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Koncept Interview: Tired of Playing Life, Finally Awaken...

First and foremost, introduce yourself to the masses...

I am Koncept. I rap and do Parkour. Sometime both at the same time. Other times I like to fly in my squirrel suit. Also while I rap.

Where are you from?

I was born and raised in Queens, NY. Spent some time in Warwick, NY, as well as Vermont. Now residing in Brooklyn.

Your are apart of a collection known as the Brown Bag AllStars (BBAS). Would you mind talking about the origin of BBAS?

We became friends while working at what was known as the most legendary hip hop store in the world, Fat Beats. That was our home for many years. As a bunch of solo artists who had all left previous groups for one reason or another, it was only natural for us to start working together after seeing the chemistry between us, and realizing that we all had the same devotion, drive and goals. We are a family.

Is it easier to write verses for a solo project or group project?

I think it really depends. When writing anything, the process differs. I can get into a zone or a mood, and write a verse in 10 minute and love it, while other times it can take me days to get it right. Writing for a group project is generally easier than for a solo record just for the fact that it's less writing.

Haha Generally I only have to write one verse, and possibly a hook, bridge, etc, for a group song, where as a solo record I have to write and create the whole composition.

Describe your writing process to the masses.

For full projects that I'm working on I like to get all the beats together first, or at least a majority of them to get the sound and mood of it set. The beat is a major part of the emotion and where the heart of a record comes from. I let that guide me.

Recently you released Awaken through Soulspazm/Fatbeats Records. How does awaken differ from your debut project Playing Life?

Well, I actually call Awaken my debut album. With both, Playing Life & More Than Meets The Eye (free EPs), I basically recorded a bunch of joints, and then put the songs together to form a project(s) to get out and make people aware of me as a solo artist.

Both were done pretty quickly, and not even necessarily worked as an album in the recording process. Where with Awaken everything was built and formed to fit together to a specific sound and structure. Of course I stand behind both the EPs, and I'm proud of them, but Awaken is definitely my debut. That's my baby right there.

Who is featured on the project and who handles the production on Awaken?

On the production I have Marco Polo who did the lead single titled, "Watch The Sky Fall" which features Shady Records, Slaughterhouse MC, Royce da 5'9. Majority of the production on the album is handled by J57, and The Audible Doctor.

I also have Dj Goo, and Marink on there. The other guest vocal features include Soul Khan & Sene. All cuts are by Deejay Element, and my Canadian brother, Dj Brace.

Describe your relationship with Fatbeats records.

Well apart from working at the store for years, as well as shopping there since a kid, Fat Beats did the physical distribution for both the Awaken CD (out on Soulspazm Records), and the Watch The Sky Fall Vinyl EP (out on Nostomania Records).

In 2011, you released a joint project with West Coast beatmaker Tranzformer called More Than Meets the Eye (which was sponsored by DjBooth.net). You shot three videos for the project. Talk about the importance of having visuals in regards to expanding exposure.

Peoples attention span is so short nowadays, on top of the fact that there is so much music released everyday over the Internet from well known to unknown artists. What's gonna make someone listen to you?

A visual gives a purpose or a reason to watch & listen. If you can give a person something appealing to the eye, it's a way to gain someone's attention and have them fall into the music.

You have been blessed with the opportunity to appear on a variety of blogs and websites. How important are blogs and websites in regards to breaking new music?

Well let's be honest, that's where everybody listens and finds out about music today. Magazines and physical forms of press and promotion have been minimized to great measures, so getting on blogs and websites is one of the most important things for an artist to gain exposure.

People should cop Awaken because...

I put my heart and my everything into this record. I care about my fans, and I make this music for myself, but more importantly, for you.

Cop on FatBeats
Cop on iTunes

Aside from promoting Awaken, what are your plans for the future?

Continuing to make more music. My group has a new EP dropping soon called Brown Label 2. I'm working on a new EP all produced by Deejay Element titled, Malt Disney. And I'm working on my next album that will be all producer by J57. I also plan to see the world rocking as many places as possible. This year alone I have been blessed to tour around Canada, Europe, and a majority of the US.

How can the masses get in contact with you?

Follow me on Twitter. Let's be friends on Facebook, and instagram: iamkoncept. Say what's up! I'm very friendly! Haha Seriously though. I love talking with my fans and the people supporting my music.

& you can peep all my videos, EPs, and everything at Koncept.

Any final shout outs?

Big shout out to you for all the love, and big shout out to everyone who's been supporting me and my music. I cant tell you how much that means to me. I love y'all!
Much respect.

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