Benzo- When did you fall in love with hip-hop
Dutch Vega- I got into hiphop when I was a young cat. Im going to say when I was about 6..7 years old. Around 91, I used to run around with my older brother. He was a “B-Boy”. He used to take me around where him and his crew used to be… I would see bmx bikes and I would be following behind them on my skateboard. They would have the boombox out with the cardboard box folded up. *laughs* That was basically the beginning. Im going to say I really fell in love with hiphop when “Ready To Die” dropped. That album made me fall in love with hip-hop. I used to go to sleep listening to that album. I think I broke 6 pair of headphones that year, due to me listening to that album and falling asleep to it everynight. *laughs*
Benzo- For the people that has no idea… where are you from
Dutch Vega- I am from the Bronx.
Benzo- Growing up in the birthplace of what we call hiphop, who was your biggest supporter
Dutch Vega- My biggest supporter coming up rhyming would be my sister Sara Kana and my brother Jesse James. They would be the 2 people that really supported me, in my journey.
Benzo- I understand that you have done work with “End Of The Week” and you are also a member of the “Grind Time East Coast Division”…. Shout out to Sara, Poison Pen, and the rest of the Grind Time family. With running GT with Sara and Pen and running the draft league for GTEC. I also know that you are a battle rapper. When did this come about
Dutch Vega- I actually got stated when “PH” was president of the GTEC division. I tried out… and I passed the 1st time. He definitely like what he saw. He put me into GT to do a battle. I actually won that battle. Then he put me up to headline day one of “Bad Blood” which was the when Head Ice battled Quest MCODY and I battled Rheteric Ramirez. I been battling since then. But this year, I actually been falling back. I only had 1 battle this year and that was against Myers Lansky. Basically, I just been focused on running GTEC with Pen and Sara, Running the GTEC draft league, and putting together my music.
Benzo- Great, Well I know you have worked with alot of people in the past from Rah Digga, to Pharoahe Monch to Tash from The Alkaholiks. Yet if you had the chance to work with anybody in the industry, who would it be
Dutch Vega- Wow, well I would def work with Kanye West. I respect what he does for all his artists that are on “G.O.O.D. Music”. Basically he gives out what his brand stands for. Good Music! I would say Cory Gunz. Not only is he a great lyricst… he’s also a great friend. Which is crazy because I actually have him on this project that my brother Jesse James and myself has dropping real soon. But all and all I would really love to work with Kanye.
Benzo- Ok, This is really a very hard question to ask any artist. But, Who would you say are your top 5 rapppers that are out right now in the game
Dutch Vega- Damn… right now… hmmm, I would say Jay is still at the top of my list. Jay is just 1 of those MC’s that I just respect for everything that he has done. He has shown that there is more to what we can do than just being a rapper in the industry. From his catalog of music, to the business ventures. So Jay would be #1 on my list. Then I would say Kanye. I got alot of respect for Drake and what he does. I like his music, Im not gonna front *laughs* To me personally, I feel him music is good. I will also say Wayne… but his studio albums really do not do much for me. So I’m up in the air on him. *laughs* Also this artist named Childish Gambino. I actually got to 1st see and listen to him when I performed at “Rock The Bells” in NYC. He was on the Wu-Tang stage. He came on right after Mobb Deep but right before Rae and Ghost did the “Purple Tape” I was like who is this dude with these little shorts on. *laughs* But the music was really good. I went home looked him up. Come to find out, he’s on a tv show that I watch called “The Community” Like forereal… he’s an actor, a comedian, and he has some good rhymes with him. And to round off the list. Wait… Do they have to be in the industry
Benzo- *laughs* No, just whoeva you feel is rocking to you… in the game… the rap game isn’t all industry. You know that…
Dutch Vega- Damn, I would have changed my list and been like Jesse James, Sara Kana, Swave, Nems, Posion Pen, and Myself! *laughs* But all and all, I would say Jay, Kanye, Drake, Childish Gambino, and Ill put Wayne on there…
Benzo- Nice… I see that you have a record label called “High Society Records” and this is actually going to distribute your new project. I understand that this is an independent label. But as time goes by and everything blows, would you stay independent or would you sign to a label
Dutch Vega- I would say that I enjoy being indie because you can do what you want. You are your own boss. Im not against signing with a label, because as an artist we all are inspired by wanting to be signed by a major label. But at the same time, it’s not really a life goal for me. It’s not necessarily the the most important goal for me. For me, it’s just putting out good music and hopefully people would like to listen to it. That’s really it. I mean, if a major deal will come about, I would look at it from a business stand point. If I see that it’s not good business for me to do. If was was good for me. Then yes… I would take the deal. If it didn’t feel right, such as me loosing the creative control or things of that nature. Then I would pass on that.
