Congratulations on winning the Loud.com MC battle. What do you think helped you win the contest?
Thanks. What helped me win the contest is that this just happens to be a label and a situation where they really listen to the MCs for the value of the music and the value of the rhymes. They actually listened to me. And that’s a big thing that’s helped. And naturally I think me having a production background had to be a valuable commodity to an artist. I’ve been producing records for years. I did records for a whole bunch of different artists. Before I was MCing that was the main thing I was focused on.
What kind of music did you think could win you the grand prize?
When I entered the contest I just wanted to put up the music I did so I could see what people I didn’t know said. It’s one thing to have people around you telling you that you’re hot but when a complete stranger from across the country thinks you’re hot then you know you got some hot shit. I had friends and people I knew enter and they tried to put in radio-type records and what they thought was a hit and the records I put in, one was about a video game and one was “Young, Gifted and Black.” That’s why I was surprised that they picked me. They weren’t radio songs and they were more hardcore and I knew if people were listening to them they would stand out. And I was listening to other people’s songs and they were very surface-y type cats and they were just party songs. There’s nothing wrong with party songs but the shit just had no substance to it.
Were you surprised when you were told you won?
I was definitely surprised. I didn’t know. The final thing is we had to go up and do the meting and I didn’t know what was going on. I didn’t know if I was coming up there because I lost. I was like, ‘Damn, they’re going to bring me up here just to tell me I lost?’ I didn’t know what was going on and what finally went down is we split the situation. I was like, ‘Wow.’ I never really saw that coming. I was happy and it made sense. I’m just happy to have the opportunity to go to the next level with my music.
You ended up walking away with $50,000. How do you plan on using that money?
Well, right now, man, I’m hoping to get a Philly street team promotions shit together. I’m working on different things. I’m working on getting certain equipment to be able to make the best music possible. I want to be able to press records and be able to get features that I wasn’t able to get before. I want to do everything right to get the buzz going and to get on to the next step. The money helps and there are certain things that you can do with money but there are certain things that having an organized label behind you can help you with that money can’t buy.
How far can you stretch the $50,000?
I’ll turn that into a million, man. It’s definitely to get to the next level. I can make it go far. I think that once I get situated with everything and once I get everything in place with the promo and all that, when people start hearing the music they’ll take me in as a credible artist and somebody to be heard.
What are your goals right now?
I want to bring back dope music. I want it to be so that a radio song doesn’t have to be formatted the same way as it’s been getting formatted the past couple of years. I want the music that I like and the music that I grew up on, the rawness that’s lacking, I want to be responsible for bringing that back. I want it. I know my friends want it. I know that people all over the country are looking for artists to take it back. There was a time when you could hear vintage styles of records and party songs and deep songs and they would all be in the top 10 countdown on the radio at the same time. Now it’s all the same thing and they’re beating you in the head. I’m not saying it’s bad but it doesn’t all have to be the same thing. There needs to be some diversity in music and I think the game is going back to that.
What does your name L.F. Daze mean?
When I first made the name I was strictly into making beats at the time. I always rhymed but I wasn’t focused on trying to make a career as an MC. “Daze” means “For days” and the “L.F.” is for “Loops for.” It’s “Loops for Daze.” I thought that was always poetic and it played into the MC thing well. I wasn’t really locked into the name but then you see it on flyers and people take you in that way so it’s like, ‘All right, that’s my name.’ The good news is that I think nobody else has that name.
Where would fans have heard your work in the past?
Probably the biggest credit I have is a record for Cassidy titled “The Message.” I did the title track for the last Junior Mafia track “Riot Music.” I did a track “Shut the Fuck Up” with B-Real on it. I did a track for Lil’ Kim titled “Get that Money” and we have a new one coming up. And I worked with the usual suspects in Philly. I did numerous 12”-type records. With my production career I was comfortable enough with that and I wasn’t even focused on doing the rap thing. I’ve been rhyming all my life and I looked at that as a tool to help me make beats and now I might need to adjust more to focusing on the rhymes more. It’ll all work out crazy and it’s just another dope producer/MC.
What song that you produced are you most proud of today?
“Young, Gifted and Black.” That’s a song about being young, gifted and Black. When you hear the song you’ll understand why the song is hot. It’s speaking the truth. It’s not a racist, militant-type song. It’s just a proud song.
When did you start taking your MCing more seriously?
A few years ago I was doing shows with my cousin and when you can see people reacting to your punchlines, that’s a good fucking feeling. I realized I could probably do that on another level. I always liked doing the beats too. I went into this contest not expecting to win but wanting to learn everything I could learn. I looked at it like it was a boot camp for an MC’s career. I realized there are things I know how to do now that I didn’t know how to do before and then I looked at it and I was at the end. That’s pretty crazy.
How valuable is being able to produce and engineer as well as rhyme to being an artist today?
Record sales have changed and you need all three. Record sales will never be the same. The only way you’re going to make a record cheaper is to keep your prices down. Who's going to make it cheaper than somebody who can produce it and mix it themselves? I could do an album tomorrow with no budget if I wanted to.
What should people expect from you next?
I’m gonna be hitting them with that conscious ignorance. Crazy punchlines, crazy lyrical flows all while making a point that’s relevant to society right now. I know that there are people that are hungry right now and I’m not a gimmick. I know that you don’t want to hear a gimmick. What you’re going to hear from me is the same person I am every day of the week.
Isn’t “conscious ignorance” the essence of Philadelphia hip-hop when you look at artists like Beanie Sigel, Freeway and Reef the Lost Cauze?
Shout out to Sigel. He smashed it wide open. I think if you think about Philly, I’m not as into street lyrics as other Philly MCs, but I’m pretty sure that if you heard me on a track with other Philly artists, it would blend in and would sound legit. The music blends in well. There are a lot of good underground MCs coming from Philly right now. And one of the things I can take advantage of is I can get on a track with an underground Philly artist and fit it or do it as well as any commercial artist could.
How far along are you on your album?
Well, I had a slew of songs I had been working on and I’m going to start releasing those and promo’ing those on the internet and getting the buzz up. I was in the crib working on a beat when you called me up. Right now I’m going to experiment to see how far I can go in different directions with the music and I can just promise that I will make it sound like nobody else.
Expect a lot of music from me. I’m going to flood it out. I got a lot of different tracks. And as a fan of music, I get the opportunity to work on a record that somebody who loves music would pay to hear, that’s a dream come true. I’m just going to enjoy the ride and make the most of it.