Sonntag, 7. Dezember 2014

Structures Built: Interview With Piece Of Mind

In May 2013 Structures Build introduced themselves to the audience with the link to an upcoming release by the Piece Of Mind. Stitch By Stitch follows their movement for a while now and proudly presents an interview with G Roc Gayle and Gedsi - in time with the release of the first 7".

SBS: What's good guys? After a few mail chats over the last few months we finally get round to this interview. And it's about that time because in a week or sowe'll be hearing from "Piece Of Mind" and the release of the long awaited “Rap Phenomenon” 7”. First and foremost please introduce yourselves and tell us where you guys are coming from. 

G Roc: Word up, the time has finally come .... I’ve been excited about having this sit down chat with you Mytee. Sorry that it has taken this long, you know how business and life goes. Emcee “G Roc Gayle” is the name formely of Golden Disciples hailing from Toronto Canada.

Gedsi: My name is Gerrard Suyao. Also known as Gedsi in music circles. I’m from Toronto.

SBS: Who are the "Piece Of Mind" and please tell the headz how it all began?!

G Roc: Piece Of Mind we’re an emcee, deejay and producer duo. We create golden era sample based Hip Hop. Basically it all began with me meeting Gedsi through a mutual friend who was studying at the engineering school Gedsi currently teaches at. During a recording session Gedsi enters the sound booth then we ended up chatting about beats and rhymes. Gedsi then expressed to me how much he enjoyed my emceein. Gedsi can take it from here on.

Gedsi: Thinking back on that day, I remember getting to the studio and seeing a lot of movement in the iso-booth. I looked through the small window and I see a dude just rhyming into the mic with such intensity and passion. I had to hear the playback. I go into the control room and I immediately liked what I heard. When he was done I introduced myself and the next thing you know we start name dropping all of the same groups: Lightheaded, Starving Artists Crew, People Under the Stairs, Pete Rock and C.L., Pharcyde, etc. We quickly realized we like the same type of hip hop and that we should work together and so I passed him a few beats shortly after. One of them was “Rap Phenomenon” which ended up being the first track we recorded together. From there we just kept the ball rolling and continued to collaborate.

SBS: The album contains 12 tracks. Will you release the full album on vinyl as well? 
Gedsi: I hope so! If there’s a demand for it, we’ll make that happen. 

SBS: In August 2012 you released the self-tilted album "Piece Of Mind" via iTunes. Please talk about the genesis of this album.

G Roc: Well the converstations we’ve had in the beginning helped spark understand about one another and our interest related to the group, Hip Hop and individual interest outside of the Kulture. I learned a lot about Gedsi not only is he a dope beatmaker, deejay and studio engineer, he’s also a talented basketball player who enjoys watching the game of basketball just like myself, this strengthened our relationship on so many levels. Before we stepped foot into the studio to begin the recording of the “Self-Titled” album we had to make sure we were both on the same page creatively which was a natural progression into recording the album. It wouldn’t have been possible if we hadn’t been a liked minded.

Gedsi: For me, I was excited to work with someone who just understood where I was coming from. That was a good feeling for sure. To be honest, this album came about very naturally. I had beats, G Roc had some rhymes and we just put our head down and got working in the studio. I knew we had good chemistry and as long as we kept working hard we could create something people would enjoy.

SBS: The album contains 12 tracks. Will you release the full album on vinyl as well?

Gedsi: I hope so! If there’s a demand for it, we’ll make that happen.

G Roc: Structures Built Records we’re thinking about releasing a brand new version. I’m also going to re-construct the album with an entirely different concept to give it a brand new feel and sound. I’m pretty excited about part 2 which will be released on vinyl in the near future. The original version will also recieve the same vinyl treatment.

SBS: On "Rhyme Training" you feature Canadian MCee "Abdominal". Please tell me more! 

G Roc: We’re all from the same city Toronto Canada. I’ve known Abdominal for some time now first meeting him in 1994 through a weekly Hip Hop event called “Planet Mars” were we both shared the stage with some well known Toronto emcees such as: Saukrates, Kardinal, Frankenstein, Choclair and Mathematik etc. I’ve always been a fan of Abdominals music, I respect his drive and passion for emceein. We’ve spoken about making the feature happen a few times and it finally came to fruition in 2008 while recording an album with my former group Golden Disciples. Rhyme Training was origianlly produced by Insight of Y-Society and was planned on being featured on the Golden Disciples album produced entirely by Insight. Unfortunatly because of in group conflicks the album didn’t get completed and during that same year we split up. In 2011 that’s when the magic happened. Gedsi can take it from here.

Gedsi: I think we were watching the NBA playoffs at the time and G Roc started playing me the original “Rhyme Training” track he did with Insight. I was definitely feeling it but he urged me to flip it to a new beat. So I hopped on my MPC and literally 20 minutes later I had a loop going which fit perfectly with the verses. That version of the song was actually released as the remix (I know it’s floating around on the internet somewhere). The album version of the song, I created months later with a sample which should be familiar to all of the beatmakers out there. I really went to work on that one and I’m curious to see if anyone can identify the sample.

SBS: Most of the blog followers still buy a lot of vinyl. How much vinyl do you have and what status does it have in your life? 

