Get Lifted: Skyzoo InterviewMay 9, 2007 at 12:29 am | Posted in Interviews | Leave a comment
If you haven’t heard the Illest emcee from
Brooklyn then you must be living under a rock. Many got lifted from Sky’s high on “Cloud 9: The 3 Day High” with 9th Wonder on the boards that took literally 3 days to make. Spitting since he was nine years old, Skyzoo is the fresh air the game needs. The City’s Favorite has had the pleasure of igniting some of hottest beats from big names like Black Milk, ILLMIND, Khrysis and countless others. If you don’t know his name, Sky doesn’t hesitate to spell it out for those sleepin on the new cat with the self-proclaimed best flow second to BKs finest Jay-Z. Not signed but in talks with many labels, Skyzoo will be a household name. Hip-Hop is in need of new talent like
Mr. Sk so I hit him up and got inside the mind of the potential lyrical threat everybody will soon know as Skyzoo.
What’s good! Thank you for going through with the interview. I just hit you up on Myspace and you hit right back so I appreciate it. So who are your musical influences?
No doubt, thank you for reaching out to me. As far as my influences as a whole there’s a lot of them, I mean I came up on a lot of different types of music. The initial artist that really got me in it [Hip-Hop] was Chi Ali and he was a member of the Native Tongues back in the day, back in the early 90s with Tribe Called Quest, De La Soul, Black Sheep and all them. The thing about Chi Ali is that he was so young, he was with all these adults and he was only 14. I think that’s what intrigued me the most the fact that he was just 14 but he was running with them and he was dope. His album was crazy. He was young but he seemed like he was older so that really pulled me in. Through the years I grew up on everything from NWA, Biggie, Jay-Z and Nas, John Coltrane, Nirvana, Kid N Play, Kool G Rap.
How did you get the opportunity to work with 9th Wonder, Black Milk and Illmind?
The way I started working with 9th was through my man Chaundon whose one of the members of Justus League with 9th Wonder, Little Brother and Khrysis. I met him a couple years ago and we clicked automatically. 9th invited me to
North Carolina to come record with them and work with them. Me and Khrysis banged out a bunch of songs in a week. He really started liking me along with Big Pooh, Phonte, they all treated me like I was family. For the record, I’m not in the Justus League, I’m not in the Hall of Justus but that’s my second family, that’s my distant cousins. With all the producers I work with, it’s really on the love and the strength of my talent. It’s strictly for the love of the music. It’s not like someone owes a favor or it’s not about my budget, it’s on the strength. I’m just blessed that I’m talented enough to where these producers need me and want to rock with me automatically between 9th, Khrysis, ILLMIND, DJ Premiere. I’ve worked with so many producers with plaques on the wall.
Where did you get your name from?
Well my real name, my middle name is Skyler and my whole family calls me that. Anybody who knows or grew up around me knows my name is Skyler or Sky. When I was a baby, I was born in ’82, there was this disco group called Sky and they were from
Brooklyn. They had this big disco hit out at the time called Skyyzoo and it was a big Disco/Radio Hit on some Studio 54 type shit. It was a huge deal, so as a baby my parents used to sing that record to me because it was so similar to my name and it just stuck. The older I got Skyzoo just stayed around as a name. So when I started rhyming as opposed to making up some name like MC Flip A Brick or MC Packin Heat I just ran with what was already there cause I hear the craziest names. I just kept it authentic and if I wasn’t rhyming I’d still be Skyzoo so I just used what was already there.
So I was listening to Cloud 9 and on “Stop Fooling Yourself” you talked about going to college and how your boys was telling you not to. Were you thinking about going to college before you started rapping professionally?
I actually went to college. I did 2 ½ years at Farmingdale in
Long Island, NY. I went to college for a little while. When I was in college I was still rapping, still doing my thing. With that record it grabs a lot of people because it’s real and just like the whole album. People say they can relate to it on so many levels. That’s what I try to do with my music especially with “Stop Fooling Yourself” the beat just spoke to me. When I write it all comes from the beat and it tells me what to do and with that beat it made me want to reflect. The things I said in that record is true because I actually got accepted to different big universities and didn’t go because of different reasons. I thought it wasn’t gonna work out or for financial reasons.