Benzo- Good point…well may I ask… what do you feel you are bringing to the table
Dutch Vega- I’m bringing something different to the game. I’m bringing my flavor to it. Everyone has their own idea of what music should sound like now, and alot of people tend to follow. At the end of the day, I feel that we all have some of our previous generation of artists come out of us. So to say with Jay. People would compare his fast flow to what Big Daddy Kane brought to the game. Big Pun, he definitely came from the Kool G Rap school of rhyming… along with Nas. We tend to take from our previous influences. Just like Cory Gunz. I remember him on the block. He would admire Eminem. And you can hear from his style early on was influenced by Em. If people were to check my music out, they would probably see some similarities as far as I put my projects together. Kinda like Kool Keith, I do characters, I do concepts. I really digged Thurston Howell alot, just because he was his own character. Also, ODB! Thats kinda the lane that I am in. Im a wild mofo. *laughs* My album is called “Dutch Vega Presents: Adventures Of Superspick”. You know people already are like “Whoa, you’re calling yourself a spic” Im like yeah… I don’t give a ****. *laughs* It really doesn’t matter to me. Im all about having a good time, and having a good time making the music. You may not catch too much political rhymes in my music. Not to say I don’t do that. I do have a couple tracks like that here and there that will be on future projects. But for now, Im all about having a good time, smoking and drinking, kicking the s***, and having a good time. This is what mainly my music reflects.
Benzo- OK, with all the music that is out there, and every year… we seem to see trends come and go. May I ask, what trend stands out to you
Dutch Vega- I can say the trend that I really enjoyed the most with hiphop is when were having fun. Like right now with the music that is out now…it tends to be fun music. So to say, when Puff and Bad Boy was out… right before DMX and the LOX came with the rawness of Ruff Ryder Records which to me change hiphop. The shiny suit era… I actually enjoyed the SS Era. *laughs* Not to say I don’t enjoy the hardcore music, because I enjoy that just as much too. But when that style tends to come back around. You seem to see alot of “fake people” come out trying to be gangster. Like when 50 came out with “Get Rich, Die Trying” that when the hardcore of hiphop was coming back. Yet, you seen alot of people came out, starting to include how they got shot in their rhymes and their bios. It seemed as if, everybody wanted to talk about how they got shot. That is just corny to me. Yet when people make music about having fun, I don’t see fakeness in it. Because everyone is just having fun. So that is the trend I tend to like the most. When there is alot of upbeat music, and you can have an uptempo production, and say some real rhymes to it. People seem to think, since it’s up tempo, you have to talk about party s*** all day. That’s far from true. You can be talking about real life situations and have an uptempo beat, and it can be crossed over as a party record. And this is what some people are doing these days. But I just enjoy when people are having fun with the music. Instead of everyone trying to be a tough guy.
Benzo- What are your thoughts on the music industry today
Dutch Vega- I feel that the music industry right now…is in a messed up place. I put it like this. They are selling the wrong product in the wrong era. So to say, in the 80’s when crack became the #1 drug. You didn’t see many people selling weed or heroine. I mean, obviously people still sold the weed and the other drugs. But it was the crack era for a reason. And like right now, we are living in the era where the industry is trying to sell some product… suck as cd’s…to people that are walking around with ipods. So it really doesn’t make sense. They are selling the wrong product to the people. They are not really paying attention to the change of times. They’re trying to get artists to sign basic deals, where not only are they putting their hand in your sales. Now they’re trying to put their hands in your shows, in your product, everything. Now the record company is getting to artists to sign these deals…where they will actually own you…as a whole…even your image. And that is something I don’t agree with. As far as the music itself…being made…it’s cool. Alot of new artists emerging, and I do enjoy the music that is out right now. Im not the people that will scream hiphop is dead…because it isn’t. It will be alive forever. Yet it will always change. Yet… they will still say Hip Hop is dead. I will say Hip Hop is dope. Just the hiphop you are looking for is still out there. You just have to look for it and find it.