G Roc: It’s great to see vinyl making a fierce comeback, who would have thought?. Currently i own 3000 vinyl, maybe even more, i’ve got to get back counting. Vinyl is a format i grew up with as a youth, most of my friends had pet dogs, cats and fish, i had a turntable and records lol. I can’t forget to mention the cover art-work and sound quality makes it all the better. Vinyl isimportant to me as much as waking up every morning to take a shower, it would stink if i didn’t purchase vinyl on a daily basis lol, it’s my yoga. I have to thank the blog followers and collectors, they play an instrumetal part right next to the labels that are keeping the movement a live and well.

Gedsi: I’m not even sure. Probably around the same as G Roc. I recently alphabetized my collection and in the process, got rid of the ones I knew I would never sample or listen to. 

SBS: From my point of view the album is how hip-hop should be. Sample based beats and scratching in the chorus lines. Who influenced “Piece Of Mind” and what hip-hop artists do you guys both listen to? 

G Roc: I agree, musically gospel, my parents, community, nature, the Rev. C Mac Donald (RIP), my Aunt Gloria (RIP), Uncle John (RIP) and my cousin Major Banks are my influences. Growing up in a gospel home with gospel music on vinyl and attending family gatherings introduced me to reggae, soul, jazz, classic Hip Hop and funk. Watching my uncle and cousin spin vinyl had me amazed and wanting more which lead me to the elders in my community who put me onto Hip Hop Kulture beyond music a lone. I still listen to Tribe, Special Ed, Boogie Down Productions, Epmd, Schoolly D, Spoonie G, The B.U.M.S and Gangstarr. Current artist Soundsci, Insight, Phill Most Chill, Y-Society, K-Def, Audessey, Oxygen, The Good People, Dj Format and more. Funk and Soul, Disco, Afrobeat, Jazz artist from the past the present. I will stop here, my list could take up the rest of our interview. Lets just say All Good Music.

Gedsi: My brother got me started at a real young age. I listened to whatever he was listening to and when he got his first pair of belt-drive turntables, I was hooked! As I mentioned before, we basically listen to the same hip hop music but as a producer I listen to EVERYTHING. Every genre of music has something unique about it and there’s definitely something you can learn from listening to a wide variety. Any record digger could agree with that. Back when I first started making beats, I idolized the likes of Pete Rock, Thes One, Jay Dee, Q-Tip, Primo, etc. While that hasn’t changed to this day, I’ve noticed that I’ve become more sensitive to the production techniques and works of: Quincy Jones, Phil Spector, Bob Power, Stevie Wonder, Eric Clapton, Lou Reed, Berry Gordy, The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, and The Rolling Stones. There’s just so much good music out there, and I want to hear and learn from all of it.

SBS: G Roc you’re an Emcee but also the CEO and Founder of "Structures Build Records". Beside "Piece Of Mind" can we expect more artists releases on your label? 

G Roc: For sure, there’s a whole lot of goodies in the works. I plan on releasing a remixed version that i call Piece Of Mine V2 of the Piece Of Mind “Self-Titled” album stated earlier on in this interview with re-recorded vocals, revamped choruses, new producer and cuts. So far we have two 7” vinyl releases planned for 2015. One from Audessey of Soundci and the second i’m currently working out the details. At the moment i’m gathering past material from my former group Golden Disciples, also recording an 8 track EP with my new group to be released out-side of Structures Built Records in 2015. Structures Built Records we plan to be around for a long time releasing quality Hip Hop music on vinyl and on a side note i’m always searching fornew untapped Hip Hop so stay tuned. We got the classics coming!!

SBS: Have you guys ever been in Europe? While the hip-hop culture downsized somehow over the last years the culture is still alive and the vinyl sales increase again. What is your perception on hip-hop nowadays and what do you expect of the future? 

G Roc: Never been, but soon. My perception is everything is irie if we’re talking about Hip Hop with substances and Hip Hop reminiscent of the golden era. For those who’re unaware they’ll need to get with the program. Don’t be ignorant like the rest believing the saying “Hip Hop Has Flooded” or “Hip Hop Is Dead”, it will take some effort on the individuals part to seek it out. Vinyl will be everylasting, that’s just my opinion.

Gedsi: I once had a 2 hour delay over in Amsterdam on my way to the Philippines... but I’m sure that doesn’t count.

SBS: I am really looking forward to encouraging releases in 2015 and beyond. Any other clues for the audience? 

G Roc: The pre-orders for the long awaited “Rap Phenomenon” gate-fold 7” will be live at our bigcartel page around the 13th/14th of December. That’s it for now.

Gedsi: Always working on giving people more music. 

G Roc: Shortly, stay tuned to Structures Built because The Structures Built Behind Bricks Of Steel! HIP HOP MUSIC!!

Gedsi: Always working on giving people more music.

SBS: Thank you very much and all the best. Talks soon! 
mytee Thor for Stitch By Stitch blogspot

G Roc: Thanks and all the best Mytee, i’m a huge fan of Stitch By Stitch Blog, keep up the good-works and the rest of the independent Hip Hop labels and artist releasing vinyl.

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