Independent artist Shakil from Camden NJ Jersey.
New mixtape “Home Grown”
Who is on your new mixtape “Home Grown”?
Shakil_ My partner Stingray is the producer along with one cut by Jet. Big Lou, Porta Rich, Mr. Fickle
I&HHM_Which unsigned artist are you looking to work with?
Shakil_ Rick steels, D Rice, Hamillionz, Porta Rich, Lyrical Lye, Mr. Fickle, Apollo the Great, Verb
I&HHM_What is the hold up on the world taking notice of all the talent in South Jersey and do you think that they ever will?
Shakil_ Pesonally, I think that we have a certain type of persona that a lot of people don’t gravitate to. We don’t show each other as much love as everyone else does. When you think about North Jersey, you think Newark, East Orange, Elizabeth and they all click together. New York it’s the same thing. South Jersey isn’t a situation where anyone is hating. It’s just a sound that everyone has of their own. So it’s hard to target and hard to latch on to. Willingboro is the only place that had a run. However people not only started to take notice to the negativity out of Camden but all the negativity amongst South Jersey Artist.
A lot of the outlets have begun to spring up. The internet, Swag Magazine, Ink&HipHop Magazine is all perfect out lets for artist. People are coming together at this point in time too. It’s a good time for a South Jersey artist better than it’s ever been before! Back in the days you ran your set. But now it’s getting there. it’s all music.
I&HH Mag_With all of these outlets and artist coming together, do you believe there is any excuse for a South Jersey Artist succeeding?
Shakil_No excuse at all now. Youtube, Worldstar HipHop, Itunes…It’s not just major label affiliates on Itunes . I’m on Itunes, so I’m sure any independent artist can do the same thing. Myspace has kinda gotten out of touch but there are still people on there and still is a valuable asset. Twitter is beautiful.
I stress this; There isn’t any excuse for South Jersey. We are only a couple bridges away from Philly, Delaware Memorial Bridge, Betsy Ross Bridge, Ben Franklin Bridge, Walt Whitman Bridge. Yet and still we don’t get that recognition we’re supposed to get outside of Camden. I believe it’s about to be a stomper to the industry, kick the door in!
I&HH Mag_Keeping it real, how do you feel about South Jersey Artist that dwell over in places like Philly and link themselves with them instead of their hometown?
Straight up, there ain’t no way in hell you going to get put on without promoting yourself in other places. But if you’re not from that place what is the point in saying that you are? That’s just fake as hell to me. My thing is, you have to be true to yourself in order to get any type of…’some people may say I don’t care what my man says, as long as I’m on.’ But we know! Then when they get around people who are really from that place they create a problem in that aspect. I will always represent where I’m from which is East Camden NJ.
I&HH Mag_ For new artist that don’t know who you are what would be the one word that describes your style, your image the whole nine?
Shakil_ Versatile. I believe I’m the ‘Realist’ artist out. I don’t have a particular style, I do what I want. I can spit any way, rhyme on any track. I have a Pac type of mindset. I make songs with substance. I do songs for my mom, daughter, my girl, family. Regardless, I’m from the hood but I have a heart too. I have family. It’s not all about the block, selling drugs and murder. I feel people want to know your story. Real music comes from you.
Interview by Earl Johnson
Edited by L.Spencer