Crazy Town just go from strength to strength. Following number 1 success with "Butterfly" in the States and in Germany the band head straight into the top 10 over here in the UK. With a sample ripped from the Chilli Peppers they set to take the whole Limp Bizkit rap / rock crossovers a step further. And the real difference lies in the beats - real phat beats!!! We talked to Shifty about how they started MCing after they heard the Beastie Boys and always dreamed of having a full rock band behind them. ts looks like they're living that dream to the max.
Q: Where did the idea for the Chilli Peppers sample come from on "Butterfly"?
A: It came from a song called "Pretty Little Ditty" and its a fucking 3 second sample from a song that had no lyrics on it. Its kind of like a solo pretty instrumental thing that Flea did.
When I wrote the song "Butterfly" I told Epic "Yo, Listen!! The song should be about be about my girl". He said "Oh great". I said I needed to sound kind of like "Under The Bridge", like really melodic and pretty but at the same time I wanted it to be way more hip-hop. 2 days later it was like Boom!!! There its is.
Sometimes things just work out really good and obviously this song affects people. The music is great. The lyrics are great. The hook is great. It has all the ingredients of a hit song.
Q: It was the Beastie Boys and hip hop that first got you into music wasn't it?
A: I mean we grew up on hip hop, but at the same time we listened to everything!!! But hip-hop is like our first love. Before I even thought of starting a band I was like writing lyrics, break dancing and as I got older I was listening to a lot more rock. The biggest albums to me were the "Judgement Night" record and the Beastie Boys record - those were the albums that were mixed them in ways I was loving and could feel. That was kind of my calling, I always wanted to have a band like that.
The Beasties lost that punk teenage angst, after the first album it was gone. But I love what they did. All I can do is tell you what hit me the hardest and that was their first one.
Q: You've claimed to be like Kurt Cobain, Sid Vicious and Biggie Smalls all in one body. Does it worry you that they all died so young?
A: Cos I'm an MC but an emotional drug addict like Kurt Cobain. Just an emotional creature like Kurt Cobain and I mean that with all due respect. And then a beligerent self-indulged don't give a fuck punk like Sid Vicious. Thats where I'm coming from lyrically but I still have that hip hop base of someone like Biggie Smalls. I'm coming from a hip hop mentality, but i'm not your average hip hop kid.
I think the fact that they all died so young was a coincidence. I used to think I'd die young and now I hope I don't, but its OK if i do. I'd like to make at least 5 more records and I would like to grow and I'd like to get old and tell stories with the cane and lots of old dirty tattoos. But its ok if I don't. thats not really up to me. All I do is do my best and have as much fun as I can everday up until my time expires.
Q: Were you ever into the political hip hop like Public Enemy?
A: No, they do that. I'd rather not do that. I kind of talk more about the life of a kid who is not completely evil and not completely good. And I'm just kind of drifting through life living life to its fullest and dealing wil the decisions I make whether they be right or wrong. I'm going through life trying to figure it out, but I'm having a hell of a time trying to figure it out!!!
Q: The album "The Gift Of Game" is a tale of sex, drugs and rock & roll?
A: Yeah, truly!!! I'm a lyrical force, thats what I do for the band. Lyrically thats the way I paint my picture. I think all those songs are just fun songs about what's going on in our little fucked up world. Were not trying to preach. Were trying to have a good time. Were a party band.
Everything is still kind of serious. We do talk alot about cause & effect. You play, you'll pay - there's a lot of that going on, but thats because were finding that out by experience. Its very real. Were learning as we go through life just like anyone else is, were not trying to tell you this is how you do it because I fuck up all the time. If you can learn from the things I've already fucked up at, then maybe you can benefit from it and not fuck up at it.
Usually you don't listen to what other people say anyway, you've got to go through it yourself. Its just like my parents say don't smoke cigarettes, but I've got to find out if it kills me for myself.
Q: How did the KRS 1 and Mad Lion get involved in the album?
A: They heard it. Mad Lion like came by with a drug dealer and heard it and was like "Damn, I like this shit". We were all stoned and he was "let me get on there". He went in there, got on it and went and got stoned with KRS. He played for him and KRS called us and said "I wanna come over and get stoned and get on it too" - Thats how it happenned to be honest.
We just did a show with Run DMC and we did a few of them. Its like Run DMC - thats one of the first tapes I ever embraced. Those are like my idols and now were doing shows with.
Q: It must feel great to have the Number 1 single in America?
A: Everything right now is surreal!!! To think that we have the Number 1 song in American and the number 1 song in Germany and were double platinum in America. This is the shit that I always wanted and I wasn't quite sure I was going to it - i just knew I wanted it. I worked really, really hard for it but to watch it materialise is like a domino effect.
The other day I was worried if I was even going to get to make music forever and I then I went around the corner and all of a sudden were getting plaques on our bedrooms walls and muthafuckers are saying that were good. Its amazing. Thats what its all about.
Q: What was the bigger deal - Meeting Run DMC or getting the Number 1?
A: Well you know what I think the Number 1 part is a bigger deal for me. Its not just meeting Run DMC. its the fact that I'm doing what I've always wanted to do and performing with Run DMC. Its great to meet Run DMC, don't get me wrong, but I could have met them before I got a record deal.
Now its like were playing with Run DMC. We performed and Run DMC were like "thats my shit". They were bobbing their heads to my music and thats what i'm talking about. Thats my passion and I love making music and to have people that I respect so much liking what i'm doing makes me feel great.
Q: How does it feel to have all these expectations on you?
A: We put our hearts into that album, but to get the feedback feels really good. My soul is giggling right now. Its like Oh Yeah!!! The fact that were going to get to make a record thats going to be an anticipated great record. Something that people are going to look forward to because we were looking forward to it too. Now with this big explosion that were getting from "Butterfly" its going to be cool because now we can go in with a whole new excitement about the project. Its good for the soul.
"The Gift Of Game" out soon
Crazy Town Website