Killer Mike
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Killer Mike

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"Killer Mike & Ice Cube Drop Controversial Song On Holiday"

This year’s Fourth of July celebration will include a bit of revolution, courtesy of a new video from Atlanta rapper Killer Mike.



The clip, titled “Pressure,“ debuts today (July 4) and features West Coast rap icon Ice Cube.



The video for the politically-charged track will offer an honest and discouraging view on the current state of affairs in America.



For Killer Mike, "Pressure" provided a way for the rapper to tap into "a frustration that’s bubbling in all parts of this country."



"You can only get upset for so long before you stop holding back. So I let loose and said some s**t that no other rapper has the balls to say," Killer Mike told AllHipHop.com in a statement. “We as black people should not be just blaming whites, but making black politicians, social and religious leaders take responsibility and accountability for selling out their community."



Killer Mike touches on topics ranging from "the police department being the state sanctioned killers of blacks" to "the Sean Bell aftermath," to "the police killing of a 92-year old grandmother in Atlanta," on "Pressure."



Produced by The Bizness, "Pressure" is one of the songs featured on Killer Mike’s forthcoming album I Pledge Allegiance To The Grind II.



The album, which features appearances from Shawty Lo, 8ball and MJG and Chamillionnaire, is set to hit stores on Tuesday (July 8).



The following is a tracklisting for I Pledge Allegiance To The Grind II:

1. Intro
2. 10 G's
3. Can You Hear Me
4. 2 Sides feat. Shawty Lo
5. Pressure feat Ice Cube
6. Big Money, Big Cars feat. Chamillionaire & Messy Marv
7. God in The Building
8. Super Clean/ Super Hard feat. 8Ball & MJG
9. Woke Up This Mornin'
10. Bang! - All Hip Hop


"Status Ain't Hood Interviews Killer Mike"

I can't even tell you how happy I am with this interview. Killer Mike is a guy with a whole lot to say, and he's not shy about it. I guess i shouldn't be surprised at how well it turned out, given that it's almost as fun to hear Killer Mike yelling over a beat at the end of a song as it is to hear him rapping. I met up with him yesterday afternoon for lunch at Porcao, a Brazilian steakhouse in Manhattan, where we both got to eat for free because his publicist knows the restaurant's publicist. That food was good, too. If parts of this interview seem a bit disjointed, it's because waiters kept coming over to offer us more gigantic slabs of meat. One thing I want to make sure gets across, though, is how enthusiastic and passionate this guy is about what he does. To really get across the way he talks about his craft, I'd have to italicize just about every word. This is a long one, so settle in.
So it's been a while since you were on the national stage.
Yeah, man. It's partially self-imposed and partially being a victim of circumstance, but whatever reason it happened, I'm glad it happened. Because it hurts not being able to exercise ideas and exercise a craft, and I know I'm one of the best rappers in Atlanta and I'm one of the best rappers in the South. And to see my city and my state and my region get represented by a lot of garbage is hurtful. Because kids who are growing up on the block, they don't necessarily know that it's an alternative to bullshit crunk, bullshit snap and pop, bullshit crank that music. They don't know that there's still real lyricism. When I talk about real lyricism, I'm not talking about traditionally what you would get out of the East Coast. I'm not trying to mimic a East Coast MC. When I talk about real lyricism with regards to the South, I'm talking about a 8Ball & MJG, Bun B, UGK. I'm talking about OutKast, I'm talking about Goodie Mob. So just having an opportunity to be back out there, accomplishing my goal, making my mark, I'm trying to make history. I know a lot of rappers only talk about making money, but this is not just about money to me. This is about being a part of the legacy of Southern hip-hop.
You very much work in the tradition of those guys.
Thank you, man. That's a huge compliment.
It's a weird thing that we're seeing right now, where the industry is in complete chaos and nobody knows what's going on...
I don't even think people really care.
Yeah?
I don't think people within the industry care. I think people in the industry care that they don't lose they job. I think they care how their particular record is charting or how many ringtones it's selling. But I don't think people in the industry actually care about the integrity of the music. If they did, you'd be hearing Glasses Malone's song nationwide now; you wouldn't only be hearing it in LA. Because that song is potent. It has Akon on the hook, Toomp did the beat, and Glasses is spitting ridiculously. But you'll probably getting another version of a crank song. And that's no disrespect to anybody in particular, but that's saying that if this was 1993 right now, this is the equivalent of 69 Boyz being heralded above OutKast. Think about what I just said. No disrespect to the 69 Boyz, but if this was 1993, "Whoomp! There It Is" and "Tootsie Roll," all that shit is being taken more seriously than Southernplayalistic and Soul Food. And that's a huge turnaround. That's like the Fu-Schnickens being taken more seriously than Tribe Called Quest. That's the first time in hip-hop history some shit like that has happened.
But it seems like there's still room. UGK had a number-one album last year.
Yeah! I was happy.
Yeah, me too. And it seems like for people who've been around for a while and built up core audiences, there's still room in the industry, but it almost has to be carved out in spite of the industry.
Yeah, it does. The industry is about making money off talent. That ain't the same as supporting talent. That's making money off talent. That's when that talent doesn't make the type of money I expected even though I don't necessarily support it. And that's not what hip-hop is about. Hip-hop is about making your own way, carving your own way. Hip-hop was about that when the kids right here in the Bronx decided that we're going to do something alternative to killing each other. Hip-hop was about that in the 80s when you had young businessmen like Russell Simmons and Andre Harrell and Rick Rubin begin to form their own businesses. It was like that in the 90s when an artist like Jay-Z who couldn't get a deal created his own deal, when a guy like Puffy who was an intern working under someone got fired and decided to do his own thing. Hip-hop has always been about making your own way. So what I'm doing, I call it street-hop because I don't ignore what's happening in the streets in my music. To me, it's not about trying to save hip-hop, because that's a big task. It's about offering my version of hip-hop that I - Village Voice


