Interview - Indie Artist "b.a.sick"

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Exclusive Interview — b.a.sick

One of our Editors, Locksmith, recently caught up with Chicago indie artist b.a.sick to discuss his new label, the state of the industry and his upcoming project Book III: The Ministry

What inspires your music?
The state of the industry is what inspires my music, everything I do I’m trying to push the envelope. I don’t want to be compared to anyone else, I’d like to think that whether people are liking it, loving it, or not it sounds like nothing you’ve ever heard before. Originality, no matter what I do, I want to make sure no one can say I sound like anybody but b.a.sick.

Who are your inspirations, musically?
So many of them we’d be here a while. Any given day it could be any genre, Hip-Hop, Rock, Pop, Funk, Soul, Electronic, everything. Old school artists such as Curtis Mayfield, Hendrix, Marley, Pink Floyd, Zeppelin to more recent acts like Pac, Big, Jay, Nas, Outkast, over to Nirvana, Smashing Pumpkins, Radiohead, whatever sounds good, music is my drug, I listen to it all.

You call Book III, The Ministry, what role does God play in this album?
I think as with any artist, the gift is from him, all praises due. But for me, I wanted to do a concept album, we went with something that would not only be polarizing but also something that we feel hasn’t been tried before. Book III is the end of a trilogy. The title is referring more to the resurrection of the art of Hip-Hop than actual religion, and hopefully that translates to listeners, artistry.

Could this be considered a gospel album?
(Laughs) Nah, not at all really. It’s without a doubt Hip-Hop, just a concept album. Around the camp my producer (The Analyst) started calling it the new gospel, but parental discretion is definitely advised. I suppose it could be considered gospel, it’s a revival so to speak, but if you’ve heard any of the other books you hear that it’s far from Christian rap or anything of that nature.

Why do you call your albums ‘books’?
This is a powerful medium as far as education goes, kids are looking up to musicians, athletes, and celebrities as role models more than their parents and teachers. They’d rather listen than read, and even worse, they’re believing what these people are telling them. My books are in the same vane as KRS-One and BDP and whole idea of the edutainment movement in the old days. We always try to give a little bit of substance along with the music.

How is this album different from the other books?
Hopefully they show progression more than anything else, Book I was End of Days, basically signifying the end of living a “normal” life, making the transition from a battle rapper to a musician. Book II: The Scorched Earth Theory, was pretty much introducing myself to new concepts and musical theories instead of just rapping. On this one, we wanted to show that we could truly do something off course from the conventional, not a bunch of singles put together, but a full cohesive work of art, from the intro to the last song it’s meant to tell a story.

What do you think of the state of music today?
I think it’s evolving, for anything to survive, it has to. I hear a lot of talk about how Hip-Hop is dead, or dying, in a way it is, but something new is growing from it. It all depends on how you look at it, instead of it being just a category for Hip-Hop and a category for Rap we’re diversifying, it’s sub-categories within those realms now, everybody has something to say and even though sales are down, obviously people are still listening.

What’s your opinion on newer acts such as Odd Future, Lil B and the like?
Like I said, it’s about diversity. I can appreciate anyone who’s out here that’s following their dreams as well as handling their business. They have their own fan base and are doing whatever they want to do with their music, I salute that, I love creativity, I wanna see everybody win. It’s enough room for anyone that’s creative and can market themselves out here; now we’re just trying to move around and find out if we can fit in there somewhere. Sound travels…

Finally, how can people get a hold of you and your music?
The album will be available on iTunes, Amazon, etc. when it’s released, as for booking/general info we can be reached at hearsoundtravel@gmail.com

And as far as the social networking thing goes:
http://www.facebook.com/HearSoundTravel http://hearsoundtravel.blogspot.com/ http://www.myspace.com/gobasick http://www.myspace.com/beatsbybumpbailey http://twitter.com/#!/bumpbaileymusic http://twitter.com/#!/Lifeisbasick http://www.youtube.com/user/HearSoundTravel

Book III: The Ministry will be released independently on SoundTravels and will available July 26, 2011