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The League: Long Island Invasion

theleague

In the year 1997, that

was a explosive era in rap music. The culture had an upside with major

companies putting dollars into advertisements. People from Omaha

to Oakland were

now able to get spotlight for their music. A crew from parts of Elmont and

Roosevelt, Long Island, New York were looking to follow suit. The League,

originally signed to Mariah Carey’s Crave Records, were poised to make an

impact but, with no project released, the group had to continue to make their

moves in silence.

Fast forward ten years

and the combination of Merse, Flix, Reem and Flip is ready to turn the world on

its axis with their amazing sound mixed with gritty and introspective lyrics.

The group has cultivated a steady buzz, being featured on mixtapes by DJ Kay

Slay, Big Mike and DJ Gooch. Powered by a new creative lease in their musical

life, this league of extraordinary gentlemen are hungry and determined to crave

out their own niche in the game.

AllHipHop.com sat down

with the talented group as they talk about their association with DJ Kay Slay,

what they learned from Sha Money XL who produced their song “Shoot

Or Bleed,” and

how their movement got respect from the likes of Chuck D.

AllHipHop.com: You guys

were raised around Elmont and Roosevelt in Long Island.

How were you able to gain exposure in other parts of New York?

The League: Basically

what we did was we made appearances in a lot of mixtapes. We would do a lot of

showcases and just built our name up within the underground scene. It was a lot

of hard work, but we were able to cultivate a buzz off of our labor. There

hasn’t really been anything too difficult with building up our name; people

have been showing us a lot of love. We started doing a lot of showcases in the

underground. We got a buzz off of that. Our shows haven’t been too difficult;

they’ve been showing us love. We just do our thing, nah’mean.

AllHipHop.com: How did

you guys link up with DJ Kay Slay?

The League: Well, we had

our buzz going strong in the streets and we wanted to make our presence felt in

the mixtape game. So, we met up with Kay Slay and Big Mike. They dug our work

and we’ve been able to build up a strong relationship through working with

them. We’ve made appearances on the radio to satellite stations like Shade 45.

AllHipHop.com: New York is a tough

place to make it in. A lot of people just hate on your talent just for the sake

of doing it. So, what would you guys say to someone who was “Hate

On The League”?

The League: If you’re not

being hated on, then you must not be doing something good. You got to be talked

about in order to know how much progress you need to or have been making. No

one has ever blatantly done that to us, though. We’ve been doing shows so much

that people have been giving us nothing but love. It’s a respect thing between

the MC’s and the crowd. We return that respect to them. It’s understood without

having being said. You get the majority of the crowd who respects you, but at

least there is just one hater in the crowd who’s a heckler.

AllHipHop.com: You guys

have done a lot of shows in New York.

What’s the hardest thing about performing there as opposed to anything else?

The League: People are

more honest with you here. We came into the music with the passion to do this.

This is something that we’ve worked for and we wanted to be able to do that.

We’ve performed for a lot of crowds to, so there’s nothing really hard about

performing.

AllHipHop.com: The

argument has always been that the music isn’t what it used to be ever since big

business aligned itself with the Hip-Hop culture. How can your group remain

true to the culture and appeal to a mainstream audience?

The League: That’s

particularly important with everyone… especially with New York Hip-Hop. We’re

from here, so we know how people want their Hip-Hop music. We’re not thinking

about appealing to the masses in a manufactured way. These songs are coming

from our hearts. We’re not making songs for the charts. Our sole objective is

to be able to put our passion on paper and express it to the masses.

AllHipHop.com: “Shoot

Or Bleed”

was produced by Sha Money XL. What did you learn from him that you guys used to

help navigate the business?

The League: Stay on your

grind. At the end of the day, you can’t stop! You must always stay consistent.

People always have to remember who you are. That gave us the motivation to keep

going and to keep pushing.

AllHipHop.com: You also

have a song on your page called, “Malcolm and Martin.” It’s almost reminiscent

of another Roosevelt, Long Island,

New York group by the name of

Public Enemy. Have you ever had the chance to build with them?

The League: We never got

the chance to build with them, but we did get good feedback from Chuck D,

himself. He liked our movement. Chuck, regardless of anything, his whole career

is legendary and we took that and moved with it. He always had great words of

encouragement that we picked up through his music.

AllHipHop.com: “2

Timer” is a

nice song, but also indicative of something that goes on in life. As a group,

as an act involved in the Hip-Hop culture making rap music has there ever been

a time where someone made a promise and didn’t live up to it?

The League: As far as our

group is concerned… that’s never happened; we keep each other up. We live up to

our words and our balls [laughs]. You can’t break them for nobody! It is what

it is, we’re all human, so things like that are bound to happen. It is life…

you can learn from whatever happens or keep it moving. We speak about what goes

on and it happens in our lives.

AllHipHop.com: Talk about

how you guys came up with the song “Not The Day”

The League: We go through

emotions everyday. I mean have you ever had a day where just what people to

stay out of your way? That’s basically what the song is about today’s just not

the day. We’re going postal on that song. Honestly, what really inspired us was

the beat. The track just brought out a certain emotion that was inside of us.

Of course, you come across those times in real life, but we had the beat and it

just brought it out of us. So, sometimes when you have a group of guys all

together and they’re all talking shit, concepts just manage to find their way

out.

The Leaugue’s Mysspcae Page is www.myspace.com/lcrookedi

 

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