interview CLYDE CARSON  (January 2008) | Interview By: Lil Jay

Dubcnn had the great opportunity to sit down with the Bay Area rapper who's one step away from shaking up the industry, Clyde Carson. Of course we dicussed his highly anticipated debut solo album "Theatre Music" and Clyde gives us the real reason why it got pushed back so often. He also speaks on his deal with Blackwallstreet/Capitol, his universal sound and the reception in other regions, his influences and his fans, and much more.

As mentioned in the interview, Clyde is about to drop his next single from "Theatre Music" called "Cali State of Mind" featuring The Game with production by Ty Fyffe. Snippets were leaked here and there, and it's getting great feedback so far. An official music video will be shot soon. "Theatre Music" is scheduled to come out in May. Show some love and pick a copy when it drops!

Big shouts to Clyde Carson and Mayne Mannish!

As ever, you can read and listen to this exclusive interview and we urge you to leave feedback on our forums or email them to liljay@dubcnn.com.


Interview was done in January 2008

Questions Asked By: Lil Jay

Clyde Carson Gave Dubcnn A Shoutout! Check That Here

Full Audio Interview Here


Dubcnn: So last time we talked you just dropped the "Two Step" single. That was one year ago, more or less. If you're looking back at 2007, are you happy with how everything went for you?

Clyde Carson: Yeah, I mean, it was just a growing process from that point to the point I'm at now. And I'm ready to release the album now. I think musically it was a cool space, but I'm at a better place right now. I'm back home now, I've been back in Oakland for the last 6 months, so it feels good to be home. I've just been doing a lot of recording out here. I'm in a real good space and I'm ready to release the album now, that's the difference between now and last year. I think last year I was still searching for the sound I was trying to find. I was working with a lot of producers but I wasn't finding that sound, and I had to come home to find that sound to end off the album correctly.

Dubcnn: What would you say sticks out the most that happened in 2007, as far as Clyde Carson is concerned?

Clyde Carson: I just think a little bit more exposure. With me doing a lot of shows and just being out there, and people connecting who I am with The Team and who I am as a solo artist, I just think the exposure I got was better. Ozone Magazine gave me exposure, I was on "Fantastic Four", I was on "Entourage". I just got to where people were like 'OK, I fucks with Clyde, I always liked the sound from The Team and now he's doing his own thing, I fuck with him'. I think the anticipation is where it needs to be on the West Coast. And now it's just about dropping that single to really take it to a level where a mothafucka all over the country is anticipating me like they do on the West Coast. I think I got the West Coast now, cause when I'm out in Vegas or I'm out in L.A., I'm getting the same love I'm getting in the Bay. So I've already accomplished the West Coast, and when I come out and drop that single every other region will be like 'OK, that's Clyde Carson, he's one of the factors out there'.

Dubcnn: Did you get what you were looking for when you signed your deal with Capitol?

Clyde Carson: I mean my label is behind me. I got what I wanted out of my deal, all I wanted was a label that's gonna support my moves and put me out when it's time to come out. So yeah, I ain't really mad at my label.

Dubcnn: But at the same time, some people, especially artists in the Bay, feel more comfortable with the independent hustle. Are you in a different mindstate by looking at the bigger picture since you're known for having that commercial appeal?

Clyde Carson: I mean yeah, I've always been like that. Ever since I've started I wanted to make music that was on a bigger level. I don't feel like I make independent music. And the next shit I put out I want the world to hear, that's all I'm saying. I still drop independent shit and I still drop verses for my folks who are independent. I still be all through the traffic. But as far as me, I feel like I go into the studio to make appealing music to all. But at the same time I'm really trying to perfect my album and make sure it's the shit. But I'm keeping myself relevant by dropping them little street singles like "Two Step" and I dropped "Doin' That" with Sean Kingston. I still keep my name in the streets.

Dubcnn: How's Theatre Music coming along?

