The Dark Lyricist | By the Window

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Hip-Hop/Rap: Horrorcore Hip-Hop/Rap: Underground Rap Moods: Mood: Brooding
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By the Window

by The Dark Lyricist

A musical ghost story...
Genre: Hip-Hop/Rap: Horrorcore
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1. By the Window
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Album Notes

CROW CENTRAL- Thanks for your time today! How has 2017 been treating you? Musically, did you approach this year any differently then you did last year?
THE DARK LYRICIST- Thank you. 2017 has really been a roller coaster. We are constantly reinventing ourselves. We have had a lot of ups and downs. Overall it has been really positive though. The label is getting rebuilt from the ground up. It kind of meant taking a step back from music for a few months to just focus on business and really define where we wanted to go and what we wanted to do. At the end of the day it was a really easy choice for us. Our fans were key. This year we offered more merch choices than any year previous since we have been in business. We have dozens of shirts and hats that come in dozens of different styles and colors. We started a bunch of new things and updated everything. Musically we went back to our roots creatively. We do a lot from scratch and so much of what we do is in house. We blocked out any and all outside influences. New sounds. We started getting more experimental, and more focused. I started an ambitious project and am working on it as we speak.
CROW CENTRAL- What kind of music do you listen to when you are working? What music gets you instantly out of a bad mood?
THE DARK LYRICIST- It is Netherworld Records only, and a lot of times it is only instrumentals that haven't had any vocals recorded to them. That is what I listen to when I'm working. No matter where I am there is something I have put together or something from Professah Aftahlyfe stalking me. It is stuck in my head. As far as what music can get me out of a bad mood... hmmmn... I do not really go down the "bad mood" road. It is counterproductive. But I'll write and vent any frustration I have out in song form. Music has always been a therapeutic to me. If my day isn't going as planned or I'm feeling a negative set of emotions sometimes a little piece and quiet is like magic. I live in a city and it is really loud, constantly. Silence is my music sometimes. Other times, that mellow instrumental can straighten you right out. Sometimes I'll just play riffs and different stuff on the keyboard or guitar and POW (laughs) I'm right as rain.

CROW CENTRAL- Growing up, have you always wanted to be a musician? Can you recall your earliest musical memory?
THE DARK LYRICIST- Being a musician was not the first thing I wanted to do when I was growing up. I probably seemed like a weird kid to people. I remember early on wanting to be a martial arts instructor, a radio host, an author, an actor, an explorer or adventurer, just all kinds of things. As I grew a bit older and experienced more of the darker side to life what I wanted wasn't so clear... what I needed to do to get by took place of that. Early middle school though I started making the move from poetry to hip-hop and music in general. I would listen to music and word for word recite the verses and hooks. Whatever artist, didn't matter. My grandmother's sister whom we called "Auntie Peg" came to visit once and I told her I was thinking of doing music. I was 12. A few days later she gave me one of those toy microphones that you could turn on a radio frequency and speak through the radio. That was one of the first times anyone had faith in me and given me any kind of encouragement. I'll never forget it. Something like that was super rare when I was young. Most of the time I kept what I wanted to be or do a secret. I had experienced a lot of negative reinforcement when it came to adults. I was a spirited, rebellious kid. A lot of adults hated that, they would always try to break me down like I was an animal or inhuman. In those days it was about complying. Obedience. I was having none of that. I remember my Mom worked so hard for us to get by when we were kids. She'd work nights a lot so she could be there to make us dinner and whatnot. She'd jam all kinds of music getting ready for work. She had this silver old school stereo system which was super analog with these giant speakers. My very first memories of music were sounds coming out of that stereo. LED Zeppelin, Janis Joplin, Tracy Chapman, all kinds of classic rock. My mother appreciated music and I learned music appreciation early on from her.
CROW CENTRAL- If you weren’t a musician today, what else could you see yourself doing?
THE DARK LYRICIST- I would be on some similar path. Probably a martial arts instructor too. An explorer. An adventurer. Then an author. An entrepreneur for certain. Why not? (Laughs) I do not prefer to work for other people. I don't have a lot of patience for "corporate" business attitudes and politics. I've worked some of the worst jobs to get a check. The feeling a job like that gives you is horrible. Self-employed all the way. It is more responsibility, but well worth it.
CROW CENTRAL- We always like to ask artists about where they came from and how that city or town has influenced them as an artist now. So how do you think your hometown has affected who you are as a musician and the art that you create?
THE DARK LYRICIST- The place I call home is Michigan. Mesick, Cadillac, Traverse City, Grand Rapids, Detroit, Flint, Lansing, Ann Arbor, Big Rapids, everywhere. Mesick is where I grew up. Big shout to the Sick. Michigan has this huge musical underground. Being in the Midwest, it is like a musical melting pot. You get hit from all directions, all genres. Michigan's musical history is HUGE. MoTown, Techno, Battle Rap, all kinds of rock and country, and the "Wiketshxt". Underground hip-hop was massive. "Wicketshxt" was king though. The environment is cold most of the year. The people are strong and gritty. Tough. Self-reliant. You are just a jump away from the the most beautiful natural environments, lakes, and rivers and just a skip away from sprawling cities filled with nightlife. It's a peninsula. I think that little bit of geographic isolation really made for unique music to grow and thrive.

