“If I don’t put nothing into this sh*t, I’m not going to get nothing out of it. Being a man is being able to stand on your own two [feet]. I’ve seen that stepping out on a leap of faith, on my own, and stepping out on somebody else’s recognizance. I’ve made it a lot further in this game standing on my own 10 toes than I have following behind somebody. Following behind somebody, I learned all the sh*t not to do. My longevity allows me to just see the do’s-and-don’ts of Hip-Hop—what hat to do, and how to treat the next person.” –KILLA KYLEON
Dead End Drive, an ominous name given to a particular neighborhood on the Southside of Houston, Texas. As in countless other locales, here some residents yearn to defy the imposed oppression of strained finances. Others are content with complacency; they embrace the darkness of an invisible apartheid. Killa Kyleon is an MC who has emerged from this environment. An ingrained faith, an organic skill for rhyme, and a tireless work-ethic helps him to share his message. Using "sixteens" to reach a public anesthetized by Pop culture propaganda, Killa Kyleon has an arduous job.
Too often the public has doll eyes; staring at everything they see nothing. These sheep are easily manipulated by the corporations behind the curtain. While pantomime MCs parrot what’s hawt; Killa Kyleon continues to share his truth. “I put my heart and my soul into my music every time. I’m going to invest all that into Hip-Hop,” emphatically states the more athletic wordsmith.
Juvenile said it best, “55% of these n*ggas is fake. The other 45% they handling they weight.” Read along to decide if Killa Kyleon is carrying his weight.
AllHipHop.com: If you were to review your body of work, which three tracks best demonstrate your personal journey through Hip-Hop?
Killa Kyleon: My journey through Hip-Hop, in three records? With Slim [Thug and Young] Jeezy, there’s a record called, “Diamonds (remix).” Mannie Fresh produced the record. And I gotta say my “Bodies Hit the Floor” record. It’s on my CPTP 2[Candy Paint & Texas Plates 2] project. That collab was a long-time-coming. And my whole T.R.I.L.L. [The Realest Individual Living Life] album.
AllHipHop.com: [laughter] You said your whole T.R.I.L.L. album?
Killa Kyleon: My whole T.R.I.L.L. album; it’s the best sh*t I ever did. But since you said three, I’ll probably say my “Change Up” record.
AllHipHop.com: To date, are you at peace with the time that you’ve sacrificed from your friends and family in order to pursue your Hip-Hop aspirations?
Killa Kyleon: Yeah, I feel like every day that I step out it’s a sacrifice. Time is the most valuable thing. It’s more precious than anything; you can never get it back. Time is life. It’s time away from the kids. It’s time away from the family. That’s the main sacrifice. I put all my time, my energy, and my grind into my music. At the same time, it’s a sacrifice and it’s a gift. The more time that I put into what I’m doing, and the harder my grind, means that it will pay off in the end.
AllHipHop.com: What is your bottom-line truth? In relation to your art, how do your lyrics help to convey this truth?
Killa Kyleon: My bottom-line truth is that hard work pays off. And hard work will beat talent any day of the week. Not in an arrogant way, but I somewhat feel that I’m quite talented in what I’m doing. Plus, I got the hard work. Truth is, at the end of the day, hard work will beat talent. You’ll get out of it what you put into it. I feel like my hard work and my grind is a fact of what my music is. You can hear it [my work ethic] in my music. It’s like everything that is Killa Kyleon—my life—I’m a student of the game. You can hear all that in my music; it’s a fact. I can’t preach it if I don’t live it.
If I did that, at the end of the day I’d feel like a false prophet. Being that our music is so well loved by everybody across the board, people feel like our songs help them throughout different events in their lives. So, I feel like if I’m rapping bullsh*t, it says a lot about the person that I am. If I’m giving them the full truth from me—the real—they’re going to respect that. They’re going to respect my music a thousand times over. Yeah, we’re entertainers, and we’re authors; but, I feel like if I ain’t live it I can’t give it.
