J. WELLS (February
2008) | Interview By: Nima|
Dubcnn linked up with producer/rapper J. Wells early on in '08 to get the
scoop on his recent conflict with Bishop Lamont which got squashed shortly
after a song dissing Lamont surfaced on the internet.
We also talk about Wells' new projects, his street
album "Digital Master II", his upcoming solo album "Inebriated", his
projects with Rah Digga and Da Brat, his feelings on "Digital Smoke", the
status of the Likwit Crew, and his memories of the recording of "I Didn't
Change" by Kurupt.
As ever, you can read this exclusive interview below and we urge you to leave
feedback on our forums or email them to email@example.com.
Interview was done in February 2008.
J. Wells Gave Dubcnn A Shoutout! Check That
Full Audio Interview
Rah Digga - We Made It (ft. Butch Cassidy) (Prod. by J. Wells)
off J. Wells Presents "Digital Master Vol. 2"
Dubcnn: We're right here with J. Wells, what's going on with you man?
I'm posted up man, Los Angeles time.
Dubcnn: Let's jump right into it... You recently dropped a diss song to
Bishop Lamont on dubcnn, but then decided to pull it... What happened there?
That record got leaked out basically. It's something that I did a long time
ago, and my boy got a hold of it, and it just went everywhere, the media
just ran with it! We already sat down and squashed our differences, it's
really just some bullshit, that ain't even the right way to handle a
situation. We pretty much put a end to it, that's pretty much that!
Dubcnn: So everything is cleared up and all good between you and Bishop?
Everything is straight, we sat down as men and put our differences to the
Dubcnn: It was actually a collaboration between you and Bishop that put me
on to him back then, remember "It's Bishop" the song?
Exactly! Yup. That was one of the classic jams all over L.A. radio. You
know, people got through their differences, friends fight, but at the end of
the day family always comes back together and puts a peace to it. That's
something I couldn't control, that was my bad for even letting it get out
like that, it was crazy, I looked it up and it was on every Hip-Hop site!
So, it was just something that got out of control but I'm about peace and
about conducting good business, just making money. Fuck all the bullshit, it
doesn't do nothing, it doesn't bring nothing to the table. That's a problem
with the West Coast anyway, all the beefing, we need to stick together and
do the damn thing, get this money so we can make this West Coast as strong
as it should be. I pretty much just want it dead, and keep moving forward
with positive things.
Dubcnn: So what else do you have going on, what's the next project we can
expect from you?
I got my label situation Bonzi Records, it goes through Fontana/Universal,
and basically we just closed a deal with a Fortune 500 company that's
basically investing in the company and backing it. We're putting together a
couple of projects, we have J-Ro's "Rare Earth B-Boy Funk Vol. 2" that we're
going to re-release, it got released in Europe and we're going to re-release
it over in the States. I'm working on a project with Rah Digga, and I got my
solo album that I'm taking my time with, really seasoning it up, I'm about
to go in with E-Swift and a lot of my Likwit family, Battlecat, just being
an artist, exploring and letting it come together as a whole project.
Also I've been working with Da Brat, she's got an artist called Mister that
we're looking at doing a Da Brat Presents Mister, so look out for that.
That's some of the stuff that's in the works, I'm definitely still working
with Kurupt and the Dogg Pound, Tha Liks, the whole family. I'm also doing a
lot of R&B now since I did the Keyshia Cole record ("Work It Out"), I've
been working with Ne-Yo, just sticking my head in different doors.
Dubcnn: This solo album you're talking about, is that going to be Digital
Nah! The solo album is called "Inebriated". "Digital Master II" is a street
album. The Wolfpac mixtape and the Digital Master I, those were all like
mixtape/street albums. Digital Master II is a street album, I don't really
call it a mixtape cause, much respect to the DJ's and what they do, but this
is more of a street compilation, just to get something to the streets,
something that they're not necessarily gonna get on the corporate album that
we put together. So "Digital Master II" is actually done, I'm gonna start
leaking it to the internet real soon, just so people can get some of that
exclusive shit. But the solo album is "Inebriated".
Dubcnn: Which artists can we expect to see featured on "Digital Master II"?
On "Digital Master II" of course J-Ro, Tha Liks, Kurupt, I got Rah Digga on
there, Battlecat, Petey Pablo, the whole Dogg Pound family, Snoop Dogg and
everybody, Ne-Yo is on there. It's a few joints here and there, classics,
Tyrese is on there, just a bunch of stuff.
