I would like to shout out Examiner.com for showing me support this year and for posting my interview on their site! Thanks for giving me this exposure, it means a lot to me!! Check out the entire interview below or go directly to the article http://www.examiner.com/article/music-spotlight-with-connecticut-rapper-sees!
Rap juggernaut SeeS is one of the top independent rappers to watch in 2015. The incredibly gifted, multi-talented rhyme slinger sits at the helm of CT Corporate Takeover / SeeS Music. SeeS is a last of a dying breed. He is a lyricist who paints portraits of his word with his music. He has honed a refreshing style that combines street tales with wisdom and food for thought. I recently sat down with him for a candid interview.
Jesse Atkinson: What is the significance of your name?
SeeS: The significance of my logo is “SeeS Between The Lines” because I believe to fully understand the meaning of some of my songs you must look a little deeper than the surface. Some might see the tip of the iceberg, others see whats beneath the surface of SeeS. SeeS is also my initials, Scott Edward Emmanuel Sheldon.
JA: Who is your target market?
SeeS: My target market is primarily college kids and people who enjoy more lyrical underground Hip hop. However, I do occasionally try to fit the format for more positive commercial mainstream songs. I define my real market as whoever wants to hear an artist be themselves and say what they think is important rather then what they think wants to be heard. I think crafting music, something so personal, towards a certain end or target market dilutes an artist’s free expression and is backwards in its process. I want people to gravitate towards me for my honesty and dedication to my voice being mine and not the sum of creative think tanks, label direction, popular trends and critics. There is enough of that, I dare to be different.
JA: What is your USP? (Unique Selling Proposition) and what sets you apart from other artists?
SeeS: I don’t want to be another reflective voice of our generation and am not afraid to make the sacrifices needed to be a leading voice of our generation. Even if at times unpopular I stand firm in my convictions and care foremost about the integrity of my message.
JA: What single or project are you currently pushing?
SeeS: The single I am pushing right now is “Never Let Em Down”, which is a song that drives home the dedication and hard work it takes to make it in the music industry. Check out the video at www.seeshiphop.com. This song is personal to me because people never assume I work as hard as I do to make things look effortless and those who help are rarely publicly acknowledged by the artist; this is my tribute to all the people who got my back.
JA: What is the philosophy by which you live by?
SeeS: My philosophy in life is simply; be humble, stay positive, and help others. If all my actions meet those criteria I feel as though I am a positive influence in life and in music.
JA: Which artists have inspired you?
SeeS: My top three are Nas, Tupac, and Jay-Z, in that order, but I am much more inspired by local talent and art then anything in the mainstream. Nobody inspires me because of fame more then those who interact with me on a daily basis and whom I make music with. I look up to the people I am surrounded by, nothing is more inspiring then other artists on the grind.
JA: Who does your production?
SeeS: I do most of my production myself. In addition to producing “Never Let Em Down” I also produced the entire project “The Conn-vicition Tapes” which featured 15 artists from CT. In addition to producing that project I featured on each track. The project was released through my independent label CT Corporate Takeover and was promoted on my blog CTHipHopBlog.com as well as pressed up and distributed throughout Connecticut. I have also worked with great producers such as Euphony and Vertygo and was fortunate to work with a few platinum producers including Fantom of the Beat and Hugo Diaz.
JA: What is your opinion of the current state of the music industry?
SeeS: I believe the music industry now represents the polar opposite of true hip hop. In my opinion historically hip hop was a marginalized voice that spoke out against the mainstream; it has become what it originally rejected, a very controlled, popularity driven business that dominates the mainstream. In the past it primarily focused on the importance of the message and the innovative spirit behind mixing records and pushing boundaries. I think having become such a mainstream genre we find more repetition, less people pushing boundaries and certainly more focus on popularity then the message. I think the audience has become so large the importance of staying true to hip hop principles has become diluted as the majority of the audience now is relatively clueless to the conditions in which hip hop flourished. That said there are some very promising artists such as J. Cole and Kendrick who truly give me hope to how receptive to lyrical music the mainstream can still be.
JA: Are there any singers that you would like to collaborate with in the future?
Sees: Yes there are countless singers I would like to collaborate with. Alicia Keys, Adele, and Rihanna would be my top three.
JA: What is your favorite movie and favorite book?
SeeS: My favorite movie is American History X. My favorite book is 1984
JA: What is your favorite part of your live show? How has it evolved?
SeeS: My favorite part of performing live is knowing your in the moment and really feeling alive in a way that’s hard to explain in words. My two rules of performing is I never use background vocals and if you practice enough you just need to rely on your talent and ability.
JA: What is your album going to be like?
SeeS: My next album is going to be another true expression of who I am as an artist. Uncompromised, unfiltered, and following my sole creative direction. I am producing most of the beats myself, writing all of my lyrics as always, and promise to deliver the most provocative but honest reflection of my reality without simply playing to a sensationalist audience. Staying true to my values I will push the boundaries of sound and hip hop as we know it, pushing myself to the limit and past in terms of creativity and innovation.
JA: What is your website?
JA: Any final words for the people.
SeeS: The things you buy should never bring the same level of joy as the things you create. Once you find passion and love in the things you make you are able to create your own happiness.