Tech N9ne is on the road once again, this time promoting his new album Something Else. The Strange Music camp wrapped up there Canadian tour and recently began their United States tour with 27 shows remaining. Tech’s entourage consists of artists signed to his independent label “Strange Music” and includes Stevie Stone, ¡Mayday!, Krizz Kaliko, Ces Cru & Prozak. We caught up with Tech N9ne at Portland, Oregon’s Roseland theater to ask a few questions about the tour and his up and coming plans.
The Source: The album you just dropped debuted at #2 rap album in the country, which is a new career best for you. What was your reaction?
Tech N9ne: Jay Z was number 1?
The Source: I do believe Jay Z was number 1 with ‘Magna Carta Holy Grail.’
Tech N9ne: Well Jay Z is humungous, he sells out The Garden! But I’m #2, and I’m independent. That means that if I was on video like he is and radio like he is, had sponsorships like he does then I’d probably be #0 before number #1 (laughs). You know what I’m sayin? I’m trying to be bigger then all these niggas and I love them all. But it’s a wonderful thing he’s the hip hop president and I can’t wait to talk to him again and ask him some questions. I’m intrigued and I want to ask him about some of the things on his album. You know, when someone’s ahead of you, you want to know what there doing. I mean you know why he got #1, he’s good and for me to have #2? I wasn’t mad at all, that was a huge accomplishment. That means my fans are out there workin like a mother fucker.
The Source: Do you think your fans can expect a future collaboration between you and Jay Z?
Tech N9ne: Totally, I had one for him on this album but I didn’t have time to send it, I ran out of time. I was going to send him “That’s My Kid” which is the one I did with Big K.R.I.T, Kutt Calhoun and C-Lo Green. I was going to send that to Jay and I had a way to get it to him with a friend on the inside that records him.
The Source: Kind of like how you were able to arrange a recording with The Doors on your new album?
Tech N9ne: Yeah totally, Fred Wreck made that happen. I got friends like that everywhere but I don’t really utilize them because I’m in my own world. When the time comes, like I’m about to call Twista and get Kanye’s number. I want to talk to him about some things. I got some good things to say to him. It’s time for me to call Kanye, he hasn’t talked to me ever. Me and Krizz Kaliko are going to talk to Kanye. I just want to talk to him as a person, then will talk about music.
The Source: Your song “Fragile” off of the new album “Something Else” featuring Kendrick Lamar talks about journalist’s critiquing your work, how are your thoughts on the current reviews for “Something Else”?
Tech N9ne: It’s not about journalists critiquing my work its about journalists saying stupid shit about my work. Saying that I’m redundant and gimmicky when everything on my album don’t resemble. “Straight Out The Gate” with Serj (Tankian “System of a Down”) doesn’t resemble “Strange 2013” with The Doors, even though it’s both rock. There totally different, even the content. “I’m Not A Saint” doesn’t sound like “Belive”. So to say my shit is redundant is idiotic to me. If you say that I’m gimmicky because my face is painted then I’m going to be offended because my dead homie painted my face back in 1994. I take that personal. So that’s just ignorant to me and that’s why I had to address it. I just think a mother fucker should be more careful when they talk about me because I’m not the norm. I mean I’m not nothing special or anything, I’m just like everybody else but I take pride and put love into my shit and I expect a mother fucker to listen to a album for at least two weeks before they critique it. I heard people come back and say they were sorry to Nas for saying things about his shit and coming back later and naming it a classic. I don’t like that shit. If mother fuckers actually did their homework and saw what was put into it and said it was whack I would understand, I would just say “well I’m full of myself”. But everyone agrees, I have seen a lot of wonderful reviews (Something Else), the majority that I have seen have been thumbs up. I don’t recall seeing one bad one.
The Source: Are you seeing a different level of reviews on this then you have on past albums?
Tech N9ne: Totally different level, everyone is agreeing that this is a wonderful album. The major consensus is that its wonderful. I mean you go on YouTube and you’ll see a lot of people talking shit like “well fuck why is he doing music with Wiz Khalifa, why is he doing music with B.o.B, fuck that. Why is he working with Lil Wayne.” You get people saying shit like that and I’m sensitive about my shit you know? I take that shit personal. They say you shouldn’t take it personal but I do. My people say “Tech, why do you argue with these people on twitter when they have 5 followers?”. I don’t give a fuck if they have 5 followers they said something disrespectful and I’m a real person so…I’m going to challenge people to pay attention, and I’ll know when you paid attention because I’ll read it and be like “oh they listened”.
The Source: So this is show number 28 of?
Tech N9ne: I want to say 55. But where not even close.
The Source: What would you like to see gained from this tour?
Tech N9ne: I’m already seeing it. I’m already seeing more tittys. The fans are getting younger and younger, it’s fucking crazy. It’s like I’m getting older and there getting younger. Their parents are bringing them as well now from being fans back in the day. It’s like the fucking Greatful Dead man. It’s hard to do what I do up there but its fun and its beautiful to know that people still want to come. Every girl here is like 18-19, my daughter’s age, I used to fuck these girls! (laughs)
The Source: What are you least looking forward to while on this tour?
Tech N9ne: I dread my artists getting sick like Stevie Stone is tonight, and he can’t perform. Something’s wrong with his throat. I don’t like to see those kinds of things happen. So whatever we can do to prevent my artists from not being able to perform for the fans that love them. This is supposed to be relaxing and something to talk about years to come.
The Source: Can you tell us about your next album “Therapy”?
Tech N9ne: Yeah its done, its done. Its an EP. 7 songs that I did with Ross Robinson, rock oriented. You know I did the rock shit for a long time and it’s always been in our music so this is my first dabble into the whole live band thing, the whole album. Its dope, I think its way dope. Its way different, and it’s therapy. I wrote a song a day on Venice Beach.
Tech N9ne continues the next leg of his tour tonight in Eugene, Oregon then heading into Seattle, Washington with the tour ending in November with a final stop in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. For more information you can check out www.therealtechn9ne.com
Words & Photos By: Mark A. Macpherson