Saturday, May 17, 2008

(Werner Necro'd) Lyrical Kuruption - Kurupt Interview

This is one of the first interviews I did, back in '98. I was interested in getting Kurupt in because he was just starting to get recognized as a lyricist beyond the Death Row type of music he was coming up in. Rumors of the Headless Horsemen "supergroup" were just starting to form, and Kurupt was coming out with his own label, and and his solo debut, Kuruption.

So tell us about the double album.

Well, you know. One CD is for the East Coast; one CD is for the West Coast, ya know what I mean? A lot of people be twisting my meaning, though. They be thinking I'm putting it out for this East Coast/ West Coast war, but I don't see no war. I see the media creating an East Coast/ West Coast war, so what's the purpose of putting out an album like that? Especially when I don't care about that. Me, personally, I'll grab the mic with anybody. You know, I'm head-huntin'. I did it because I'm from the East, but I grew up on the West. East Coast is what gave me my skills, and the West Coast is what gave me my career. So I gave the East their own eleven songs to love, and I gave the West their own eleven songs to love.

And, now, you're no longer on Death Row anymore, right? You've got your own label, Antra. What's up with that? What's it stand for?

Entrepreneur. That's one meaning, then the other is meaning, really, what it stands for, is: All New Talented Recording Artists, because I spelled it with two A's. 'Cause I feel like, when you jump back into the game, you gotta come with the hunger of a new artist, homeboy. You can't play no games. We're just getting started. It's just gonna begin from my album. That's where the whole thing kicks in, but you know.

Now, you got a song coming out on the Pace Won album, right? Tell us about that?

Definitely. What you know about my homeboy Pace Won? It's a heater, too. You won't believe how I hooked up with my homie, Pace, man. I was in my little car, man, and I went to stop at this little spot, probably to get some cigarette or something. He was comin' in there to get something, and he came out, and he was like, "Yo, Kurupt. What's up, man?" I shook his hand; we was chillin'. And he just met me right then, and he was like, "Yo, I'm in the studio right here, man. You can just come right, through." And I'm like, "Alright, cool." So he went into his studio, and I went into my room which is just across the street from where his studio was. So, then I just left the studio, went right across the street, went upstairs, like, "What's up?" They was like, "What?" I'm like, "What's crackulatin?" Let's do a jam." They were like, "Hell yeah, let's do this." That's the way the game is. I love skills. I wanted to hear how he sounded, and he was dope, so I was like, "Yeah, that's it. It's time to drop some heat."

And you're on that Gangstarr "Three Men and a Lady," right? The remix?

Yup. Lady of Rage. That was the bomb. 'Cause it's Gangstarr, ya dig? Gangstarr, homeboy! OG and I grew up to Gangstarr. Just like doin' that song I did with Pete; I'm a legend, homeboy. So I was just like, "Damn!" But that's what I came into the game for. To do them type of things, man. You know, it's to the point where you can rock with people like that; it's like, damn. You're there. That's what this game's made of.

Now, everybody knows you came up on Death Row... What's the deal today, with you and Suge?

Well, all I can say is my homeboy took care of me. The reason I left is the game he gave me, ya know I mean? Suge broke it down on how to run a company. And I wanted to do it. You see how you didn't hear nothing about Kurupt leaving, but then you hear Kurupt got his own company. I left when I went to Philly to go live with my mother... take care of my mother. Spend some money with my family out there. So, after I did that, I wanted to open my own company. Why not? This game is made up of big business, baby.

So, are you still working with Daz, or are you split?

No, we ain't split. We'll never break up. Dogg Pound is forever, baby, yo! So, we're gonna drop the EP, Aftershock, and then we're gonna release the album, Dogg Shit.

Is that gonna be on your label?

No, that's gonna be on Death Row, definitely. I'm still gonna make money with my homie. And he's gonna make money with me.

Ok. Now you've kinda started making a name for yourself in an almost more East coast, lyricist-type way, lately, you know; like your recent battle with Graffix...



Who's that? I battled him?

You don't remember that?

I remember I chopped some cat's head off. That was him? Ok.

Ha ha Cool. Well, between that and doing the Wake Up Show freestyle LP's, etc... That's something a lot of people mightn't expect from you, just knowing you from being with Snoop and the Dogg Pound...

That's my thing, man. That's all I know. I'm the king of that. To me, that's the top of being an MC. Break somebody off.

So, what do you think is the next project for your label, now, after the LP?

Well, I got a movie comin' out in '99. With Lisa "Left Eye" Lopez. Starring me and Lisa Lopez and Frank Dileo . I told her I was gonna make a movie. I said, "You wanna be in it? 'Cause I'ma make it about us. I'ma come over with some things, it's gonna be me and your movie." So she said she was down and I made it. I brought it to the table, at first, she was like, "What? You're a movie maker now?" I was like, "Hell, yeah! Let's get this thing poppin' now." And the soundtrack's gonna be on my label. That's the little two-pronged money attack. It's gonna be on the big screen, though. It's gonna be dope. Frank Dileo is the cat who played Tuddy Cicero in Goodfellas, so he's G'd up in the game.

You're directing?

Nah, I don't know who we're gonna get to direct it, yet. We're lookin at that guy who did Oz - that little series on HBO - Dr. Dre, and my homeboy, DJ Pooh. That's who we're really lookin' at.

And what's up with the Four Horsemen project?

You know... What you know about the horsemen, boy? We're gonna start in '99. All four of us got companies. It's gonna be on all four of our companies, you know? It's Kurupt - Young Gotti, the Headless Horseman, my homeboy Canibus, Ras Kass, and the killer Killah Priest, nigga. For sho'. The Horsemen, homie. We're dangerous, too, boy. No dance music! No samples, just raw attack. I'm gonna get Dr. Dre to drop us some heat. I got a couple other cats. We'll get Daz to drop us some heat. They gonna get some niggas to drop some heat. We got it locked. Dangerous. Strictly for MC's, nobody else, just MC's.

Alright, now I know a lot of people want me to ask you about Foxy...

That's my fiancee.

I heard you were gonna do an album together, too, based on that?

Yeah, but we're just basically gonna chill for now. We really just wanna concentrate more on the relationship than anything now. I met her in LA; I just ran into her. We went through a lot of ups and downs. You know, we've been together for three years. We've been through a lot together.

So, you got any last thing you wanna say to your fans checkin' this out online?

Yeah. What up, y'all? Dogg Pound gangster, assassin number one. The Horseman, Headless Horseman, speakin', spittin' atcha. Live online. What the fuck? (Laughs)

Kurupt has a myspace, naturally, as well as a Flash-heavy website at Both seem to be out of date... the myspace is still touting his 2006, even though he's since dropped both a solo and DPG album in '07. I don't have any word on anything new, really... but it hasn't been that long yet since his last album.

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