The Urban Fever Radio Show
Interviewer: Mz Rizk
Artist: Musiq Soulchild
Mz Rizk: How are you?
Musiq Soulchild: I’ve been good, how about yourself?
Mz Rizk: Very good thank you. I’m excited about having this chat with you. Are you excited to be back? I saw you the last time you came to Melbourne and that was an amazing show and that was without a band!
Musiq: Yes I’m excited to come back. I was just disappointed that it was short lived, you know and even this one isn’t going to be that long but I decided to bring my band, so I feel really good about that.
Mz Rizk: What is the possibility of you joining Angie Stone for ‘Ingredients of love’ on stage?
Musiq: Oh wow! I haven’t, I hadn’t – I don’t know. It’s something we would have to talk about and rehearse. That would be cool, that’s nothing to get to her but it’s a matter of us getting together and rehearsing it, its totally possible. I’ll see if I can make that happen.
Mz Rizk: Oh that would be great if you could make that happen. It’s not often in Australia that we get such a full current soul line up- this has never happened.
Musiq: Yeah it’s cool actually. I got to go learn that song again; I wrote it so I’ll figure it out.
Mz Rizk: I hope you do! So the band that you will be bringing down, is it your band that you’ve been touring with for a long time?
Musiq: Band members change all the time. Um but it will more than likely be the band member’s that I have found out here in Atlanta that I’ve kind of gotten cool with and we gel really well. Um so it will probably be them, but its so far away so anything is liable to happen between now and then. But I hope that it’s the same band members. But I don’t like to switch up band members like that. But the reality of the fact is that sometimes you have to. For many reasons, it’s not always bad reasons. Sometimes band members have prior engagements that they just can’t make changes.
Mz Rizk: Your first album came out at a time that the Internet probably wasn’t as useful as it is now – how has that changed for you. What have been the pros and cons of being able to access people almost immediately without being in their space?
Musiq: Obviously, well the con is the fact that the conversation before your work has been compromised greatly so there is just that. However it heightens the demand for quality, you know, because if a person can pitch a product for free then whatever you do has to be a little more incentivised. You know in the way of quality for them to choose it. They think “I know I can download this for free – but I totally support this artist so that’s why I’m going to go out of my way to pay for it”. And then with the whole just the whole social media thing you can get information to people so much quicker and the fans have immediate access to you and they can go Twitter or Instagram or Facebook and say “hey Musiq Soulchild I really like what you just did, or they can say hey Musiq Soulchild that last show you didn’t come with it on that last show. You need to do better”. You know so you get that immediate repour. It’s almost like – it’s almost being put in the audience’s hands now. You want to know what your fans want; you want to know what your audience is waiting for – they’ll tell you. Ask them and they will tell you. So you know, I see more of an upside than a downside. You know what I’m saying; the downside really pertains to potential commercial gain and losses that you could incur. But all of that becomes irrelevant if you have a great relationship with your audience and with the people that support you. So if you’re always responding to them and you’re always doing things that they enjoy and that they like, you know, they will let you know and they’ll always be there no matter what’s going on. So it’s all a matter of perspective.
Mz Rizk: And you love Instagram!
Musiq: Yeah! Instagram is pretty cool.
Mz Rizk: Yeah I like your Instagram. You’ve been using a lot of video lately – it’s great.
Musiq: Yeah, yeah, yeah. I’ve been learning to have some fun with it. I’ve kind of been MIA for a while because I’ve had my head down. In the grind trying to put out some really cool stuff for you guys. But I’ll be back on it.
Mz Rizk: We look forward to looking at that. Can I take you back? I was reading Questlove’s book and he mentioned in Philadelphia you were the pizza boy. Was it you or another person?
Musiq: * Laughs * I used to work at a pizza shop; yeah I had to work at a pizza shop. I used to work at a lot of places. It’s funny that he would choose that one. Go ahead Questlove. Yeah I used to work at a pizza shop, it was a spot called Comadoro’s. On the corner of Fourth and South Street, right across from the Starbucks.
Mz Rizk: Did you all used to hang out and jam and sing? Is that what happened?
Musiq: Yeah. There used to be a lot of open mic clubs that a lot of us would kind of gather around and there were certain nights for certain events. For instance Jill Scott she used to have a function that was called words and sounds and I used to go to her thing. Then right after her thing I would go to another thing at this club called Wilimena’s. I forget the name of the um, what was it called. It was two Jazz musicians. One trumpet player and one trombone player, one trumpet player named Jafar and one trombone player Jeff Bradshaw. I forget what they used to call it but I would leave Jill’s thing then go down to their thing. Just get on the mic and do whatever. Sometimes I would have something in my head or sometimes I would just get up and just freestyle. That is the culture that I come from, you know and there was a lot of that going on in Philadelphia and you just get on the mic and you just do you. That was sort of my training so to speak. So when it came down to do it, do it – a record deal and all of that. People were just so excited about it because it just seemed like it was something so new. But to us that was our everyday. It wasn’t until I realised that, that wasn’t happening everywhere that I really started to appreciate it. But yeah… that kind of took me back
Mz Rizk: Thank you for your time Musiq…
Musiq: No- thank you.