Benzo- With “Adventures Of Superspic” about to drop. Tell me, why should people listen to it
Dutch Vega- Well, I think they should check it out because this is a record well put together. It is a conceptual project. Within itself, you will get lost. This is album that when you pay attention yo everything that I am saying lyrically, in each song, everything is pertaining towards the image of the project that I am putting out. Im not necessarily the “Superspic” all the time. *laughs* This is a character that I created for this project and this is embellishing on the person that I am sometimes. People will enjoy it. This is really good music… and also… IT’S FREE! *laughs* This is some different from what everyone else is doing. I think everyone tends to play the cool guy and this is far from what I am doing. If anything, on this record…Im talking about how sloppy I am. You got some rappers that talk about they’re balling with millions in their pocket but catches the train and lives in a rat infested apartment in the Bronx. Im just being myself and not pretending to be something else. This is what makes the project dope.
Benzo- When you’re not writing, recording, or working with the GT family… what does Dutch Vega do
Dutch Vega- Honestly… this takes up all my time outside of my regular 9-5 job. If I’m not at my job, Im probably promoting a draft league battle, or setting up battles for the next event, or working on my next project. Like the whole time I been working on this product, I already recorded a couple tracks for the next project coming up. I already put together a mixtape which is Jesse James and my self next project which is dropping January of next year also another mixtape that will be dropping in November. Basically all I been doing is working. This rapping is literally a full time job. People say how Jay and Kanye are successful for some satanic reasons. I dont believe that. I feel they are successful because they worked hard! They worked hard everyday. Kayne talks about it in his music, where he locked himself in the basement for 3 summers. Thats dedication and in order to be successful, you have to work hard, everyday.. every hour… Like, my wife understands the sacrifice that we make as a couple for our relationship. Like 1 time, our anniversary came up, and I had to put it off for the next day because I had to do a battle with GT. Like thats the sacrifice that some people have to do in order to be successful. Luckily I have a women that supports and understands. *laughs* But this is a 24 hour job. Even if I get 10 minuets to myself and Im sitting back and laughing. Im always thinking of the next plan to better my career.
Benzo- I see you live by the #NoDaysOff module… What are your thought on selling your music digitally rather than tangible albums… Or either or
Dutch Vega- I think it’s important to hit up everything. I still feel it’s a great reason to print out vinyl. There are still DJ’s the strictly do vinyl. But I do feel that it would be good to put your music out thru all outlets. Erykah Budu, I repect her so much because when everything started becoming digital downloads. She did something that I thought the industry should always do. Instead of selling CD’s, she was selling her album on a “jump drive”. And this is really appealing to the modern day and age of technology. But I would want to do everything. I wouldn’t want to limit my music to just 1 outlet.
Benzo- If you could give 5 steps on how you made it to where you are, and maybe how it can help the next artist that is trying to build their career in the game…that has little or no knowledge
Dutch Vega- That’s kinda hard. I really can’t put it into steps, because each artist has to walk their own path. What is successful for 1 artist may not be the key for the next. For me…I learned about the music…Then I learned about the industry…I started making my own music… started performing it… then promoting it on a wider level…then the next step would be to promote in on an even higher level… and hopefully that will pan out to be successful steps for me to do to make it as an artist.
Benzo- Now, the release of your full lenght solo debut of “Dutch Vega Presents Adventures Of Superspick” on High Society Records…when is the release date
Dutch Vega- October 31 which is Halloween. *laughs* Im actually in competition with a couple of my boys… Iron Solomon and Goods are also dropping they’re project on the same date. So I just want everyone to support all 3 of these projects.
Benzo- Any shows…battles coming up
Dutch Vega- Actually yes I got some shows coming up in the tri-state area. I will be at the End Of The Week on the 30th…the day before my release in Manhattan. 101 Ave A, New York, NY. Check out www.EODub.com for more info. The next battle will be with GrindTime East Coast on Dec 10th. So make sure you guys look out for that.
Benzo- Great…any last words
Dutch Vega- Please go check out my music at www.soundcloud.com/dutchvega or www.dutchvega.bandcamp.com or just google me to get all my social networks. And I just want thank you Benzo and everyone from www.thatshiphop.com for the support! O… please support my project “Dutch Vega Presents Adventures Of Superspick”
Benzo- Cool, well I want to thank you for taking time out your schedule… and keep up the good work bro! #NOWTHATSHIPHOP
Contact Dutch Vega:
"My Pen Brings Genesis, U Can Call The Color Sega"