DAVID BANNER’S CERTIFIED OZONE COMIC BOOK!
THIS ST. LOUIS SUPERPOWER’S CO-SIGN HELPED CARRY DAVID BANNER’S PRODUCTION CAREER TO NEW HEIGHTS! Why did you decide to drop two albums on the same day, Sweat and Suit? Honestly, I went into the whole project looking to do one joint. Then I just started doing so much material I thought it would be hot to do something different and new. How long did it take you to record the album? I probably did the bulk of it in about a month, a month and a half. From there I was just adding on pieces here and there. After you do it, you want to listen, see what you got, see what you don’t have, see what you might wanna add. When you go into the studio do you specifically say, “Now I’m going to make a song for the ladies” or “Now I’m going to make a party song”? What’s the process like? I just go in and do it. I work with a lot of my in-house producers like Basement Beats and Mo’ Beats, so I pretty much already know what it is I wanna do. I’m not really trying to categorize it and say, “This one’s for this” or “This one’s for that.” But it does get to a point to where you have to be like, “Okay, do I have everything to make this a well-rounded album?” That’s when I came up with the whole concept of doing two albums. I realized that people have supported me on both ends of the music that I do. I’ve had people support me on the “#1”, “Hot in Herre,” “Air Force Ones,” “Country Grammar,” and “E.I.” But they also supported “Pimp Juice,” “Ride Wit Me” and “Dilemma.” So I was like, “How about if I just separated them and did one album of each?” Let’s talk about some of the collaborations on your album. They sound natural. Some collaborations nowadays are basically just people sending files back and forth. Well, sometimes you have to do the parts separately because of scheduling. I would love to be in the studio with the artist every time, but it just doesn’t work out that way. With Christina, we were in the studio at the same time. With Jaheim, we never got to be in the studio at the same time because he had a lot of stuff he had to do in New York, and I had a lot of stuff I was doing out of L.A. It was impossible to hook up, so we communicated on the phone lines, working back and forth. We had a vibe, an understanding of what we wanted out of the song, so it was easy. We were both thinking in the same direction. What was the studio process with Christina like? We were just in the studio just chillin’, having fun because the song is so uptempo. Christina’s voice is incredible, so we just really cut it loose. It was a bit different for both of us because it was our first time working together. We had to feel each other out, but after a while we just had a ball. You also have hot Southern artists like David Banner and T.I. on your album. Why did you decide to collaborate with them? Because I appreciate what they do. I’ve always been a fan of artists like T.I. and Big Gipp. I’ve been a fan of Goodie Mob since before I was an artist. I grew up on [labels like] South Circle and Suave House [with artists like] Mr. Mike. Now that I get a chance to work with artists from the South that aren’t necessarily selling records on a national scale, I take advantage of it. I’m so appreciative of all the support people have given to me. I’m not taking it lightly and I don’t expect to do it each time I come out. I don’t expect to sell over 5 million albums every time I come out. Am I hoping for it? Yeah. But if it don’t happen, will I be upset? No, because who can really say that they’ve accomplished everything I’ve accomplished in their first few years? We also have Nelly the businessman. You’ve been making some
IT MUST BE
YOUR ASS, CAUSE IT AIN’T YOUR FACE!
NELLY’S VITAL STATS:
ALTER EGO: CORNELL HAYNES JR. COSTUME: GOLD TOOTH, BAND-AID SUPERPOWER: RAP-SANGIN’! serious power moves lately. You have to. You want to be able to explore other options. I idolize P. Diddy, Jay-Z, Russell Simmons, Master P and people who have had success outside of music. It shows people that you’re not just a dumb-ass rapper with a doo-rag on, because there are still a lot of people out there who think that’s all rappers are. A lot of people think that, and we don’t help them out a lot when we first get in the game. We don’t do much to change their minds. And that’s because you’re taking kids that a lot of times come from nothing. All of a sudden you give them something and you expect them to know how to operate and manage it and make it last and make it functional. That’s just not the case. You’re taking a kid who just yesterday was hanging out on the block, chillin’ with his homies and all of a sudden he’s a businessman and he’s an entrepreneur. You have people who go to school for 15 and 12 years just to learn how to do that. So it’s culture shock. Boom: here’s this money, now know how to manage it and know what to do with it to make more. We all want to be able to go outside of music and make something happen so we can stop rapping. Then we can do albums at our leisure, because we’re feeling the music, not because we have to do it to make money. That’s where I’m trying to get to in my career.
FUN FACT: DAVID BANNER PRODUCED THE BEAT FOR NELLY’S INFAMOUS “TIP DRILL,” A REMIX OF HIS HIT “E.I.” A44
OZONE AUGUST 2005