Mixtape.
Two Tiffanys celebrating what they love by giving it a stage and using their voices to spread the word.

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Interview: 보니 (Boni)

Early last month, we introduced you to Boni through our SOUNDCHECK, as the newest soul diva of South Korea. At only 24, this young woman is on the verge of starting a new revolution in K-pop; a revolution that is about bringing back the soul to Seoul. Her music is reminiscent of the late 90s and early 2000s in not only Korean Pop music, but American styles as well. Her velvety voice dances easily between fun dance tracks and smooth ballads without missing a beat, and while this South Korean beauty has just stepped on the scene, she’s already gained an international following. Having just released her debut mini album “NU One” in March of this year, she’s already made the rounds on South Korean shows like Mnet’s “The Pub” and KBS’ “Star Golden Bell,” and now, CrayonBeats brings to you her first English interview, especially for her international fans! Read on as we get to know this dynamic singer, Boni!

Interview: Karl “Oye” Iglesias

Karl Iglesias, known as ¡Oye!, is an actor, an emcee, a poet, a mentor, and a director. He’s also Puerto Rican and from Milwaukee. He’s a two-time Wisconsin teen slam champion, and was the first artist to accomplish this goal at the age of 19 (which occurred in 2008). In 2009, his team at the UW took second place at the Collegiate Union Poetry Slam Invitational. Among many other things he’s accomplished, he also debuted his solo theater show, “If A Tree Falls“, across the country and was a featured artist in the 2009 Hip Hop Theater Festival in NYC as part of the “Young, Gifted, and Hyped” series.

He’s currently going to school at UW-Madison, and he’s a member of The First Wave Arts Ensemble. You might remember that he dropped his first solo album, “In My Mind“, in December. And two of the tracks from that album were also featured in our blog’s mixtape! Now that he’s been featured here on CrayonBeats quite a lot, it was time for an interview…

Interview: HOW & NOSM

Identical twin brothers HOW and NOSM (Raoul and Davide Perré) are graffiti artists and professional muralists. They were originally born in Spain, but grew up in Germany. They paint on anything they can get their hands on – canvases, skateboards, sculptures, mounds of snow, walls, toys, and more. They’ve traveled to more than 50 countries, painting their names on various surfaces. Their graffiti can be seen all over the world, including The Bahamas, Hong Kong, Costa Rica, Brazil, San Salvador, the Honduras, New York, and many others. They even blessed the Berlin Wall.

In the late 90s, they permanently moved to New York and became members of the world famous TATS Cru (other members are BIO, BG183, NICER, & TOTEM2). Painting for 22 years now, they’ve grown from hitting subways and trains, to custom-painted murals for corporate clients such as Nike, Coca Cola, Sony, MTV, and Kodak. If you live in the Bronx (specifically 163rd Street and Westchester Avenue), you might’ve seen the Big Pun memorial mural that Tats Cru painted (video at the bottom).

They are artists in various other aspects as well. They do graphic design, live painting / demo shows, promotional media, workshops, lectures, sculptures, writing and editing, and also tattooing.

Below is the interview that I had with them. Check it out…

Interview: Pumashock

If you listen to K-pop music, or have spent any time surfing youtube at all,  you should already know about this talented young lady. Natalie White, better known as Pumashock, has been remixing some of the top Korean pop songs and posting them up on youtube for the better part of a year now.  Her talent and creativity not only earned her scores of fans across the globe as a youtube sensation; but also landed her an appearance on South Korea’s “Star King” variety show after her remix of the insanely popular Girl’s Generation song “Gee” was viewed by over 1 million people in less than a day. How’s that for record setting? Ever since, she’s been super busy with vlogging, and blogging, maintaining her website, creating original songs and of course posting hot remix after remix on her youtube channel.

After the jump, Pumashock answers a few questions for me about her youtube fame, what inspires her remixing, future career plans, and the one thing you should NOT ask her…no matter how much you want to.

Interview: Soap-Box World

The first time I stumbled across Soap-Box World was through Twitter. I think it was through a “Follow Friday” and Elaquent had made a #FF regarding some artistic people. Both of our names were included in that little group, and he (Daniel of SBW) had followed me. I went to his page, clicked his website and checked out the art. They grabbed my attention.

And now here I am… doing an interview with Daniel. SBW is a UK-based artistic team. They design artwork, vinyl toys, graphic novels, and clothing. Diverse, right? Inspired by everything around them – people, conversations, music, kung-fu, culture, anime, etc. Everything is original work, as it’s all hand drawn and unique. They’ve collaborated with Elaquent, by creating an animated video to pair with one of his tracks (video at the end of the interview). They’ve also worked with Soweto Kinch, Robot Bunny, and more. And every piece that they create has a limited amount, and will never be recreated again.

Read on for the interview…

Interview: 14KT

Kendall Tucker, better known as 14KT, is a beatmaker that was born and raised in Ypsilanti, Michigan. For him, it all began in a church choir. From there, he joined forces with 6 other guys (Buff1, Grand Champ, Sunny Star, Texture, Vital, and DJ Haircut) to form the MI hip hop group, Athletic Mic League, in the early 90s. All while still attending high school. He started out as an emcee in the group, and eventually took it upon himself to flip jazz & soul records to make beats. Due to the artists of the group branching out with solo work (Buff1‘s “There’s Only One“, DJ Haircut aka Mayer Hawthorne‘s “A Strange Arrangement“, and of course 14KT’s doing his thing), many hip hop heads thought that they broke up (which is false).

