has never been an issue for Patrick Baril. When he started deejaying at
underage clubs in New Hampshire in his early teens, people around the
way got to know the name of DJ Statik. But after hearing about others
spinning under the same moniker, he got frustrated enough to realize
he needed something to set him apart. It wasnt until one Friday night
at the age of 17, while doing his weekly DJ spot in a Bronx club, he
heard a promoter grab the mic and utter a phrase that clicked in his
head, and ultimately led to the birth of Statik Selektah.
a young man at 25, Statik already has the industry schoolings of a veteran,
with a Sirius satellite radio show, his own marketing team and label,
and highbrow mixtapes that will remind listeners how some music is still
worth your money. With his long awaited album about to hit store shelves,
and a gang of other projects in the works, Statik is now in a position
to say whatever the hell he feels, even if he has to hurt some feelings
and break some egos.
Statik candidly breaks down his rise
in the Hip-Hop ranks with longtime pal Termanology, why Lil Wayne cannot
be the best alive, and the obstacles up against a DJ trying to reach
that top-tier position.
AllHipHop.com: Tell me a bit
about Showoff Records.
Statik: Showoff started in
2003, I started putting out remixes, 12 inches, and I used to throw
the logo on my mixtapes and shit. In 2006 we put out Termanologys
first album Out The Gate which is a project he did with DC. Its
not really his first album, its more of a side project hes been
working on but it did pretty good. Also in 2006 we released an album
by Grand Estate who are from New Hampshire and that did pretty good
too. But basically the label is going to get launched with my album,
which has been pushed back so many times, but its finally time on
November 6. After my album, Reks album is coming out in January.
Im A&Ring Termanologys album, and he just got a real big deal
but I cant say yet. The dude he signed with is a very major player
in the industry whos responsible for like 30 million sales. Youre
gonna bug out when you hear who.
AllHipHop.com: So is Terms
album almost done?
Statik: Yeah, weve been
working on it for like two years, its been in the making, but were
going to finish it up with [unknown party].
AllHipHop.com: How did you
and Termanology first get together, because you played a big role in getting
everything rolling for him right?
Statik: Yeah, its funny
cause me, him and Reks were all born in the same hospital. (Laughs)
Hes from Lawrence originally, Im from Lawrence originally but
moved to New Hampshire for high school. I used to deejay an under-21 nightclub
the Hampton Beach, and he used to get up and freestyle and say how hes
better than everybody, and he was like 14 or 15 getting up and telling
everybody hed battle them. It was cool, cause hed rip it. So we
started hangin out just as kids off of loving Hip-Hop coming up together.
Then I moved to Boston and he stayed up there and we didnt talk for
years. There was a time where we didnt talk at all. Four or five
years later, he started sending me records and theyre real dope so
I started playing them, even though we werent even cool like we used
to be. He was consistent, and I admired his consistency cause he was
making good records.
After a while he started coming
down to New York, and it got to where we record stuff like every single
day. He lives in my old apartment, I moved out of the Bronx to Brooklyn.
Literally he lived upstairs for a while. Hes on tour with Common
and Q-Tip right now, but when hes in New York were working like
every day. Well do three records a day.
AllHipHop.com: Its been
said by some that rapping a young mans game, with Lil Wayne being
in throne position in some peoples eyes. But on the other end youve
got people who argue Jay or Nas still get the “Best Rapper Alive” title.
Statik: Yeah, Im the latter,
Im with the Jay and Nas people. Waynes cool, but cmon dudes.
The guys that the kids and a lot of the younger people think are really
good nowadays are saying the same s**t that people were saying in like
82, 83. I dont see the originality like there used to be. And
Im not downing Lil Wayne, I love Lil Wayne and I listen to anything
he puts out. But calling yourself the Best Rapper Alive? I mean its
cool, its confidence, but people actually call him that. Its one
thing if he calls himself that, but when youve got people literally
in the hood saying Waynes better than Nas or Waynes better than
any of these dudes, its like Nah, hold up.
AllHipHop.com: Do you still kick it with the Smash Squad on a regular
Statik: Oh yeah, thats my
crew! Me and Clinton started that with Chubby Chub. Now weve got
Scram Jones, Tony Touch, Wild Boy out in DC. We keep it real tight,
and its not one of those crews that youre gonna see like 30 or
40 DJs in. Theres less than 10 of us.
AllHipHop.com: Was that crew
started as an inspirational thing strictly DJ related, or as something
that developed out of friendship?
Statik: You know it was both.
Me, Clinton and Chubby have always been cool. I look at Chub as like
my big brother. Hes a legend in New York with mixtapes, and he moved
up to Boston and started doing radio, and he used to let me fill in
for him on Hot 97. That was a big move for me and a major step in the
industry. So I always shout out Chub, I always shout out Clinton, these
guys if anyone are the two that really helped me. And shouts to Primo
too, DJ Premier has been a big part of my drive for a couple years.
AllHipHop.com: What was the
whole deal with your project getting pushed back all those times, and
only now seeing the light of day now?
Statik: I mean honestly, it
was really just me bullsh***ing. I never really started it until about
two months ago, but I did the whole album in like two months. Its
been crazy just trying to get all these people in the studio, a lot
of cats will be on the road and they gotta email me the ProTools sessions.
