Chiddy Bang Jump “In the Mix” [DJBooth.net Interview Exclusive]
If there still existed a divide in the listening public's mind between "serious" spitters and new-school "hipster" rappers, Chidera "Chiddy Bang" Anamege laid that dusty prejudice to rest May 2, when the Philly native delivered a record-breaking nine hours, 18 minutes and 22 seconds' worth of straight, improvised rhymes. Of course, that's only the beginning of what the Philly native's accomplished with the help of production partner Noah "Xaphoon" Jones. Since hitting the scene in '09, the duo have popularized their progressive, electro-infused hip-hop style through a slew of dope mixtape releases, the latest of which, Peanut Butter & Swelly, is set to hit the 'net this Friday. And that's not all: following their latest street album, the crew have a debut studio album (Breakfast) in the works, and are currently working with fast food heavyweight Taco Bell as part of their Feed the Beat program.
In this exclusive, five-question interview, Chiddy Bang & Xaphoon Jones step into the Booth to discuss Chiddy's record-breaking strategy, the rebirth of the duo as a force in the rap game, and why their music and Taco Bell's delicious food are a match made in heaven.
Amazingly it’s only been a year since… What do you think it is about your music that people grabbed on to you and your music so quickly?
Noah: I think it is how good looking we are. (joking) I think that me and Chidera having such different musical tastes and styles and they come together and have a sound that is not found in a lot of hip hop anythings, let alone duos. There are not a lot of hip hop duos anymore. We lost Guru, RIP from Gang Starr. We have amazing legendary bands, like The Roots, and solo artists and solo rappers. I think in a very short amount of time we covered a lot of areas that weren’t being covered in and that is what I think drew people to us. And I love Taco Bell.
What was the hardest part about rhyming for nine hours straight?
Chiddy: Hardest part about rhyming was balancing the energy and making sure I don’t run out of my fuel too early by going so hard within the first two or three hours. I could have started right out the gate rhyming the craziest stuff, craziest rhyme schemes, going so hard for three hours but then in hours 4-7 I would have just fell off. It was about pacing yourself which was the most difficult thing and it sort of clicked to me in my head while doing it that I could really just relax, chill on the couch and relax and rhyme stuff that I could save myself up for the difficult hours 4-7. Then once I got through those hours, it was like I came this far and would be an idiot to drop it at this point.
You are working with Taco Bell.
Chiddy: We are members of the Feed the Beat program which is essentially Taco Bell reaching out and working with upcoming musicians. It’s really dope because ya know we provide the music and they provide the food. Being on the road constantly is like all the time touring it is hard to really just get a good meal sometime because you’re going from place to place.
Noah: You are in survival mode. You see food, you eat it.
Chiddy: What better way to do it then have that food be free since we’re going there anyway, since that is what we do late night. Taco Bell is essentially the Chiddy Bang official tour food of choice.
Considering how far you’ve come, what is next?
Noah: Fragrance by Chiddy. (joking)
Chiddy: I just want to get this album out. We’ve experienced different things and have been doing so much, but let’s just get album number one out. Begin our legacy! The work really begins after the album comes out.
Noah: And let’s go on another Australian tour.
Chiddy: We just got to keep saying that we want to Australian Festival and someone will hear that… and grant us our wish.
What is keeping you busy this summer?
Chiddy: We’ve got the mixtape coming out on the 27th of May called Peanut Butter and Swelly. This is our first full-length release mixtape in over a year and a half so this is a really big deal for us. It’s just dope because that’s how we’ve always connected with our fans from the start, it was always about giving out free music. We’re excited to be in a position to do that again. All the opportunities that we’ve been blessed with have come off of our first mixtapes. Mixtapes have always been a tool for us to push to the next level and hopefully with this next one we can continue to do so and prep for the album to drop.
Noah: I just did a new free mix of “The Good Life” and it’s a mid-tempo thing so I tried to do a freaky midtempo base with a moomba-tone edit which is a genre of music that combines Latin rhythms, mid-tempo base and progressive dutch house and it’s a really crazy remix that I think you guys will like it and you can download it for free on Taco Bell’s Facebook page.
Chiddy: The best things in life are free!
As a reminder, fans can catch Chiddy Bang's show LIVE and for free on Wednesday, May 25 on Taco Bell's Facebook page.
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