For this Monday’s edition of RH First Look we turn the magnifying glass on Curse, an emcee who has called San Diego, Chicago, and Atlanta his home. In San Diego he fell in love with Hip Hop, in Chicago he honed his craft, and in Atl he spread his wings while teaming up with Don Cannon for his Sneakers N Sex mixtape. With a wide array of musical stylings and taste, the Sol Munki brother has gone in over beats made popular by the likes of Coldplay and Amy Winehouse just to switch things up, as he preps for the release of his next project, Live Fast, Die Young. Here, Curse introduces himself, speaks on his growth, as well as why he’s Hip Hop’s version of Vinnie Chase. Check it out below.
RubyHornet: Do you recall any kind of ‘aha moment’ when you decided you decided you wanted to emcee?
Curse: Well, the first time I heard Nas I was literally floored, like “I ain’t never heard nothin’ like this before.” That’s what first made me want to write. As far as making it a career, that was when people actually started telling me I was good…haha.
RubyHornet: At times you go by Vinnie Chase, and also rocked over the Entourage theme song. What attracts you to the show? What does it mean to be the rap Vinnie Chase?
Curse: Well, it’s a funny story. My boy back in Cali put me onto the show, and my boys in Cali started playin around like “that’s you b. I just want to be Turtle” or “I just wan to be Drama.” And since rappers have always had aka’s like Biggie was Frank White, Nas Escobar etc. I rolled with it. Those that know me, know I don’t front like a tough guy. I’m more of a get fresh, let’s party and get it in with some chicks type dude…haha.
RubyHornet: I’ve heard you over instrumentals by Coldplay and Amy Winehouse, how did those come about?
“Viva La Vida Remix”:
Curse: Well the Winehouse is actually a funny story. Ok, sooo I had an ex, everyone does right haha..There was a movie called “Chasing Amy” that I really dug, so I called the song I made about the ex “Chasing Amy.” So me and this ex were off and on for a minute, and when we finally split for real, I found the Amy Winehouse album. It was an instant classic for me, and I wanted to try something different than what every other rapper was doing. The Coldplay remix is off of this mixtape myself and my squad Chekk, Khallee and Live are doing called Superbad, which is remixing non-Hip Hop records. Again, just trying out different s**t.
RubyHornet: Explain the title of your Don Cannon hosted mixtape.
Curse: That one’s easy, Sneakers N Sex (Download) is all I need haha. Not so much anymore, I’m more of a Chuck Taylor kid now, and sold most of my dunks and SB’s and s**t. But I had just moved to the Atl, and my family and I down there got a shop and clothing line called Sol Munki, which is the hottest sneaker boutique in the city.
RubyHornet: You’ve lived in various parts of the country, did you notice your sound change at all when your location changed?
Curse: Yeah definitely. I got dope and honed my craft while in the Chi. While living in the A, the music scene is pretty much standard downsouth rap, which I like, but I like more than just that. So being there made me go back and listen to s**it I came up on as a shorty, like Zeppelin, the Beatles, GnR and s**t like that. It heavily influenced my music.
RubyHornet: Your bio says that you feel many Latino artists tend to stick to the Latino audience, but you want a broader appeal? What factors lead to each mindset?
Curse: For me, the factors are seeing and living outside of your norm. Music is suppsed to touch and reach people. Not be so narrow that only a few people can feel it.
RubyHornet: What have you learned from working with Don Cannon?
Curse: Man, working with dude was an honor. I had no deal, no budget, and he looked out to do it just cause he respected what I was doing.
RubyHornet: If possible, listen to your first song, then one of your new ones. What’s your first reaction after hearing them back to back?
Curse: Man I sucked lol.
RubyHornet: Going forward, what does the end of ’08 and top of ’09 have in store for Curse?
Curse: I got two projects just about done. Live Fast, Die Young and August Rush. Just gotta work out the kinks.
RubyHornet: For many this will be their introduction to you. What are three things you’d like people to know about you before they listen to your music?
Curse: This is me, currently in my life. I’m here for the long haul. And I love what I do!
Check out more Curse below & Myspace
Standing in The Rain