DRIP DROPS of HIP-HOP from CHATTANOOGA
By Ben Banks
This interview was really cool on how it all came together. I honestly hadn’t heard of Goldperms before but one day my IG blew up talking about his latest project, ‘The Gold EP.’ I listened to it, loved it, then reached out to him for an interview. He’s a super chill dude and he’s definitely one to keep up with in the future
Where are you from? What area do you feel like you best represent?
Goldperms: I was born in Hattiesburg, MS but I came to East Memphis, TN when I was two years old. Been raised here ever since and I’m still out here off Shelby Drive, them boys know what’s up.
What/who got you first interested in music?
Goldperms: I got put onto rap by my father who used to religiously listen to old southern rap like Gorilla Zoe and the usual 3 6 Mafia and Koopsta Knicca. Since then, it turned into a slippery slope of delving into southern rap, west coast stuff, indie rock, jazz, and more obscure shit that i’m probably forgetting.
But in regards to starting to rap, I have to owe my two friends Jarvis and Dallas (who are both also rappers @jd_daltrey and @onosapien). They literally threatened to beat my ass if I wasn’t productive so I needed that.
Who are some of your current inspirations for your music?
Goldperms: Definitely most of my influence as of late comes from the underground east coast scene. Dudes like MIKE, Medhane, Navy Blue, and (of course) Earl Sweatshirt definitely played a big part in influencing my sound and approach to things.
Finish this sentence: Goldperms is ____
Goldperms: Starving. No, really. I deadass didn’t eat breakfast, I’m an idiot. But also in a sense of motivation. No one ever wants to stay broke AND work a nine to five. Get that bread, son. Baguette boys.
Who’s an artist that’s really slept on right now?
Goldperms: Oh, MAN. The whole Unapologetic camp, honestly. A Weirdo From Memphis, Preauxx, Cameron Bethany just a name a few. Then you got other artists like Qemist, Sir Jerold French, and Goddessie all doing their own thing with their own spin on it, it’s sick. Memphis has variety.
Briefly take me through your process for creating.
Goldperms: I don’t really have a cool process. I know dudes that meditate with burning incense before they write, and I dig it.
I literally will just find myself in my room, listening to music and pretending that i’m performing live using my phone as a microphone (don’t judge me). Then, that would turn into “fuck, I want to write right now” which turns into me going into my closet listening to the beat for a few minutes and I just bang out tracks there.
How do you balance making music and other aspects of your life?
Goldperms: It’s not hard for me to balance, I unashamedly don’t have much going on at the moment haha. I spend a few hours doing music and trying to be somewhat artistic whether it’s trying out new cadences or sketching things in my book. The other times, it’s skateboarding and odd jobs.
Is there a story behind your latest project?
Goldperms: Somewhat. It’s mostly a diary of me venting, if anything. During that time I wrote and found production and networked and all that, I was going through a lot of inner turmoil and dealing with toxicity with people I knew and my own mental struggles. So I’d just let it all out. Those tracks all relate to me, 100%. PROVIDER is actually aimed at someone but I doubt I’ll actually reveal who.
What are some of your goals that you hope to accomplish within the music industry?
Goldperms: Industry wise, I don’t have many aspirations. I’m pretty to myself, BUT I do want my music to have an impact. To be memorable for those who can relate or who have similar bouts with mental illness. It’s a common thing to feel alone, and those folks are far from that. Also, I wanna get money to fund my expensive skateboarding and cars habit. Trying to get back into drifting, on my T-Pain shit.
What are some trends that you see happening in the music scene this year?
Goldperms: I have no idea. When I said I’m pretty to myself, I meant it. I legit be in my room like eighty percent of the time, it be like that.
What things are you trying to change in the music game?
Goldperms: Make niggas genuine in 2019.
Faking depression and mental illness in the light of the whole faux “positivity” image is just as bad as flaunting with materialism. If you don’t got it, it’s okay. Be you, damn.
What are some themes that you really focus on in your music?
Goldperms: Mainly the usual. The good ole “haha I’m better than you in various ways”, mixed in with sad existential dread. It’s lit.
Who are you making music for?
Goldperms: My stuff is pretty personal, so it’s kinda for anyone it applies to. Them and all the sadbois who’d ever gotten flaked on or their hearts broken. This shit for you, dawg.
