FEATURE: Cuban Pete – My Inspiration | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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As the title of his debut release, Renaissance Man, suggested, Cuban Pete has a love for past classics. Therefore, it’s easy to think he can be relegated to the category of ‘older head’ in rap’s current generational battle but that is not necessarily the case. Cuban doesn’t subscribe to that divisive narrative and is just a lover of good music regardless of an artist’s age. He says “Hip-Hop was built by the youth and is the voice of the youth. It was kids that created classic albums, and spawned sounds that defined eras in Hip Hop music. ‘Because they’re young’ should never be an excuse for putting out sub-par music for a quick buck.”
His latest release, Capital C Capital P, is a further introduction to the man and his music. Cuban breaks down the album track by track below and reveals what inspired him to create his mini-masterpiece.

GMT Intro (and Outro)
GMT is a nod to Greenwich Mean Time and my Britishness but also stands for ‘Grown Man Talk’. That was the original title for the project. I removed a couple of tracks and added a few more to make it what it is now. I wanted to make it a solid ‘all killer no filler’ project at a length more suited to the current market.

Take Notes (produced by D.Original Mr.Blue)
This was one of the original tracks that I kept because it’s a dope track lyrically. I originally did it to prove something to myself. I’m not a shouty type of rapper and I realise now I’ll always sound laid back but I wanted my voice to be more dominant. I grew up listening to Chuck D, Melle Mel, and other artists that commanded attention and that’s something I’m still aiming for, as well as growing my confidence as a performer. For me this was a definite step in the right direction.

You Made The List (produced by DJ W.I.Z.)
I’m sure some people think I’m deadly serious about everything I post on social media and I just sit there furious that people are ruining hip-hop, shaking in anger while I type status updates. That inspired me to make this track about wack rappers being added to my shitlist as light-hearted as possible and I ended up with a party banger.
Hip-hop started as party music as an escape from the daily grind and that inspired me to do something I hadn’t really achieved up to this point. I mean I had bangers but they weren’t something you could dance around to if you wanted. And, in my opinion, I managed to do it without sacrificing the quality of the lyrics.

Evil Roots feat OneMike (produced by SuperEgo)
Noreaga (from the group Capone-N-Noreaga) is a favourite MC of mine and one of the things I love about his music is his honesty. I can’t in all seriousness sit there and pen a track about how I’m getting money or ballin’ when I’ve got holes in my underwear. That line was true at the time btw though I have bought new underwear since ha-ha.
Although a featured artist Onemike is an inspiration to me too. We inspire each other to do better and have a collab project coming in 2019.

Aural Medication feat B.Dvine (produced by DJ W.I.Z.)
This was another track inspired by the truth. Hip-hop has helped me through a lot of my bad times and I touched on a couple of those times on my verse. My last year of school wasn’t great and it was pretty much me versus them for no particular reason other than people being dicks from what I remember. Hip-hop was my escape from that.
Obviously I took the breakup of my first marriage quite hard at the time. I put my all into relationships so I had to switch quick and throw myself into my music instead.
Feature artist B.Dvine also turned to music to help him through some very dark times and details them in a brutally honest verse.

Rosy One (produced by DJ Stizz)
As well as music, I’m a visual artist that is heavily influenced by graffiti. This was an entirely fictional track (as my wife does not like hip-hop at all) about the search for a hip-hop loving girl that I named after female graffiti artist Rosy One. I contacted her first to make sure she was okay with me naming it after her and wouldn’t think I was some stalker fan, ha-ha.

Why Not feat Ju Muny and B.Dvine (produced by Cleno Jovanni)
All three of us on this track were just inspired to write whatever we felt by the dope beat from producer Cleno Jovanni. We had fun with it. I work with Ju and B often and their flows on this one inspired me to move out my comfort zone and switch mine up to match. That one of the reasons I love working with other artists.

My God (produced by DJ W.I.Z.)
The label I’m under, F.N.B.G. (Fear Nothing But God) Records, inspired the concept of this track. I’m not a follower of organised religion as such but I’m not an atheist either. If you hang most people off a roof by their ankles they’ll pray to something or someone. This was me being hung by my ankles, being honest with myself, and praying I can just make it through this crazy life.
One thing I’ve realised through writing this is my main inspiration is truth. There are many lies and twisted truths spread by media that influence our daily lives. Real recognise real as they say which I like to think is not only why I am respected by my peers but also why I piss a lot of people off. Not everyone is equipped to face the truth or prefer to stay ignorant to it.
I wouldn’t lie to you.

Capital C Capital P is out now and available here.

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