Big Pooh Interview
|Artist:||Rapper Big Pooh|
|Label:||Mello Music Group|
|Next Project:||Get Back (Oct '07)|
|Twitter:||Rapper Big Pooh on Twitter|
|Website:||Rapper Big Pooh's Website|
Only one thing matters to Phonte and Big Pooh of Little Brother: the music. Following the critical acclaim they received for the album “The Minstrel Show,” LB got right back into the studio to begin work on their follow-up, “GetBack.” Though since then, they left their major label home at Atlantic for the independent ABB Records and parted ways with former producer, 9th Wonder. During an interview with DJBooth’s DJ “Z,” Big Pooh discusses the reason why “GetBack” won’t be dropping until the end of October, which producer will most similarly duplicate the sound of older LB records and what is his most embarrassing fashion moment of all time.
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Rapper Big Pooh Interview Transcription
DJ Booth: What’s goin’ on, y’all? It’s your boy ‘Z,’ doin’ it real big, and joining me inside the DJ Booth is one half of the North Carolina duo whose music makes their status as the ‘younger sibling’ seem embarrassing for the rest of the industry. Please welcome Big Pooh of Little Brother. How you doin’?
Big Pooh: Yes sir, what’s good with you, man?
DJ Booth: Well, things are good with me, but I want to know that things are good with you guys – The other day I read on Phonte’s Myspace blog that the album has been pushed back to October. What caused this delay, now?
Big Pooh: Record label stuff, I guess. It was a thing where, we did what we were supposed to do – turned the record in, turned the artwork in, was ready to go – but the label didn’t have things wrapped up on their end. The most frustrating part about it was instead of them being honest and giving us a realistic timetable, they kept tryin’ to hold tight to the date we had set, and when it became obvious that they couldn’t hold their date anymore, that’s when they decided to tell us that it was gonna be pushed back a month. It’s kind of frustrating and disappointing all at the same time.
DJ Booth: No, I can completely understand. Phonte’s words, in his blog, seemed to insinuate that the unfortunate merry-go-round that artists are forced to play with their label has caused him to lose some of the love he has for music. How do you feel about the entire situation? Has this caused you to feel differently about your music?
Big Pooh: Nah, because it’s part of the business. As far as Te, you know, I can never tell you what’s goin’ on inside his head, but I don’t think he lost his love for the music, I think it just get to a point in time where the politics and the strain of the business just has you at your wits’ end, and I think that’s just what he ended up at – just throwin’ his hands up in the air and steppin’ back for a breather. For me, I just got accustomed to how the whole game is played. It frustrates me at times, and then it upsets me and disappoints me and all that. I can quickly step back, reassess the situation, and come with a new game plan, but everybody isn’t built like that. I understand frustration – I’m goin’ through it with him, so that’s where we’re two different people. I just still go forward, and I just – I never forget.
DJ Booth: Sooner rather than later this album is going to be here, because October is just around the corner, so let’s focus on the album. The title is “GetBack.” Pooh, what is being returned?
Big Pooh: The happiness that we once had in creating music. Situations such as the one that just happened with our album pushed back –stuff like that can derail you, and can cause you to lose focus from the whole point of what you’re doin’, and that’s making dope music. We just wanted to get back to the part where we wasn’t concentrating on nothing but making dope music, because you can lose sight and lost focus of all that in this music business – you start thinking about and worrying about everything other than the music, and I think we had gotten to that point during and after “The Minstral Show” was released, we just needed to take a step back and just go back to making music.
DJ Booth: Something else that probably played into that is in January, 9th Wonder left the group and that kind of circumvented this whole discussion of ‘Is Little Brother gonna be the same without him?’ Are you guys sick of answering questions about what you what you will do without him as a producer?
Big Pooh: Yeah, you get sick of answering them questions, but I always know they’re coming, you know what I’m saying? The world will see, when the album is finally released, what kind of group we gonna be, but this wasn’t a one-man show – this was a three-man show – and one of the men isn’t here anymore, but the two that still goin’ shall keep it movin’ and we ain’t no slouches neither.
DJ Booth: Not at all. Production on “GetBack” includes contributions from Illmind, Nottz, Hi-Tek, Mr. Porter, some very good producers. Who out of that bunch complements your sound most similarly to past Little Brother records?
Big Pooh: Probably be between Khrysis and Illmind, and that’s because we worked with them in the past numerous times on countless occasions. Workin’ with them was second nature, because we were used to workin’ with them so much in the past. A lot of people would say Khrysis complements us because him and 9th made music together, and his sound at the time, as far as what people know is the closest to 9th Wonder. So [he] was probably the easiest to jump in, and start making tracks.
DJ Booth: This album has been wrapped and recorded for some time now. Did the opportunity to leave Atlantic spark a newfound wave of musical genius for you and Phonte?
Big Pooh: Nah, after “The Minstrel Show” and we put the “Separate But Equal” mix tape, we has some time just to chill and reflect, we kinda had a newfound energy ourselves. The bulk of this record was recorded before we even left Atlantic. It wasn’t like once we were done with Atlantic, we got another burst of energy – we was already there, we was already in that state of gettin’ back to what we do best, before we even left the label. Just leavin’ the label – that just took what we thought would be the pressure of a whole lot of BS off of our shoulders. But we got put back in the similar situation with the independent label.
DJ Booth: Yeah and now you’re in some new BS.
Big Pooh: Yeah, that just goes to show you – different name, same situation.
DJ Booth: The current single, “Good Clothes,” is something to which anybody and everybody can relate. You both take shots at fashion no-nos but the reality is that we all make them from time to time. So individually, describe your most awkward dressing experience while growing up.
Big Pooh: Um, ha, I probably have to say it was after my uncle’s wedding. I didn’t have any clothes to change into and we were about to go out, and I was waitin’ for my mother to bring my clothes over. And my grandmother didn’t want to wait, she was like, “I got some stuff you can change into.” She had me put on these shorts, like the basketball players used to wear, the ones that rounded off at the bottom, has a little split on the side, with my dress shoes and no socks and a white T-shirt – talkin ‘bout, “That’s how the grown men do it.” And I was like, “Grandma, I don’t care they do it. This ain’t hot!” She made me go out like that, so that probably was one of my most awkward dressing experiences right there.
DJ Booth: You never know - if you were to bring that style back here in 2007, you could be a trend-setter, Pooh. You never know.
Big Pooh: I’ll pass, I’ll pass on the opportunity. I’m a big guy, you know what I’m sayin’? Them little shorts not comfortable for a guy my size.
DJ Booth: I feel you right there. Listen, I wish you nothing but the best of luck on this project when it does drop, in October of course.
Big Pooh: I appreciate it man, thank you.
DJ Booth: Any time. Give everybody a website, a Myspace address, so they can find out more about you guys.
Big Pooh: No doubt – you can check out myspace.com/littlebrother, gonna have all our tour dates up. From there, you can go to myspace.com/rapperbigpooh, for my personal page, and myspace.com/phontigallo.
DJ Booth: Beautiful. Well, hopefully “GetBack” will be in people’s hands and stereos before we all know it, and will lead to bigger and better things for both of you guys down the line.
Big Pooh: Thanks man, appreciate it. Thanks for all the support.