World’s Fair has had a pretty busy year thus far. After signing to Fool’s Gold Records during the summer, the crew released their debut album Bastards of the Party. They have been featured in multiple publications and on websites, including TheSource.com (in Let’s Call It A Movement), while becoming a fixture in the New York concert and festival scene.
Last week, Remy Banks, Nasty Nigel, Cody B. Ware, Lansky Jones, Jeff Donna, and Prince Samo took some time out of their schedule to chat about their music and lives; discussing topics as varied as their view on Queens hip-hop to the acquisition of a full body do-rag. After a few jokes and tangent filled conversation, it was clear that beyond their brash and humorous exterior, lies six creative forces with an explicit goal they are trying to achieve in their music.
“We feel like we don’t fit in, so f**k your party is like the game,” Nasty Nigel answered in response to me prying into their motivations for their new album. “We humanized the ‘f**k you industry’. The girl represents the game, so we ruin the game or her party.”
Those who have already heard their debut album should remember the girl that Nigel was mentioning. She appears right in the intro, when she calls Remy to invite him to her party. Setting off a chain of debaucherous events—including the punching of said girl’s boyfriend, excessive drinking and smoking, and of course party crashing—that ultimately ends up back in “bum a**” Queens, where the group ditches the girl.
“Queens has been dead for years because it wasn’t cool to be from Queens. We rep Queens hard. Nobody else does that,” Prince Samo confessed when the topic of the borough’s hip-hop scene was brought up. Harsh words, but merely the manifestation of how many critics characterize New York’s biggest borough.
“There is no Queens hip-hop,” Samo said almost bating heads to get angry at him. “We are Queens hip-hop from one end of the borough to the other end, we represent all the parts.” Throughout the interview, a common sentiment could be felt—we are going to represent for their hometown and city, although repping Queens is an uphill battle.
“It’s an underdog story at the end of the day,” Jeff Donna said when describing their debut. They are looking not to break into the industry, but rather, bum rush and destroy it.
Earlier this year, Fool’s Gold announced that they had signed the group, giving World’s Fair the backing of a label. However the goal and life hasn’t changed. “Working is pretty much the same thing, our work ethic shouldn’t change,” Donna explained.
“When you get the deal the work doesn’t stop, we were working on the album anyway. Nothing’s changed,” Samo added. If you were a fan of them before Bastards of the Party you will find a familiar atmosphere and better rhymes. Even you have never heard of these guys, after listening to their most recent project, you will have a good understanding of what you already missed out on.
Our conversation changed directions from the present to the past. Each of the members explained how they got into rapping and then came together as a group. Most of their testimonies were summarized succinctly by Donna. “I got my start at ‘America’s Got Talent.’ Nick Cannon told me I could do this!”
On the real though, “We’ve been doing this for awhile, we weren’t taking it seriously, until people started showing love. So we started taking it seriously then, for about two years.” The other members were mostly in agreement. Besides Cody, who said “I was making fun of this girl in school.”
They were not expecting their music to get as big as it did, so fast. “’Company’s Fair’, we didn’t think it would go as viral as it did, so we took it and ran with it,” explains Donna. It certainly did, amassing a huge internet fan base, eventually leading to their position right now.
Interestingly enough, their DJ, Thoth, had a very odd back story. “I started DJing last year at SXSW. Five minutes before the show Remy walks up and says ‘you’re our DJ. I didn’t have my laptop nor did I know about Serato.” A full year later and Thoth has been their tried and true DJ, seen at majority of their events.
An interesting aspect of Bastards is the ever present presence of humor and how they weave it into the tale. The light hearted atmosphere of the album was a welcomed break from the hardcore, serious, street testimonies that are dominating the game right now. This wittiness was not limited to their album or music, but also in their stage presence and conversation.
At the Fool’s Gold Day Off this year, Remy Banks came onto stage draped in a full body du-rag. It became an instant sensation on Twitter. “It was a gift from my great-grandfather who was Irish,” a strange response, but not the weirdest received that day.
Nothing was safe from a joke being made about it, “I got a rapper, you haven’t heard about him yet because he’s not born,” Prince Samo suspiciously said about his upcoming “Baby dropping in December.”
All joking aside, the group is nothing less than genuine. Their group dynamic was obviously from their friendship and each of their unique personalities they bring to the table. “The cool thing is that we have our own thing, it’s natural and organic. It’s more about style”