AllHipHop.com: It’s 2012, and we’ve witnessed our first African-American president. A provocative bumper sticker boldly declares, “Don’t Re-Nig in 2012.” What are your thoughts?
Killa Kyleon: I don’t appreciate it. It’s showing you how racism still exists. I can look at that and go several different ways. N*ggers! Don’t re-elect a n*gger. Or re-nig, meaning don’t ride with that sh*t [continue to support an African-American president]. Like, if we’re against it; we’re against it.
AllHipHop.com: So, you feel it’s more than a clever play on words; it’s blatant bigotry?
Killa Kyleon: Whether we like it or not, racism still exists. It’s at an ultimate all-time high right now. I feel like us as Black people are falling off and falling short. Re-nig is against. The whole word is damn near sarcasm. Don’t Re-NIG; don’t re-elect a n*gger. Don’t re-elect a n*gger in 2012. The word renege means against; it’s not for it. Racism is at an all-time high. To this day, I feel like racism still exists.
For a dollar, a lot of n*ggas is out here selling their souls. Yes, we have a Black man in office; but, we’re living in a White man’s world. A Black man has statistically proven that he can get the job done. He’s done that, and it’s still a problem. The [zealous Republicans/Teabaggers] are trying to dig up sh*t on this man [President Obama]. They’re trying to create sh*t to make it appear that his job isn’t being done properly.
The sh*t that they’re bringing up is pointless. The man is doing his job. The man has stopped the war [War on Terror]. Now they’re trying to start another war with the Kony 2012 sh*t. They just want to go over there and steal Uganda’s sh*t [natural resources]. Us in the U.S. have our priorities f*cked up. We try to go and run other people’s sh*t, but here our sh*t is not even together. I feel like he’ll run two terms if they don’t kill him. I hate to say this, but if he wins this time, I feel like they’re going to kill him. Or, they’re going to try.
AllHipHop.com: When I was watching him get sworn in, I was worried that a sniper’s bullet would kill the hope. Didn’t think he’d make it this long. What’s your stance on voting? Does our vote actually count?
Killa Kyleon: I’m from Texas. I’m from where the a**hole who f*cked us up is from. I feel like voting is damn near like religion. If you have faith in it, and you believe that it’s gonna work—to each his own. God is Somebody that we’ve never seen. We actually don’t see them votes. Bush [George W.] showed us or sh*t don’t count.
AllHipHop.com: [begins to cackle] You’re right.
Killa Kyleon: They had it in black and white that this man loss, but they still put him in office. Honestly and truly, that right there showed me that my vote didn’t count. It’s just like what I say about religion. You go to church to get the word, not to listen at the pastor. Whether they’re wrong or not; you vote, because it’s right. That’s damn near the same thing.
AllHipHop.com: Do you ever bring any of your political awareness to your music?
Killa Kyleon: Sometimes, I let it be known. I just don’t get too all the way in it. Rap needs to get back to that. Our voices are powerful. We’re the most powerful music genre in music. We do too much shining, and too much stunting, and too much n*ggerdom; we don’t focus on the real. We’ll come together and do positive sh*t; but, we’re damn near brainwashing people with what’s hot. Why not brainwash them with what’s real?
AllHipHop.com: From you, what projects should we anticipate?
Killa Kyleon: Be looking out for T.R.I.L.L. - "The Realest Individual Living Life, Team Run It Living Legend". It’s a culturally conceptual album. It’s going to be super dope. It’s going to be one of my best bodies of work.
AllHipHop.com: How do you plan to release it? Have you linked with a major record label, or secured a distribution deal?
Killa Kyleon: As far as giving away the music, I think I’ve done everything that I can do. Now, I’m about to put an actual project, that is going to stamp me that I can make a complete album. It’s going to be an album. I feel like everything I put out is an album; but, at the same time, I haven’t put out a solid project to where it’s completely solid, like using all of my own production. I’ve done mixtapes with my own production, but I didn’t actually put the stamp on it that, this is an album. This is a street album that I’m putting out.