"Killer Mike Is The Perfect Verse Over A Tight Beat"

Late last week I got a opportunity to check out one of the most illest, and most involved hip-hop philanthropist I know; Killer Mike’s listening session for his upcoming project. Check out the exclusive video I got for you below.
Killer Mike [Bang, Bang, Bang,] is easily one of the most underrated M.C.’s in the game today. With SOHH many mainstream rappers filling the airwaves with misogyny, socially irresponsible lyrics, and just overall bullsh*t. It’s refreshing to hear a member of the hip-hop community, particularly coming out of Atlanta brining us positive songs with a message. But don’t belittle Mike’s music by calling it hip-hop because he will immediately set you straight. He made it very clear to me, and a handful of other invited music fans that his music is “Street-Hop” which I’m assuming is the next best thing. A progression, if you will, of a genre that is becoming mind numbingly dull.
Take a look at the video I snatched below from the event.
As a blogger I hear music on a daily basis from record label executives, A&R reps, myspace kids, etc. But I often time hear the same lackluster beat, with little to no message. As a hip-hop fan I long for artists to kick their knowledge over a tight beat. And as critic Killer always delivers it with flawless execution. A lot of you kids in the game could learn something from him. But the question I want to know is are y’all going to stand up and support a man who’s trying to give you quality street-hop. Killer’s passion is undeniable as his new album I Pledge Alliance To The Grind is a tribute to the city, and a culture that he loves.
Oh, and Shawty Lo make sure you get at him. Why sample when you can give the man the real thing.
Oh, and for all the readers who log in daily to see what I got to say. Well I just got another gig on Atlpics.net. Check me out. Talk to y’all lata, --SOHH Gyant - SOHH


"Killer Mike - The Neverending Grind"

