Featured Hip Hop Group: Notriety [Interview]

Posh Da Socialite: So, I see in the bio how you guys met. How did you choose the name “Notoriety” for the group, and why?
 Notoriety: (Vydle): Well, we actually first started as the “Influence”, but after a little while we realized that name was taken by a bunch of other people. It was kind of like a big tug of war for that name so we just backed down from it. Then, on one recording night in Boston, we were looking at different variations of what we were trying to portray and what not and I came across the word Notoriety, looked it up and there was just something about it that stuck at the time. It was anything really sentimental then, but we all dug it and agreed on it. It's been history ever since. Now it's like our staple. (The Technician): Notoriety trying to gain notoriety. (Vydle): Yea, and now it really plays into the whole #Gainerz movement we have going so it's perfect and really worked out.  Posh Da Socialite: How would you describe your sound?
Notoriety: (Vydle): I think our style is kind of like a new style version of the golden era of Hip Hop, like a lot of "boom bap". We stick to our roots when it comes to a lot of the Hip Hop sounds that we try and delve but, every now and then, we step outside the box in a good way. We make songs like “I'm In Like With Her”, which is from back when our first tape, The Toast EP, dropped. That was something that was almost Indie and a lot of people thought we were just a straight up Indie Hip Hop group, but it was just something that we felt at the time. Our inspirations come from a lot of walks of music so, I mean, for now I'd say we're definitely a traditional Hip Hop sound.
Incredible Chuck
(The Technician): In short, we have a young attitude and an old soul.  Posh Da Socialite: What makes you unique from any other group?   Notoriety: (The Technician): I think our independence. (Vydle): Yea, probably our independence: from how we go about recording the music, making the music, the whole process of getting cover art and all that stuff. It's ALL in house…and by that I mean from the recording to the beat production to the samples being chopped to the lyrics and the whole entire mixing/mastering process. The majority of our promotions and marketing, up to this point, have been solely off the efforts of our two managers (Matt Whitlock and Samuel John), who have been with us since the get-go, like since we were born, they were right there with us. I think that's the one thing that sets apart as far as like, you know, they say you have to have a strong foundation and I feel like we've had that since the very beginning and it's been like a learning process for all five of us, even though you only hear two of our voices, Notoriety is a 5 man team (2 emcees, 1 producer, 2 managers).
(The Technician): It's a lot of learning on the fly too. None of us would say that we're experts on anything that we're doing, but at the same time it’s cool because we get to feed off each other and our creativity is never restricted. We pride ourselves on doing everything independently/in house so we're always able/willing to try new things and just see how it goes. (Vydle): That's a good point, and we get to express anything we want to express without any limitations or setbacks. (The Technician): We have our own checks and balances within the group, but outside of us we don't let anyone tell us how to do what we do. We're just like nah, whatever, we're gonna do US. Posh Da Socialite: I see you have a producer in the group. Do you work with any other producers in the industry? Who would you like to work with? Notoriety: (Vydle): As far as producers, we’ve worked with a few independent producers (Shabazz of MOR Beatz) and some other people who have more experience in the game and what not. You know, we'd love to branch out and work with other producers but, there's a lot more to it when it comes to wanting to work with somebody else because we used to make music for fun (not that we still don't), but now that we're in it for real, there's a lot of business involved. So a lot of our energy and work output is put along with the stuff that we can and have been making so far with the help of The Tech being our in house producer. As we grow as a group and as a business, we'll get down with working with the bigger name producers and really show that we can put it down on any style of sound, rather than just sticking with the roots we have now. We do what we do now, because it's creating the best results with what we have and as we get bigger, I feel like we'll branch out and our sound will develop with the maturity of this whole "getting into the music industry" thing. Posh Da Socialite: Being from Chicago: Would you guys work with, or have you already worked with, artists like Common or Kanye West?
