On The Q&A Tip with... Oxygen
Psykhomantus: Welcome to the Q&A tip. Before I hit you off with the 10 Q's. Can you tell us where you're from and what do you do?
Oxygen: Peace! The name is Oxygen (aka Ox The Architect or MC Just Divine) hailing from Long Island, NY. I'm a recording artist (MC), DJ, crate digger & vinyl collector, producer, and preserver of the Hip Hop culture.
P: As Sanaa Lathan would say in the movie "Brown Sugar", When did you fall in love with Hip Hop?
O: The moment I heard the first funky drum break from my mother playing her gospel LP's back in the early 70's and the feeling that gave me, I knew something was happening inside. Hip Hop in my experience has never been just a label or title. It has always been a feeling. An emotional connection.
P: What inspires you to write your rhymes?
O: Many things. Going back to that reference of a connection, it usually comes from the beat first. The words just take form from there. Experience, simple conversations and building with other like minds is inspiration too.
P: Can you break it down to us and explain who is/what is...
A) Vinyl enthusiast
b) Verbal Tech
D) SPOX PhD (with DJ Spinna)
E) The Rampagers
F) Vinyl Veterans
G) Chemical Breakdowns
O:A) Vinyl enthusiast - Anyone who has a deep passion and gets a high from collecting records the old fashioned way: diggin' !
b) Verbal Tech -(Short for Verbal Technician). My way of saying "emcee".
C) Soundsci - One of the groups I record music with. Three American emcees (Audessey, UGeorge & myself), two main producers from the UK (Jonny Cuba & Ollie Teeba aka The Process), and one DJ (Ollie Teeba).
D) SPOX PhD (with DJ Spinna) - Another group I'm part of. Two man team of DJ Spinna and myself, Oxygen.
E) The Rampagers - ANOTHER group I'm part of!!! Yes...I'm all over the place. Three American emcees (Emskee, Phill Most Chill & myself), and DJ/producer Jorun Bombay out of Canada.
F) Vinyl Veterans - International crew of "vinyl enthusiasts" from all across the globe, mostly concentrated in England.
G) Chemical Breakdowns - My old radio show that ran from 2004-2007 on 90.1 WUSB at the University of Stony Brook (Long Island). More recently, Chemical Breakdowns has returned as a segment with Vinyl Veterans Radio. Same formula as my original show. Just a shorter version.
P: Can you tell us where around the world you've been and which one of your shows has been your favourite?
O: I've been to and performed in Germany (Dresden), Netherlands (Zwolle), all over the UK, Scotland & Wales in various cities. Toured down in Miami back in the early 1990's with reggae artists Dennis Brown, John Holt & others, and a ton of spots throughout NYC & New Jersey. I can't even say one show was any more of a favorite over another at this point. They all have a different flavor. Each one (even the bad ones) hold a special place.
P: Is there been a performance that you've done and said to yourself that you could of done that better?
O: Oh man, PLENTY of them! hahaha One in particular was the show in Dresden. I was one of the openers for Public Enemy, and this was coming off the heels of Sputnik Brown so I was a bit rusty as it was rocking solo. But I didn't have a DJ which is a no-no for me, AND my show CD had skipped when the act before me was breaking down their equipment on stage. It was frightening because that place was jammed packed. It was my first international show too and I wanted to make a good first impression. In the end, it turned out OK but I always said if I had ONE show I'd do over, it'll be that one for sure.
P: Can you name one song you wish you written?
O: "No Competition" from Rakim. That's a lyrical masterpiece to me.
P: As your known to be a vinyl junkie Can you name 5 beat diggers you rate and why?
O: My brother Cut Wizard Albee, Gene Brown from North Carolina, my man Rolieo, Kid Dyno out in London, and Gensu Dean down in Dallas. Why? Because these are all heads that I've gone diggin' with and I KNOW physically get out there and get their hands dirty. Not taking anything away from eDiggers that strictly dig online, but there's a greater appreciation I hold for those of us who still make time to hit up spots. Honorable mention to all my other heads I've been out there in the field with.
P: My favourite question (Me being a trouble maker) Is there an Rapper you feel that should just put the mic down?
O: Not really. I once considered myself a VERY horrible rapper at one point, but I practiced enough where I can tolerate listening to my own rhymes. haha That being said, everyone has the potential for improvement and putting the mic down won't get it done. Now there's a good hundred or more who should stop RECORDING for a while until they improve! This rap thing is wild though. Even the ones WE may consider the worst have a following who connects with them on some level.
P: Last question. What will we be expecting in the future from you?
O: I'll keep on recording music as long as the people seem to enjoy what I do. Lookout for more Soundsci material, I have several features on deck about to drop. Hopefully get this SPOX PhD project with Spinna in the bag. I'm also putting together a solo LP also under my first emcee name, Just Divine. Working on production teamed up with my man Audessey, which together we're called Masterminds In Effect. The return of Chemical Breakdowns with the Vinyl Veterans Radio situation. Hopefully a lot more DJ'ing and touring around the world. I have a goal to get back to my art work too. I'd like to tighten up my skills as a commercial artist. That's about it for now. Thank you for having me, sir! I truly appreciate it.