Some players in the game of Hip Hop use this industry as opportunities to advance pass go and collect 200 dollars. Lots of players take shots and roll the dice at life, while gambling their chances. Some strategists make sure that they buy up strips and own property, (in case things fall apart and they can collect money through their investments). Almost never, do players walk around the board, making trips to gain nothing. The assumption is, everybody is playing the game to win.
Killer Mike is no exception. With a concrete introduction to the Hip Hop community by one of the best selling duos of all time (Outkast,) Killer Mike had a "Lucid Dream" introduction to the game. An introduction that most only dream of, yet the reality wasn’t as great as he imagined. He wanted more.
After guest appearances on countless Outkasts’ tracks, the husky, hard-spitting emcee took it upon himself to roll the dice, while investing in his own game plan and the plan was to take over the rap game and create a brand out of his new company, Grind Time Rap Gang. With a new mixtape, Ghetto Extraordinary circulating on the net and with an upcoming mixtape, I Pledge Allegiance to the Grind: Vol. 2, Killer Mike sat down with Yo! Raps to discuss his relationship with Outkast, his new hustle and why most people don’t know what it means to be a "Gangsta." It’s officially Grind Time.
Peace! What’s been good? What’s been going on with you?
Well, for people who aren’t familiar, I was an artist who was on Aquemini/Purple Ribbon, which is Oukasts’ label. We left due to stagnation and I chose to start my own thing. All that to say, that four years ago, I started a label called, "Grind Time Official." We’ve been putting out underground, or street albums that we put together, (like real albums that you go in and mix and master) like real albums. You put them out and you distribute. The first one (mixtape) we did like five to 10 thousand, on some mixtape shit. The first one was I Pledge Allegiance to the Grind: Part One. It actually came out around this time last year. We just won an underground award for it, for "The Best Street Album of the Year," from Ozone (Magazine). That (mixtape) was pushed out of our trunk and we pushed 40, 000 copies.
Oh, that’s quite impressive.
Yeah, yeah. When I say out the trunk I don’t literally mean, Killer Mike rolling up and poppin’ CDs "out of the trunk." If you see me on the streets and you want one, I’ll definitely have one. We developed our own net worth of independent stores and indi-distributors that we do business with and that’s how we got the record out there. We also went to a one-stop distributor. We hade to learn how to innovative and use intinuity, to try to circle the fact that record labels are kind of stagnated right now. Grind Time Official now has distribution.
When you refer to "we," whom are you referring to?
Good question. I say "we," because Killer Mike is an individual artist, when I say "we" I mean the Grind Time Rap Gang. Those are the homies and the people who are affiliated with Grind Time. When I say we, like when a Roc-A-Fella artist says we. When I say we, like when somebody in the soul assassins crew say we. You see Killer Mike and that might be the first face you see, but that’s no it. It’s not solely about Killer Mike. You got S.L. Jones, Super Mario, Gangsta Pill, The Bill Collector, Six Slim, you have an array of people who are artist and then you have businessmen. You have J.L. Baker, Shea Davis, and White Boy D. It takes a lot to put out these undergrounds, so it’s not just me, and a producer and we go wild out and have a underground. It takes building your own network, to up your net worth. I’m talking about we like when Jim Jones talk about he Diplomats he say "we." When you hear me speak and you hear me say we, I’m not just speaking of me but all the people down with Grind Time. I’m not by myself. Even the people who buy the albums- those are our fans, so those are our supporters. They’re part of it too. I always use the word we, you’ll never hear me use the word I. I’m not really big on that word.
Word, there’s no "I" in "we". Let’s start off by addressing your relationship with Outkast and the people over at Purple Ribbon. Do you guys still talk?
I don’t even think Purple Ribbon exists anymore. I’m just not sure if they exist (honestly). I don’t know if they have anything on the roster to come out. It’s sad because Purple Ribbon had the potential to be something great. Beyond that, I’m a huge Outkast fan - I’m from Atlanta, I grew up on their music, I don’t think you’ll ever hear a group greater than Outkast. If it wasn’t for Outkast, I don’t think you would have the new conscious rap movement or whatever you want to call it now. I don’t think you would have any Kanyes, Lupes, or any anything. I think Outkast are the forefathers to that and they deserve all the praise and recognition they get. I’ll be a fan until the day I die and I’m very proud to be a Dunji - Yo!Raps


"Killer Mike - You Can't Kill Me"

Missed opportunities, bungled promotion, poor timing; all the aforementioned are just a few of the reasons a promising rap career can find itself stalled. Michael “Killer Mike” Render knows this intimately. The once star nouveau Dungeon Family delegate won a Grammy with OutKast (“The Whole World”), dropped an underappreciated debut (Monster) and nevertheless rolled with Big Boi’s Purple Ribbon only to have his sophomore effort (Ghetto Extraordinary) never be released by the label.

While Internet savvy fans were recently able to finally cop his second album [Ed. Note: Do yourself a favor and find The Killer mixtape], Killer Mike has refused to become a rap footnote off sheer will. Since late 2006 the Atlanta rapper dropped the critically hailed I Pledge Allegiance to the Grind (which formally introduced his Grind Time Rap Gang crew), hosted a show on comedic web portal Super Deluxe (Killer Mike's Grind Time Sports Show), done voice acting work for the Cartoon Network (Frisky Dingo, Aqua Teen Hunger Force) and in late 2007 aligned his Grind Time Official label with Bay Area based label SMC Recordings. The result, Killer Mike refuses to have his influence perish before he can bring his A-Town style rap lyricism to as many ears as possible.


AllHipHop.com: What’s been up, what’s been going on?

Killer Mike: Man, I fell off. I picked myself up, dusted myself off and came back up.

