Category Archives: Interviews

Bonus Cut Films Presents: An Interview With Hir-O (Final Installment)

via blatpack.com

via blatpack.com

Omari Hall (aka Hir-O) is a producer from Detroit, Michigan. As one of the city’s rising hip-hop artists, Hir-O has branded his music with splashes of electronic swells, jazz, soul, live instrumentation and other realms of music that all come to form a cohesive hip-hop force. His projects with DaJaz1, Doss The Artist and Red Pill, along with his instrumentals such as The Voyage Home, reflect the true prowess and versatility of his work, and with future projects coming in 2014, Hir-O is a name you should remember.

Today we’re excited to bring you the third and final installment of our interview with Hir-O as part of Bonus Cut Films, a series that looks into the lives of various hip-hop artists across the globe that have impacted and shaped this culture for the better.

If you haven’t seen part one, you’re going to wanna do that. Click here to watch.
Part two you can view here. 

Below is the final installment of our Hir-O feature:

Film Credits: 
Writing and Script Design: Daniel Hodgman, Gus Navarro and Justin Cook 
Directed By: Gus Navarro 
Production: Daniel Hodgman, Gus Navarro and Phillip McGuigan 
Camera and Sound Design: Ian Siporin, Julian Stall and Phillip Mcguigan
Editing: Gus Navarro and Phillip McGuigan
Songs: “Commonwealth” by Hir-O / “Angel Outlaw” by Hir-O/ “Waiting On A Train (instrumental)” by Hir-O

Many thanks to Omari for inviting us down for the interview. 

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Bonus Cut Films Presents: An Interview With Hir-O (Part Two)

via blatpack.com

via blatpack.com

Omari Hall (aka Hir-O) is a producer from Detroit, Michigan. As one of the city’s rising hip-hop artists, Hir-O has branded his music with splashes of electronic swells, jazz, soul, live instrumentation and other realms of music that all come to form a cohesive hip-hop force. His projects with DaJaz1, Doss The Artist and Red Pill, along with his instrumentals such as The Voyage Home, reflect the true prowess and versatility of his work, and with future projects coming in 2014, Hir-O is a name you should remember.

Today we’re excited to bring you part two of our interview with Hir-O as part of Bonus Cut Films, a series that looks into the lives of various hip-hop artists across the globe that have impacted and shaped this culture for the better.

If you haven’t seen part one, you’re going to wanna do that. Click here to watch.

Below is the second installment of our Hir-O feature:

Film Credits: 
Writing and Script Design: Daniel Hodgman, Gus Navarro and Justin Cook 
Directed By: Gus Navarro 
Production: Daniel Hodgman, Gus Navarro and Phillip McGuigan 
Camera and Sound Design: Ian Siporin, Julian Stall and Phillip Mcguigan
Editing: Gus Navarro and Phillip McGuigan
Songs: “We Are Not Like Them (instrumental)” by Hir-O / “Best Rapper (instrumental)” by Hir-O

Many thanks to Omari for inviting us down for the interview. 

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Bonus Cut Films Presents: An Interview With Hir-O (Part One)

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Omari Hall (aka Hir-O) is a producer from Detroit, Michigan. As one of the city’s rising hip-hop artists, Hir-O has branded his music with splashes of electronic swells, jazz, soul, live instrumentation and other realms of music that all come to form a cohesive hip-hop force. His projects with DaJaz1, Doss The Artist and Red Pill, along with his instrumentals such as The Voyage Home, reflect the true prowess and versatility of his work, and with future projects coming in 2014, Hir-O is a name you should remember.

Today we’re excited to debut Bonus Cut Films, a series that looks into the lives of various hip-hop artists across the globe that have impacted and shaped this culture for the better. More importantly however, we’re honored to feature Hir-O as our first Bonus Cut Films artist.

Below is the first installment of our Hir-O feature:

Film Credits:
Writing and Script Design: Daniel Hodgman, Gus Navarro and Justin Cook 
Directed By: Gus Navarro
Production: Daniel Hodgman, Gus Navarro and Phillip McGuigan
Camera and Sound Design: Ian Siporin, Julian Stall and Phillip Mcguigan
Editing: Gus Navarro and Phillip McGuigan
Song: “Voltron’s Heartbeat” By: Hir-O

Many thanks to Omari for inviting us down for the interview. 

