Check out I2G’s exclusive interview with Watzreal.
I2G is here with Watzreal, how’s it going?
It’s going good man. I’m currently on day 6 of a 22 day 8 state wide tour so I feel blessed.
Tell me a little bit about how you got your start in music and who are some of your musical influences.
I got started through this nonprofit that came to my high school called Beats Rhymes And Life. The org does Hip Hop Therapy with youth and they really boosted my confidence and gave me a lot perspective on Hip Hop culture. Now I’m blessed to be working for the org. They have really opened my eyes to how this Hip Hop music is extemeley healing to create and the how the culture makes you feel connected to something bigger than yourself. I wouldn’t be rapping today if it wasn’t for them.
Tell me a little bit about your new single and video, My I.D. Pt 2: Shadows.
The single is about my personal battle with depression and it’s a follow up to my first song, My I.D. I really pushed myself and my ability to be vulnerable from talking about root of my depression being unknown, to taking anti depressants, to going to therapists since I was little and even opening up about how I think was raped as a kid and how I think I blocked the memory from myself. It was extremely difficult to get that uncomfortably personal, but the response I’ve been getting has shown that I made the right decision.
My I.D. stands for inner demons because I feel how we tackle those trying times in our lives and how I’ve dealt with my depression makes up a large majority of my “ID,” today. It’s like Malcolm X said, “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convience, but where he stands in times of challenge and controversy.”
Do you have any more upcoming videos?
My next music video will be, “Party With No Drama,” featuring Gully and Cash Campain. I’ll be dropping that one by the end of the year.
What’s next for you as far as albums or mixtapes?
I’m releasing an EP early next year called, “Watz Realer Than Love,” which will be all love songs based on my experiences with love in the past to my current relationship. I’m planning on recording 14 songs and saving only 7 for the EP. I only want showcase my best work on this project.
What are your current thoughts on the music industry?
I feel like there’s more hope personally. When I started rapping around 2007, I feel didn’t have too many positive role models in the industry. Now there’s Kendrick Lamar, J. Cole & Chance The Rapper and so much more on the mainstream side of things and Tech N9NE, Atmosphere, Run The Jewels and Logic so many others who don’t even have songs on major radio stations but are still KILLING IT!
What is currently playing on your playlist musically?
I’ve been listening to a lot of Hip Hop & R&B blends to draw inspiration for the new love based project. A lot of Common, Nelly, Ja Rule, J. Cole, Kendrick Lamar, Anderson .Paak, Frank Ocean, Jay-Z, Nas, & Fabulous. I’m also really into the new albums by Kendrick Larmar, Brother Ali, and Chris Rivers.
Do you have any shows or tour dates?
Yeah I’m actually on tour at this very moment with two other emcees Def-I (Albuquerque) & J-Scribe (San Francisco). Here’s our upcoming tour dates for the, “Third Eye Wide Tour.”
8.11 El Paso, Texas-The Prickly Elder
8.12 Espanola, NM-Blue Heron
8.13-Albuquerque, NM-Moonlight lounge
8.16 Santa Fe, NM-The Underground
8.17 Cortez, CO-Blondys Trophy Room
8.18-Las Vegas, NV-Beauty Bar W/Milo
8.23 Poulsbo, WA-110 Lounge
8.25-Portland OR-The Fixin’ To
8.26-Salem, OR-The Triangle
8.27-Seattle, WA-The Upstairs
What is your website information?
You can find more info on me at Watzreal.com
Appreciate the interview, any last words or shout outs?
Shout out to ROTC (Return of The Cypher), Family Power Music, Beats Rhymes And Life, Hip Hop For Change, Engrafft, SF Threads, and all the homies back homies holding things back in the Bay Area and beyond. I love ya’ll.