King Chase is an emcee from Prince George's County, Maryland who has released two solo mixtapes, five Coast 2 Coast mixtape feature spots, and a successful EP entitled "Young King". We recently caught up with him to see what's up with his upcoming EP "Crown", to find out his musical influences, whether he feels being signed to a major is still important in 2015, and much more.
What's the Rap scene like in the DMV for an emerging artist such as yourself? K: The rap scene here differs based on region. You could perform a song in DC that might not have the same crowd reaction as a Virginia show. The DMV as a whole is a diverse area, and the music reflects that. Whether it's a pure hip-hop track that takes you on a mindtrip to the old days of "boom-bap" style raps... Or a new age sound that may get you on the dance floor. There's artists of all types and backgrounds here. And for that reason, I feel we are the most slept on region for good quality music.
Is everyone supportive of each other or is more every man for themselves? K: I try to support as many up and coming artists like myself. Whether its sharing a link or sharing some knowledge that might help them take a step ahead in their career. I can't say the same for everyone else though. Sad to say, it's the classic case of the "crab in a bucket" complex. Nobody wants to show love to anyone. Too busy hating or throwing social media shade at one another.
Do you have a favorite artist? If so, how have they influenced you? K: I have a few artists that I can honestly say have influenced me. Wouldn't be fair to give all the credit to one. Nas and Jay-Z get the two top spots. Jay's work ethic is nothing short of inspiring. I can honestly say I watch his interviews more than I listen to his songs. It's almost like he gives the blueprint to success every time he speaks. And Nas, his ability to tell a story and spread a message all in the same track. That was and still is the dopest thing to me. I try to bring that same feel to my music. I want my listeners to take away something from the experience. Whether it's one person, or one thousand people. I thrive off of that energy.
Does it really make sense for an emerging artist such as yourself to sign to a major record label in 2015, especially with our sites like ours, Soundcloud, Bandcamp, and other free means to promote your music? K: I can honestly say I see valid points on both sides of that argument. There has never been a better time to make a name for yourself independently than right now in this internet age. With slight knowledge of social media and networking, possibilities are endless. But having a label backing your brand has tremendous upside. Wide-spread distribution, international promotion, and the endless plugs and connections you gain under record companies almost make it worth while.
But I feel the answer to that differs based on who's being asked.. If you have the drive and work ethic.. You can make your own brand, your way.. And for me, that sense of accomplishment is unmatched.
What is it you look for when you select the production you decide to write to and record?K: Originality. Thats the number one thing. If your average, round the way rapper would use it... Chances are I wouldn't. I'm constantly chasing new sounds, new styles, and new cadences. Different beats allow me to experiment with new ideas & challenges me to become a better artist.
Are you dropping a new release soon? If so, when? K: I have a new 8-track EP coming very soon. We're leaning towards Thanksgiving Day.