The Technician
  Notoriety: (Vydle): Haha, no we have not worked with any large names like that. Of course we would love to. We're still fairly young at this as far as our connects and how far along we've come in our career. Our first MAJOR mixtape was with DJ Statik Selektah and we feel blessed to even make that big of a step. So, to answer your question, no…BUT we would LOVE to, absolutely love to, you know. I mean, who wouldn't?! (The Technician): Those dudes are legends, living legends. (Sam, co-manager): As far as Chicago artists and us, we did submit one of our singles to be on an LEP Bogus Boys mixtape, so they're one group that we're definitely looking at in the Chicago area.  Posh Da Socialite: What is the game like? I know a lot of times in D.C. it's hard for artists to break through. Out here right now, the hottest rapper is probably Wale and the D.C. area is known to “hate” on other rappers behind the scene. What is your relationship with other artists and do you deal with “haters”, if any?  Notoriety: (Vydle): I feel like we're not really concerned with people hating as far as music goes because, I mean let's be serious, if you're doin' what you're doin' people are gonna hate on you so we're not really concerned about it nor does any of that negativity even reach our ears. I've never heard anybody say anything negative toward/about us. As far as our relationships with other artists, I feel like its all positive. We follow a lot of the local artists and our conversations are real and genuine. We just pick up each other's strengths and there's soon to be a lot of other collabo's with local artists who we feel are on top of their game. (The Technician): It's all about the hustle. We only want to work with people who are just as motivated as we are. (Vydle): Yea, the thing about “making it” is there's SO many people in this pond and the people that stick out are the people who are bringing that real, genuine music and find a way to evolve slightly with the times. It's kinda like a marathon, this ain't a sprint, you know. I could drop a platinum single tomorrow, but if I don't stick with it and go with the necessary things I gotta do, nobody's gonna remember you six months down the road. This game is like…you gotta be NOW, you gotta be current. (The Technician): Especially with Hip Hop because I feel like Hip Hop evolves faster than any other genre. When you hear rock and stuff you can hear things from like 1960 that's still relevant today. But, you know, you hear a Hip Hop song from the 90's and some people hate on it nowadays BECAUSE it’s old school. Like, c'mon, really? Hip Hop IS an evolution. Posh Da Socialite: Tell me more about the mixtapes, how often does Notoriety drop a new mixtape? I see you have 3 out now.  Notoriety: (The Technician): About twice a year probably. (Vydle): Yea, it's been just about two a year since we started. We don't really have a goal as far as how many to put out a year, we just go by how much material we have in our pool and how much of it we think can actually make it on a mixtape, then go from there with ideas, names, labels, and all that. (The Technician): We also ride the wave of how everyone responds to it. If we're getting great feedback on our current tape, we're not gonna put anything out right away. We want people to live that up while it's hot and fresh. We're constantly working behind the scenes. People may not see us and be like “Oh, what happened to Notoriety?”, and then we got a fresh new batch of hotness comin' right around the corner. (Vydle): As we've grown with the business, and learning about how to go about actually dropping a mixtape, I feel like now we know we can drop a tape and put out singles, but Part Deux was our first tape that was like constructive, develop a game-plan type of release. Every step was very strategically planned; our first music video was off of this tape. We just have to be very strategic, 'cuz if we put it all out at once, you get that first initial blast, but towards the end it kinds fizzles out. We learn how to stretch and develop new material so that each track has a substantial shine throughout. (The Technician): At the end of the day it is a business and as much as we love what we do, like V said, we have to be more strategic and more business minded about how we release things. So yes, while we have been dropping' roughly two tapes a year, we still are releasing singles in between, trying to keep fans on their toes. Posh Da Socialite: What projects do you have coming up?
 Notoriety: (Vydle): Right now, we're just riding the wave of Part Deux, which we did with DJ Statik Selektah. On the back end, we're cookin' up a tape that we haven't even told the name of to anyone. I feel like we won't even say what the name of it is, but as far as the new music…I'll say this: don't sleep, 'cuz the next mixtape comin' out will be with Rhode Island's best DJ hands down, CR The Beast. We really plan to kick it up another notch. We're actually more excited about this next tape than we were for Part Deux. So, like we said, we're gonna keep the name of it a secret for now, but we do have a next tape in the works and it will most likely be out sometime in late 2011/early 2012. For a preview of that tape, everyone needs to check out our newest single right now, “Stoopid High”, which will definitely be on there. That song right there jumped out of the batch early, haha. We just couldn't hold on to it any longer. As soon as we made it, we HAD to let people hear it. Posh Da Socialite: Are you on tour or have any performances coming up if, so where and let us know the dates?  Notoriety: (Vydle): We're not on tour or anything like that, but always doing shows. We have our first real major show on June 16th, 2011 at West End Johnnies in Boston. There will be a live band backing us/playing our music so that'll be Hip Hop in full effect. That's gonna be crazy. Rehearsing for that has taken us up a notch from how we've been performing and we're pretty amped about it. (The Technician): Just to see what we can do with a live band behind Incredible Chuck and Vydle is gonna be insane, the live sounds right there showcasing all of their talents as emcees. (Vydle) This will be our testament to the fans as to if we can really put it down because a live band is SO much different than using a DJ. It brings the music to life.
 Posh Da Socialite: Thanks for taking the time to checkout my blog. I love the music; I'm listening as I asked these questions. I really like the group. Are you signed yet? …or shopping around?  Notoriety: (The Techician): Right now we're independent but always trying to take advantage of new avenues and see what's out there. We've made a few trips to NY, visiting labels, promoters, etc. to just be heard and get our name out there. With that being said, we may be independent but we're not just going to sit around and wait for something to happen. We're always going to keep working, putting our music out there, and networking.  Posh Da Socialite: Do you have anything else to add that you would like to mention?  Notoriety: (Vydle): Just check us out on Twitter: @NotorietyMusic and "LIKE" our Facebook page: www.facebook.com/NotorietyMusic. That's me on there, by the way. I usually run the Twitter so if you tweet us, on there you'll most likely be talkin' with me. We also have a new website coming soon, which will supersede the BlogSpot site we have now. It'll be on full blast when it comes to that time so you'll definitely be hearing about the release. Also, check out our music videos on YouTube (www.youtube.com/NotorietyMusic). Basically, you can find us on all the major social media outlets. In short: Google us.