Upon hearing Nick Pratt’s work for the first time, instantly it reminded of what I love about Texas so much: Distinct, unmistakable voices, unique and proficient flows and beauteous execution that most Southern rappers, that I listen to and admire, bring to the table. In recent times, the Fort Worth-native rapper — who has been dubbed a stylistic blend of Big K.R.I.T, UGK and Big Boi — released a powerful eight-track extended play with Lazy J called, “Dark Matter: A Space Age Odyssey”. The original music project, not only piqued my interest from the very beginning (“100MS”), it’s an authentic body of music with playback value.
In addition and to my satisfaction, this project has a Chopped Not Slopped version, and if you don’t know, you’ll soon start to understand my deep admiration and liking for chopped and screwed music but enough of me and my music tastes — Get to know this emerging sensational emcee by way of a short but detailed interview, in which he talks about what inspired the record, social responsibility and what’s next.
One of the first things you say on record is about racial profiling. How do you feel about racial profiling in America today? Do you feel like you have a social responsibility?
I was racially profiled by three Culver City PD officers last Summer and it was demeaning as hell. It always is. My black is beautiful, not criminal, and I hate that I have to defend myself for my birthright; the gift that is my blackness. I definitely feel like I have some social responsibility to uphold. It’s rough sometimes because I want to hear more from more influential people than myself but I know I can ultimately only do my part and try to be influential in my own way.
What inspired both songs, “Still Swangin” and “Thumping”? What does it mean to “swang” and “thump”?
I wrote these songs after riding around Los Angeles with a potna of mine and sharing stories from growing up in our respective areas and just generally choppin’ game, and the whole ride I was playin’ a gang of records that I grew up on so when I got to tha studio, my vibe was on some straight Southside story tellin’ shit. “Swangin'” is basically driving unless you want to be specific then, it’s swerving rhythmically from lane to lane, but in this instance it’s just driving. “Thumpin” is just banging your speakers, mayne. Volume turnt up loud so your subwoofer is pumpin ’til it sounds like a giant [is] thumping the inside of your trunk with his thumb.
How did you team up with Jaehill and the producers, Cassius G & Nice Rec?
Jaehill [is] like my brother, we grew up together. Cassius G [is] like my lil’ brother. I’ve known him since he was like 15 or so and I’ve been working with him and watching him grow ever since. I met Nice Rec while I was in college at Pitt; my homie Mario Dones introduced us. He had a cold DJ setup in his crib with vinyl and tapes everywhere.
What is it like to be from Fort Worth, Texas? What makes the experience unique?
I can remember growing up in Fort Worth, knowing there had to be so much more to the world than what we had goin’ on there or even in Dallas for that matter. I think it gave me a good sense of value and hard work though, especially after moving to LA. I love home though. It’s a smaller southern city so it’s all about the people and what’s going on. People have a sense of community. That gets missed when you move to a bigger city. They can be polarizing.
I’ve been working on my first commercial release, “Everythang Ain’t Enough”, and gearing up to drop my lead single “2damnhard” produced by Fetty Wap and Remy Boyz’s resident engineer-producer Peoples (“679”, “Again”). My attention has really been going to that and making sure everything is in order. The album should be out this Fall.
You’ve heard it here, folks. Check out the awesome new record “Still Swangin/Thumpin” by the talented Nick Pratt below:
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