Newcastle Upon Tyne may be slightly behind the UK when it comes to the Hip Hop market but local MC Silver is aiming to change all that. With an already hugely successful release behind him and work on the next surely to be under way soon I decided it was time to shed some light on the UK MC’s up North that are seriously killing it!
How old were you when you decided music was your calling in life?
Silver: Well to be honest I always enjoyed music, but my dad took me to rugby, so music was always second to that. But I was bout fifteen and I rapped to my self in art class and one guy always used to say, “you’ll never get a MOBO so shut up”. So it was about then that I was focused on winning a MOBO, lol. Got to prove the haters wrong!
Your first release “Day Dot” was highly successful; give us a breakdown of that release?
Silver: Well when I first got to Newcastle I thought that was the end of my music, but I gave it a go when I met Wayne C MacDonald 'n Sermstyle, an up and coming producer and we basically done 100 tracks and took them to Wayne, got constructive critism, until there was nothing to critise. Then Day Dot was born really looking to finish the year on 12,000 sold, done 2k so far, very excited.
How would you define your musical style?
Silver: A mixture of everything really my family was pretty chequed with my dad playing opera, mum playing soul love songs, a sister in to rock an the other in to jungle and a brother in to old school hip hop. So I’m open to any thing, you didn’t [expect] a lot of variation on Day Dot apart from Leave Me Alone with the White Stripes, expect more versatility on the next one!
What is the Hip Hop scene like in Newcastle?
Silver: Urm… to be honest when I arrived here I don’t think there was much of one. I heard a few names thrown around the toon but nobody was really killing it. Eventually I learnt the nightclub structure 'n how huge hip hop’s fan base is in Newcastle, but they didn’t really have anyone to support. To be real, each age range has there own 'lil scene. B Town pretty much run the kids and Tha Projekt are destroying all competition at the mo. Defo keep an eye on them for the future. And if you branch a bit further out in 'Boro, KC’s top seller at the mo' and Rizlo is coming up and the Young Riders are hot as well, so lots of heathy competition. But in terms of DJ’s the Tek Net are unreal. Jay Rockwell 'n Kriss P kill it 'n every one else is doing their thing.
You used to attend Crunk, what was that like?
Silver: A learning curve realising there is more to music then just the fame and the money, but how music unites the people who wouldn’t normally want to be in the same room, it was good to have my mix tape launch party there as well (Show Racism The Red Card).
What projects are you currently working on?
Silver: Oooh, mad crazy at the moment. I’m working on Top Boy Round Here my new mix tape, also doing a Best Of Both Worlds LP with Kriss P whilst hosting nights at night clubs around North East. Working with a new group Tha Projekt, these guys are unreal lyricists, best I’ve ever heard really, and also I’m starting my distribution company which will be hot as well.
Who influences you musically?
Silver: A lot of people listen to my music and say some of what I say is not true and they would be correct. Some of the songs I do with story lines come form my dreams for instance, I never killed my lass, but I dreamt it etc., but in terms of artist influences, my favourite artist is Ludacris, he always has something to say. T Pain influenced this new album, but growing up it would have been Naughty By Nature, LL Cool J, Run DMC etc.
Do you work with any local rappers from the Newcastle area?
Silver: Tha Projekt are the only rappers I work with in Newcastle really, but I’m working with Plus 8 the hottest drum 'n bass producer in the toon 'n also Wayne 'n Dexter, rnb producers. And if you can find me a decent house producer I’ll be knocking down their door too!
How has it been working alongside DJ Devon?
Silver: It’s had it ups and downs and now with the baby arriving it’s even harder, but def learnt a lot from him, and his whole family have become really close friends as well, not to mention his beats are of the chain.
Do you feel there is enough support out there for UK unsigned artists?
Silver: Not really unless you go hunting, but that’s what you have to do really. You need to be on the grind. I can’t really say much cos I'm proper lazy, but when it comes to music you have to hustle.
Where do you see yourself in three years time?
Silver: Either in the States absolutely ripping up the charts hopefully, but realistically I just hoping to be able to have this as my career not just my job. I'm going to take it one day at a time.
With so much talent out there right now how do you manage to keep your own style fresh and new and not follow the paths of others?
Silver: Find inspiration from places nobody else could, like my dreams, or from things kids say, or from a story only relevant to yourself and just keep on top of the beats game. Always try and compete with the chart beats, but differ them.
Who would you most like to work with and why?
Silver: I’d love to work wit a host of people, Lily Allen is a favourite of mine, Kate Nash, Lupe Fiasco, Ludacris, but most of all I’d like to do a song with my dad, he was into his Beatle mania when he was a kid, so I'm sure he could show me a thing or two.
Silver: Rest in Peace mumz, big up my pops 'n my fam, the wife 'n top boy Rolo and every one who supported me shizzle. Fred from Crunk 'n all the Crunkerzzz.
Check out www.myspace.com/welcometoperfection.
Interview for British Hip Hop courtesy of Underground Promotion UK.