Sunday, November 27

Rich Hil Interview

Growing up in the “stuck-up neighborhood” of Glenville, CT, Rich Hil’s penchant for individuality manifested itself at an early age. “I’ve always been the black sheep of the family and the whole area,” he admits. “As soon as I realized what public school was, I made them switch me. Yeah, I got beat up in school. Yeah, I was a loser. Now, because I can say that, I made it cool.”
The precocious songwriter began writing and recording tracks at 13, learning swagger from Philly rap stalwarts like Beanie Sigel and Philly’s Most Wanted and prolificacy from 50 Cent. “I would just lock myself in a room for hours studying the same rap until I felt I knew it,” recalls Hil.
He quickly got the attention of über-producer Swizz Beatz, who produced tracks for Hil’s first group and took him on his first tour. It was as hype man for the producer, and as a performer in his own right, that Hil learned the performance side of the game, a trait that has metastasized into the performer’s current setup with a live band.
The maturation process has been quick since those early days. Nowadays, Hil ( a recent Warner Bros. signee) hasn’t touched a pen for a while, allowing the music and his instinct to decide the topic, flow and vocal melody. The result is a steady barrage of music that incorporates Hil’s mix of raspy crooning and rapping with an emotional, sometimes brutal, directness that recalls the best of Lil Wayne. “I don’t talk about money, fame or power,” admits the emcee. “It’s strictly vulnerability and the fun I have is stuff I take to ease that vulnerability.” When D & D caught up with him, we discussed his career thus far, what he's got coming up, and being Fat Trel's favorite artist to collaborate with.
How did you end up getting signed to & leaving Full Surface?
I was in a Rap group called Y.R.F., there was two of us, and we were shopping around to labels, doing mixtapes, and shit like that. After I broke up with the group, I made a mixtape, about 12 songs, and brought it over to Swizz. I told him basically to fuck with me on this, and he said cool. So it was Full Surface. The next day we actually drove out to Baltimore and did a show. He started teaching me how to perform, write hooks, and go in the booth without a pen or a pad. Different tricky shit, I started watching him make beats, Swizz is really like my big brother. He showed me a lot of shit I didn't know about.
Who's your favorite member of State Property?
Beans. Definitely Beans by far. Beans is one of those rappers that you can tell is not a perpetrator, whatever he's saying is some real shit. I used to wear his clothing every day to school.
Could you tell us what to expect from your next album? 
You're going to hear a lot of melodic, a flow of dark subconscious, pain. There is going to be some up-tempo in there, but a lot of dark, melodic, sub-conscious flow kind of shit.
Rich Hill ft. Fat Trel - Rollin (prod. by Lex Luger)
Did you see on twitter where Fat Trel said you're his favorite artist to collaborate with?
Yeah I saw that. Me and Fat Trel got together and did a song called "Rollin," while he was in New York. He was actually in the studio next door, so we got together & put that together. He's a good dude man.
Is your Warner Bros. release going to be entirely produced by Lex Luger?
Nope. The first Warner Bros. release support your local drug dealer is going to have a variety of producers. Lex is on there, but the shit I got from Lex on there isn't Trap sounding shit, it's more like vibey, it's druggy, sub-conscious flow music. I got a whole mixtape with Lex called "500 Grams" we're going to sneak  out before we release the album. That's all produced by Lex. He has so many beats, there's so much shit that we do together, that we got to try to organize it, put it together into different projects. We're definitely going to keep working, and making shit.
Now that you don't wear Supreme anymore what're you rocking?
Support Your Local Drug Dealer (pulls out all black, leather sleeved, varsity jacket bearing the same name.) I'm rocking that all day. This our new shit, we got the snap backs coming online too. I got like 5 or 6 exclusives from Varsity, so you can grab those.I'm rocking that, rocking my own shit.
How did you end up reading Robert Burns in rehab, was it there or did someone send it to you?
My Dad brought that to me. He's (Robert Burns) a distant relative. When I was kind of sobering up, cleaning up my head I wanted to read that. I feel like if my great-uncle's a poet, then there must be some kind of same substance to what he's talking about. So I read the peoms, he's talking about love lost, a woman, the whole shit. That kind of reminded me of me, things about love lost, a woman, all that type of shit.
You said that you were the nicest rapper from Connecticut, who was the nicest before you?
I haven't heard any others.
What was your first tattoo?
Limo's (shows it on inside of index finger.) That Limo shit. I got a kidney stone, after I passed the kidney stone, I was like "fuck this, I can get tattoos."

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