Check out the exclusive interview with Spice 1, the legendary West Coast rapper with 14 solo albums under his belt and he is working on a brand new one titled “Haters Nightmare”. He has recently been touring with Warren G as a dedication series for the late Nate Dogg. Check out the brand new videos below from Haters Nightmare called Ghetto Star and Sidelines featuring Layzie Bone from Bone Thugs N Harmony.
MusicalFury – What’s up?
Spice 1 – Just getting done with that concert with Warren G, about 3,000 people here. I have been on the road for the last two weeks. Today I get a little break. These concerts we are doing are a tribute to Nate Dogg.
MusicalFury – How long have you been rapping for, since 91 on a label right?
Spice 1 – Yea, since 91 I was the first release.
MusicalFury – How did you first get discovered back then, was Too Short a key source for initially getting you signed to Jive Records?
Spice 1 – The Bay area was blowing up big and Jive was looking for artists out there. I was hot at the time and Too Short was hot and they just found me. Short played a roll as far as motivating me and it was a big motivation for him to pick me up from high school and take me to the studio. Jive just called looking for me and as far as discovering me, a lot of cats did, but Short would pick me up from school and show people I was hot so he played a part in it.
MusicalFury – There was a lot of fierce competition on the east and west coast in the 90’s, what did it take to really stand out and get noticed enough to get a deal?
Spice 1 – A lot of people thought it was easy back then but you definitely had to have skills. You couldn’t rap regular, cats rap now like abc… shit but back then you couldn’t do that and get respect unless you was a real G from the street. Too Short or Easy E could do that because he was from the street. But, you really had to battle everyone you came in contact with in order to get your respect, you really really really had to have skills.
MusicalFury – Did Suge Knight ever approach you to sign to Death Row when they had the roster of Snoop, Pac, Dre etc…?
Spice 1 – Yea, we was going to do a few things and whatever but there was a lot going on but we never got to finish up everything I was working on. I didn’t really know Suge like that but as far as I know we were cool. A lot of motherfuckers were scared of the nigga but that was my nigga and I wasn’t even trippin like that. We were both just about our money.
MusicalFury – How was the transition for you from being on the major labels to going the independent route?
Spice 1 – It was definitely a lot of experience because I signed to Jive when I was 21 years old and I got off in 99 and I didn’t know anything about the independent industry at all. I was fresh out of high school and signed to a major label. Everything was right there for me but once I got independent I had to learn everything and everyone else was 10 years ahead. By the time I was learning everyone else in the independent game was already ahead so that was confusing. It worked out though and I got my distribution deal and got my own checks.
MusicalFury – A lot of artists speak about Independence being much better overall because you have a lot more creative control but you have to put in a lot of work from Marketing and promotions to funding your own budget for beats and what not. What do you like better?
Spice 1 – Independent is cool because if something happens and you mess up at least you know you messed up. It is also nice to have more control over your situation so things have been good.
MusicalFury – You were friends with Tupac, do you have any wild stories about him that others may not really know?
Spice 1 – Oh man there is a lot now that I think about it. I guess, when I first met him we were in North Richmond and were shooting a video in my neighborhood. I knew him but not that well and then next thing you know he showed up and come to find out, he knew all my songs by heart. That was crazy, meeting him for the first time after seeing him in Juice. He was a fan and I was a fan so we just were real cool with each other and there was a mutual respect.
MusicalFury – If Tupac were alive today, what do you think he would be doing and do you think hip hop would have evolved into what it is today?
Spice 1 – Um, well, yea because the West Coast would have kept running shit. They knocked off the boss and while the west and east was beefing, the south came in and got their money, and I ain’t mad at them either.
Sidelines Feat. Layzie Bone
MusicalFury – What is your biggest gripe with the music industry today? Most people say that the “industry” is a tank of sharks with a few good people sprinkled in.
Spice 1 – They don’t respect the cats that made the game what it was and made people love it so much. We don’t get enough respect on the radio or respect from the DJs. They always want to play the new shit and then they expect us to sound like the new cats but we don’t sound like them we want to sound like us. That is ridiculous.
MusicalFury – Who in hip hop are you really feeling right now and have respect for?
Spice 1 – There are a few cats you know what I mean but I like Young Jeezy, he hot. I ain’t mad at that dude, I don’t listen to his music a lot but I know who is making noise. He still walking around and being the same dude. I like that, that’s cool.
MusicalFury – You have a very respectable catalog of albums under your belt, what else needs to be done to solidify your legendary status?
Spice 1 – Yea, I have about 14 albums by now, I think my music and my new videos need to be promoted more because I am making new music. It is a trip because that shit is bangin and it is 2014. I am an artist that came in to the game in 91 and sold millions of copies and now just trying to be relevant and compete with the new artists. Times are changing but I feel that things will come around.
MusicalFury – Do you foresee yourself being a part of hip hop as long as you’re alive?
Spice 1 – Yea, definitely. I mean, the hardest thing to understand is why some artists sell more albums when they are dead than when they were alive. I tell everyone to give me the love now while I am alive and able to enjoy the love.
MusicalFury – I have to ask, what is your thought on some of the new rappers wearing skirts and rocking the female leggings and what not?
Spice 1 – That is just the most embarrassing gay shit that I have ever seen in my life and I don’t want any parts of that. I don’t wear that shit and I don’t know what is wrong with them. I am a ghetto soldier standing at attention and I am not wearing no tight ass jeans. It is funny to me really and any females that like that more power to them but I just cannot understand it.
MusicalFury – Are there any projects that you are currently working on at the moment that fans should be checking for soon?
Spice 1 – Yes, I have my next album coming out and have been working with Layzie Bone while trying to get Twister and Busta rhymes on there. It is called Haters Nightmare. I have a video out with Layzie Bone called Sidelines and another one called Ghetto star.
MusicalFury – What religious beliefs do you have, are you a devout follower of any particular religion?
Spice 1 – I just believe that there is a God who is good and I feel like I got him in my heart. There are so many stories out there but I just keep a good heart and believe in a higher power.
MusicalFury – I really appreciate your time and best of luck to you.
Spice 1 – No problem man thanks for the interview.
Welcome to the Ghetto