kansas City and what’s sizzling just turned into something I said. You know what I mean cus we are truly sizzling, but really it came from us saying you know what I’m sizzling, like you know what I’m saying, you know what I’m sizzlin? Ya so it just evolved into what’s sizzling, it falls in the bracket of fo shizzle my nizzle.
Q) Tells us what else you have coming out on Strange Music this year?
We got the Lost Scripts coming, we have Tech N9ne collabos-the Gates Mix Plate, we have Brotha Lynch Hung-Dinner and a Movie, we have Kutt Kalhoun-Rare and Uncut, we have the KOD tour dvd, we have Cognito-Automoatic, we have Krizz Kaliko-Shock Treatment, we have Big Scoops-Damn Fool, we moving man, and you might just get anotherTech N9ne album, a solo album as of yesterday.
Does Kalkio do chip on my shoulder on the show? He has my favorite line in there where he raps like e40?
Ummm, hahahahaha, ‘if you do your due diligence, you could be killin it’ that’s so funny, it sounds like 40 just jumped on the song real quick, ’40 said if you do your due diligence you could be killin it’ nahh he don’t do that one on this one he did that on the last tour, he don’t come out to that no more, he comes out to some epic shit. It was crazy, I don’t even know what it’s from, he murders it you will see tonight
Q) What is the importance of the number 9 in your last name?
Ummmm, I wanted people to see the number of competition in my name. 9 is the number of completion, you know it, 9 months pregnancy, you know the whole spiel I say it everywhere on every interview. Cat has 9 lives, 360 degrees, 3+6 makes 9. I just wanted people to see my number you know? My number is not far from an I, I is just so regular, n9ne is so beautiful, they are going to see that 9 pop out, that big red 9 like bang. Tech N9ne man, its beautiful.
Can you give us some information on anybody else’s album that you did a song for?
Ya man I just did one with Joell Ortiz and Bun B. I was supposed to do one with for lil Scrappy but I don’t know if it is too late, I just did one with 3-6 mafia called shots after shots, that’s out already. I did one for Bone Thugs that’s murder called speed of sound, I hope it comes out. What else have I done, I keep doing .ohh I just did a video for Bizarre, called Believer, it’s me and Bizarre plus a guy called Nate Walker. He is hard core he’s the guy that wrote Blame it on the Alcohol for Jamie fox and say ahh for Trey Songz. Real real talented cat, Nate Walker, we just did a song and video for bizarre new album, bizarre of d12. I really can’t remember everything I have done, I do a lot of stuff in the midst of me doing my albums, and you know what I mean.
Thanks for the interview Tech. Is there anything else you want to add?
Eat drink and be merry for tomorrow you may die, Tech N9ne!