Ya'll know how much I love Youtube, I was tubing around one day and heard this.........
The song is great..BUT, I wanted to know who that was rhyming..I was blown away, I did some research and became even more fascinated with this talented young man. His name is PHZ-SICKS, He hails from V.A. and I have a feeling he is going to be a household name very shortly..
I tracked him down for an interview, and he had some very surprising answers!
TQ: You're 22, Who did you listen to growing up? and how did it influence you?
The album that most influenced me was “E. 1999 Eternal” by Bone Thugs-n-Harmony. Once I heard it, learned the melody of the beats and every word, I knew I wanted to rap and I have been on that route ever since.
P: My family got me in to music. My mom was in the military and didn't want me to be moving around all crazy. She wanted me to have a sense of stability. Due to that, I was sent to live with my grandmother and the rest of my family in Mississippi. Every weekend, music filled the whole house as my fam did chores. Soulful R&B and the Blues from Al Green to ZZ Hill filled the house. My uncle had the movies “Purple Rain” and “House Party” on a loop. House Party was my hint of what Hip Hop was and I fell in love with it. The music in “Purple Rain” was great. Prince is still my favorite artist and is who I place myself after as an artist. All the trials and tribulations he has been through as an artist, the perfectionist he is, and the great music he put out. “House Party” had me dancing around and getting my moves right. I felt that if this was Hip Hop, I could get down with this. (laugh) During this time, I would ride around with my Uncles as they blasted everything from MC Hammer, The Chronic, Too $hort, Public Enemy, and Big Daddy Kane. I had the great soulfullness of the 60’s and 70’s with the pop and aggressive sound of 80’s and 90’s. At such a young age, I didn’t see myself doing music, but I could already tell it was going to play a huge part.
TQ: what was the hip-hop scene like growing up in V.A?
P: Well, from where I was, there really wasn’t one. 2 hours south of me, you had Da Bassment (Missy, Skillz, Timbaland, Magoo) but in Northern VA, there was nothing. Around 10th grade, after years of battling people in forums online, I got a program, some beats and put out the first mixtape in the area. I built a buzz by battling everybody in their mama and by the time I was selling it, people wanted to hear what I had to say. After that, people in the area followed suit and it seemed everybody had a mixtape. I’m not going to say that without me, Hip Hop in my area (Woodbridge) wouldn’t exist without me, but I see myself as a huge part of it. The area now has expanded in to the DMV (DC, Maryland & VA (northern)) and it’s looking like NY before they took over. The unity is beautiful right now and I’m just glad I’m a part of this great movement.
TQ: The mixtape 'Feature Presentation', tell me about how and why you made it?
P: Due to college, I fell out the music loop for awhile. School was taking up a lot of time and I just wasn’t inspired. Well, I went through a horrible break up and I was just down. I’m talking Jason Segal in Forgetting Sarah Marshall depressed. It got to the point where I just couldn’t sulk anymore. I needed to feel my time with something. Music called me back and I picked up this time. “The Feature Presentation” was basically a re-introduction to the public and also to the industry. The reason it is called “The Feature Presentation” was because I feature myself on songs that I loved or felt I could make better. It was like if I was signed, this is how I could make your song better. I not only know how to make a good music, but also a hit. It was my “Hello” and “Less Than Zero” will be me walking through the door and putting my boots on your couch, ala Rick James.
TQ: the song 'nothing to worry about' how did you come across it?
P: Well I was on DdotOmen.com and one of the contributors saw the song on Kanye’s blog and put it up. I believe it had only been up for one day. Soon as I heard it, it lit the light bulb and I just started to write to it. I believe I was one of the first to lay a verse on it. There have been many, but my version came out great. I put the file up (it got taken down), put another one up and followed suit with the Youtube video and it has been doing great ever since. People love it and I’m happy about that. One of my friends ran in to their PBnJ (Peter, Bjorn & John) manager and tried to see if I could get on the official remix. Nothing has come from it, but it doesn’t matter. If the people want it, it will happen. It is bigger than I ever thought it would be.
TQ: who have you worked with so far?
P: Swag Kids have done the production from the first song I’m dropping off “Less Than Zero” called “Then & Now.” XV, Melo-X, The 42s’, Alex Kresovich, and Black milk have lent production on The Feature Presentation and Less Than Zero.
TQ: who do you want to work with??
P: I def. would love to work with Prince and the usual suspects like Jay-Z, Nas, Pharoahe Monch, Skillz, Little Brother, Chrisette Michelle and Eminem. From my area, I would def love to work with artist like Marky, Wale, Lyriciss, Pro’Verb, Cayan, K-Beta, and so on. Production wise, Just Blaze, Kanye West, DJ Premier, Pete Rock, Dr. Dre, Equinox Productions, J-$crilla, and so on.
TQ: what has surprised you the most about the industry?
P: That’s a hard question to answer. I don’t think that much has surprised me since I’ve always watched it from the outside and looked at past artist and how it treated them. I guess it would be the whole aspect of labels not really supporting or developing artist. The music business is about making money and the best way to do that is by put out a great product. Now and days, they just seem to throw it out there and they wonder why the industry isn’t booming like it use to.
TQ: Why do you rap?
P: I do it because it’s a way to reach others. I do music off emotion and what the beat gives me. If I can make you think and change your views on something, I did my job. If I could make you smile and give you a sense of self, I did my job. If I can make you dance, I did my job. Music is a way of communicating with people, the same as any other format. The drums move us as so does the words. Being a storyteller is in our ancestry and I should pass it on in this way of rap. Not only that but it’s my outlet of getting my feelings and opinion at the time. It captures a time in my life that I can look back and see what was going on.
TQ: What’s next?
P: I’m currently working on “Less Than Zero”, which will be like listening to a movie. There is a beginning, middle, climax, and end. Everything goes in a circle. “The Feature Presentation” follows a movie theme, but I would consider that the previews. “Less Than Zero” will be the full length movie. I’m really looking for to it. Other than that, I’m just looking to expand my fanbase, do more performances, get a manager, and get out there more. It's time to affect and change the world.
Download the mixtape "FEATURE PRESENTATION" here
Please visit PHZ-SICKS on
check out this DistrictFresh.com interview and learn even more!