posted: 04-15-04
interview : brolin winning
Known for their streetwise reality raps and close affiliation with Mobb Deep, Queensbridge trio Infamous Mobb have been making moves for a while now, tantalizing listeners with raw crime tales laid over hard-knocking beats. Comprised of Twin Gambino, Ty Nitty, and G.O.D.-Father Pt. 3, they first appeared on the 1996 classic "Hell On Earth," followed by "Murda Muzik" and compilations like "QB's Finest" and Muggs' "Soul Assassins." In 2002 they released their debut album "Special Edition," solidifying their rep as true-blue QB thug storytellers. Two years later, IM3 are about to drop their sophomore joint "Blood Thicker Than Water Vol. 1," which also comes with a two-hour DVD. They also star in the long awaited feature film "Murda Muzik," which will finally drop later this month.
How did you guys first come together as a group? Did you know each other from growing up in Queensbridge?
Twin: We actually played together in strollers…little kids, like 4 and 5.
Were you in any other groups before you hooked up as Infamous Mobb?
Twin: Nah, basically what happened was when we'd go to the studio, P used to scream out Infamous Mobb clique, so that's how it really started.
Are you gonna be on their new album?
Twin: Yeah, yeah, we on it.
When your first LP dropped, were you guys happy with the response?
Twin: Yeah it was cool, we sold like 100,000.
On the new album, you're working with a lot of different producers I'm not familiar with. Are those all QB cats as well?
Godfather: These producers right here are underground producers that you probably never heard of. We just trying to keep it grimy, keep it street, give other producers a shot at making it, you know what I mean?
Ty Nitty: A couple of the producers are from L.A., a couple are from overseas, you know, all over.
It's good that they rock the same kind of vibe that you guys are known for, even if they're not from QB.
Ty Nitty: Yeah that's cuz we know how to pick the beats, you know what I mean.
Godfather: That's because they didn't get they shots yet, they still grimy, so they got those grimy beats.
How would you describe the new album?
Godfather: the new album is the dirt. It's the grime, it's the ghetto, it's the hood son, go get that! "Blood Thicker Than Water." Don't let nothing come between your family, know what I mean?
Even though a lot of the mainstream MTV rap is pretty corny, The Bridge is still standing strong, with lots of new stuff from you guys, Noyd, Mega, Tragedy, Littles, and Nas. Do you feel like Queensbridge acts get the props and exposure they deserve, or do you think radio/video is sleeping?
Twin: I think they be sleeping a lot man, cuz I don't feel like Nas gets enough respect, and the Mobb, know what I'm sayin'? I think everybody sleepin'.
With so many QB emcees out there, is there a lot of competition between each other or is everybody cool?
Twin: There's no competition towards the music, but everybody's not cool with each other. We all say "what's up what's up what's up" but everybody don't hang together and chill.
Growing up in the bridge, who were your biggest influences? Were you big into the other QB cats?
Twin: Yeah Juice Crew was hot, but I was feeling Eric B, Rakim, and EPMD was like the best to me.
Godfather: Then you got MC Shan, especially since we from the block, we from the 41st side of 12th. That's where Marley used to live at, so on the come up we used to hear the music coming from his window on the second floor. It was crazy, that was like a big influence right there. Biz Mark come trough the block, chill at the card table, Big Daddy Kane, Shante, Masta Ace, you know what I mean? Craig G and all that.
Have you guys done any work with Marley?
Godfather: Yeah we was up at Marley's crib a couple weeks ago, we hit the radio station.
Are you still down with Nas - I heard there was some problems with cats not getting paid off the QB Finest comp.
Twin: If he hollers at us we'll definitely do a song.
You guys also have a DVD coming out, is that gonna be included with the album or is that a separate deal?
Godfather: the DVD comes with the album. Two hours long, it has nine videos on it? Some interviews with Ron Artest, Mobb Deep, Alchemist, and some other hood things.
Besides that, do you guys have any interest in getting into movies?
Twin: Actually, right now we have this movie coming out, I think it's coming out April 27th, it's called "Murda Muzik."
