It's crazy how
an area that is so imitated can be so overlooked in the grand scheme of things.
That is the case for the San Francisco Bay Area's Hip-Hop scene. Whether it's
the slang that has been borrowed by the masses or the independent game that
made virtual unknowns millionaires, the Bay is all about setting trends.
One of the major
players in setting those trends is Messy Marv. After being critically acclaimed
and street certified for ten years in the game, Messy Marv is ready to take
his career to a higher level.
The new album Disobayish is doing very well. How does it feel to be
back grinding with renewed focus?
Messy Marv: It
feels good homie, I been grinding, I ain't never went nowhere
Yeah but the radio play and the media support is heating up now like it never
has before with the murder dog cover and the Source story and whatnot.
MM: I just went
down to the radio stations and the magazines and was real sincere with them.
I deserve this so I came at it with that approach.
With your albums you bring sincerity to the game of saying what's on your mind
and your heart regardless of what people may think. Do you think the music industry
is ready for that?
MM: Actually man,
when you dealing with underground artists, that's always been there. The game
been dealing with it since the NWA's and the "f**k the Police" days.
It just depends on if a muthaf**ka's gon' be scary or not. It's a lot of scared
muthaf**ka's out here that don't want to deal with the real s**t and whether
they like it or not they gon' have to deal with it anyway.
What do you think needs to be done for the industry as a whole to shine more
light on the rappers in the Bay Area?
MM: Everybody just
needs to stay consistent and come with the cream, the good dope. In the Bay
Area what we're known for is being pirates, everybody has their own label, we
like an industry within ourselves and I hate to say [it but] it's a lot of bulls**t
coming out the Bay because everybody wants to be a rapper. Everybody's been
looking on the Bay Area because I'm hearing our slang and everything about the
Bay in these other people's lyrics and on they albums. The Bay has always been
a major part in this music industry whether they like it or not. We trendsetters
out here, its just that you don't know if it came from The Bay Area because
these other people have put it out on their songs and you think its coming from
them, but all the time it came from here.
On your new album Disobayish, you are dissing 50 and Obie Trice. What made you
even give them any light on your album?
MM: As far as the
Obie Trice situation I just took it real personal that that dude came down to
my city of San Francisco, got on the radio station and said 'the city showed
him love but he had to walk around with his ass on the wall' and made a joke
like we was fa**ots or something, I took that real seriously. As far as 50,
real ni**as speak on a situation like the J. Prince's and the other real rap
moguls of the industry and you see a dude live on TV dry snitching on another
man's company. We put snitches out there like that, and that's always been a
street thing, snitches don't get no street credibility. So when you got real
ni**as speaking on it, other real ni**as pick it up and speak on it too. It's
just like if you get your paperwork on a snitch ni**a, we put it out there like
that, now everybody around town is talking about it.
After getting offers from major label's what makes you continue to stay independent
and do you ever plan on going the major label route?
MM: It's just going
to take the paperwork making sense. In order for me to sign a deal its' gotta
be right. I'm not scared of that, I want that.
On the last few albums you always have songs relating to women that are a different
vibe from your normal material. What makes you do that, are you looking for
radio or is it just something that you just decided to put down?
MM: It wasn't the
radio, because the radio really doesn't support me anyway, the streets support
me. It was just my maturity; it's just a part of growing.
Unlike a lot of artists that aren't on majors you have a lot of markets supporting
you, how did you get that love?
MM: It's real man,
I feel like the world is a ghetto and everybody goes through the same struggles
and that's why they pick up the tapes. They go through the same s**t I go through
so of course they gon' pick it up just like they pick up the Jay-Z's and whoever
else, they feel it. It's funny, I went to New York and the hood really supported
me like 'yo this s**t is real and it ain't too many real muthaf**kas coming
up out The Bay Area like this and we could learn to love this and respect this.'
It was weird. I'm talking bout Cypress ni**as in the Cypress projects, Brownsville
ni**as, Brooklyn ni**as was really like this is some real s**t. ni**as is sleeping
on the Bay because it's a lot of saturated weak ass s**t coming out The Bay
so muthaf**kas ain't even looking at it.
