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LAist Interview: Sole & The Skyrider Band

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Sole is a rapper who as a teenager was already blowing off major record deals, because he thought having an album produced by Jermain Dupree was lame. He set forth making rap music for the advanced listener, and choosing never to pander what TRL, MTV, and Record Executives want to cram down all of our throats. Being one of the co-founders of anticon places sole on a special branch of the family tree of hip-hop. Sole's new album is dropping soon, and he's back from europe, so we thought it would be a good time to hit him up for some questions.

LAist: What's the best and worst thing about being part of Anticon?

Sole: best thing is that i know what a special and unique thing anticon is and i'm honored to be one of its founders. the worst thing... its hard to determine what the WORST is, i would say that the "media" is so hard on anticon, the so called "alternative music world" will sing the praise of 50 cent and white stripes all day long about how they're geniuses, but wouldnt grant a hundredth of the amount of press to an anticon act, and if they did, then the next record anticon puts out is equally great they'll turn around and say, "we did a 13 word feature on why last month, unless you guys start shelling out some advertising dough we have no incentive whatsoever to give you any free press." on the other side of the coin, it seems like the smarter the journalist is, the more they want to tear us down. its amazing how personal the insults get and the lack of support out there from so called "liberals" and "knowitalls" but i guess thats the terrain we fight for, not high enough brow for the really pretentious music critics, but not low brow enough for rock music and rap critics to say the music is good enough for 16 year old trendsters. in the end the limitations and desperation makes great art, so i cant really complain, it just makes me sick how the image is always more important then the content...

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Are there any funny stories about groupies that you could share with LAist?

yeah, we're in japan, and we're being chased by japanese kids who dont speak english. i allow them to follow us, then i start to run, and they begin to chase. when they finally surround us i just keep calling out brands to them and they chant them in return... "coca cola!!! COCA COLA.... bruce willis.... BRUCE WILLIS.... it was pretty funny, non of them spoke a word of english.

What's behind this new album, Sole and The Skyrider Band? How is this different from mansbestfriend, bottle of humans, and selling live water? and how is it NOT different?

this album i use the word "mature" to describe. its subject matter, its production, the live instrumentation.... almost everything about this record is opposite then the way i have done things in the past. in the past i never left myself open to any feedback, this time id even get some help in the studio with recording. with 3 other musicians to work with the process went smoothly, and was very exciting. so, id say its more like selling live water in that its a well produced cohesive work, and it has little in common with mansbestfriend or other things.

its like my other records in the sense that its still me rapping on it, i havent made up some stupid personality which i saw on an old movie that would make a good character, its me, a bit older, less angry, still pissy, but im chilling. i read a lot, but with less of a sense of urgency, i just sorta channel everything through the music and speak my piece. we worked hard to make every song good and to rework things till we were happy without making them mechanical. i havent been this excited about a project in a very long time.

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let's play "Mary, Fuck, Kill": Janet Reno, Bee Author, and Barbara Walters... Which lady would you marry, which would you fuck, and which would you kill?

i would marry janet reno, fuck barbara walters, and kill bee author, because i dont know who she is.