Clyde Carson: I mean it's basically done. I could turn it in right now and be good. But I'm looking at like two more joints, I'm knocking them out everyday. But it's coming cool though.

Dubcnn: What has been holding it back for so long? It's been a while since you first announced it.

Clyde Carson: The hold-up was that we didn't get Sean Kingston cleared. For some reason he just couldn't get cleared. And by the time we got the clearance the label was ready to move on to another single. But my whole thing is that I always try to make hits for the radio anyway. I got shit that I can put out tomorrow, all we gotta do is mix and master it. So the only reason why it's been taking so long is cause we've had a couple hold ups like the label merging, you know. I could give you hella excuses, but I ain't for excuses. I just say straight up the shit I ain't ready yet. That's just been the whole hold-up. I ain't gonna put out nothing I ain't happy with. It just ain't ready yet. But it's coming, it's in the works, it's slaps. I promise you that. But I mean it's hella different little shit like when the label was merging everything got put on hold, and when we finally got shit right we didn't get Sean Kingston cleared. So it was hella bullshit going on too. But at the same time, now that I look at how far I've come with the album, I'm like the album wasn't ready!

Dubcnn: Was there a breaking point where you were just gonna say fuck it and put it out on your own?

Clyde Carson: Nah nah, I ain't got no breaking point. I'm good. I mean I'm still not done with the album, but at the same time it's like I don't have a breaking point to where I'm like Man I'ma put this shit out myself. I just drop more music. I ain't really trippin' like that. I put out music when I'm ready to put out music. I'm not really getting forced to put out shit. I got songs if I wanted to drop something, but I wanna do it right. I ain't really had no point where I was like fuck it.

Dubcnn: Do you think the constant delays benefit the project and your buzz?

Clyde Carson: No I don't, because it's only out here. I need that buzz everywhere. I need that buzz in New York and in Florida like that. What's the word? Tell me what's the word! Do y'all want me to come out and sell some bullshit ass numbers the first week? Or y'all want me to come out and do what I'm supposed to do? If you fuck with me, fuck with me. Anybody that's fucking with me, hit me up, it's all good! Hit me up on MySpace or something! All my fans, I fuck with them, cause I love my fans and I'ma give them some good shit. And it's finna come, it's gotta drop right now.

Dubcnn: But it's kinda funny, cause in the Bay you're considered as the next artist to blow up, but in other regions you still have to prove yourself?

Clyde Carson: Nah, I don't feel like I have to prove myself. Well, to a certain extend. It's like, I didn't know about Jeezy. Jeezy put that DVD out and he showed how people where he from are loving him. People from other spots just wanna see that you got your home. And if mothafuckas at home ain't fucking with you, why should they fuck with you? But for me, I done put in so much work out here that my fans stay loyal to me, and I love them for that. I just think when the video hits and everything else pops off, people gonna know that I'm a force on the West Coast and I put out some good music, some classic shit. I got some fans out here that's fucking with me, and they gonna fuck with me for that reason.

Dubcnn: Speaking of your fans, how are your fans responding to the push backs?

Clyde Carson: I mean they want the album, I feel 'em. But I'm finna drop some more shit though. I don't really like speaking about it, I'm just gonna make the shit happen. But they want the album, and I can't blame them for that. They ain't responding hella crazy, they just be like 'When Theatre Music coming out?', they can't wait for the album. But I'm doing shows so at the same time I'm getting new fans. So all my fans, keep fucking with me and spread the word. I'm doing shows every week, I'm getting fans everywhere I go. And I spread that Clyde Carson / Moe Doe / Blackwallstreet.

Dubcnn: Can you evolve a little bit about the concept of the album itself? How would you describe it?

