Ever wonder whats behind the motivation of your favorite musician? Check this out…
Vixen:How would you describe the transition that took place from “The God of the Block” to now?
Folkz: Alot of things have changed about me as a person, who I am. My priorities are very different then they were when I released “God of The Block” in 2007. Back then, I had 3 priorities: my hair, my music and my drug habits…and that was it. I now have things like a wife and family to worry about, my brother and my tattoo business, ect. That has helped build my character. When you have nothing to lose it reflects in your art/music. Nowadays I have a lot to lose, and I care more about my life and those around me, and I think you can hear it in my music. I used to be very disconnected spiritually, and I now have a much greater connection with my higher power, and that has changed my outlook in general. There is more emotion in my songs and I am less reckless. I think my fanbase loved my “recklessness” so I hope they aren’t disappointed that I am no longer as reckless. Either way, this is me now, this is Folkz, this is David Simmons, and I am happy with who and what I am.
Vixen: What was the inspiration behind the “Opium” single?
Folkz: I used to have a drug problem…well not really a problem I guess, because I never had a problem unless I couldn’t get more drugs, and that never happened. I wrote the lyrics to “Opium” as if I was speaking about a bad relationship with a woman, in a kind of U2′s “With or Without You” way so that it would be more commercially viable, and those who can’t relate to a bad drug addiction can still relate to the song. “Opium” can be about a bad relationship or any bad influence in your life that you can’t live without but you ALSO can’t live with. At the same time, if you are high off Opium while listening the song sounds pretty cool too…lol
Vixen: Speaking of “Opium” – Does this single set the tone your next project?
Folkz: No. I released “Opium” as the first single because it is the easiest transition for my fanbase from my rap/hip-hop records. “Opium” still has hip hop influence, in the bass and drum patterns, so “hip-hop heads” will still enjoy the record. The majority of “The Long Road Out of Hell” is much closer to Korn, Tool, Nine Inch Nails, Marilyn Manson, ect…whereas “Opium” is much more laid back, in a Coldplay or Red Hot Chili Peppers sense. I didnt want to scare my fans and supporters away with some of the more aggressive rock records that are going on the album. My next single “The Devil’s Work” which I will be releasing in 2 weeks is much more consistent with the overall sound and theme of the album.
Vixen: By the way – what inspired the name of your next project and what can you tell us about it?
Folkz: I don’t want to sound like I am bragging when I say this, because that is certainly not my intention, but I do not know many people who have experienced more pain, struggle and suffering in their life than I. Most people who don’t know my story and are not close to me would never guess that I have been to hell in back, they only see the pimp cups and the gorgeous women surrounding me, the drugs, the rockstar lifestyle, ect. What they dont know is that my brother is doing 12 years in prison right now and won’t be up for parole until 2019. I watched one of my closest friends wither away from the AIDS virus and die on my birthday. I havent seen my cousin in 5 years because he is a ward of the state due to violent pyscho-social disorders. I spent my teenage years in institutions and juvenile facilities. I’ve been to 17 funerals. And sometimes it felt like it wasn’t fair, like “Why Me?.” I needed to get all of this off of my chest so that I could move forward without all of this baggage weighing me down. That is what this album is. This album is my therapy. This album is the result of me doing what everybody else wanted Folkz to do and Folkz to say, and me deciding that I wont do that anymore. THIS is my long road out of hell. I am still walking it and I haven’t made it out yet, but maybe I will by the time I complete the album…hopefully.
Vixen: Outside of your own project – what else is the Dogg working on these days?
Folkz: I am making beats for every rapper inside and outside the “DMV” and if you are a rapper who does not have a beat already from me, it either means I do not fuck with you, or you haven’t reached out to me. So if you are reading this interview and you don’t have a Folkz Beat on your next project, hit me up!
Vixen: Out of all the albums/mixtapes you have done so far – which one is your favorite and why?
