(AllHipHop Features) Luiz “Cipha Sounds” Diaz will be one of the high-profile performers to hit the stage at the TIDAL X: 1015 charity concert in New York City next month.
Besides preparing to spin his turntables for the Tidal sponsored music event, Cipha Sounds has also used the entertainment platform to host his No Small Talk comedy series and present a 22-track “Hits By Cipha” playlist.
When I recently spoke with the Bronx native, Ciph talked about his extensive relationship with the Jay Z-led streaming service.
In addition, the co-host of the long-running Juan Epstein podcast and former Hot 97 radio personality brought up his travels with comedic legend Dave Chappelle.
Television viewers can also be on the lookout for a new program based on Cipha Sounds’ live Take It Personal: Hip Hop Improv Show held at Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre East Village.
[ALSO READ: EXCLUSIVE: Angie Martinez & Cipha Sounds Talk “TIDAL X: 1015” Charity Concert Featuring Beyoncé, Lauryn Hill, T.I. & More]
I saw you did a playlist for Tidal. What was your thought process for picking those particular songs?
I noticed that Tidal is really good with the Tidal Rising artists, new artists, and new releases. But my theory was sometimes there’s a girl that works in the doctor’s office that just wants to hear all her favorite songs in a row.
The playlists on Tidal are made by dope people and they’re very conceptual like the 2Pac samples
for the 20th anniversary of his death. But sometimes you just want to hear your favorite songs in a row. That comes from radio training.
To me, it’s just a regular list of dope joints. But everybody’s been hitting me like, “I’ve been listening to your playlist.” I didn’t know it was going to have an impact like that. I got more coming.
What has been your experience working with Tidal?
Artists are the number one thing. There are artists coming in there every day, superstars like T.I. I saw Ty Dolla $ign there the other day. New artists too. It feels like home there. It’s an artist-friendly, artist-driven place. The artists run it. They feel welcome there.
How did the [Ciph] documentary come together?
That sh-t came out of nowhere. I was in London. I met this kid who was a bellman of the hotel. I was real cool to him and we were hanging out a little bit. He said he was coming to New York, so I told him to come to my comedy show.
He said, “I film stuff and do promo stuff for the Ace hotel. I want to film you.” I said, “Yeah, whatever.” Over the course of a year, he came to New York like three times and filmed me.
To be honest, it was a little bit annoying at times. I thought, “Why did I say yes to this? Why am I doing this?” Then he hits me a couple of months later like, “It’s coming out. BET wants to air it.” I was like, “What!?! How the f-ck did you get that?”
Then he put it out and I got mad love because of it. It was crazy. I was thinking, “Why would anyone want to watch a documentary on me?”
I feel like when you get a documentary made about you, that’s like that “stamp.”
Yeah. I was like, “Who wants to see this? Who cares?” That sh-t was really heartfelt. I was getting messages and people calling me. I was like, “This is cool!”
What’s going on with your comedy career?
Comedy is great. I was just in London with Dave Chappelle.
Wait, you can’t say that so nonchalantly. [laughs]
That’s how it is though. Dave is nonchalant. The way he asked me to go to London with him… first of all, he was going to a big fight. I was like, “What’s up with that fight? I want to go.”
He said, “You want to work? I’m doing like seven shows out there.” That’s how he asked me. In the middle of a different conversation.
All the shows sold out. It was mad fun. That’s how he is. He’s a regular dude. He just happens to be the funniest guy on the planet.
I read that you’re working with Alicia Keys on a project. Is that still happening?
Yeah, for a TV version of [the Take It Personal: Hip Hop Improv Show]. We just signed a deal. I can’t say where yet, but we’re starting to work on it now. It’s a lot of steps, but it’s looking real good. I also got another season of No Small Talk coming out on Tidal. We’re about to shoot that in a couple of days.
[ALSO READ: EXCLUSIVE: Cipha Sounds Discusses ‘No Small Talk’ Series, Getting Support From Jay Z & Funniest Rappers]
TIDAL X: 1015 charity concert will stream live October 15 on Tidal for members and non-members.
The next Take It Personal: Hip Hop Improv Show is scheduled for September 30 at UCB East.
Stream Cipha Sounds’ No Small Talk series on Tidal.