The past, the present and the future from the mind of the Sixth Swordsman of the Samuri's Apocalypse.
When did you 1st start rapping seriously & which artists inspired this?
A lot of people inspire me, from Jesus to the Specials, Mr. Bohze of 2Tone Committee to Big Daddy Kane. I started Rapping when I was like, erm 12-13, I cant really remember, I was always writing poems and shit when I was younger, so I guess I was rapping before I knew I was.
How did you go about making things happen, getting your first track out?
My first track, well it depends if you mean when I was with Thoughtz of Mortalz, or even Vendetta before that, or when I went solo? I have appeared on mix tapes and Underground Street tapes for years before I got onto vinyl with Major Threat, then the 141 Glasgow Allstars Woodchoppas Dojo, then there was the Skinnyman and Skeme track with Late and Daddy Ash, it all just spiraled from there really I suppose.
What's the thinking behind the name Eastborn? (For the thick readers)
I am Born in the East, I am the original first man of the Earth. I study the stars and the ancients, they believe in the powers of the Sun, its the Eastborn, it comes from the East and sets in the West, much the same as I have. Its a canopy of ancient mystics, a concoction of many aspects to complete and build Eastborn.
What shitty jobs did you have before being an MC?
Every job is shitty if you don't work for yourself. I have worked in call centres, I have worked in Sports shops, hell I've even been a debt collector!
After school detention kid or front of the class squat?
Depends on the class to be honest, History I'm up the front, others I could be up the back buzzing tip ex! ha ha
Do you produce much of your own stuff?
That's where my man DJ Switch comes in, my man Nick Wong and Casual 7, they all have superb set ups, but don't ask me to name the equipment! Big Div from Major Threat has also done tunes for me, as has Styly Cee and DJ Vadim and I think those names talk for themselves!
What's your studio set up like?
Ha ha , see above
Are the lyrics written before the beats made or vise versa?
It depends on the tunes, some tunes I write to, others I wake in the middle of the night, I always sleep with a pad and pen beside me, I like to write down my thoughts after what some would call nightmares, when the shadows are still in my room and their voices are fresh in my head, you know what I mean?
What's your writing process like? Freestyle and then sharpen things up or sit down and draft shit out?
Again, it depends on the beat, the vibe or the tune. Some I just go into the studio and just straight spit the track, others can take me months to perfect, the problem with that is I think too much about the lyrics and a lot of people don't really listen and I mean really listen, double meanings, stories within stories and so on.
What releases and gigs have you got in the pipe line?
Eastborn releases I have Eastborn Presents Vol. 1, That's out in March. It features DJ Vadim, Universon, Pitman and Doyen D and Bungle. I also have a limited release of How's Life in Scotland, a cover version to the old London Posse classic. Also on Drop Zone Records, my man DJ Switch has his Long Range Audio Artillery 12" for all the DJ's. Drop Zone are also putting out the Dark Craftsmen LP Shadows on Your Sundial, so there's quite a bit going on!
Who are you feeling on the UK scene right now?
Erm, Blade, TaskForce, Skinnyman, Jehst, Braintax, Rodney P, Riccochet Klashnekoff, Two Tone Committee, Scotland Yard plus a lot of people that your average UK head aint heard.
The favourite album you've purchased in the last 12 months is?
Hmm that's a tricky one, plus I get everything sent to me, I don't buy anymore, I'm too good for that! ha ha, na man seriously, I would say Pegasus from Australia, or Lyrical Commission from Australia, also Foreign Beggars! Man the Asylum Speakers LP is amazing! I cant wait for my man Blade new LP THO!
Tony Blair needs taking out, or Tony Blair needs taking out? And why?
Tony Blair needs taken out of power, I don't believe in murder, not even for a child molester. Blair has lost the backing of the people and his Labour roots. He is only a puppet for Bush and we all know how crazy that man is!
Do you feel it a disadvantage being Scotland based when London's got a lot going for it in terms of hip-hop?
Disadvantage don't explain it enough, but you can also turn it on its head. A lot of people don't think I am from Scotland, they think I am from London, I guess that is a reflection of my work. But I feel that we have a lot of talent in Scotland, people just needs the balls to put it out there and not just keep it in their own midden! Get out there and tell the world, if London aint listening then Switzerland, Germany, Australia, Germany, France, Japan etc etc will. As a wise man said to me once, never jump out of your fish bowl into another one, look for the sea! That's what I try to do.
What Scottish crews and acts should be check out?
All of them, then make your own mind up on people. There is so much I cant write them all down, you aint talking about a city, your asking me to name crews from a whole country! That's a lot of crews! Its worth noting also that we have some of the best graffers, breakers and DJ's in the world too! It aint all about the MC.
Who'd you like on both the decks and the mic to collaborate with?
Hmmm, I really don't know, Rodney P, Blade, Rakim, Cappo, TaskForce, Guru, Methodman, Redman, Ian Brown too! On the decks? Hmm Premire, QBert, MixMaster Mike, Harry Love, Andy Smith, there is litterally too many!
Dizzy Raskals already on MTV USA making some noise. Do you think this will indirectly lead to a rising of exposure for UK hip-hop?
I don't think so but I hope so. There is a lot of people out there working hard, but the question is are they holding doors open for others? I spoke to Grand Wizard Theodore about this recently. I was asking him what UK crews he had heard of and he said he liked the Chemical Brothers??!! I was like what?? There is a lack of knowledge between people and we must look at ourselves first and get our ship in order first. Good on Dizzy, I aint a fan but if he does well good on the man, but is he gonna hold the door open?
How are you about the internet? Up for it replacing the record store?
I love the net and I also hate it. It gives a chance to ISP noones to single-handedly open a hate campaign on someone for no good reason at all. It gives people a soap box to stand on when they have no qualification or experience to back up what they are saying. I also hate people downloading my tunes and others off the net, we aint all Jay Z and Puffy, we need to make our money so we can make more, not so we can buy BMW's! Downloading peoples tunes is killing the scene at the roots! I seriously hope it don't finish off record stores cos those places have a vinyl spiritual vibe that cant be recreated in an internet world!
A message for all the heads checking you?
Peace to all the peoples that have heard of me and check for my music, love to all the haters too cos I love you even more, you give me the strength to go on, I wanna give love to all my wheelers and dealers and shop store stealers, my strip club Divas and crocked pealers. Peace to the 141 Woodchoppas Dojo and all at Drop Zone Records, all those on UKHH.com, all those on my forum on Dropzonerecords.com and peace to you too my man and everyone on this site and those that took the time out of their life to read my words, it appreciated.
Peace Eastborn (The Sixth Swordsman of the Samuri's Apocalypse)