West Coast Styles

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Other outlets can copy our news headlines but our exclusives can’t be copied – and today we have another exclusive feature! Tapping in today for our HipHop50 series is none other than Big Prodeje of the legendary group South Central Cartel. SCC played a big part in the West Coast resurgence of the 1990’s bringing that authentic South Central Los Angeles sound to the world stage – and Big Prodeje was the man behind it all. Read below as he and our own Todd “DG” Davis have a hip-hop discussion.

First things first, this year (August 11th) marked the 50th Anniversary of Hip Hop — What exactly does that mean to and for you? 

Man, it means everything to me. I can remember the days when most folks thought Hip Hop was just a flash in the pan type of genre. But, look at us…50 years and stronger than ever! It took a young man from the ‘hood and saved me from only God knows what..

To quote the late, great The Notorious B.I.G., “You never thought that Hip Hop would take it this far!” — Was this something that you ever could’ve imagined?

Yes, I believed then and still believe in Hip Hop. There is absolutely no limits to the  levels Hip Hop can get to.
What are some of your fondest, most stand-out moments / memories from your lengthy tenure in this thing called Hip Hop? 
My fondest memory is signing my 1st and 2nd recording contracts because I was a kid living my dreams. A lot of things, both good and bad, have happened since, but I’m not one to dwell on the negative.
That said, what are your future plans and / or goals throughout the remainder of 2023, going right into ‘24? 

My immediate goal is to finish this South Central Cartel project, RESPECT THE REAL!! It was previously going to be titled Cartelifornia, but due to some internal fuccery I had to change the title.. Other than that, I’m back in my studio making classic music. Not following trends, just feeling a vibe and flowing with it.

Switching gears here, what exactly do you want people to get from your music?    

I want them to feel it in their souls. I want them to hear something that triggers some emotion. I’m not here to do this bland assed regurgitated sound.On a more serious note, are you happy with the current state of Hip Hop?  

I’m very happy with the current state of Hip Hop. Because the way I see it…it’s wide open. If you’re ready to put the work in, you can build something special right now. I think people are hungry for something authentic. They’ve grown bored of everything sounding the same.

What do you feel has and will continue to be the key to your longevity?     

Just being myself. Not trying to change me to fit in. There’s only one Big Prodeje. So why would I try and be somebody else? I’m 1 of 1. I’m going to embrace that.

Do you have any other outside / additional (future) aspirations, maybe even completely away from entertainment?

My future plans include a lot of traveling and creating in amazing places. I’m just finna to be the music again. Flow with the inspiration. I’m sorry my mind is mostly consumed with making music. I also like to just travel to experience life in different ways and different cultures.

What’s an average day like for you? 

I’m up at around 6am working. Lately, I’m working out first. Handling my personal and business calls, etcetera. Then I’m in the lab for most of the day. That’s am average day for me. Nothing major, just average shit.Please discuss how you interact with and respond to fans…  

Man, I treat my fans like good friends, period! I have the upmost love and respect for my people. So anytime they reach out, I try to respond in a timely manner. Some of my fans have become close friends of mines.

What is your favorite part about this line of work? Your least favorite? And, why?

My favorite part is being in control of my own time, that’s priceless to me. My least favorite is the way the powers that be try and limit the potential of artists / producers by boxing them in. They only put their money on what’s currently hot. That’s super wack! Let us create out here. Keep it fresh and new.

What advice would you have for someone wanting to follow in your footsteps? 

Do you! Stay true to that fire that’s burning inside of you. Don’t get side-tracked by what’s on the radio or internet. Stay in yo own lane. That’s a Bar right there!

What’s up with South Central Cartel? 

Right now, the SCC is finishing up what will probably be our final full album. The title will be Respect The Real. We will never, never stop making songs; we might even do an EP here and there. But, this may be our last full album. We recently dropped the 1st single, “Set N My Ways,” so go and check that out if you haven’t already.

Looking ahead, say five or maybe even ten years from now, where do you see yourself?  

10 years from now, I hope I’m still in my studio vibing and loving this Hip Hop shit, Word!

Is there anything I left out or just plain forgot to mention?        

Currently the SCC members are Big Prodeje, Big Havikk, LV and DJ Domino.

Any “parting” words for our readers? 

Don’t let this social network era swallow you up. Stay authentic, stay official, stay you. You don’t need to be a carbon copy or be some one else’s example of what cool is. The coolest muffucca you will ever know is in the mirror. And, that’s 1Hundid 4 that jazz!

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Big Prodeje of South Central Cartel is here for an exclusive WCS HipHop50 Interview!

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