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A Bonus Cut Feature: An Interview With DJ Soko

soko

By: Gus Navarro

Last week I was in New York City visiting a friend and was able to sit down with Michigan native DJ Soko, a current resident of Brooklyn. Soko has been involved in hip-hop for over ten years but his emergence onto the scene as an artist is still relatively recent. That being said, he has been extremely active on the 1’s and 2’s between DJ’ing at parties and for MC’s such as Journalist 103 and Kopelli. In 2010 he teamed up with Journalist 103 and Apollo Brown to form The Left. The trio put out Gas Mask, one of the most critically acclaimed hip-hop albums of the past five years. Soko is somebody that is very proud of where he is from and the particular sound and image that is associated with the Detroit hip-hop scene. On top of that, he is an artist that loves what he does and cares deeply for the integrity of his craft. It was a true honor to have the chance to sit down and talk with him about his experiences and passion for hip-hop.

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A Bonus Cut Feature: Impact 89FM Interviews Grieves

Grieves-Rapper-Bloody-Poetry

Last week, our friends over at Impact 89FM interviewed Rhymesayers‘ own Benjamin Laub (aka Grieves). On his way through Michigan supporting his Back On My Grizzly tour, Grieves sat down with 89FM in Grand Rapids.

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A Bonus Cut Feature: An Interview With Journalist 103

Journalist+103

via Last.fm

By: Gus Navarro

I still remember the first time I heard Gas Mask by The Left. Apollo Brown’s beats hit hard as per usual and that’s what first drew me in. As I played the album over and over I couldn’t get enough of the lead MC, Journalist 103. To put it bluntly, the man has a way with words that few in hip-hop have today. His rhymes are laced with social, economic and political anecdotes, and are an example of why hip-hop is educative. The passion he has for music is evident in every track he’s done and is a main reason why we wanted to talk with him. Last week, I drove down to Detroit and met him at the Al-Aqabah Islamic Community Center right off Joseph Campau Street. Once I was there, we just sat down and talked hip-hop. There are many things that we touch on in this interview. We talk about his childhood, Islam, Eminem, Detroit, what hip-hop is and much more. I walked away from this interview realizing the power of hip-hop. For Journalist 103, hip-hop is something that is much more than a way to make money. For him, hip-hop is a way of life and the love he has for it shines through more than anything else. I don’t think I’ve met anyone who has the same amount of passion for hip-hop as Journalist 103 and I am honored that he was willing to share his thoughts with me.

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A Bonus Cut Feature: An Interview With Dessa

By: Gus Navarro

It was exciting when Dan told me that we might have a shot at interviewing Dessa. From Minneapolis, Minnesota, Dessa’s impact on hip-hop, literature and education has been a big one. Through her work with Doomtree and other projects, she has touched so many. Naturally, I was looking forward to getting to hear her thoughts. Ann Arbor, Michigan was one of the places on her “Parts of Speech” tour and she was going to be making a stop over at the Impact 89FM studio, Michigan State’s student radio station. The original plan was that I would interview her following an in-studio performance. However, due to time constraints this did not happen because the band had to get down to Ann Arbor for the show. Initially, I was bummed. However, when one door closes, another opens. Despite missing out on the chance to talk in person, it was decided that we could do a phone interview. I was also put on the guest list for the show in Ann Arbor (Thank you Mars!). At the show she mingled with fans before the performance, with each encounter being seemingly genuine. On stage, she interacted with the crowd, bringing them into the show. It felt as though we weren’t just there to watch musicians on stage, instead it felt like we were part of the performance. At one point, she said to the crowd, “You are the record label.” What she meant was that with the decision we make to pay for records, we keep independent artists afloat. As someone that chooses not to download music illegally, it was refreshing to hear an artist acknowledging the role that fans play in supporting musicians. On stage, it never felt that she or the band were working too hard or not hard enough. They were in the pocket, playing well and feeding off each other’s energy. A perfect way to spend a Sunday night. After the show, i introduced myself. As we talked about the show and setting up a phone interview, her approachable and humble personality was the same as it had been on stage. There is an edge to Dessa that manifests itself within her sense of humor, intelligence and beauty. It was an honor to talk with her in person and on the phone because of her honesty, insight and dedication to her craft.

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A Bonus Cut Feature: An Interview With Detroit’s Urban Arts Academy

urban arts title photo

By: Daniel Hodgman, Gus Navarro and Justin Cook
All photos by: Phillip McGuigan

Listen to the interview here:

Order of speakers: Lex Zavala, Gianni Carazo, Freddie Burse, Row Mendez, Sacramento Knoxx, Antonio Cosme, Lex Zavala, Antonio Cosme, Row Mendez, Antonio Cosme, Lex Zavala

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