In 2008, 14KT won the Detroit Red Bull Big Tune Beat Battle. Also that year, he released “The Golden Hour” soundtrack (with A-Side Worldwide), which is said to be the soundtrack to his life. And in 2009, he dropped “Nowalataz” for free download – which is a collection of Dilla-donuts inspired beats that he made in 2006. And if you were at SXSW last week, you might’ve seen KT drop beats between sets. I know he’s a busy guy, so I really appreciated him taking the time to do the interview with me. I think that 14KT is a real solid/consistant producer, and he shouldn’t be slept on. So check out the interview I had with him…

Interview: L.E.O.

L.E.O. (formally known as Leo Kekoa) is one of the few emcees who has managed to walk the thin line between the mainstream “hip-pop” and underground hip-hop scene of Korea’s ever-growing music industry. Born on the mainland in Washington D.C.  and growing up in the Hawaiian Islands, L.E.O.’s music and style reflect  his American attitude and Korean roots, as he is known to spit both in Korean and English.

Having been in the game for over 10 years, he’s known by his fans as one of the young innovators of the new generation rap and hip hop in South Korea; with some even claiming him as one of the top  underrated artists in the glitz and glamor obsessed world that is music entertainment. He’s broken the stereotype of  the angry, antisocial underground emcee by not exclusively collaborating only with other underground acts, but has expanded his horizons and fan base by venturing into the realm of “pop music”. By doing so, he proves that being “real” is being true to yourself, and your passions; and in his case it’s music all day, every day.

While taking a break from recording his 3rd studio album, L.E.O. was kind enough to answer a few questions for his English-speaking fans right here on CrayonBeats . Check out the exclusive interview after the jump.

Interview: Rafael Casal

Rafael Casal will be turning 25 this year (on August 8th). He’s a multi-talented artist that won’t stop using different art forms to express himself. He’s a slam poet, a musician, an educator, a writer, and the founder of The Getback. He’s a 2-time Brave New Voices (BNV) Poetry Slam Finalist Champion and a 3-time cast member of Russell Simmons’ Def Poetry on HBO.

In 2008, he dropped his first full-length album titled, “As Good As Your Word“. The following year, 2009, he released his “Monster” LP, on Halloween day. A lot of people might be familiar with his “Grinch Song” video (as it kind of went viral), where he dropped 100 Bay Area slang words in 3 minutes to this dope Grinch beat. And he hasn’t stopped there. He recently became the Creative Director at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where he is helping to build the first Hip Hop theatre program.

We here at CrayonBeats have featured Rafael Casal a couple of times. We also reviewed his latest album, “Monster“. So it’s about time we get to interview him, right? Right!

Interview: Flipz5 of Rok The Spot

Rok The Spot is a two-man collective of artists living in Florida. They are equally handsome, talented, and cool. And did I mention that they are brothers?

Meet Flipz5 and Carlo$. They paint, draw, take part in photography, and even cut hair. You can see their work on clothing (t-shirts, hats, and shoes), bags, female bodies, canvases, munny’s, and anything else that they see fit. And Flipz5 agreed to let me interview him for CrayonBeats, so check it out…

Interview: Gimm!박사

(Dr. Gimm) is a one man show. He sings, dances, produces, raps, writes, directs, and probably juggles sharp objects while sleeping. Yeah, he wears many a hat and what’s great about it all is, he wears them well. Late last summer I found myself listening to his single on repeat and then about a month later, I accidentally bumped into  him on Youtube trying to find out about another artist’s music; which he actually produced, unbeknownst to me. Coincidence? I think not!  Well, needless to say I was eager to interview this new artist/producer who just seemed to have come out of nowhere!  Thankfully, Dr. Gimm made some time in his soon to be very busy schedule to do this with me.  Read on in this exclusive interview for CrayonBeats,  and  get to know a little more about this upcoming talent, Gimm!박사!

Interview: Jam One

Juan, or better known as Jam One, resides in Chicago and is a man that posesses many talents/hobbies. Those talents include the following: beatboxing, turntablism, freelance photography, graphic design, and video editing. He’s that guy you see making all kinds of noises with his mouth, while reaching for his camera to catch in-the-moment shots of those guys breakdancing on the corner. He might even have slightly rough finger tips from scratching vinyl over the years. He’s rocked the stage with DJ Q-Bert a few times, Mr. Dibbs, Qwel, Illmaculate, opened for Zach De La Rocha (Rage Against The Machine), and others. He made his first DVD, “The Cypher”, which features a bunch of footage from various underground hip hop events in Chicago (check out the trailer at the end).

Jam One is my 11th interview since April, and it’s is my last interview for 2009. Check it out…

Interview: Elaquent

Starting December off with another interview. Meet Elaquent, or eQ for short. He’s a beat maker from Ontario, Canada. In the city of Guelph, to be exact. He’s teamed up with ThinkLoud Records and Digi Crates Records, so be on the lookout for the LP he’ll be releasing on ThinkLoud next year.

Lingering between hip hop, neo-soul, and downtempo, the man eQ shouldn’t be slept on. He dropped a series of beat tapes (3 volumes so far), titled “In Colour” dirty/dirtier/dirtiest loops. Sometime earlier this year, he dropped “After Midnight“, which is more like a real album compared to the 3 beat tapes before. The album is probably best enjoyed “After Midnight”… when you’re ready to kick back and relax your feet. It has that laidback, jazzy-soul vibe that your mind can and will sink into. Guest spots include his brother Es, Moka Only, Mishoo The Drumkit, Solar C, O-Phrap, and a couple others. This, along with the “In Colour” volumes, can be downloaded at the end of the interview. He’s a cool guy, so don’t hesitate to read the interview, listen to his music, and connect with him.