AllHipHop.com: How did a brother from Adamsville get down with SMC in the Bay Area?

Killer Mike: What it is the dude Will [Bronson] he used to be a writer and he's an A&R over there. The dude just got an incredible love for dope music. Instead looking at it like we signing regional acts, he looks at it like the people he signs are regional powerhouses. When you look at the [Mistah] F.A.B.’s, and the Messy Marv’s, the San Quinn’s out there, those people are known globally for that area. I don’t even think a lot of times we know how far we go. Like I went in a bar in Amsterdam and I was hearing my s**t.

Will, he found the music. He did a deal with [Pastor] Troy. Troy people got in touch with one of my mans, and the rest is history. I really like the business model that they had over there. Where I was in terms of being in the underground, I was on some s**t like, I’ma make sure me and my crew get what they deserve. I’ve had numerous conversations with good friends like Chamillionaire, the homie Paul Wall, Slim Thugga, because they really came out of that independent movement. Then I started talking to people like Jimmy [Jones] in the early days Dipset, like four or five years ago. Jimmy gave me a lot of grind advice and I just started applying it. Doing my thing, self-distributing on the underground, doing one stop distributors and s**t, and it attracted attention.

Ya know, SMC wasn’t the first company that came to me. Koch came to me first. [But] they were in the middle of blowing up, the roster got real heavy. Alan Grunblatt was very cool but I really wanted to be somewhere where me and my company could grow, and grow exponentially; not have to wait at all. I’ve had too much of that. So I didn’t want just a situation for me. I wanted a distribution situation for the company Grind Time and me being the first artist off that company. The dollars and the business made sense so here we go.

AllHipHop.com: I Pledge Allegiance to the Grind II will be released through SMC, is it done yet?

Killer Mike: Nah, I’m working. I got records done. But I look at with I Pledge Allegiance to the Grind ??, on this one I wanted to really expand what I was doing in terms of…I’m cool with a lot of people in the industry… Not cool on no homeboy s**t, cool like I love their music, they love mine. On this one I want to have Mr. F.A.B. and Yukmouth, on this one, Trae, 8Ball & MJG, Bun B. Florida, you got everybody poppin’ in Florida now. I’m really trying to show people that this ain’t the next movement of these four or five cats and they just want you to be on they s**t. I really f**k with what’s going on in The Bay. I really f**k with what’s going on in Texas.

I Pledge Allegiance to the Grind II is about showing that the grind is national. It’s not just local. It’s not just doing petty ass drug deals on the block. It’s about if Mistah F.A.B. has his thing going and he’s a leader there, and I have my thing in Atlanta going, then why shouldn’t we unite and make dope music and make sure that people from the A and The Bay can kick it and conglomerate in the clubs and what not? Ultimately that’s what I want to see. I’m reminiscing of when the Geto Boys and N.W.A was dealing with one another.

I’m not one of those artists that left a major label and got soft and got mad. I really looked at it as an opportunity to build something. Atlanta has no underground and that’s what Grind Time is about to become. As well as pushing back out major records. It’s exciting to me.

AllHipHop.com: So are you completely off Purple Ribbon?

Kil - AllHipHop.com


Discography

Underground Atlanta - LP
Ghetto Extraordinairy - LP
I Pledge Allegiance To The Grind II - LP
Monster - LP
My Chrome featuring Big Boi - single

Photos

Bio

Killer Mike got his formal introduction when he first appeared on the Outkast single "The Whole World" for which he won a Grammy. Mike then signed to Outkast's Aquemini label, which was distributed by Columbia Records, and in 2003 released his debut album, "Monster" which went Gold. After a short stay at Big Boi’s label, Purple Ribbon/Virgin, Mike decided it was time for him to make moves on his own and he established Grind Time Official in 2004. With no distribution, Grind Time still made an impact with Killer Mike releases including, “Dec Crack” in 2004, “The Killer” which won the SEA Mixtape of the Year Award in 2005, and “I Pledge Allegiance to The Grind I”, which won Best Street Album at this years Ozone Awards.
I Pledge Allegiance To The Grind II was released in early 2008. Pledge II boasts an impressive line up of both Southern and Bay Area rappers, which will include appearances by notable legends, 8 Ball and MJG, UGK and Trae. As he did with “I Pledge Allegiance to The Grind I”, Mike reunited with producers Chaotic Beats, Heatwave and The D Majors for part II and also included beats from Marvelous J and The Beat Bullies.