Dame Grease: Sour Diesel Era

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When Dame Grease interviewed with AllHipHop.com a couple years ago, he was in the process of demolishing his own empire.  After a phase where he felt “blackballed” by the powers that be, he was forced to change his mind set and begin drawing up plans for a much stronger network. Today, the fruits of his labor have paid off.  Dame has strengthened his own market value by focusing on his own music and his maturation as a business man.  With two albums on horizon, multiple placements, and several multi-media deals in the works, Dame has used his new foundation as a springboard to an amazing future.  On May 27th Dame will release Goon Musik, and follow up with the highly anticipated Sour Diesel.  Dame took time out with AllHipHop.com to discuss his new projects, why he decided to start rhyming, and what he thinks of Ruff Ryders Records today.AllHipHop.com:  Tell me about the line up and the particulars on your new album.Dame Grease:  The album is crazy. The line up is crazy.  Goon Musik actually was a mixtape, but I made it into an album.  It’s like a whole movie into one.  AllHipHop.com:  Who do you have on it? Primarily your Vacant Lot Records artists?Dame Grease:  Yeah I just kept this one simple because I have another album coming out right after this.  I got my Sour Diesel album coming out so kept this one simple and put my Vacant Lot artists on there.  Actually, I’m rhyming on most of the joints on this album.  That’s a different twist on it, but I’m not rhyming to be a rapper or an artist.  I’m just rhyming like I’m the hood narrator.  AllHipHop.com:  Well, tell me what made you want to get into the rapping aspect of Hip-Hop?Dame Grease:  The thing is , real talk, I was rapping before I was making beats.  With the sound and music people know me for as far as the big sound, big movies, big music.  We actually wanted to do an album like that with myself rapping because  a lot of artist don’t really do theatrical rap.  Everybody is kind of one dimensional now.  So I wanted to display a little more artistry and make a couple joints that are more like movies instead of ring tone joints.  AllHipHop.com:  So the Sour Diesel is the album with more notable rappers?Dame Grease:  Yeah, Sour Diesel, I call it prime time.  A lot of people know I leaked the “Sour Diesel” song last year.  It’s a song that’s so monumental, it’s still spinning across the globe right now.  It actually has  a life of it’s own.  So the song became everybody’s favorite weed song.  I’m displaying more of my family in the business.  I got Styles P., Sheek Louch, Pusha T. from the Clipse, Freeway, DMX, Drag-On, John Doe, and my n***a Meeno from my label.  I really wanted to get all the artists that people know and bring them into my world and give them a breath of fresh air.  For example with the original song with Nore and Styles, they were able to bring a different vibe without being the traditional character they usually are.  So I wanted to keep the vibe.   All of [my]albums, I try to keep the main vibe, like a comic book.AllHipHop.com:  The last time you interviewed with me you expressed interest in working with Jay-Z, despite his past riff with one of your artists.  How did it feel when he got on the “Big Spender” song?Dame Grease:  The s**t felt beautiful.  Last time I was talking about it, I was just building a plan.  Me being an adult, and being in this business, I wanted the longevity.  We actually broke all that foul air that was there.  Me and Free (Freeway) are cool, me and Jay are cool.  When Freeway took him the track, he (Freeway) called me and said , “Yo Jay’s about to get on that.”  Then my man Shalik from Def Jam said, “Jay told me to tell you to beef it up a little to make it bang.”  Right there let me know that all the air is completely clear and we are all here as business men to make hits, hot s**t, and keep it pumping.AllHipHop.com:  Also, last time we spoke, you seemed like you were starting over.Dame Grease:  Yeah, I had to do the whole s**t over.  It’s good that you’re doing the interview because you’re the one that did it before.  You can actually feel me and where I’m coming from.  It’s beautiful.  The one thing that I’ve always known is from money, to black balling, to any hating on me, or me being young and ignorant, nothing can stop my mind and my music.  Once I know that, it’s my job to fix everything and rebuild it to what I know it is.  The sound and the music that I have is monumental and stretched out in the rap game.  Grease has a Vacant Lot sound, that you can try to duplicate, but you cannot replace who we are.  So, it was my job to go back, destroy everything, get my little bucket of concrete and bricks, and start fixing the building back up.AllHipHop.com:  How do you view what happened to you and what’s happened to Ruff Ryder Records since then?Dame Grease:  I’m gonna keep it real, I’m a street dude.  All this is spiritual. God works in all of us.  I actually had to do a spiritual cleansing.  Even after that, my mother passed away and that was just a knockout blow.  She knows the man that I am so I just had to come back stronger and use that to be more focused and do this thing that I’m here to do.As far as the owners of Ruff Ryders, I don’t want to say nothing bad on them because I don’t know if they’re all watching what I’m saying. (laughs) It’s cool for me and I always try to keep it positive.  I’m not going to use no negative energy to get up ahead.  AllHipHop.com:  Most producers do beats and leave it at that. You’ve used your music to put you in different businesses.  How important is that to you?Dame Grease: It’s real important. People just want you to be a producer, but I’m a business man. I’ve been a hustler since from the streets.  Actually this music business is the only legal job I’ve had in my f**kin’ life.  It’s no way in the world I’m gonna ever sit still and wait for one thing to happen. A lot of great people from the streets have the ability to be millionaires or billionaires.  It’s no way in the world we can’t do it just because of where we are from. You just  have to learn knowledge and how to apply it to get it done.  Even before I broke into the game as a producer, I had like six f**kin’ groups that was making a lot of records.  I actually was a record label without being a record label.  Until I got into the business [I didn't realize I already had one].  It was just something that was going down already just based on the business knowledge, and that talent knowledge.  Now, I have more good people with me and a lot more knowledge.  We’re in a new era and a new age and I want to be one of the kings of this new era.  All the giants are knocked the f**k out, the major labels.AllHipHop.com: What’s up with DMX?  Are you still working with him?Dame Grease:  We’re still cool, we’re going to be cool forever.  That’s my blood and my brother.  I didn’t see him in a couple months, I’m not going to lie.  We spoke a little while ago and I got two joints on his new album.  I sent some joints in for his project but I didn’t actually see him.  AllHipHop.com: Who’s someone out now that you’d like to work with?Dame Grease:  I like Shawty Lo.  I f**k with Shawty Lo. That’s my n***a, he be spittin’ that s**t.  See the thing is that I like hearing music but I can feel him.  That’s the whole thing is that you don’t have to have the best rhyme skills or quality.  If you can be felt, you can be heard.AllHipHop.com:  Any last words for the community?Dame Grease: I’d like to thank everybody. I’d like to thank you, all the websites, all the magazines, and everybody that believes in this real music.  It is music from the heart.

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