Def Jam Recording artist, Bone, may be standing on the outside of the Freshman class of 2010, but could very well step out to be "John Wall (of Kentucky Wildcat fame)" when the year is over. The Atlanta, Texas (yes, I said Texas) native, Fort Worth resident appeared on the industry radar this past October, and got signed to a single deal with Def Jam for a song he recorded only a month before called HomeGurl.
Six months later, the early success of HomeGurl upgraded Bones Def Jam situation to an album contract. And the recently released remix of the record has been graced by Texas lyrical legend, Bun B. Bone is currently attending Prairie View University. And this is where Hip-Hop elder statesmen would be proud. Bone is currently taking a Hip-Hop course, learning the in and outs of the industry as well as its history. Bone was granted a break between classes to talk with AllHipHop.com about his early success and double life as rapper/college student.
AllHipHop.com: While we got some time between your classes, talk about some of your early influences in Hip-Hop.
Bone: When I was very young, it was listening to LL Cool J that made me want to rap. I can remember watching the Around the Way Girl video with my mom. She was a huge fan of LL. When I was old enough to choose what I listened to, I listened to UGK. I remember hearing Pocket Full of Stones a lot. Do What You Wanna Do by Devin da Dude was a favorite of mine. At age 12, I was blessed to listen to Eminem, and he has been my favorite rapper since. More so than Em, I must say Scarface. And I cant leave out artists like Paul Wall, Chamillionaire, Mike Jones, Slim Thugg, Chalie Boy, etc. These were the artists that showed me how to grind and how to get my music heard. And Im not just saying but Ive been reading AllHipHop.com ever since I started reading news online. So your site is an influence too.
AllHipHop.com: We appreciate that a lot! Ok, so talk about your college life and whether it connects to your music career or not.
Bone: Well Im sitting in my professors office, shout out to Dr. Jones. I met Dr. Jones back in 2006. His favorite rapper is Rakim. And he swears up and down that Rakim is the best emcee ever. Im enrolled in his Hip-Hop class this semester. Dr. Jones expertise in History and his background in Hip-Hop has opened up my small world to the larger picture. Hip-Hop is a culture. I believe that there isnt a wrong way to be Hip-Hop. I believe that Texas is as much Hip-Hop as New York and California is as much Hip-Hop as Georgia is. Hip-Hop is universal. And as far as tying Hip-Hop in with my major (Psychology), in many ways it is one in the same. But I just want people to know that you can do both, music and school. You dont have to drop one for another. You can work twice as hard at both.
AllHipHop.com: Let me be honest with you. I never knew there was an Atlanta, Texas. Can you do a pitch for your hometown real quick?
Bone: Atlanta, Texas is all about Football and Track & Field. Weve won State Championships in both. I was on the 2004 State Championship Football team. Its a very athletic community. The population is 5,000 people. As far as Hip-Hop goes, there isnt any history there. So for me to come from Atlanta, Texas and to be signed to Def Jam is a blessing. Im so proud to have been born and raised there. But I will tell you, there werent any places for me to record in town. I didnt record my first record until I was 15 years old. Ive wanted to rap since I was 4.
AllHipHop.com: Now that you have your album deal in place, what are you looking forward to this year?
Bone: I got a lot of songs ready that we are going through right now. We have a title for the album. Tricky Stewart will be lending his Grammy winning expertise to the album. I got my first mixtape coming out. Were just working hard, pushing everything to the max. I am also working on getting this degree at the same time. So its a lot of work, but its the best work.
Will Deshair Foskey is a Senior Journalist/blogger, born and raised in New Jersey with a New Yorkers mentality. You can follow him on Twitter @Deshair