The EST 19XX rapper releases his first official EP, Old Lights New Lights. We go inside the album with a new music Bundle, plus the chance to win tickets to meet Dub-O at EST FEST.
The landscape of hip hop is something that we oversimplify; as if Southern rap is a single sound, as if there’s nothing beyond or between the East Coast / West Coast thing. We miss the point. In Ohio, Machine Gun Kelly’s EST 19XX label has built a mass audience — millions of followers — without ever hitting the mainstream. While staying fucking wild.
MGK’s longtime collaborator, Dub-O, has helped craft the sound behind this movement. His new mixtape, Old Lights New Lights, comes out today. To mark the release, he’s giving back to fans with a BitTorrent Bundle.
Inside: exclusive previews of his upcoming “Better Days” and Old Lights New Lights videos, merch discounts, and 5 standout tracks from last year’s Do I Know You mixtape. Everyone who subscribes to Dub-O’s email list will be automatically entered to win free tickets to EST FEST 2014.
Words With Dub-o: on OLNL, coming up in Cleveland, and the underground grind.
BitTorrent: Old Lights New Lights is out today. It’s also your first official EP. What went into making this record? What can we expect?
Dub-O: Time and patience. Like seriously, it took me time and patience on this project. It’s going to be a new sound. New Flavor. All original material. Melodic. Catchy. Urban/Soul if that make sense.
Hopefully this project wake up people up. Make them listen. The music I have on this project sounds like nothing else; it’s also big jump from my last mixtape (Do I Know You). I have no expectations to live up to. I have no big shoes to fill. My only goal is give it all I got.
BitTorrent: How did you get into hip hop? What’s been your path up to now?
Dub-O: I grew up listening to all kinds of music; it didn’t matter if it was rap, R&B, pop, or whatever. A friend actually got me into rapping when I was 16, 17 years old. So I’ve always been into hip hop, I guess.
I mean: music is everything. Hip hop is life. What would we be without it? I really love the fact that you don’t have to be a rapper or a singer to be a part of hip hop. It accepts you regardless. It lives with in you.
BitTorrent: Your music and your label is tied to a place. How has the Cleveland scene influenced your style?
Dub-O: As far as music, Cleveland is known for the legendary Bone Thugs-N-Harmony. They came with this dope style of fast gangsta rap, plus smooth harmonizing vocals. I was intrigued by their sound. They could rap about tragic things, and you’d never realize it: it’s hidden under melody. The whole rap/singing thing was influenced by these homies.
BitTorrent: Your crew, Machine Gun Kelly and EST 19XX, have millions of followers. It’s crazy how massive and influential you are to a generation of listeners. But you’re still seen as part of rap’s underground. Do you see success in hip hop is something that’s changing? What does it mean to you?
Dub-O: First off, you can be just as successful underground, as being in the majors. Tech 9 for example. He’s underground, but probably doing better then mainstream artists backed by machines. A worldwide tour powered by one man independently every year with a 100% profit? Sounds successful to me. I believe in that underground grind.
About BitTorrent Bundle
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Creators can build their own BitTorrent Bundle and distribute their massive multi-media projects to 170 million BitTorrent users around the world. Each Bundle comes with a key; fans can unlock artist content with an email address or a donation. Got ideas for the next BitTorrent Bundle? You can sign up here.