What message are you trying to send to that audience?
Goldperms: Mainly that life sucks, and things happen. You don’t have control of them and you feel out of touch with how things are going, and that’s okay. Given the circumstances, a flower can still grow from the worst resources, but it grew regardless because it got what it needed, and nothing extra. It’s okay, mane. Thug it out, we got this.
Which artist would you love to collaborate with?
Goldperms: Oh, damn. That’s a list in itself. I hopefully have a collaboration with AWFM soon. I also would love to do a collab with Cities Aviv and my homie $ungod, they both are local dudes that make music in a similar vein as me. I want to get the chance to make music with the dudes who are in the aforementioned influence list, and other than that I want to work in cinematography and work with artists for music videos.
Talk about any obstacles that you’ve overcome to pursue your music.
Goldperms: Money was a HUGE obstacle, honestly. Worrying about where I could record in quality with little to no money is always a hassle. Luckily, my good friend Jerold had a connect with a studio and we were able to hash things out and make the EP that’s here today. The only other obstacle I had was purely obstacles of my own, like getting out of bed or overcoming any down mood I was in that day. Depression will strap you to the bed if you let it.
What advice would you give to someone starting in music?
Goldperms: The biggest thing I have to say is TALK to people. Outside and on social media. Networking is the most important thing you could do, you never know who knows who. Engage with people with a positive attitude and people will gather on their own on accord of you not being a piece of shit amongst a toilet bowl full of doo-doo. Other than that, it’s all about stepping out of your boundaries and comfort zones. Be open to criticism. Have a level head, and monitor what you post on social media.
What are some victories that you had with your music/art?
Goldperms: Most of my victories I honestly can’t talk about because they tie in to BIG things I have coming later. Stay tuned and y’all will see them.
How would you best describe your brand/style?
Goldperms: I haven’t thought of that much, but people OBVIOUSLY go for the whole Tyler, the Creator vibe. I honestly just want to describe it as just cool music to cut grass or smoke to, it’s relaxing.
What do you want to be known for?
Goldperms: I want to be known for a couple things. Outside of rap, there are so many things that I want to get into. I want to own my own clothing brand (which I plan to have out and distributed by the end of the year), I want to film music videos and actually make movies, both full length and short. I also want to curate art shows with my pieces and other local artists’. There’s a LOT I want to be known for, but it’ll happen in due time.
What are some other forms of media that inspire you? (Movies, art, TV, etc)
Goldperms: Cinema is a HUGE influence. I’ve been a fan of certain directors since I was in high school. Like every other art student, I saw Wes Anderson’s “Moonrise Kingdom” and I was mad infatuated with the color palettes and the offbeat humor. Other than that, visual art can definitely evoke inspiration.
Tell me about one of your favorite projects so far.
Goldperms: ‘Some Rap Songs’ most definitely up there. MIKE’s War In My Pen is immaculate. Because The Internet is a classic that no one talks about for some odd reason, 2013 was the year of a lot of things.
Oh, and of course Tyler albums but I’m not saying anything else.
Do you have any other hobbies that you want to build in 2019?
Goldperms: I’m most definitely going to be working on my visual arts and mediums. I want to work on that so i can incorporate it into the music more and I make it more organic and into myself. Another thing I’m gonna work on this year is my car obsession, just to learn more about the ins and outs of what makes things tick.
Anything that you want to promote? Shows, projects or shoutouts?
Goldperms: “THE GOLD EP IS OUT NOW ON SOUNDCLOUD, AND WILL BE ON APPLE MUSIC AND SPOTIFY SOON.”
Other than that, A Weirdo From Memphis also dropped an EP on the same day as me, and it’s insane I’d highly recommend it.
I want to shoutout Jerold for helping me get GOLD out, Spekulate the Philosopher and my skate friend/brother Dylan Brown for tethering me to the ground in times when I needed it. My parents of course for giving me the support I needed. If I’m forgetting anybody, I’m sorry. I love everyone that’s helped me through this shit.
Where can people keep up with you on social media?
Keep up with the boy and watch the come up. More good times.
Tha Milk Drop is a site focused on highlighting the hip-hop culture in Chattanooga, Tennessee, but also taps into hip-hop worldwide. Each week we drop exclusive and new content from artists. Also catch the profiles and interviews of hip-hop artists and creatives.
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