What is your take on the whole New Bay movement considering you fall into it
a bit because although you've been putting it down for a long time, there are
a lot of new fans peeping you now?
MM: I'm just a
diamond in the rough waiting to get shined up real good. I don't think it's
a New Bay because I been doing this a long time and I 'm just now getting the
recognition that I feel is due. I'm just going to continue doing my work and
putting it down. I don't feel it's a New Bay I feel that muthaf**kas are just
You had a preview DVD that came with the Disobayish CD, what's the
deal with the full length?
MM: The Diary that's
gon' be the biggest s**t, I'm going to drop that probably in July. I'm running
around the projects in New York, I went down South and I'm on the West coast
but I'm gonna show you these cities like you've never seen them before. Its
gon' f**k you up, you gonna be like why is this dude not getting the platinum
sales and the recognition he needs to get, when he's all out here and muthaf**kas
is supporting him. So I'm bringing it to the streets and bringing a visual on
how Mess gets down and how the streets love me.
On the preview you did a cover of a Bay Area classic "Jealousy" originally
done by Cougnut. What prompted that?
MM: Rest in Peace
Cougnut. Its just like Jam Master Jay, Pac Biggie, Aaliyah, its like you don't
realize what you got till its gone. I just wanted to put it out there; everybody
goes through that jealousy and envy s**t. That was a good friend of mine, just
like anybody else would put it out there for they loved ones that past away.
What do you think you are bringing to the table that a lot of people are missing
MM: Quality music,
real music. Overall I feel like I'm the most complete artist.
For people that have no idea about San Francisco beyond the tourist attraction,
what is your message to them?
MM: I just want
to let them know, don't get us f**ked up, its real concrete bricks out here,
its real projects, its real ni**as spending big money. Overlords, drug lords,
street lords really out here doing it, been putting it down for years. And its
real talent, like I said half these ni**as you see on BET and MTV, they ain't
the ni**as; they got that from right here. That s**t ya'll hear, that game they
hollering, they got that from right here. But we ain't crying we just gon' keep
coming and stay consistent. We letting the world know and you'll be able to
Staying on that note, the murder rate has been increasing every year all over
The Bay, what is you take on that?
MM: I want to say
f**k the police first of all because they put on a front. An incident just happened,
one of these Africans in San Francisco killed a police officer and it was headlines,
front page. And what I'm saying is my ni**as die everyday and muthaf**kas don't
even take the time to find out who did the killing or put the s**t on the front
page or nothing. The Source did an article in 98' on me and my projects called
'Casualties of War' about how it took like 150 police officers to raid 13 spots
in my projects and its just like the police are dirty. So when you got that
and you ain't got support from the community, of course you are going to have
a high killing rate. We need to support one another as far as us being black,
whether its rap or this community stuff, no matter what it is because the police
ain't gon' do it and the government ain't gon' do it. f**k Kuwait, that s**t
could wait, we warring everyday, ni**as walking around with AK' s going to the
liquor store just to buy some juice, its real out here homie. And when you say
West Coast, they get The Bay mixed up with LA. I love LA, LA goes through what
they go through but we're our own Mecca. It's a lot of s**t that happens in
this Bay Area that everybody sleeps on and I feel like this is where all the
s**t comes from. Everybody comes out here with their dry ass sponges and soaks
up the game and [leaves]. As far as the murder rates, its going to continue
to happen if we don't move towards a cause. Other than that its gon' be war,
so I'll see you ni**as on the field.
Anything you want to touch on before I let you go?
MM: Look out for
the Diary. And I really ain't got no beef with 50 or Obie Trice or none of that
s**t, I'm just letting them ni**as know how it is where I'm from. You'll always
be behind bars when you running your mouth. Keep your mouth closed and ni**as
won't be getting at you. It ain't no personal thing I'm just from the streets
and when you turf politicking, that's how you get down.