We’ve connected with Harlem based rapper, author, and podcaster Tommy Danger for an exclusive interview to discuss the newly released visuals to his track “Everyday We Dropping”, featuring Jimmy Timeless, which appears on his “Motivation and Confidence Vol. 1 - 7 Steps” mixtape. We also find out how he’s able to juggle being an artist, author and podcast host, as well as what his goals are for 2019, and much more.
After reading our Q&A with Tommy Danger, be sure to stream the “Everyday We Dropping” track and the “Motivation and Confidence Vol. 1 - & Steps” mixtape on Spotify. Also, purchase Tommy Danger’s e-book “Motivation and Confidence Vol. 1 The 7 Steps” on Amazon, tune in to his podcast show “Motivation and Confidence”, connect with him on social media and check out his website.
You're an artist, author, and podcast host; how do you find the time to do it all and what's your motivation to continue juggling all three?
Grinding. I know that I can't put my faith of being an artist in anyone else's hand. So I have to give it my all every day and being an artist is something that comes naturally to me. I've been doing this for so many years. I talked about the grinding in my book “Motivation and Confidence”. How I tried to get a record deal with Russell Simmons. He never basically got back to me but his assistant told me to keep building a buzz and then people will come to you. That's what I'm doing no matter how long it takes me I'll keep building the buzz until the people come to me.
The podcast was created out of pain; my mother's been sick diagnosed with cancer. I think that I was at one point going into a depressed state. It actually started as me motivating myself to keep going and then when I realized that I could touch the lives of other people and help them I just continue the podcast.
The book itself I wanted to do something cool and different, reminiscent of creating an opening up a CD effect. Open up the CD and it has the pamphlet and you can pull things out and read it and really dissect it. I wanted to do that with the e-book and mixtape combo so you can basically open up the book; it's a short read check it out in your phone. 20 minutes gives you like 7 simple steps that you could use to start your ideas. Some people struggle with that so we wanted to create the framework to do so. After that you jump into the mixtape, 7 tracks on it. Sort of parallel to what the book is talking about it's not preachy It's really dope. It got a crazy vibe to it and I hope that the people enjoy it.
We really think your new single/video "Everyday We Dropping" is very dope. How did you and Jimmy Timeless connect to create the song initially?
This is a funny story. The track is actually created by a producer out of Virginia called 45 Crummie Beats. They produce a lot of underground hardcore dark beats. I found the beat on Instagram and I just thought it was crazy. So I hit them up and I said Yo what do you think of me and Illa Ghee doing a song to this beat. They were like cool that would be dope so I said send me the beat. They sent me a pack of beats. They sent five beats; of the five beats, none of them was the beat that I wanted. I hit him back and I said this isn't to beat that I'm looking for I'm looking for.
The beat long story short, the beat for “Everyday is Dropping” was one of the original 5 beast that they sent to me wasn't even a track that I was going to use. I liked the vibe to it because it reminds me of like a old school Spike Lee flick when like you're riding down the street in Brooklyn, brownstones around you and it has like that floating carriage effect in the horns of playing in the background. That's what that reminded me of.
I met Jimmy in my hood because he owns a juice bar and restaurant. His grind is just crazy so it's something that I respect and then one day I seen on Instagram and he was rapping so I just said one day like yeah we got to do something together. I wrote my verse I sent it to him via email he's like yeah that's crazy. He wrote his verse; he was going to record it somewhere else. But then he was like I got to go to Yonkers or something to record it. I said why not swing by the crib so you can record it. He came by, rolled up something nice; he got lit he laid his verse. We had a few drinks and we listened to it. We both thought it was dope and that's it. You can check Jimmy Timeless out on Soundcloud; he got some dope music. He has a real vibe he's like a modern Andre 3000 and Mass combined together.
How did you get started writing and why should every person reading this interview purchase your e-book "Motivation and Confidence the 7 Steps"?
I always wanted to write a book. When I was in college I asked my professor how to do it he gave me the framework. I just put it off until one day I just said yeah I'm going to do it now. “Motivation and Confidence the 7 Steps” is actually a second idea; the first idea is a book called “Motivation and Confidence Vol. 2 Building up Confidence”. It talks about me growing up and how I was teased as a child. How I came from nothing but holes in my clothes and people teasing me, to the frame of mind that I had to get into to be a stronger person that I am today. Basically giving people the tools to be confident.
One of my family members had asked like how do my wife and I come up with all these different ideas. I said well here is the framework. I wrote out the 7 steps. I put it out there for my family and my friends who always look and see my wife and I are creating different things but don't really know how to do it. We put the framework together so that you can do it so there's no reason to make excuses for not doing it. That's the reason why I think everybody should I purchase the book. If you struggle with the idea and are not really sure how to get it started, you don't want to be a complicated, check out the 7 steps. It's a quick read, and simple to go through; you could pick up some cool pointers. After you read the book, check out the mixtape because both of them combined together is dope.
What can you tell us about your podcast "Motivation and Confidence"? How long has the show been running and what sort of topics do you discuss?
The idea for the podcast was a way to basically self treat myself to prevent depression. To stay motivated and doing things. I wanted to do something that was timeless. Sometimes when you do hip-hop people will put a expiration date on it. I had to figure out something that I could do basically until I'm 90. I mean also I could do music until I'm 90 but you know hip-hop in particular has the stigmatism that you know you could only do it while you're young and as you get older nobody's going to check you out, which is all the bunch of b*******.
As long as your music is dope and you got style people will rock with you but “Motivation and Confidence” I came up with the idea of things that meant something personal to me. I can share with other people to inspire them and be greater.
I've been doing the show now for a little over a year and it basically talks about strategies on how to be and do the best that you can do on a daily basis. We talk about managing stress, we talk about meditation, we talk about the proper foods to eat to boost your confidence. We talk about who to keep within your circle, we talked about how to manage anger, dreams and what they mean.
Every week there's a a different topic. Sometimes we have other guests on the show that have amazing stories of challenges that they've overcome. People that I look up to that I aspire, that I'm glad that they are a part of my inner circle. You can definitely check it out at tomdanger.com.
What are some of your goals as a creator this year?
The main focus right now is to push this project, “Motivation and Confidence Vol. 1” mixtape and e-book bundle. We have another single, it's going to drop soon which is called "What They Say". It’s really dope and goes along with the theme of the book. I think it'll be a universal song lot of people can get into. It’s real smooth.
We will shoot another video for the 7 steps so people can get a visual as to what the 7 steps should look like. I'm continuing to do the podcast, almost finished the second book “Motivation and Confidence Vol. 2 Building Up Confidence”. You can pre-order on my website tomdanger.com. It is also going to have a soundtrack but that one as well.
Continue to inspire people to do great things and looking forward to touring, meeting new people and connect to a new artist and just enjoying this life because it's all a dream and I'm happy that is happening now.
What does the term "Motivation and Confidence" mean to you?
Grind and work right; that's what I tell myself everyday. I'm married, 4 children have a full-time job, write books, and care for my mother who's ill. Make music, the podcast, blog and a TV show but these are all things that I want in my life. I want my family to be happy. I want to show my kids that is possible to live a dream and not just work a job.
My motivation is always grinding and working. It is basically doing the extra. I'm not just going to go to work just to get a check. I want to be the best at whatever I do. So it's not just like putting out a mixtape. I want to create something that's really going to spark thought someone. Confidence is basically living without fear and living to be your own. Embracing it no matter what it is. Thank you for this opportunity.