Its a lot of politics and favors being done. Like I didnt pay
anybody, it was all favors. Everybody looked out.
AllHipHop.com: I think its
something a lot of people are going to be checking for, so it must be
a big day for you. What can people expect to hear on it?
Statik: S**t, I dont know
where to start. Every record speaks in its own way. Theres no
filler records at all, and Im happy about that. I used to put out
so many mixtapes before I started doing the Nas and G-Unit ones, I had
Spell My Name Right Volumes 1-10. I always tried to hint that thered
be Spell My Name Right album. (Laughs). But its a good feeling, Im
from Boston and a lot of people know that name from the old mixtapes
and were finally putting out the album. As far as collaborations,
the Freeway/Cassidy is real major, cause theyve never done a song
together. The Q-Tip and Styles P with Termanology is out of this world,
every record on there I love. I think theres something for everybody.
AllHipHop.com: Like you were
saying your mixtapes have dropped for a while, and after the year 2000
you started getting production credits doing Intros and Outros, and
even a few tracks. Now youre production is popping up a lot more,
so how has that developed over the years?
Statik: Its been picking
up pretty steady, but now is the time when youre gonna start seeing
my name on a lot of albums. I produced two songs on Consequences
next album, I produced two records on Joell Ortizs Aftermath album.
I produced every song on my album, so thats gonna be like my business
card when I give that to artists. I did Animal on AZs last
album, a bunch of records for Termanology, and Im producing Reks
entire album, and thats another one Im really putting a lot of
AllHipHop.com: Lets talk
a little about one of my personal favorite mixtapes, The Bar Exam.
What was the story behind you, Royce and Premier getting together to
work on that project?
Statik: I had done a CD with
Royce before that called The King is Back, which isnt out
there as much but we still pressed up like 15,000 copies and that was
back in 2005. Royce was in jail, and Keno his manager had wanted to
do another CD for a while, but Primo kind of put a spark to it and said
Lets do it. He gave me the Hit Em! record, and even
the Ding Ding record had never been on a real CD in the store,
so we put it on there. Half of it was new freestyles, and half was acapella
freestyles that he gave to me.
AllHipHop.com: So I guess you
had the idea to put some to old Primo tracks?
Statik: Yeah, a couple. The
Million Questions he obviously rapped to that one. But like the
Christina Aguilera one, Primo went and got the DAT and dug for it to
give me that beat. AllHipHop.com: Recently theres
been talk of Royce possibly signing with Nas label, you know anything
Statik: Yeah, I mean Ive
been in between it, because when he started doing that I was doing the
Royce tape trying to get Nas on [The Bar Exam]. But theres
definitely going to be some kind of Nas/Royce collaboration sometime
soon. I was going back and forth between both their managers trying
to make something happen, but its just not always that easy.
AllHipHop.com: I dont know
if I missed it or not, but there was talk before a project with Big
Pun material that your were supposed to be working with. Did that ever
Statik: (Laughs) Thats kind
of ill that you heard that. Its gonna happen, we just havent started
it yet but its gonna happen. Theres a lot of politics with that
too, its like weve got to deal with Fat Joe the right way, and
if we really decided to put it out there in the right way, Id want
to break off his wife or whatever. I dont really know, its kind
of a touchy subject. Big Pun is Terms favorite of all time, so he
really wants to do it and it was really his idea. But if we do it, its
gonna be crazy. Its really just an idea, but were gonna do it.
AllHipHop.com: One of the problems
with doing a project like that is a lot of people say, Let the man
rest in peace with the work that he did.
Statik: But those dudes are
corny though. Ive done parties where Ive done a 20 minute Biggie
set and people come up like Yo, play some new shit. Let Biggie rest
in peace. And its like What? Cmon man. Im showing respect
to one of the best who ever lived. In no way is it disrespectful
to him. I mean, its one thing if I take a Biggie acapella like Hypnotize,
put it over a new beat and push it like its some great remix. Thats
corny. But as far as doing a whole CD of a dead artist like Big L, Pun
or Pac, or anybody if you do it right and it sounds good? F**k it
then, do it. Theres no reason not to keep that legacy alive. All
of the dead rappers were some of the best that ever did it, why not
keep their shit alive? You just gotta be original with it. Everybodys
put a Biggie verse over a Jay-Z beat, but whos gonna bring it to
that next level?
AllHipHop.com: So whats
that next level?
Statik: I dont know, well
have to see. (Laughs) I got a lot of Biggie acapellas, I might have
to do something. I mean doing something like Biggie did with the Duets,
its an original idea, but I dont know if it was done the way it
should have been, but something like that is cool because people get
to see collabos that you never saw.
AllHipHop.com: But youve
got to wonder if Biggie would have actually been doing collaborations
with certain artists.
Statik: See thats what Im
talking about, youve got to do it the right way. Personally, my opinion
is that Pac wouldnt necessarily be working with Eminem. I love Eminem
and I love Tupac, but when you put them two together on a song, thats
when its questionable. Like Whats really going on here?
Its really an Interscope thing. But as far as Biggie and Redman,
something like that, that s**t makes sense.