Lime interview - Music
Semper - Azeez -Harris
Meeting Righteous down in Camden it’s a wonder that the Margate verbal warrior is here instead of in a hospital.
A week or so prior, Righteous had been in hospital where he should have been having some surgery but instead he decided that this was not the time. “They wanted to operate on me but I walked out I did not think it was right when it is such a crucial time for me. I would not feel right doing that to all the people that have supported me especially when Open Mic is here.” He adds when asked what exactly the problem was?
“I was not really paying much attention to what the doctors said but it is some problems that have developed over time in my neck and they need to remove them. I should be having the operation in a couple of months”.
On leaving the hospital, Righteous went straight home and proceeded to drop a hugely emotional ra ta –tat –tat freestyle verbalganza for an explosive cathartic rap.
“I sat in the hospital and I decided to write a free style it was only meant to be 32 bars but it ended up being eight minutes long. I had to actually learn it in the hospital and then I left the hospital. I went home and all my fiends were there and I just filmed it”.
Righteous acts and speaks from the heart and shows all the characteristics of a person destined for success; he’s focused on that end goal a fact elaborated by the fact that he was on the cusp of being a dad when he signed his deal.
“It was a stress because at the time my girlfriend was about to have my son [Elijah] she was in that 9 month period but at the same time I was having meetings with Sony about signing my deal. One of the questions they asked me was do I have a child? I let them know that I have a child coming which started alarm bells ringing but luckily they had the faith in me to know that I would be going through with this to the end which is what I am doing”
His hunger for the chance to “send out his message” to an eager audience is palpable. After years on the circuit, Righteous’ determination is being rewarded. He is basically on the very precipice of blowing up and after years of displaying that rampaging style the plaudits and accolades are raining down on him like the metaphors he uses to spice up his bars; featured on MTV USA as UK Rhymer of month, was named in MTV’s top 10 best of the best MC’s in 2012, first independent artist to be picked for Music Week’s Radar feature.
Open Mic as this debut EP is a collection of some tracks from his early career like the imaginative surrealness of The Pen which is unashamedly inspired by the likes of Nas’ (Rewind) and 2Pac to up to date fresh material like the anthemic mix of rock come hip hop straddling pop with his next single Up All Night. TDH who produced eighty percent of the album are a live band and their added dimension takes Open Mic into a different level which allows the EP to cross genres with ease and without a big chunk of Gruyère!
“Most of the album was produced by TDH and so it was just about me getting gassed and going into the studio every day until we actually had something which was Open Mic. It was a great experience for me because I have never worked with live musicians before- I am used to the whole computer thing. When you work with a live band you notice the difference you cannot compare the sound that comes out from a computer to the live music from a band.”
When I ask him if he was surprised with the huge success of Open Mic he replies with genuine honesty?:
“I was surprised-I was gob-smacked! It was the first product we put out for sale and it has just done so well. It is even better because people could download it but people are buying the music so I am really happy- they are showing the support for me.”
Open Mic as a completely independent project has, since its release, stormed the I-tunes charts reaching number one in its first forty five minutes. That’s a major feat but evidently Righteous has earnt it obviously because of his talent but also because he appears to be a genuinely nice verbal typhoon that just happens to love a cup of “milky tea”!
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