Dubcnn: Is it all released stuff or new stuff?
Some of it is released, and the rest is exclusive joints.
Dubcnn: Ok. Now what can fans expect to be different on your real solo album
"Inebriated", compared to the "Digital Master" CD's?
Well the way I'm going to put together my album is kind of going to be
demonstrating my production and the way I can put something together, as
well as me rapping throughout, but not necessarily focusing on me rapping,
but bringing songs by new artists to the light, and just kind of like a
concuction of a feeling, like "Digital Smoke" was. If you listen to "Digital
Smoke", it was much more of an album that flowed, and that's basically the
way I'm gonna do "Inebriated", just a concuction that all blends together,
and feels like an album.
Dubcnn: Looking back, are you happy with the reception that "Digital Smoke"
Yeah, I mean in this market, to me, it was expected, because you look at the
way records are selling and how things are coming out. I learned a lot as a
business man as far as where marketing dollars should be spent, and certain
things of that nature. The way that the business is and record sales are
right now, you really gotta play it safe with the dollars that you spend and
where you spend it. That's what I learned, but as far as the reception from
the people, I haven't read one review that didn't say that the album was
great. They compared it to Dr. Dre a lot, which is a great compliment. I
feel like it came together well, and it's really time to make "Digital Smoke
II" and keep smoking! But definitely, it was a great project, a great album,
I learned a lot, I had a full in XXL, Source Magazine gave us 4 mics, so it
was a great thing.
Dubcnn: What's your prediction for the rap game in 2008 and where would you
like to see yourself?
As far as the West Coast, I feel like there's a lot of good music coming
out, Snoop Dogg just made a beautiful record that's coming out this year,
and you got Glasses Malone that's burning up the radio waves... Rap in
general is obviously going towards a digital age, it's just about filling it
and getting in the line of the change of the industry. It's really coming to
a point where artists are taking control of the business, to where the fans
and the people that enjoy the music can come directly to the artists and get
the music directly from the artists, via the MySpace, website, download
direclty from the artist. That's where it's going, and it's cool because it
almost makes music go back to when people were making that real music, when
it wasn't driven by A&R's, a bunch of executive, and if somebody blows up
it's because the people really liked him! It seems like that's where it's
going, good music, it's a lot of good music coming out.
Dubcnn: What's the status on the Likwit Crew?
Well, it's always going to be a family. We're always going to be homies, but
as far as an album coming together, I think it's going to take a little more
time to get everybody on the same page. Everybody's spread out, you got J-Ro
in Sweden, Xzibit is doing his thing with the TV and everything, E-Swift and
Tash they're out in Vegas, working on solo albums. So it's going to take
some more time to just get everybody together and put something together.
It's still cracking, we're still mashing, we're just spread out! But Tha
Liks they have a tour coming up sometime soon, in the States. Maybe that
will be the beginning of an Alkaholiks album or something, we definitely
Dubcnn: Before we go, I have a throwback question for you... Tell us about
the recording session for Kurupt's "I Didn't Change".
Ah man! That was crazy! Just to be a part of it, when the whole thing was
going on between Kurupt and Daz, Snoop and everything, it was just crazy.
Kurupt was really hurt by the fact that it was all going on, you know? There
was a lot of feeling and emotion in that record, and I just had the
privilege to be able to record it. I remember he sat out in the car for an
hour or so just writing it. When he came in, he was ready to go, he had to
get it off his chest, and it was crazy.
It wasn't a diss, it was just his outtake on the situation and why he did
the things he did, and it was crazy to be in the middle of that history.
Then to see them come back together and be cool, it was a beautiful thing. I
just think that me being a part of that whole thing definitely taught me a
few things about what goes on and how a situation is handled. But it was
definitely crazy. I just always kept my neutral place as a producer in it,
and I wanted them to be a cool, cause I knew they was family! I knew that it
was just family fighting, but in the end everything comes back together.
Dubcnn: So basically you got the street album "Digital Master II", the solo
album "Inebriated", you're working with Rah Digga, Da Brat, that's a lot of
projects. Is there anything else you'd like to let everybody know?
Go out and buy some more Keyshia Cole albums, she's at 1,2 million right
now! *laughs* I produced "Work It Out" on there, so I definitely want people
to go out and support it. Go out and support "Digital Smoke", that's still
in stores, and keep looking out for the good music, keep banging the shit
and keep the classics going!
J. Wells Gave Dubcnn A Shoutout! Check That
Full Audio Interview