“Y’all be hating ’cause it’s free.”
This week I caught up with Bay Area rhymer Brodie Dollars to chop it up about everything, from moving to LA and lack of originality in hip hop to his definition of a true OG. Catch the full interview below and be sure to stick around ’til the end to hear his new album, ‘City Of Richmond.’
@WestCoastKeish: I’ve known you for since you moved down to LA two years ago… how’s everything been?
@BrodieDollars: Cool… I dropped City of Richmond about a week ago
@WestCoastKeish: I saw that, how it’s going so far?
@BrodieDollars: Yeah, the project was originally called Wiggln, and I had to change it because the digital distributor wouldn’t push it unless the title matched the artwork.
@WestCoastKeish: Ooh, that kinda sucks – was it a problem?
@BrodieDollars: At first it felt like an “L” but the content, pretty much everything spoken on the album, fits perfectly in Richmond, CA.. it became what it was – it’s actually kinda bootsie distributors do that
@WestCoastKeish: I guess it’s part of the independent game – how are you liking LA?
@BrodieDollars: Yeah, and I don’t mind being independent… no one can tell you what to do, when to drop, what to write about, what to sound like – everybody is a clone right now.. and I don’t think they even care they’re clones LOL
@WestCoastKeish: The mumble rap era.
@BrodieDollars: It’s not even that… sometimes I don’t even know what the f*ck I’m saying – it’s more-so how everyone sounds the same or is looking for the same type of beats… Like trap beats… Played TF out.
@WestCoastKeish: LA …
@BrodieDollars: At first I hated it, at first I was like F*CK LA – coming from Richmond, CA… coming from The Bay Area period, people are a lot more wholesome – and that might be because Hollywood is out here, so I mean proximity-wise, that might be what rubs off onto people.. like you jump into an elevator and a lot of people just look at you or stay quiet; back home they at least greet you – I also had a big problem with people understanding me, too.. Richmond has somewhat of a southern twang, every city in the Bay Area speaks a little different from one another… Like if you get a dude from Deep East Oakland, they’re definitely not going to sound like a Frisco cat – so at first I had to read njust how I came at people… People still don’t understand me. lol
@WestCoastKeish: It’s a trip how Northern California is only 400 miles away and it’s a whole different world.
@BrodieDollars: Completely different – [I] had ran into this dude from Long Beach that was very adamant about me knowing what neighborhood he was from and he told “you on the west coast now, bro” LMAO I was like “fam, you know The Bay Area is the northern part of California” – we got into it because of the term “OG”, apparently an OG to us is a lot different to what it is to folks down here –
@WestCoastKeish: What’s the difference…?
@BrodieDollars: Well, for us it’s a term of endearment almost… you can push to an elder and say “what’s up with you OG, what are we looking at?” and it’ll be cool… Or just in referencing to anyone that’s been in the game a little longer, an older woman at a bar checking you out can be the “OG” LMAO… it’s true tho! It’s basically anyone you can render game from.
@WestCoastKeish: Lol. So what’s LA’s version of an OG…?
@BrodieDollars: LMAO… Ok, so this was dude’s from LB definition: your gang leader. Someone that recruits you and makes you do a bunch of shit you don’t want to do in your neighborhood – and I understand that, California up and down can be grimy, but I guess the way we use it it’s not that serious.
@WestCoastKeish: Were you ever affiliated … ?
@BrodieDollars: Know what, I have to say no.. because like an OG told me, a real OG northerner, “never half-step” – half of my cousins were northerners in Sac and affiliation is just always around you.. Like you can’t have one foot in, and have another foot in school, you can get your shit busted doing that, it’s like living two lives.. That shit is old though – like that shit trickles out of the prison system, and it’s generational and geographical – if you’re born north of Fresno or in The Bay Area or Sac, then… but pretty much everyone now-a-days is just about their city.
@WestCoastKeish: What’s up with City of Richmond, what made you want to put out a ten song EP?
@BrodieDollars: Musically, I’ve just been polishing my talents.. I started making my own beats when I moved down to LA, and they’ve gotten better and better and better.. Then I started to mix my own songs, and that got better – the reason I started making my own beats was because I was sick of asking producers to send me files after I had gotten two-tracks from them, and I’m the type of artist that likes to do everything right… If I’m going to record a song, I’m going to need all the goddamn files to mix it later.
@WestCoastKeish: The very first song is hella upbeat… “Took your b*tch to Benihanas on the under that’s a cold date / f*cking on your b*tch & had her wash out with that Colgate / f*cking with a hot boy, you’s a lie boy you’s a hoe mane / game is to be sold & not be told just like the cocaine”
@BrodieDollars: Wow, I can’t even remember 4 bars to my shit. Lol – yeah, I wanted to make sure it started off right energy-wise. I actually had to re-sequence the album a couple of times, I wanted to make sure it flowed right and in the case they skipped around they landed on key tracks.
@WestCoastKeish: Content-wise it’s different. You have some great punchlines. They’re actually funny as f*ck when you listen.
@BrodieDollars: Yaaahhhh.. it’s made to be like your boy bussin’ raps to you, like freestyling. It’s written, but that’s just the style I rhyme in. And it’s about 1st person situational shit, like
“whoa, I can picture my boy saying this to me about a broad or work” – I printed physical copies, fina’ sprinkle LA.
@WestCoastKeish: Are you sure they’ll listen after this interview…? You know how people can be. Lol
@BrodieDollars: Yeah, no doubt – I got a lot of love for LA. I love the opportunities out here, and I love the fact that you have to have ambition to standout out here as an artist.. it’s a huge breeding ground for networking opportunities. And as long as you don’t sound like another hoe- ass clone, I think we’ll be alright.
Listen to ‘City of Richmond‘ on Spotify