Coming from South London, Pound Sterling has stepped into the limelight and after keeping heads sweating is now releasing his well anticipated long player. He has his head in the right place and his own label. Keep reading to find out more when he spoke to britishhiphop.co.uk's Lady Jay UK…
Lady Jay UK: You were originally a ‘behind the scenes guy’ involved in the business side of your record label. What happened to make you switch to rapping?
Pound Sterling: I saw a lot of people talking about lifestyles that they hadn't really lived. All of a sudden everyone was Nino Brown of their manor, everyone was gangster and rich, when they were on tracks but in reality they'd never sold an aspirin, had no money and probably couldn't even drive. I'm not dissing people in that situation it’s hard out there but I think rappers should be true to themselves. If you work in Halfords talk about working in Halfords, if you drive a Fiesta don't jump on tracks and talk about your Benz. I do my thing and I felt like they were taking away from my reality and the reality of those that really have come up that way so I decided to let people hear a piece of the real so I dropped the CDs then switched to videos and gave them some reality TV.
Lady Jay UK: Who do you have on your label?
Pound Sterling: The Label is called London Hustle. On the label is my younger brother Change, he's real talented check him on my myspace he’s a top friend. A singer called Yasine, she’s amazing and a rapper called Booker – watch out for all of them next year.
Lady Jay UK: The title of your album is ‘Money Before Music’. That’s an interesting title. Explain…
Pound Sterling: Two reasons: Firstly, people see the standard of my video production and the way I carry myself in general and wonder how I can afford to do it all. The album breaks down how I came to have "Money before Music". Also I’m more of a hustler than anything else, so making money will always be a priority to me. Where others would be happy to be the greatest MC to walk the Earth’s surface even though they're broke, with me if it’s not making no money I’m not involved. I wouldn't even be doing this if I didn't have money. It’s hard to bust verses on an empty stomach.
Lady Jay UK: You released three mixtapes in 2005, was that a mad period for you? Who were you working with to achieve it?
Pound Sterling: I had a lot of things to talk about. I've lived an interesting life and experienced many things some good some bad, so once I started I couldn't stop I recorded 90 tracks that year, my producers couldn't keep up with me so I started jacking beats. It was just me my crew and my engineer. It wasn't planned, the CDs were just real popular and I was in the zone so it just went that way.
Lady Jay UK: Tell me about your sound. Your style, and influences…
Pound Sterling: My sound music wise whatever sounds good, I like to make music rather than just spitting all over tracks I wanna make songs that you can pick up in ten years and they'll still make sense as for my style and sound vocally I keep it very local, I don't really rap I more talk to the audience, so if you listen to everything I’m saying it makes sense. I'm just telling my story. As for Influences anyone that’s made something from nothing.
Lady Jay UK: You delayed the release of your album. Why?
Pound Sterling: In my opinion my album is groundbreaking I'd put it up against any rap album in the world. I didn’t want people to sleep on it then pick it up two years later and realise how good it was or to hear my story and think it wasn't true. So I picked tunes off the album and shot videos to them and gave people a look at my lifestyle. Now rather than harassing people to be buying my CDs like most of these rappers do. I've got people on me to buy my album and my whole back catalogue.
Lady Jay UK: On your myspace page it says: “he knew there was one particular audience he needed a track for before he could release his album, women. His third video "All About Us" was a smooth track on which he told the ladies what they wanted to hear”. Was that a business decision?
Pound Sterling: I’m always about my business so yeah it was but at the same time its just part of my character, I've got my team around me but other than that I don't really mingle with dudes I’d rather be with a fleet of women. So I made a track for them, but man dem liked that tune anyway. So it was a win win.
Lady Jay UK: The track ‘Big Time Hater’ is about the haters that have accumulated with your success. Why do you think this is?
Pound Sterling: It comes with the territory. You do good people are gonna hate, it doesn't really bother me I'm used to it because I've always been pretty successful in whatever I’ve turned my hand to. People hate because of something missing within their own lives. When you know your doing your own thing you won't grudge the next man or woman for doing theirs.
Lady Jay UK: Do you think you are different at all from other UK hip hop artists?
Pound Sterling: Definitely. In my first video "For My Dogs" I wore a t-shirt that said I'm not a rapper because I don't consider myself as one. When I dropped my first mixtape people were shocked, a lot of people already knew me but nobody knew me to rap. I don't work the circuit grabbing open mics; you won't see me on the corner spitting rhymes to a camcorder with my boys going Brapp in the background, that’s cheesy. I'm about my biz first and foremost it’s a bonus that I can rap.
Lady Jay UK: You’ve had a lot of success with your videos being aired on Channel U, and MTV Base. There must a lot more people who know your face and your music now. How has that experience been for you?
Pound Sterling: People come up to me a lot and tell me they like my music and tell me to keep doing what I’m doing, its good because it lets me know that I’m connecting, I get recognised almost everywhere I go now it took a second for me to adjust to it but its all good. A lot of support from the roads which for me means a lot because first and foremost that’s who I do the music for.
Lady Jay UK: Where can we buy your album Pounds?
Pound Sterling: It will be out in all stores early next year. You can get advanced copies from my myspace www.myspace.com/poundsterlingthehustler.
Lady Jay UK: Shout outs?
Pound Sterling: My Team they know who they are and yourself Lady Jay.