Clyde Carson: I mean, it's just me evolving. If you listen to The Team albums, that's pretty much where my focus was. And producing them with Sho'Nuff, it was moving more into a collective sound on the second album. And now me coming with my own album, it's pretty much the same direction. It's like a piece of both of that. It sounds like The Team shit. I pretty much produced those albums, so my album is turning into one of them classics. Sonically, it slaps, it pounds, with the 808, you know how I like my shit. If you listen to "It's Gettin' Hot" or "Bottles Up". And then you got the collective sounds too, the shit with real instruments. So it's like the best of both worlds. Some positive, conscious, gangsta, street, turf shit. That sounds hella good! (laughs). I can't really describe it, but you know the sound that I've got.

Dubcnn: Were there any special influences from other artists?

Clyde Carson: I always like what Jay-Z does. But musically it's just the sound of the time. I'm just listening to the sound of the time, which is now. I don't really reflect back on too much shit because I have to make music relevant to what's working now. I listen to the radio, I watch MTV Jams, I stay on the internet. I'm just influenced of what's going on in Hip Hop. I gotta stay in tone so I can speak to the Hip Hop audience. See what's going on around you, you gotta stay in tone with what's going on in Hip Hop. Just keep your flow tight. As long as your spittin cool, that's all that mathers. Pick the hot beat that's hot at the time and you're in there. You just gotta blend in.

Dubcnn: Do you see yourself having the same kind of influence one day?

Clyde Carson: I think so yeah. If I just stick to my craft, and the public respect me, as long as they do that, I'm pretty sure I can have the same type of influence. I always try to be an influence, I never try to be like nobody else. You can hear that in the music too, at least in the music I've made in the past with The Team. When I approached it, it was more or less a new sound. It was like 'What the fuck is that?', that was a new sound.

Or like we had the "Hyphy Juice" and then you start seeing more energy drinks come about. I mean you can name different things, even the way people rap. They kinda followed the whisper type flow. They followed that pattern, which is cool, it's flattering. But now it's about me being on a national level, you can talk about the shit in the Bay, but I just gotta do it on a national level. I'm already influencing the Bay, I've seen things that I came up with be duplicated. And I ain't go no problem with it, I love it, I think that's fresh. I'm glad I can influence people. I just gotta do it on a national level.

Dubcnn: And I'm sure the deal with Blackwallstreet opened new doors for you, especially in other markets like L.A.

Clyde Carson: Yeah, signing to Blackwallstreet was huge for me. That was the biggest move I could have made. That opened me up to so many more people, especially from the mixtape game. That was the biggest move for me. I did go on a tour with [Game] last year, and we're still working on his album.

Dubcnn: As far as that situation, is it more of a business relationship or is it about the creative process too? Did it bring anything new out of you?

Clyde Carson: I think you can hear the West Coast influence on the song I got with Game on my album. It's called "California State of Mind" and it's more Blackwallstreet influenced. Even "Two Step" got that West Coast feel, that smooth feel. I just put my little harmonizing element on it. But the next single is "California State of Mind" featuring Game and my man Ty Fyffe. That will show real Blackwallstreet influence on my music.

Dubcnn: Listening to your sound, you can tell that you moved around a lot. Like how do you balance the universal appeal with the Oakland flavor?

Clyde Carson: I dont know man, I think it's just in me. I can't help that swag that the Town gave me. That's just in me, that ain't gonna leave. Everywhere I go I just adapt. I see niggas from the Town and all Bay everywhere I go. I just let that shit pour in my music. From me coming up all over too, I used to stay in Berkley, in Vallejo, I stayed all over the Bay. That just gave me that edge to always be able to bounce at anytime and then come back to Oakland and live in the Town. I've seen the difference between me and my niggas that was around me, cause I've been to so many spots. So moving to New York wasn't shit, it was like 'Aight, I'm just finna try'. And then living in L.A., I'm out in Vegas. I'm just always travelling, but still have that Town energy. It really got me where I'm at, cause I've never been afraid to do nothing.

Dubcnn: Do you approach your fans from the Bay differently than the others that just heard of you recently, since they're probably not as familiar with your sound? Do you have different ways to conversate with your fans, being that you're heavy in the Bay, but at the same time still considered a new artist on a national scale?