Describe the day in the life of Skyzoo?
Well the day of the life of me varies. I’m on the computer a lot because majority of my fans are on the computer, the hip-hop sites, YouTube, Myspace. I’m on that everyday because that’s how I keep up with everything. The digital world has its pros and cons but the pros are so big that you have to take notice you have to get in touch with people all over the world. Get yourself out there visual and audio wise, everything. The easiest way to do that is through the net. The day of the life of me is I wake up, take a shower and the whole nine and I’m on the net for awhile and then I’m either in the studio or promoting. I’m getting my next mixtape pressed up or photo shoot. Then at night I’m usually at shows performing or someone else’s show promoting myself or I’m linking up with magazines. It’s all on the same wave length, everyday is just another part of this grind, another part of this push to get it where I want it to be.
What can you bring to Hip-Hop that can change it from the monotone state it’s in?
Apart of me is bridging the gap but those aren’t my intentions. My intentions are to make the music I want to make and being that I’m influenced by so many different sounds and I grew up the way I grew up but I still had different things available to me so I know a lot of different spectrums of the world. So my thing is to bridge the gap but not intentionally, if it happens it happens, if it doesn’t it doesn’t. Like when Biggie brought
New York back he ain’t never say it he just did it. With me, I just want to bring versatility to game and bring back the complete emcee to the game. Rock shows, freestyle, doing everything without reaching and when you do that then you can be a complete emcee like Jay-Z and 2Pac.
There’s a rumor going around saying that you ghostwrite for Lil Wayne. Can you confirm or deny that?
Yeah I heard about the rumor too. I have never pen anything for
Wayne. I think he’s an incredible emcee and I’ve seen him grow. He has a new mixtape out every week which is crazy. His growth is unparallel, he’s really going for the gusto with it and I salute that man for what he’s doing musically. I can’t judge his personal life because I don’t know him like that. But musically he’s doing what he has to do times 10. I definitely respect what that man is doing and I never pen nothing for
Wayne but like I said even I was pennin’ for people I can’t really talk about it.
On the song, “The Spirit” you say “Flow-wise No One Can See Me Besides Hova, Quote that”. To some people that seems to come off cocky, how do you feel about that?
Hip-Hop is a competitive sport and Hip-Hop is about going for what you know and feeling like you’re the best and doing all you can to prove that if not to everyone else at least to yourself. I think with that line it’s me just feeling like I got this over anybody else, I got it 100%. When you walk in the ring automatically you wanna knock somebody out and when you walk on a basketball court you automatically dunk on people because you want them to know this is how it’s gonna be from here on out. It’s the same with that record and any other record I make.
You got any shows coming up?
Yeah on May 10th at Galapagos Art Space in
Brooklyn. It’s a FREE show. I’m performing, Amanda Diva from MTV and Sirius Radio, Stimuli from Virgin Records/Def Jam Records thing he has going on, Nina B I think she’s the future of female emcees and my man Torae whose also a beast. So the five of us are performing at Galapagos in
Brooklyn just get there at 9:30/10 o’clock.
What’s next for you?
What’s next for me is my mixtape “Cornerstore Classic”. I actually started promoting it before I started working on it. Now I’m working on it, it’s just about done. Get that out there. The production alone is from DJ Premiere, ILLMIND, Black Milk, 9th Wonder, Khrysis, the usual suspects. Those are the same people that’s gonna be on my debut album whenever it comes out. Cloud 9 was a collabo project, more like an EP. The majority of my big debut album is gonna be the usual suspects as well as some big producers that I can afford when I get a bigger budget. Also I’m about to drop my single I got with ILLMIND. I’ll be performing that on May 10th so come out.