A Golden OpportunityMay 19, 2007 at 3:40 am | Posted in Interviews | Leave a comment
It seems like the Reading Railroad from Monopoly jumped the tracks straight out of the board game to bring a Midas touched sound all the way from
Reading, PA to the world community. M.C. Golden, whose moniker is Golden, is hitting the Hip Hop community heavy with his dose of Peddling Medicine that hits stores May 15th, 2007. His first single, Elevator Music, has already been downloaded over one hundred thousand times by fans in little under a week on the infamous Myspace.com. This artist is definitely ready for the next stop on his train to fame while he takes his career to the next level.
Golden: So at this point anything I say can be held and used against me in a court of law…well I’m a Sagittarius and I enjoy-just joking-my real name is Casey Golden. I was never really clever enough to come up with some cool rap boy name. Growing up my friends used to call me Golden; so it just stuck.
Max: Where did you grow up?
Golden: Grew up with
Reading PA. It’s like the N.Y outlet mall capital. It’s about a 45 miles west of Philly. It’s the Reading Railroad that’s in the monopoly game, except that the rail road got shut down a long time ago. All the industry went out of the city. I then came out to
Minneapolis and began doing music here out here.
Max: How does the diversity in your background influence who you are individually and as an artist?
Golden: Hanging out with all types of kids gave me a real different perspective on the average American “white experience”. Being 6 and asking your mom why Santa didn’t come to your house on Christmas break and being involved in city sports and athletics, and riding around in a whip when your 16 and getting ripped out of the car with your black friends and getting pushed up against a wall as opposed to being with your white friends in the same situation and getting joked to and let go…gives you a real distinct view point into how and why things work. My different experiences made me question why things are the way they are. Hip Hop always helped me to answer some of those questions and let me know that I wasn’t the only one thinking about that stuff. So that really influenced me…and being on the east coast lyrics are important…Nas is the rapper that solidified that for me on Illmatic. It was intelligent and poetic at the same time. Even though we grew up in completely different worlds I was able to take something away from that record and try to relate my experiences in my music. Then coming up in
Reading as a white kid rapping, I’ve been threatened to be killed every show I did. And then when I came up to St. Paul,
Minneapolis clubs accepted me as long as I had the skill to hold down the craft.
Max: Do you practice your religion fervently?
Golden: No…I’m like the type of Christian that goes to church on Easter. My customs are still there. Knowing that my skin is white but I’m still different…that’s engrained in you from the second you’re born in a Jewish family. I identify very strongly with culturally being Jewish.
Max: What do you have to say to and how are you proving to all those who have to say that a white Jewish rapper has no skills?
Golden: It’s not even about the skills…come to the show and I’ll give you the microphone. In terms of my place in the culture, being a white Jewish kid in a day in age where Hip Hop is like what happened to jazz and rock and roll. Hip Hop is being heavily appropriated by white kids. It’s to the point where you ask black kids about rock and roll today and they think its “white music”. They don’t fully understand the history of it …so I fully understand that we are in a day and age where Hip Hop is being appropriated by white culture and corporations and what I focus on is to fully understand the culture and the history-understand that it’s a culture born out of struggle and pain to effect change and if I could get that through to some of my peers to help them understand, then I can bridge some sort of gap. If I can change a couple minds and affect people in the process then I’m doing my job.
Max: How have people been reacting to you?
Golden: It’s been positive so far. I’m used to it any way it comes. I’ve had the reaction of being threatened to be killed and I’ve had the reaction of “oh your so cute…we love you” and any where in between. I’ve had the reaction that “this isn’t your music” and that reaction mainly comes from white people saying you should be doing white music. This isn’t a color issue at this point; this is an understanding and a cultural issue at this point. I’m not that dude who is going to change who I am based on who I am talking to. I speak the same for everyone and I give respect until that respect is not given back. I hope that I am received well.
Max: What is Peddling Medicine?
Golden: The name stems from the concept that the rap game always compares itself to the crack game. Throughout my life music has been a cure for whatever ailed me. There was always a song that helped me channel my feeling. Peddling Medicine is an attempt for me to say that this is my medicine; this is how I feel. I hope that I can provide that medicine for you. Peddling because it’s a hustle; it’s a grind especially now with music sales being where they are. I had to get out on the street and peddle my product.
Max: What inspired you to make this record….why now?
Golden: It’s been a three year process. Everything came together when me and Furgie cut that record a couple years ago. Back in the day there was more balance. For every ignorant rap you had a public enemy for politically challenging rap, you had your party rap, your love music-now you don’t have that balance-I think it’s out there, but you don’t get the same attention from the media for one reason or the other. I think this record fills that void. This album is not violent, or misogynistic, and if you listen enough times you can peep the message without breaking out a dictionary or being preached to. It’s acceptable enough where the medicine is candy coated and kids ain’t gonna mind swallowing it.
Max: Cool…tell me about elevator music track.
Golden: I did that with Fergie 3 or 4 years ago. I slid it to my man Printz, who is the music director and a touring member of The Black Eyed Peas. He re-worked it with live instrumentation. We had a woman singing demo vocals and it was cool, it had a neo-soul kind of vibe to it…and when we where working on the Black Eyed Peas tour bus and she heard the song on the ride up and wanted to get on it. We recorded it in the athletic department of a university with the words on a dry erase board. It’s cool because with where she is at right now its cool that she could’ve asked for a whole gang of money but didn’t.
Max: What’s your favorite song on the album?
Golden: It’s hard for me to say-Peddling Medicine because its 100% my production-most well written is Fallin’. I feel all the tracks for so many different reasons.
Max: What do your family and friends think about your chosen career path.
Golden: When it first started they were like, “aww you’re trying to be a rapper” and they were cool and when I went to college they were like, “okay when are you gonna get a real career?” I had no problem living in a basement out of an apartment complex and eating rice and beans and tuna and doing what I love-
Max: We’ve all had to do it.
Golden: Word…I’m blessed with having a family that understood that Hip Hop was my passion. Once they were able to realize that it’s not violent music then they were on board.
Max: Where do you hope to be in five years?
Golden: My goal in music to affect people on a mass level in one way shape or form. I want my voice and place. I would love to be traveling the world and connecting with people.
Max: So how has your life changed?
Golden: It hasn’t…I’m still in my backyard cleaning up. Except the problem is that I go on the internet and click on Myspace and it’s a different world.
Max: How has myspace been influential in this whole thing?
Golden: To go from the low 10, 00 to 100,000 listeners in a week is crazy. Just the exposure it provides lends legitimacy to what you do. It’s gotten so easy to hit the artist up. You can tell people all you want but it lets you know that people do enjoy your stuff. It’s a great tool and there’s no way that I could have got the word out that quickly before this. Hopefully it will translate to sales.