So, being a white guy in a small town. Coming from that perspective it’s…
In terms of rapping, was there anyone around Berne who helped you get started on your way?
No, I had to fend totally100% for myself. That’s why I say I’m the mastermind. Like Albert can make a beat. But I paid for everything you see here, minus these speakers. But I found this stuff, found out what it was and how we needed it. I started out on three beats I had on singles: Cool Breeze, “Watch for the Hook”; Canibus, “Second Round K.O.”; and Snoop Dogg, “Woof” and I just rapped over them back to back to back. Freestyle.
How old were you?
18. I got my first karaoke. It takes a little while to get stuff around here. Wal-Mart had ‘em but I ain’t have no money.
So that was the first thing you got?
Na, the first thing I got was a mic for $20 up at The Music House in Decatur. I said, “Is this gonna work?” And she said, “It ain’t gonna sound good.” I said it don’t gotta sound good. It’s gotta put my voice over a beat and let me hear if I can do this.” I had been freestyling for a long time but I didn’t say that to her, she’s just some old lady.
What was your first rap?
Who knows, It could be recorded somewhere. I’ve got tapes, archives. Most of my stuff is written and hasn’t even been recorded. I was waiting to get a beat for it. ‘Cause I write without beats a lot. I can change the syllables and even change some of the words in a line. I’m planning on releasing a mixtape with other people’s beats. But I can’t record yet. Really I’m just getting off the ground, doing it all myself, in a town where no one else is doing s**t. They might have a rock group but as far as rap, I’m it.
Why not rock, why not country, why not anything but rap?
I don’t know. It just grabbed me at a young age. I just loved the way it was put together. And by the time I was thirteen, it was my life.
What was the first one you had memorized?
Probably “2 Legit 2 Quit.” But the first one I was really proud I memorized was old Bone Thugs “Everyday Thang.”
What are your favorites now?
Dipset, I like JR Rider under Dipset. I like the way Chamillionaire does it and my perennial favorites are Scarface, Yukmouth, E-40 and Saigon. He ain’t got his CD dropped yet. Some of the themes get old but I like a lot of Texas s**t. Trae from Rap-A-Lot and Z-Ro too. And Stat Quo, he’s the main one I like out of the whole Shady/Aftermath label.
Would you say rap is a social statement, a political statement, race, youth…?
A little bit of everything, like this song “Strugglin’” that C-Mob got. He said, “This life ain’t f**kin’ fair, feel like I look in my pockets and there be nothin’ there, f**kin’ nobody cares, whether I life or die…or something.
When you’re sitting at the Shell station what are you thinking about most of the day?
Flows I’m about to type when I get back inside. Thinkin’, hell at least I’m makin’ something out of this job. And eventually, who knows what I’m going to do. But I’m trying to make some money one way or another. There’s endless possibilities.
In a way you’re kind of like the American Dream, you’re basically reinventing yourself and you believe you can do it.
One of the things is that I saw all of this s**t on TV. All of these people in rap videos and I could just tell a lot of them were coming from nothing. They were still wearing t-shirts and stuff. They’re not rich. I felt like I was more like them than I was like these other people… like rock, like Aerosmith in the early 90s. I just couldn’t get into it.
One last thing: Why the name “Infamus”?
It just came up one day to me a long time ago. Just for different things I did. I felt like different people knew I did it. Like I was in a bad spot, like I was infamous.
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