If you’ve checked out this site over the past 4 months, you’ve noticed I’m a huge Kyle Lucas fan. His solo work and rhyming in Vonnegutt have made him a creative force to be reckoned with in 2009 and beyond. After checking out his performance with Vonnegutt last month and some pestering, Kyle was more than gracious in following up with my request: a Q & A.
What Kyle sent back was more than informative. If you haven’t checked out his music before, now you don’t have any excuses. I’m very pleased to announce the very first Q & A on this site, with Kyle Lucas!
1. When did you know realize you wanted to make music?
I realized i wanted to make music when I was probably in 3rd or 4th grade. I loved hip hop music, along with other genres of course but i remember seeing the videos for Puffy and Mase in “Can’t Hold Me Down” and Biggie “Hypnotize” and being blown away. I remember hearing “Me & You (Elevators)” by Outkast on the radio driving around with my mom and then started writing rhymes after that. I also loved Boyz II Men, ha-ha, if I could sing I probably would, but i can’t hold a note to save my life!
2. Its easy for fans to forget that you’re in college, is it tough balancing the demands of crafting music and taking classes?
Yea it definitely is difficult doing both, I’d be lying if I said it was easy. But it’s very important for me to have my college degree. I don’t have that long left, but I’m also not going full time, I’m just slowly chipping away at my degree. I might have to take a short hiatus after this semester; it really is just getting to very hectic. And we haven’t started touring, which has made it easier for me to attend classes, once we start touring I’m assuming I’ll have to stop going. Although, when we did warped tour in Atlanta this summer I had a conversation with Matt from Gym Class Heroes who is taking online classes. So I might have to give that some thought. I’m almost there; I need to just knock this degree out though!
3. Whether you’re freestyling over punk/rap tracks or creating your own hip-hop or rock tracks with Vonnegutt, your style is very versatile. Is there a genre you prefer making music in? Has your taste changed over the years?
Umm, yea i would definitely say my taste has evolved over the years. But to give myself credit, i have always been a versatile music fan. I grew up in Marietta just being a skateboard kid who bumped Outkast, Dr. Dre and Jay-z as well as Sublime, Blink-182 and Weezer. So I’ve always been all over the map as far as music. I definitely prefer making hip-hop records, and I pride myself in the art of emceeing and rhyming. But if I could sing I’m sure I would be singing as well. I’ve dabbled in a little auto-tune stuff for the new mixtape, I know it’s really really played out but sometimes i want to sing. So you know, I might give it a shot. Ha-ha. That’s probably the only music fad that I’ve dug and really kind of wanted to dabble in.
4. You are very accessible to fans by using Myspace, Facebook, Twitter, You Tube and selling concert tickets personally. How important is building those fan relationships to you?
That’s very, very important to me. I try to answer all the messages, emails, aim’s and even text’s people send me. My music is so personal and when people connect to it for whatever reason, it means the world to me and I just have to let them know that the support is everything to me. I also want to be the artist that is approachable. I always want to be that.
5. Many of your songs deal with past relationships, drug experimentation and general anxiety that is engaging and seems earnest. Are these experiences you’ve had personally? Is music your way of coping and getting through those situations?
Yea my songs are definitely therapy for me. Their how I cope with everything I go through. I have my problems, like any human, and I just deal with them through writing. I definitely pride myself in being honest. I feel that the consumer can see through an artist, so I just try to be myself as much as possible and be as honest as possible. And From what i hear from the fans, i feel they appreciate it as well. I show vulnerability in my music. I’m not some super hero rapper who is invincible. That’s not me. I have my problems and i just want people to appreciate the art form I use to express it.
6. What artists/albums have you been enjoying lately?
Lately I’ve been listening to a lot of Coheed & Cambria and Fall Out Boy. For some reason I’ve been stuck on Fall Out Boy’s latest record and their first one. I’ve been bumping Drake’s new mixtape hard! I’m glad he’s finally getting the support he deserves, I’ve been a fan for a minute and I’m glad he’s finally getting the recognition. Joe Budden is always on rotation. Of course, I always have a lot of Outkast playing as well as most of Dungeon Family projects as well. Kanye West is a genius to me, so I’m bumping 808’s a lot. P.O.S.’s new record is incredible. Umm…
7. There seems to be a new movement in hip-hop recently. Artists are stretching the boundaries of what is classically “hip-hop”. From Kanye (808’s & Heartbreak) & Lil’ Wayne’s (Rebrith) albums to new artists like Wale, B.o.B., Asher Roth and KiD CuDi. How do you stand out among the new generation of hip-hop artists?
Hopefully I’m considered to be one of these new emcees who is pushing the boundaries. When I do a mixtape, I rarely just jack an industry beat or a beat that’s a hit on the radio and rap on it. When I do a mixtape I almost want it to be like an album, I think I set the bar with my last one as far as experimentation on what kind of songs to rap over and the art of sampling and rapping over “non-rap” songs. That’s kind of been my calling card as far as mixtapes; I really do want to make them like albums.
Kyle Lucas – Breathing In A Smoggy City (produced by Cookin’ Classics)
Check back for Part 2 later this week!
Thanks to Laura, Andrew & Jenny for all the help!