AllHipHop.com: Do you have an anticipated release date for it?
Killa Kyleon: We’re working to finalize it. You know in Hip-Hop, fans got A.D.D. I swear they do. I feel like that’s why as long as I’m constantly putting out dope sh*t, I can’t lose. It would be a difference if I was putting out sh*t that wasn’t dope—just putting out random sh*t. I always give my fans something that leads into something else.
AllHipHop.com: Is it going to be released this year?
Killa Kyleon: It’ll be within the next couple of months that it’s released. Honestly, it’s going to be released no later than May or June. The project is done. We’re just going to do all the proper promotions for it. This time I’m going to get out and hit every region. That’s what I’m going to do differently with this project. I’m real good with a lot of the blogs. I would like to thank y’all for placing a lot of my stuff as well. Y’all have been rocking with me for years. Now, the internet is more important than it ever has been. It’s stronger than radio. I’ve been pretty much regional based. But now, I’m fixing to get out there and give the project legs. I’m going to actually go to these different regions and touch these different markets where they don’t know me. I’m going to go out there and touch the fans.
AllHipHop.com: You have to have a hell of a work-ethic.
Killa Kyleon: Baby, I do five to six records a day.
AllHipHop.com: I hear you talking.
Killa Kyleon: My next three projects are done. I’m working on trying to outdo that. I have a five year plan and I’m sticking to it.
AllHipHop.com: Well, check you out. I’m definitely interested in hearing your new stuff.
Killa Kyleon: It’s going to be dope. I worked with a lot of dope people on it, too.
AllHipHop.com: Can you tell us any names?
Killa Kyleon: Pretty much, I want it to be a surprise.
AllHipHop.com: You can surprise us now.
Killa Kyleon: Out here, I got relationships with a lot of good guys. Just expect me with other dope people.
AllHipHop.com: See how you didn’t give me a name?
Killa Kyleon: [chuckles] Everybody wants to know who’s going to be on it. It’s going to be classic. I just can’t reveal it yet. It’s going to be classic though. I’ll give you a little sneaks about it.
AllHipHop.com: [snickers] What is a sneak going to do?
Killa Kyleon: We riding around and getting it; we just love Mary Jane. You know, the Kush goes good with the orange juice. It’s going to be real dope.
AllHipHop.com: I went all the way to Austin, [Texas for South By Southwest], and you wouldn’t even talk to me.
Killa Kyleon: I didn’t know you was down there. I was working super hard. I had a bunch of demands. I felt like I was one of the hardest working men out there.
AllHipHop.com: I hope your funky album is worth it.
Killa Kyleon: [chuckles]
AllHipHop.com: May I ask you a personal question?
Killa Kyleon: Let’s go.
AllHipHop.com: Is Z-Ro on your album?
Killa Kyleon: Ah ha; that’s the homie! Z-Ro is one of the dopest artists ever. That’s a real dope guy.
AllHipHop.com: So, that’s a yes; that dope guy will be on your album?
Killa Kyleon: That’s a real dope guy.
AllHipHop.com: Is he dope enough to outshine you on your own sh*t?
Killa Kyleon: To outshine me? There’s one thing that I can say; to do that one, they’re going to have to light a bonfire. I don’t think that nobody can beat me but me. They’re going to have to light a bonfire to do that one, baby.
AllHipHop.com: You sound confident.
Killa Kyleon: They mistake that confidence for arrogance; but, that’s what that is. I’m confident as ever.
AllHipHop.com: So, we’re confirmed that Z-Ro will be on the album?
Killa Kyleon: He’s dope. I love, Z-Ro. That’s my homeboy. I f*ck with Z-Ro heavy, man. His new shit is super jamming.
AllHipHop.com: [laughter] You’re killing me. What would you like to share with your supporters?
Killa Kyleon: Team Run-It, we run it. Killa Kyleon, f*ck with me like I owe you some money. I guarantee that you’re going to get money back, real talk.