CROW CENTRAL- What advice would you give to someone just getting started in the music industry? Or even to someone young that is thinking of becoming a musician one day?
THE DARK LYRICIST- Wait. Do your research. Learn every aspect of the business you can before you just jump in. It is not right for everyone. Don't listen to negative people. In fact, avoid them like a disease. Learn all you can about recording, mixing, mastering, distribution, publishing, copyright and trademark law, entertainment law, entrepreneurship, merchandising, sales, promotion, marketing, e-commerce, everything. Have a well-detailed and researched plan and back-up plans because things go wrong. Know social media and the internet. Don't put all your money and capitol in one place. Make sure you have different sources of income other than music. Lock up or destroy your ego. Do not do anything half-assed- give your best every time. Always keep an open mind and learn, learn, learn. Be ready to change and adapt. Don't sit still and lose your momentum once you start building it, and don't let ANYONE try to interfere or capitalize on your hard work. Avoid people who are negative. Avoid people who make excuses. Avoid people unwilling to learn new things. The industry is full of opportunists and ego-driven people who live in fantasy land. If you are around someone who is not willing to put 100% in every category (recording/mixing/mastering, merchandising, sales, marketing, legal, e-commerce, graphic design, etc) don't be afraid to cut ties. If people don't believe in you- cut ties. This is not an easy path. Stay determined and persistent. Knowledge is key and you have an entire world of it at your fingertips with the internet. Be yourself and be original. Only keep good people around you. Too many people in this industry do not live in reality and start pretending or actually becoming the characters they front to the world. Those types only attempt to take advantage and are no good to be around. Knowledge is key- of yourself- the craft- and others. You got this.
CROW CENTRAL- How do you think that you have continued to grow as an artist year after year? What has remained the same about you and your music?
THE DARK LYRICIST- I thought I sucked when I first started. I probably did (laughs). I spent a few years learning and doing a lot of growing. My skill improved dramatically. I focused on the craft. I learned and observed, and experienced a lot. I care a lot more about what I say and how I say it. I think I've slowly evolved into more of myself... With what I have available to create with I have developed a certain sound. My knowledge is much greater and I know how to go about doing things a better way. I had to do everything pretty much on my own and from scratch with no investment but my own hard-earned money. I stopped counting how many dues I've paid. I've literally fought to be where I'm at. I have a long way to go to. The music I make and the lyrics I write are better than ever before. My need to make music is a constant. I'm still me but I feel I am a better version of me. I don't play anything safe really, and I do what I feel. Every day is a new beginning I am grateful for.

CROW CENTRAL- Let’s talk about your upcoming singles, “By The Window", "The Bite", and "Witch”. What was the inspiration for these songs?
THE DARK LYRICIST- There are a lot of urban legends, local myths, and supernatural goings on in Michigan. There is a reason so many horror movies take place there. (laughs) One is about this witch. The witch is the personification of evil ambition. The witch will whisper into your ear to tell you if you only sacrifice the good part of yourself and get rid of your ethics, morality, and integrity, you can have anything you desire. The only cost is your soul and self-respect. Anyway, this witch wanders all over corrupting young and old. No one has been able to stop this witch because it gets into your mind. Only strong willed folks can resist it. If you can fight back fire can hurt it or possibly kill it. Scary stuff. No broomsticks or cauldrons, or some emo kid obsessed with pentagrams. Just old fashioned evil. That song is my take on the legend. “By the Window” is a song about someone that is dead but doesn’t know it. It’s their story. It features S.E.P. on the hook. It has a West Coast vibe but has this sadness, this sort of ghost story meets double-meaning lyrics meets hybrid quality to it. Its one of my favorites. “The Bite” is a horror tale about getting bit by something while walking home. Its pretty out there. What if you were bitten and infected with darkness? I won’t say too much because I want all of them to be a surprise. The first single will drop on around Halloween, possibly and then shortly after a special collector's edition will come out. The following two will come out a bit later. I am also considering a fourth.
CROW CENTRAL- How do you think these tracks prepare listeners for what is to come?
THE DARK LYRICIST- There has always been storytelling in my music. It is a big part of why I love to write songs. There is something special in the works for fans who really love ghost stories, scary tales, around the campfire scares, all that. Wait and see. It is definitely something we have wanted to do for years.

CROW CENTRAL- What do you hope people continue to take away from your songs?
THE DARK LYRICIST- I hope people are entertained. I hope they enjoy it. I have different kinds of songs and make different kinds of music. With the political side of songs I put out- I hope people really listen. Really dissect the lyrics. I put a lot into each song. I hope people gain some knowledge on the political tracks, I hope they are entertained by the storytelling, I hope the whole production gets people nodding their heads. I hope people go "have you heard this song?" to their friends. I try to keep a positive message behind the songs, even the dark ones where I'm venting and releasing a lot of emotion. I'm not just rapping over an instrumental. I do EVERYTHING from scratch. I make my own music, mix and master it, write my own songs, record, mix and master the vocals to the music... I even do the graphic design for all kinds of projects. I wear all kinds of hats. I hope my appreciation and love for the craft come through. Doing this means a lot to me and I don't take it for granted or try to half-ass anything. What's coming is really going to showcase that. I'll be sharing a lot of information in the near future.
CROW CENTRAL- Thanks for stopping by!
THE DARK LYRICIST- The thanks goes out to Crow Central... (laughs) ya'll really get in depth and pull out information from us! (laughs) Talk to you soon.
Make sure to check back to hear the first single entitled "BY THE WINDOW" by The Dark Lyricist!

Also check out The Dark Lyricist on Facebook, Apple Music, and Spotify!



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