Folkz: Definitely “The Good Hair Project.” LOL What a fuckin stupid album! I love it! I swear to you, when InfaRedz and I first got in the studio to make that album, we said “Let’s make a whole album about absolutely nothing!” And we sure did lol. That album had the most limited content ever: every song was about bitches and other people’s babymothers. And you have to understand, we made this project back in the time before ALL mainstream hip hop music was about nothing, like it is today. So it was kinda crazy to tell people “Yeah, we are making an album about nothing, so what?”
Vixen: If you could work with five artists – dead or alive – who would they be and why?
Folkz: Curtis Mayfield, Marilyn Manson, Sade, Kurt Cobain and Andre 3000…in that order. As far as why, those are my favorite musicians creatively…I think we would make great music together…and that’s what its all about right?
Vixen: Random question: If you wasn’t an artist – you would be a ______ (fill in the blank with career choice/ dream job)
Folkz: OB/GYN…I’m good with my hands. Just kidding lol. If I didnt have such a bad criminal record I would l**e to be involved in politics. I read the news everyday and the things I see that I wish I could change drive me crazy.
Vixen: Now – I’ve heard that Folkz is a rather talented individual – how many different instruments DO you play exactly and how long have you been playing them?
Folkz: Well thank you for that. Guitar since I was 11, Piano since 15, Bass Guitar(just recently started learning) Drums since 14 and I have been producing on software and drum machines since 14 as well.
Vixen: On this upcoming project – who did you work with production and artist wise? How much production did you do for this album?
Folkz: All of the production on this project is by me, or by the band that I am slowly putting together. I have done all of the composing and writing however. Benny Rome, the producer that I’ve been working with for years and the producer you hear on all my albums, has been involved in this project as well, helping me tighten up drum tracks and add different sounds to mixes. The studios I am using are: Rugged Soulz Studio, Team Demo and Studio Allusion. I would rather not say exactly what artists are featured on this album, because the artists that are featured will surprise everybody. I will tell you that I have K-Beta and Mo Betta on a heavy metal record that will shock everybody but I will leave the rest as a mystery until October.
Vixen: Five years ago, Whitefolkz was…
Vixen: Five years from now Whitefolkz will be…
Vixen: How can your fans keep up with The Dogg?
Folkz: www.WhitefolkzWorld.com, TWITTER: @Whitefolkz, FACEBOOK: Whitefolkz Whitefolkzington, INSTAGRAM: @SexDrugsViolence, YOUTUBE: DoggOvision, MYSPACE: www.myspace.com/godofthablock, TUMBLR: http://whitefolkz.tumblr.com/
Vixen: Any last words of inspiration for aspiring artists out there.
Folkz: You know, I remember when Me, Don Juan, Infa, Mo, ect would leave the club at 2am, get to the studio at 3am, and go through our emails for beats folks sent us, and record track after track, with no set goal in mind other than to make GOOD MUSIC. That shit has changed a lot. And we let it change. The last time I went into the studio with Don Juan we sat down going through beat after beat, not picking the ones we liked, but trying to find a beat that was radio ready, the right bpm for the club, catchy hook, ect. We werent recording a record for the l**e of music, we were recording like it was a job. And that makes me very sad, because it wasnt always like this, and it doesnt have to be. I’m just using Donnie and me recording as an example but it happens with many other artists, you stop recording for the love of recording and start recording for the purpose of “making hits.” I can’t begin to describe how much I miss the old days of reckless recording with no set goal in mind. Sure, we got alot less work done and alot of the records we made had no set purpose, but they were GREAT records. My only advice to other artists is DONT LET THAT HAPPEN TO YOU. Too much of that shit and you start making songs that sounded like songs you already made. You start making music that might be good for the radio but when you listen to it you dont l**e it, theres no passion for it. Make music for yourself, that is true to you, and the people will hear your passion and feed off of it. And always remember, these D.C. streets are tougher than Elephant Bacon, so it can’t hurt to leave the “DMV” every so often and do out of town shit for your career, cause trying to come up in D.C. I aint gonna be so easy anymore if you arent already established out here. As far as good life advice I shall leave you with this gem: Never trust a female who won’t fart in front of you..What else you think that bitch hiding???
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