EXCLUSIVE: Warren G Talks Kendrick’s “Control” Verse, His Issues With Mainstream Radio & West Coast Hip Hop
(AllHipHop Features) AllHipHop.com got the opportunity to speak with West Coast legend Warren G. In part two of the exclusive Q&A, the Grammy nominated rapper/producer speaks on various topics including his take on fellow California emcee Kendrick Lamar's verse on "Control," the difference between Hip Hop radio in the 1990's and now, some of the younger rap artists that he's checking for, and the love he gets across the nation.
[ALSO READ: EXCLUSIVE: Warren G Talks Partnership With Allure Moscato, Starting His Own Wine Brand & New Songs Featuring Nate Dogg]
AllHipHop.com: What did you think about Kendrick Lamar’s "Control" verse?
Warren G: I think he was trying to get his point across as far as just a lot of bullsh*t going on in rap music. Everybody keeps talking about the same thing. They keep throwing up money, what they got, chains and sh*t. After so long that sh*t gets played out. As far as I read it he's basically saying everybody step your game up. Let’s talk about different things. Let’s get into real Hip Hop, and have fun with it.
I’m pretty sure he ain’t dissing New York or down South or these guys here in the West. He's just basically telling these guys step your game up. It’s like where is Hip Hop headed? But don’t get me wrong, it ain’t nothing wrong with partying. It’s so many stressful things we go through in life sometimes you wanna go in the strip club and have a drink. But throwing up $30,000 or $50,000 or $100,000 in a strip club when you could be giving that to the homeless out there in the street. That ain’t cool.
In the 90's, mainstream Hip Hop was a little bit more balanced. You had lyrical artists, conscious artists, party artists, gangsta and they all got the same amount of play, but it seems now, as far as radio, it only focuses on one type. Do you think it will ever get back to the point where some of these artists that have a different voice are going to get that same level of exposure in the mainstream?
I think it will get back to that, because like I said people are getting tired of the same stuff being played. Everybody's talking about chains and Bugattis. We don’t want to keep hearing that. You got people that are not as fortunate as that. They don’t want to keep hearing that. They want to hear you give them a direction on how they can be successful. That’s what we need more of. What’s so crazy is that some of the records they be playing on the radio, I be like how can they even play this on the radio? How do you play this sh*t? For motherf*ckers it’s all about the money. To me it’s just a lot of bulls*t going on. Cause it’s a lot of records being played on the radio that shouldn't be played on the radio.
It's dudes on records talking about eating girls out. They never played no sh*t like that on the radio. If we had done that sh*t back in the 90's you’d be done. They wouldn't play no more of your sh*t. Now instead of that being a treat to a women they've made that a natural thing. It’s dudes talking about eating girls out and girls talking about blowing guy's socks off, and the radio plays it.
Do you put the responsibility on the radio stations or on the artists?
I put it on the radio and the artist. These kids growing up thinking that’s what it’s about, and that ain't what it is. They thinking it’s cool to just go out and eat a girl out the first time you meet her or getting some head off top. That should be a treat in a relationship when you've been together for a while. They making it common to do those types of things. Don’t get me wrong. I ain't a square. You know we did "It Ain't No Fun." That was a straight party record, but it was real talk. It wasn't no game. It was real.
It’s just time to get back to real music, real Hip Hop like Kendrick said. You know who does great records to me? Drake does great records. J. Cole does great records. These guys know how to make songs, so I’m not knocking all these new young artists at all. I got love for a lot of them. I actually want to do music for a lot of them. It's certain people that know how to make a song, and you got some guys that don’t know what the f*ck they doing. They just doing sh*t just to do it. Nipsey Hussle knows how to make great records. Kendrick knows how to make great records. These guys know how to make records.
You mentioned Drake, J. Cole and Nipsey. Are there any other artists that you'd like to get the studio with?
I’ll work with everybody. A lot of artists know when they come work with me they gotta come with it, cause I’m not going to work with you if you're talking about some bullsh*t. They know they gotta come with it, make a real song. That’s what I do. I do singles. I want to work with all these artists. J. Cole, Drake, Kendrick Lamar, Nipsey Hussle, Ty Dolla $ign. He got that new song called "Paranoid." That’s a dope record. It’s a concept. He’s going in with a story, and it’s dope. I want to work with Nas, Jay Z, Kanye, 2 Chainz. I just want to do good music.
[ALSO CHECK OUT: NEW MUSIC: Ty Dolla $ign Ft. B.o.B “Paranoid”]
You got the final dates of the West Coast Fest coming up. What does that represent for you having all these huge West Coast legends all on the same bill?
It feels great. Some of the guys been doing it before me, so it’s just great to be able to be on the same stage as these guys and know I use to jam to their records. To know that I’m right there, same stage jamming with records that the people love, being a part of history that was before me, that showed me the way, I love it. We need more unity out here on the West Coast, because we don’t have a lot of unity like down south. Everybody works with each other and be successful. That’s why they're winning.
And then New York, a lot of those artists are collaborating and being successful, but here on the West Coast it’s about money too much. You get an artist that wants you to bless [a song]. The first thing they gonna say is "I need $100,000" instead of doing that sh*t out of love. As an artist, if you're well-known and you popping right at the moment do that sh*t. Blow that artist up, cause you're gonna make yours off of publishing. You’re gonna make more than $100,000. And then you're helping another guy be successful. You never know. You may need that person later down the line. He may blow up bigger than you, and then you got that favor back. Muthaf*ckers out here just be on trying to cash in at the moment instead working, building up, and everybody being successful. Not just one person, everybody gonna get it.
It’s interesting you say that, because Schoolboy Q did an interview where he said he felt like he gets more love in New York than in his own hometown.
I feel the same way. Let me take that back. I get major love here. With the people it’s off the chain. The industry motherf*ckers out here, that’s the sh*t where these motherf*ckers really don’t be respecting each other and trying to work together. Everybody trying to see who can be the man and who can run everything instead of doing this sh*t together. We should be working together.
When I go down south the love is just incredible. When I go to New York the love is just incredible. The first thing they say to me in New York is, "why don’t they play y'all on the radio out here." I just have to tell them it’s just some political stuff. Thank God we got the internet now and you can hear me still. When I’m in Georgia, or the same thing when I’m in New York, I just be walking down the street and they be like, "I know this ain't who I think it is." They be tripping. They do that out here too. It’s just the industry that be kind of funny out here.
The person I am on that video camera is the person I am off that video camera- a cool cat. I don’t get all up in the fake sh*t. I just do me. That’s why I get respect on the West Coast. I can go in any neighborhood I want. I can walk anywhere I want cause they know I ain't on no fake Hollywood sh*t. I don’t get in nobody's business. I don’t start sh*t, and I keep great relationships with everybody. That’s who I am. You can ask anybody about me.
Do you think that’s why you've been able to maintain a successful career for 20 years?
It’s being a good person, keeping great relationships, and making great music. That’s it. Just having good people that have your back. It’s very rare that you have a good team behind you these days. I’m trying to do this for 20 more years. Then, I’m not going to stop. I’m gonna keeping doing it, just at a higher level.