Clyde Carson: I just think if somebody likes you, they like you, whether you're new or old. I think it's the same energy. And when I'm in the Bay it feels good to talk to somebody who can name hella songs I've been on, or albums they've bought. And then it feels good to meet somebody who's only heard me on Blackwallstreet mixtapes, and they be like 'Man, I'm from Pomona!', or I meet a nigga in Miami and say that. Or I was in Vegas and I stopped at McDonald's and the dude in there at the register was like 'Oh shit, you're Clyde Carson!', and everybody looking at me and everything. And I just didn't expect I was gonna get that where I was at. And he wasn't even from there, he was from Pomona. The energy is still the same, he couldn't name hella shit that he heard me on, but what he heard me on he liked. So that energy was the same, he was excited. That's dope to me, I don't give a fuck where you're from. You could be from Alaska for all I care. If you like my music I love you.

Dubcnn: So is that still kinda surprising to you when you're in L.A. and people come up to you and recognize you?

Clyde Carson: Yeah! But a lot of times I meet somebody and when I say my name they be like 'Oh shit, I've heard of you, you dope. I like your shit!', you know, it would be shit like that. Cause I still ain't really been on TV. You can go on the internet and see me, but you gotta be looking for me. I ain't put myself out there yet, plus you only get one shot at being new. I'm still new as Clyde Carson. And I don't wanna fuck that up by just putting myself out there hella much. And then I ain't new no more. It's hella niggas that ain't came out with an album that I done heard about them two or three years ago. But I'm trying to take advantage of mine as far as in the public eye. Cause I'm still not really known. I can still walk down the street. Well, not in the Bay really, maybe to a certain extend. Does that make sense though? I mean I'm not on TV yet, you can't just turn on the TV and say you see Clyde Carson. So I'm still at a point where I feel I'm new to America. And as long as I'm new to America, I think it will be cool. Or the Hip Hop world. I don't think everybody knows me in the Hip Hop world. Or do they? You tell me! Am I known? Honestly, honestly though!

Dubcnn: I wouldn't say so, at least not yet. I would say that you're heavy in the Bay, but not in other states or even countries.

Clyde Carson: Yeah! Even you know that, so that's not smart for me to do that. If it's not ready and I'm just putting something out there quick? I know it's been months, but I don't care, I don't look at it like that. I know I got fans, but my fans stick around. I'm a fan of [DJ] Quik, Quik takes hella long to come out, but when Quik comes back I know I'ma get Quik's album. You feel me? Or when Too Short comes back around, I know I'ma get his album. I'll wait, I know if I can wait, they can wait. And they know I got love for them, and they know they can always contact me, they can always talk to me on the internet.

Dubcnn: Do you think the Bay Area is in a good place right now?

Clyde Carson: I think the Bay Area is where Hip Hop is. It's not poppin', but it ain't wack either, it's there. All it needs is another hit. The minute I drop a hit, or the minute anybody drops a hit, the Bay will be poppin' again. It's all about hits man, it's nothing else. It ain't about nothing else but a hot song everyone loves. I mean it's talent out there, and it's hella easy to make beats. That's how music goes, it just takes some young niggas to be in their basement and create the new hot whatever it is. There you go! It's gonna catch on fire and it's gonna turn into "A Bay Bay" or any one of them.

Dubcnn: So what's the next move for Clyde Carson?

Clyde Carson: I'ma finnish the album first, but y'all finna hear something from me real soon. That's a promise. Y'all finna hear something real soon, y'all gonna get that album y'all want. That's what's next for Clyde Carson, the new album dropping. Blackwallstreet/Moe Doe/Capitol Records. It's coming. And Blackwallstreet mixtapes too, I be on line with Juice and Nu Jerzey Devil everyday. I just send in freestyles and stay in the mixtape game. All my mixtapes should be through Blackwall. Shit we good! (laughs)


Clyde Carson Gave Dubcnn A Shoutout! Check That Here

Full Audio Interview Here


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