That's finally coming out?
Twin: Yeah, it's coming out through Koch. I'm not sure if it's April 27th but I know it'll be out real soon. And us three, we're starring in the movie. That's like our movie, it's two hours, shit is nice man.
What's up with the new IM3 label? Are you looking to sign other artists or is it basically just for you guys?
Twin: We looking for other artists definitely.
Any plans for solo albums or are you keeping it a group thing?
Twin: We working on our solo albums right now.
Who are some of the artists are you working with?
Twin: Flame Killah, you got Tracks Murder, Buddha Bless, Norfolk, and UN, my man UN.
Ty Nitty: And this girl Chinky too.
Now that you guys are independent, are you looking to stay that way forever? Or if some major approached you with a deal would you go with it?
Twin: If a major tried to throw a deal, as long as it say Infamous Mobb, IM3 Records, then anything's possible. We'll always have IM3 Records doing independent records though.
If you guys could get in the studio and collaborate with any artist, who would you want to work with?
Twin: Ummm, T.I.
Ty: Rubber Band Man!
Twin: I like that dude.
Godfather: I don't know. It ain't too many people out there. We're trying to put shit out ourselves you know what I mean?
Twin: I never really think about collabos, you know, we could've probably gotten a couple people on our shit.
A lot of cats kind of overdo it with the guest appearances these days.
Godfather: Basically we trying to show that we can hold it down by ourselves, without the major production, with out the big production names and stuff like that, the Premo and the Dre. We have producers that you never heard of in your life, know what I'm sayin'? We gotta give people a chance. That's one thing that's wrong with the industry: they don't give people a chance.
I know you guys got a bunch of videos on the DVD, are you gonna be working any of them to MTV or BET or whatever?
Twin: No.
Ty Nitty: This is strictly for the streets.
Have you guys had any problems would bootleggers and whatnot, leaking tracks on to the internet and stuff like that?
Godfather: If the bootleggers try to bootleg an album that just means it's worth the wait. We putting this out ourselves, so, the more people that wanna hear it the better.
It seems like a lot of Queensbridge rappers don't really tour, at least not on the West Coast. Are you gonna hit the road to promote the new record?
Twin: Yeah definitely, I just left the west!
Ty: Twin just left the west, he just shot the video for…
Twin: Dilated Peoples!
Of all the spots you've performed at, what cities have been the most live?
Twin: North Carolina, they show us mad love!
Godfather: He took the words outta my mouth, North Carolina.
Twin: ATL too, ATL show us love.
Ty Nitty: VA is crazy too, Connecticut, the whole east.
You've all been in the game for a while now, do you feel like hip-hop as a whole is getting better or worse? Do you miss the old days, the 'golden era'? Or are you happy with how things are progressing?
Twin: Right now it's watered down, but um, the money is kinda cool, getting a lot of endorsements, sneakers, clothes, so that's cool.
Are you guys looking to do anything like that?
Twin: Nah, not right now, Right now we're just trying to put other artists on.
Individually, what was the last record that really impressed you guys?
Twin: I can tell you, "The Chronic 2001," you know how some albums go up and down? That was like a straight path, it was like the skits glided into the soul you know what I mean? Perfect!
Godfather: I don't know man, I'm thinking the Eastsidaz, they had a crazy album. I loved they album son.
Ty: I'd probably say…I like the Mobb Deep album, "Murda Muzik."
What are you feeling that's big right now? Are you guys into 50 or Kanye or any of those guys?
Twin: We definitely don't listen to Kanye West but…you know he's got a song or two I might like, but his style of rhyming is kinda different.
Godfather: He's like book-bag rap.
Twin: We talking about what's going on in the streets. Right now - wherever you at I know they got a ghetto out there. We talking about what's going on the ghetto period, everywhere.
Ty Nitty: Don't get me wrong, I don't knock him because he a black brother and he doing his numbers.
What else do you wanna say to the fans?
Twin: We wanna let em know there's a lot of watered down shit out there, and we about to give em the real.
"Blood Thicker Than Water Vol. 1" drops April 20, for more info hit up
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