ROB KELLY INTERVIEW





Me and Rob Kelly are blood brothers, we both appeared on Dance energy back in the day:

‘How did you get into rapping?
I used to watch a show in the early 90′s when I was around 11 or 12 called “Dance Energy.” It was on BBC2 and presented by Normski. They had some excellent live in studio guests and it was a fantastic introduction to hip-hop music. Also I used to have a thing for Betty Boo, member her?

Who are your influences?
I am influenced by all the great emcees and lyricists. I don’t know if I can list them all in one go. People who beat their wives, tortured geniuses like myself and bobby brown.

What influences you when writing?
I don’t write, I’m like Biggie, Jay-Z & Stephen Hawking a bit like that. Genius but it’s not written down

Do you think that being Irish affects how you write? As in do you write from a different perspective because you’re Irish, or do you think it matters?
I am a very proud irish man so of course it influences everything, my slang, my behaviour, so of course it comes through.

What’s your opinion of the Irish hip hop scene?
I dont really hold any opinion on it. thats not a dis, but to me a scene comprises of some sort of activity and unity and on the surface it would appear there is not much of either.

How does the Irish hip hop scene compare to other scenes you have encountered?
In France, Netherlands, Japan, Australia, Germany, all of these places, they support their own. In Ireland we don’t really like to congratulate our own when we do well. I think that goes across the board though not just in our scene but its a very Irish mentality. A lot of people always look to what was done in the past, what came first and while you have to respect that and I do, I don’t feel I get enough credit for taking it as far a field as I have. I’m not going to start listing achievements but give me some credit for what I’ve done. In hip-hop people hate you when you are doing better than them. In Ireland people hate to see people doing well so its a bad combination. I work alone. I’m a lone wolf I’m the motherfucking Chazz Michael Michaels of this shit.

Whats the Irish audience like?
If you work on your live show then the audience will respond to you. It doesn’t matter where they are from. I always get good responses from audiences no matter where I go, so I can’t complain about them. So many shit live hip-hop acts in the world today. Irish rap acts like to rap to the ground and forget that they are in front of an audience and curse out the soundman.

What is the perception of Irish rappers from people you have encountered in the media and in general?
They don’t really understand it until they hear it. Probably because most Irish Rap is not good enough. There are a handful of a few very capable acts but after that its actually a joke. Like you know when you watch Fair City and its so bad its good, but this is not even funny.

How receptive is the Irish media to hip hop acts?
Irish media, they like the friendly acts and safe acts and gimmicks, they love gimmicks. Its funny i’ll give you two examples. I couldn’t get playlisted on Spin FM or FM 104 with a song I could get on BBC. The guy from 104 was actually cursing out the kids ringing in looking for me and said, I quote “we will never play an artist like that.” The same day I had an e-mail from Lenny S who was A&R at Def Jam. I can get airplay in London and New York but two Dublin stations won’t play me. There was a time I was about to do a lucrative pay per view tv show in the USA. It was a fairly big deal. The Late Late show passed on me because they said I wasn’t suited to their audience. The other night they had “The Satanic Sluts” on it…fuck sake. As much as I like “Hot Press” they only called when i did a song with Bleek. Reviewers always have a little jibe and all that about it not being the norm.

Then when you do get air time they are all, “do us an aul rap there now.” Like I don’t do anything except freestyle? bitch go ask fuckin Snow Patrol or The Script to sing you an aul impromptu song. While we are on it RTE, how come that little lad has three presenting jobs in the middle of the credit crunch? Ya know him? Little fella off the cafe, he is spinning the wheel and all now, fuck sake.

How have the mixtapes gone down in Ireland and overseas?
Really well, the mixtapes have just been preperation for the album. That was it, preparation for the album. They have all sold out. I am doing one more mixtape with my DJ, Mo-K and after that the album will be out, and the album is sounding big, I promise.

Do you feel you will have to leave Ireland in to order to make a career from rapping?
It will all depend on what is on the table when we pitch the album. I have already had an offer from a major digital label but we will have to see who comes up with what when its all done.

What’s your opinion of hip hop in 2008?
I still love hip-hop as much as I always did. There is plenty of good music out there. Tell you what I don’t like, Kanye’s new beard, I’m not feeling that, or Wayne Rooney stealing my red beard. Beards are hip-hop these days. Shout out to Peter Beardsley.

How important has Myspace and the internet been in your career?
Its been everything, without Myspace I wouldn’t have a career so to speak. I am reaching so many people all over the world, day in day out.

Where do you see it going in the future?
Its constantly changing I guess some digital changes to combat piracy would help rejuvenate the flagging sales of music would be nice or just helping to catch predators is good.’

Check out the full interview with Scruffy Daddy. Wexford stand up!

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