Lyriciss Jumps “In the Mix” [DJBooth Interview Exclusive]
New York, N.Y. -- Back in December, we jumped "In the Mix" with Cymarshall Law, the Jersey-based emcee whose latest EP, The Creator's Kid, is set to drop on the 26th. For the 19th installment of our Booth-exclusive interview series, we're giving readers an up-close and personal look at Lyriciss, the DMV up-and-comer who brought us mixtape cuts "Bright Nights" and "Give 'Em a Show," as well as Booth-exclusive freestyle "It Ain't Hard to Tell '09."
Born and raised in the D.C./Maryland/Virginia area, Lyriciss was inspired to start rapping at the age of nine after hearing The LOX' classic Money, Power, Respect LP, and continued to hone his skills over the course of his middle school and high school years. Now signed to indie label Inner Loop Records and production company EQuinox Professionals, the 22-year-old emcee is preparing for next Tuesday's release of his new, DJBooth.net-sponsored street album, The Practice.
In this exclusive, five-question interview, Lyriciss discusses his role in the DMV's rise to national prominence, how his lyrical approach will set him apart from his peers, and what he hopes to accomplish with his latest mixtape.
The "DMV" as a region has received lots of buzz over the last year, but only one artist is on the mainstream radar (Wale). Will 2010 be a breakthrough year?
It's possible... it's very possible with the amount of talent and attention in the DMV right now. The key part is everyone working hard toward success, and combining that with more quality music and excluding the petty beefs and bickering. There's a lot of behind-the-scenes squabbling that goes on and still holds the DMV back from our full potential as a movement, unfortunately.
If you were positioned in a hip-hop line-up with four other artists from your region, what characteristics would separate you from the pack?
The subject matter for an artist my age...there's not too many other 22-year-olds speaking on the things I speak on in my region. Most of them are having a lot of fun in their music, while I tend to speak on more serious topics. I swear, people think I'm depressed or something (laughs). Seriously, I just feel like people need to know that people our age have something to say, and even more, people my age from the DMV have something to say...we're in the nation's capitol. We need to have a message and a goal as artists.
The title of your brand new DJBooth-sponsored project is "The Practice." Do you believe "practice makes perfect'?
I believe "perfect" doesn't exist...I do feel practice increases skill though. I wrote so many songs for this tape, sharpening my bars and practicing different flows and the art of the double-entendre. That's how the project got its name.
What do you hope to accomplish with the release of this brand new mixtape?
More progress in my career and art, more fans and supporters, and more shine to the DMV. I want myself and the whole DMV to just reach more people worldwide with our sound and music.
In September you spit an '09 remake of Nas' "It Ain't Hard to Tell" for our Freestyle Series. When it comes to your career, what is the hardest thing for you to tell?
Whether this is a dream or an attainable goal. There's so many ups and downs in this game, especially when you hold most of the responsibility on your own shoulders, but I feel like God has a plan. I was born with a talent, so I have to sharpen it and have it heard.
Last words, plugs, shout-outs, mentions, confessions?
Thank you to my family and EVERY single supporter I have out there...y'all are the reason I keep doing this. Inner Loop, EQ, Zzz Gang, DMV...the movements are still moving. Oh yeah...and if y'all aren't logging on to DJBooth & RefinedHype everyday, you're probably losers. Peace & Hip-Hop.