Interview with Grandmaster Caz

Interview with Grandmaster Caz

You changed the way DJ’s perform in Hip Hop music. You began rapping as a DJ. What changes Hip Hop nowadays?

I think that advances in technology have the biggest affect on the changes that are happening in Hip Hop. Now the turntableist especially have taken DJing to such a high level, such a height, that it’s like, what more can you do? Now technologies that are coming in are kind of replacing some of the old way they played songs. To me that is that is a new field to challenge. It’s a whole new challenge altogether. Being able to perfect technology that is out there. They got I Pod mixers and USB connections, laptops and all that… I think it’ll start all over again but it’ll start with the new technology. How far can you take that? You can stretch your imagination.

You don’t think there is anymore room for innovators per se?

There is always room for innovators because they come out of the left field. They come out of a place that we do not expect and that’s what makes them innovators. So I can’t predict right now or else I would be that innovator. Hopefully I will be. Like I said, I’m just trying to keep up with technology and just trying to perfect that. Once you got that, the way you use it and everything, then comes the pioneering like how far you take it, what you do that hasn’t been done already. Creating a whole new market out of what you’ve done with it. That has to be seen. That’s what I look forward to.

Your lyrics were used ion the first Hip Hop hit, Rapper’s Delight. What do you think of today’s lyrics?

There is a lack of imagination. Everything is supposed to be about being real and reality and what’s realy happening and that’s a really dull reality. The way Hip Hop is supposed to be is about you being creative and adding something to conditions that we already know exist. When we get back to that, it’s getting back to the basics, then Hip Hop will be all over again.

Do you think that there is a strong presence of old school and new school of Hip Hop or is it all one-sided?

No, no, I don’t think there is enough of a presence of the old school. Everything is pretty much new school and its such a quick turnover that the new school is old school in no time, know what I mean? So new school doesn’t even get to be old school because they don’t stay around long enough. For you to be old school you have to come from a long way and still be part of the landscape.

You’re a part of Zulu Nation. How much of their ideas and principles do you think are being integrated into the newer music?

Not a lot. You have your particular artists that pretty much follow that concept and those are the more conscious artists that are pretty much more aware of themselves. They’re aware of who they are and what our people have done and contributed to society. And like I said that’s not that much of the population, so until we start knowing more of who we are I think we’ll be able to see more. We’ll be able to take a whole positive stand and stand on solid ground. ‘Cause we know what we stand for, we know where we came from, we know what needs to be done.

Talking about conscious Hip Hop, are you more with the soft Hip Hop style of Mos Def or the revolutionary style of M1?

I’m more of a KRS-1, Immortal Technique kind of a brew. ‘Cause that’s like it’s about Hip Hop. It’s still about the art of being a good MC, but you’re delivering a message and a positive one, you know what I mean? Not being corny about it.