Keep it Raw
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Keep it Raw

Annapolis, Maryland, United States | SELF

Annapolis, Maryland, United States | SELF
Band Hip Hop R&B

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Tell us about where you are from and how you got to this position today.
We are straight out of Maryland, the capital of Maryland, actually, Annapolis, which is located between Baltimore and DC. Annapolis is perceived as a historic, wealthy, and predominantly white city. That’s somewhat true, but when you enter the belly of the city it has your impoverished and low-income areas just like anywhere else. We have gotten to the point where we are today by bringing a group of us together from different neighborhoods and different facets of life to become brothers. Not only do we do music and business together, at the end of the day, we are a family which makes our grind even more important to us. Most of us started doing music young, at least over 10 years ago. In the early stages I can truly say we had a lot of opportunities to work with big artists in the Maryland area that gave us a lot of insight which we use today running our own entertainment company.

What are you currently working on and what can we expect to see?
What are we working on? Let’s see… A lot! First and foremost, Keep it Raw Ent. is structured in the likes of a Young Money, State Property, or Wu Tang Clan. Basically, we have a roster of talented individuals who do different things. There are about four of our artists who are currently working to put out solo projects. We still have plans in the works of coming together sometime later this year to put out a Keep it Raw compilation which will feature everyone. We believe our business goes beyond music so we also try to branch out a little further; we host an online radio show through blogtalkradio.com called “Raw Radio” which airs every Thursday night 10pm-12am.The radio station is a way for us to network with others, get our music heard, as well the music of others in the “DMV” area. We have attracted listeners from over 20 different states, as well as some of troops who are overseas, including Korea. A few more initiatives that we have are a clothing line (Banco Pop Fashions) and a graphic design department. Anything essential we try to learn and do so this can become an empire.

Tell us about one of the hardest challenges you had to face in the industry?
One of the hardest challenges that we have had to face in this industry is getting the run around. What we mean by that is, a lot of times when you are new to anything, if you’re not established or don’t know anyone of high status in that field, you get overlooked a lot. It could be something as simple as getting your song listened to or played by a DJ. It’s like being in the minor league– you have to practice, plus, show and prove a little bit more than someone already in the majors.

What was one of the biggest set backs in your career and how did you bounce back?
The biggest setback that you have to overcome when it is more than a few people in your group is “Lifestyles.” As we get older things aren’t the same as when you’re in middle or high school and can just up and do whatever you want whenever you please. Life begins to add different things such as jobs, kids, new friends, or just everyday problems. These things can cause people to be away at times and to also lose focus a little bit on the task at hand. At one point in time a few years back we sort of fell back due to everyone getting their lives in order, whether it was school or anything. How we overcame this was the main solution in a lot of problems– “communication”. You can’t understand what a person is going through or dismiss a problem if it’s not brought to the table. Once everyone explained their issues, we were able to schedule times for the studio and meetings, while also keeping everyone up to date through our company email. Those few changes started a smooth process in getting us back to where we needed to be.

What are some things artists need to be careful of?
Things that artists should be careful of–we would say the business aspect of things. When you are a rookie in the music game, you usually jump on anything a person tries to offer you. Try to educate yourself as much as possible about contracts, promoters, and fraud. There are a lot of people out here just trying to make a little money off of starving artists and they will false advertise and sell you a dream in a second. Just stay focused and research anything before accepting any offers. Last but not least, beware of “haters”, which are people who down talk anything you do because a lot of the time there not happy with their lives. Point blank, pay them no mind.

What suggestions do you have for other artists like yourself?
Suggestions that we would have for artists–you could go on for days with that. We will just leave them with a few phrases and words that they can run with. Stay humble, never quit, grind, loyalty, respect, integrity, and believe. Last but most definitely not least, thank God for blessing you with any talents you may have and just the gift of life.

What are the be - WWS Magazine


Discography

Still working on that hot first release.

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Bio

Label Name: Keep It Raw Entertainment
Alias: Da Raw Aka Dem Raw Boyz
Established Since: June 2002

Keep It Raw Records was formed around the year 2002-2003. Before it was a group or label it was just started as an idea from one of the artist in the group (Tre Da Kid) with the help of another artist/childhood friend (J-Black).Before we composed our music on CD’s we used to make songs on a karaoke machine. As the years passed the group grew from one person with an idea then to 9 people.

In the year 2004 we dropped our 1st compilation album called “The Comp Vol. 1”. We then created a big street buzz in our hometown of Annapolis, MD. During the making of the album is when the group got larger. In that year Young H, Greeny, and Nem were the newest recruits of the group. Cell Spitfire, Kojo, and Mouse Miili were members of the group that was rapping for years so we have a well rounded group from vets and new artist. We then met up with Bucc City who is one of the most versatile artist in our group by him being from Chicago with a different delivery.

Since then we came out with numerous amount of mix tapes. We’ve also performed in parties and charity events in our hometown. We are now focused on getting a world wide buzz and we are negotiating deals with major record labels to get Maryland on the map.

Keep It Raw
Origin: Annapolis, 0Maryland, U.S.
Genre(s): East Coast South Hip Hop
Years active 1999 – present
Label(s) N/A (Looking for deals now)