We've got a new video for you from 4th Pyramid, and you should watch it if you like parties, girls, and rapper cameos. It was shot by Aaron Power and Jude Star. If you don't know 4th Pyramid, he's a rap dude from Toronto who has a lot to say about the city. Plus, he's got some great stories about Wu-Tang and Killer Mike. Wanna hear them? Cool, we interviewed him. Watch above and read below. Oh and if you want to keep up on all things 4th Pyramid, look for his EP due out in April on Silk Ivory/Universal. You can also buy the song on iTunes here.
Are you excited about rap in Toronto?
I’m not that excited about Toronto rap right now. I like Drake and shit, that’s exciting, but outside of that… I’m not a huge battle rap guy and that’s big out here. That’s dope for them, but it’s not really my flex.
I don’t want to get pigeonholed as a Canadian rapper. Toronto was a huge base for me, but if I lived here my whole life I probably would have never got on the right way.
So what do you think rap in Toronto needs, then?
More bitches. Let’s be honest, man. There’s two communities in Toronto. One is just about having fun and wilin’ out, then there’s the diehard people. If you go to those diehard parties, the b-boys are going to be there, and that’s cool, but there’s a time and a place for that shit. I feel like the Toronto hip-hop world is just a lot of dudes.
I don’t care that much about rap, which is probably some horrible shit to be saying, but it’s the truth. I have an appreciation for that [diehard/b-boy world], I come from that, but it’s 2013. I’m not trying to relive 1994 and 1995. They were great years, but I feel like there’s a lot of that here. The music scene and the party scene here is fucking dope. I just don’t go to a lot of rap parties.
Photo by Jude Star.
Where did you meet Killer Mike?
I met him in New York at Brooklyn Bowl one night. He was talking shit, he’s one of these rap enthusiasts, and he was talking about how Scarface was his favourite rapper. He had this whole fucking criteria as to why Scarface is the best rapper of all time: longevity, consistency… I argued that Nas is the best.
That’s how we met, but he was like, “Nah nah, Nas hires Scarface to do songs. Scarface doesn’t hire Nas to do songs!” And I was like, “Alright, you win.” You can’t fight with him.
That’s awesome. As a Toronto-based artist, obviously it’s important to have a global perspective and build up American contacts, but you literally bounce back between New York and here?
I still spend half my time in the states. I think Toronto’s become cool though because, when I was on Def Jux, they would advise me not to mention that I was from Toronto. That wasn’t direct from the label, that was managers, but that’s the kind of shit I’d be hearing. Back then it was taboo to be from Toronto. Maybe it was true back then, but now it’s this exotic thing... since Drake shouts it out on every song.
You’ve bounced around the rap industry in a bunch of different positions, but you’ve managed to keep yourself in the music business. How’s that process been?
Rap is a shitty living. You might as well play the lotto every day. I’ve tour managed, produced, sound engineered… It takes swallowing your pride to be the sound engineer for another rapper when you have your own rap career… There’s times when you sit around like, “Fuck, what am I doing here?” After I was done with Def Jux I went on tour with Wu-Tang and sold merch.
Whoa. What are your craziest stories from that tour?
That was an intense tour. Going out with Wu-Tang… the core guys are really nice, but the entourage is literally just ex-convicts all around you. Like, fucking, killers and shit. It’s not even a fun tour.
One time I’m in the hotel hallway and Ghostface is behind me, so in my head I’m flipping out, but I’m walking around like, “Whatever bro, fuck it. I’m gonna go sit in my room and watch some cable. I’m doin’ this!” Ghost says, “Yo,” it’s like eight in the morning, always bizarre hours, “What’s goin’ on?” Ghostface style though. And he asked me if I wanted to go for breakfast.
Then we sit at breakfast and it’s mad quiet, because I don’t know what to say without totally fanning out. I’m just trying to stay cool, but in my staying cool-ness I just got quiet. He says a little prayer before food and he was like, “You don’t pray before you eat?” It turned into this breakfast interview with Ghost. That was fun, but there was a lot of weird shit.
One time GZA thought I stole his son’s hat. That was intense. We had the same hat, it was bad… It was like initiation. I was the new guy in their crew.
I was killing it on the merch but there was a lot of tension on tour with Wu-Tang. They’re just from a different world. A lot of people want to be thugs in Toronto rap and it’s ridiculous. It’s ridiculous to people like this. Even if you come up in hard times here, there’s a relative absurdity just by looking at the environment that these people are from. No matter how big they get, there’s still all these fucked up values and codes stuck in what they’re doing.
I got in shit from one of Meth’s goons because I forgot to give him a shirt from the merch table, and everyone was whispering like: “Yo he just got out of jail two days ago!” It wasn’t nice or pleasant, it was like, me forgetting the shirt was sign of utmost disrespect.
Follow 4th Pyramid on Twitter: @4thpyramid