@Judahonthebeats Choose Wisely Video

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Words w/ Judah via www.readysetdc.com

Judah, a respected DC-based producer, who’s latest mix was featured here last week, is bringing unity and camaraderie to the district. He combines music with a message, simultaneously inspiring, beat-making, and supporting local talent. Judah was nice enough to take time out of his schedule and answer a few key questions about hip-hop in the DMV.

[Answers are paraphrased from a phone interview held on 2/1/2010]

LR: I really enjoyed the Amber Rose Mixtape. How did you come up with the concept behind it?

Judah: Thank you. Well, first off I’m a man, so there was that attraction. I ran into her at SXSW and then she came to DC and I was inspired. I thought it would be a good creative idea to mix music, fashion, a woman and put everything into one mix.
Laura: And how does Kanye [her boyfriend] feel about it?
J: I’m actually not sure, I’ve been trying to get a copy out to him, a comment from him would be helpful whether it’s good or bad.

LR: How do you offset the fact that DC rap is thought to have just broken through, but the history is much deeper than that?

Judah: I aim to provide history and facts that potentially give DC more national recognition. Nobody knew that it was happening in DC, but it has for fifteen years or so. It is our duty to get out the history and facts about the music scene.

LR: How did you get the idea to show the movement through the historic DMV photo shoot and to declare Nov 1st as DMV hip-hop day?

Judah: The photos have been happening in other cities, and I wanted to take the opportunity to highlight what is going on in the district. It is important to showcase local artists and producers, get our names out, and show that DC does have a rich musical history.

LR: What is the role of social media [blogs, twitter] in what you’re aiming to do and spreading the word?

Judah: Social media can be great, but major blogs aren’t helping out yet. They all post the same material, and there is no diversity in getting others exposed. Wale is the only thing they focus on when there are many others. In terms of Twitter, it is good for local recognition, but it is more of a network for the scene. Everyone in the area follows each other, but it needs more people from out of town to really be able to promote beyond the region. [Follow him @Judahonthebeat.]

LR: What are you working on now?

Judah: I have a lot of things on the table. There’s records with Clipse and DJ Alizee. I’ve got an instrumental album and a lot of independent work with the majors. I’m working at building a brand and getting back to contributing more on the major label side of things.

LR: Do you have anything else you want to say to our readers?

Judah: We’ve come a long way, but we still have a long way to go. In terms of DMV music, we need to raise the level and hold artists accountable, but always support each other. We are making strides, but can’t stop pushing forward.

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