interview MR CAPONE-E (November 2011) | Interview By: Javon Adams

   Repect game and get to know Mr. Capone – E. He is not stranger to the West Coast rap scene and he has been putting it down for years. His Hi Power Entertainment churns out consistent product and according to Mr. Capone – E, he has only just begun.

Dubcnn.com and Javon caught up with the West Coast representer and talked about his business savvy, the lasting impression he leaves on fans, his new project Tears of a Soldier and how he has embraced the power of the social media.

Get familiar and enjoy. As always let your thoughts be known at javon@dubcnn.com. Peace.

Interview was done November 2011

Questions Asked By: Javon Adams

Listen To The Interview Audio Below or Download Here

Related Media

Mr Capone-E - I Did You Wrong (Audio)
Mr Capone-E - I Did You Wrong (Video)

Mr Capone-E Interview
A Dubcnn Exclusive
By: Javon Adams

Interview Audio

Dubcnn: Dubcnn, Javon here with a legend in the world of Hip Hop and Latin Hip Hop and all of those things…Mr. Capone – E. How are you doing man?

Mr. Capone-E: How are you doin’ homeboy? I’m chillin’ like a villain, you know. California. Winter time. Sunny Day. Doing good.

Dubcnn: That’s what’s up. I want to definitely get into your project that just recently released but I want to talk a little bit about your business savvy. You own your own label, Hi Power and…you’ve had 11 years, about 11 years in the game. Talk about your business savvy and how that has led to your longevity.

Mr. Capone-E: Like you say, I’m independent and I learned from up coming artists…so coming up in the game I didn’t have it like most of these rappers that have a record deal or record contract. I just had to come from the streets and bang it out the trunk and game recognizes game so I started learning more and more. (Eventually) got a distribution…at the beginning it was distributed through Thump/Universal. That got my music out there everywhere and the CDs were selling good.

After I saw that I could do good I thought I would help out some of the homies in the hood. Brought them on the team and (released) their stuff and found some quality artists out there and put it down. Next thing you know we were selling like crazy. I got off of my deal with Thump and got a direct distribution deal and history she wrote, you know.

Started building the label catalog with artists like Criminal Lady Pinks and venturing out with artists like Bone Thugs and Harmony and Lil’ Flip…we just kept the ball rolling and connecting with everybody from the West Coast to the South to the East and it’s been all good. We’ve been independently killin’ ‘em.

Dubcnn: Speaking of that, when you mentioned Bone Thugs and Lil’ Flip…I would imagine you listened to Bone Thugs and Lil’ Flip before signing them and being involved with them on a business level…how is that to work with somebody, not growing up, but you listened in terms of being a fan and then having to get down to the brass tax and do business deal with somebody. Was that difficult?

Mr. Capone-E: You know what, it’s pretty crazy because when it first happened it was like, ‘Is it really going down?’ But at the end of the day we just kept grinding and doing our thing. Being in the studio with some legends…you learn a little something about how they conduct their life because they have been there and done that. They have been legends and they have seen the big stream and this and that. Doing stuff with them was a good feeling because that let us know that we are doing something right. We have enough power to do music with celebs and not just Bone Thug (but) Lil’ Flip who was an underground legend in Texas and the list goes on with people that he has worked with. It was just a good blessing and we are really focused on our music and I was determined to keep grinding so at the end of the day it was a great feeling. It was perfect and it worked out good. After we got that connection we learned a lot and just kept growing, ya know.

Dubcnn: Right. One of the things…I was doing a bit of research and in an interview you mentioned that you’ve influenced a lot of people whether it has been for people to do music or graphics or whatever it might be. Can you share a story that somebody has told you on how you have influenced them that was the most unique or the most touching since you have been doing what you’ve doing in terms of grinding and putting out quality music.

Mr. Capone-E: There’s been a lot of that man. I’ve been doing shows and running into artists that come up to me and say they’re trying to rap, trying to get out of the hood, trying to do my music thing and how I’m an influence. (They say), “I got my CD out and I’m out there hustling and grinding. I’m trying to push my stuff and you got me going.” And I saw another guy that told me he was doing graphics and learning how to put CD covers…big shout to one of my homies out there in Texas, Snoopy. He did some graphics for me, my website and myspace. I mean I didn’t know how to do it and he learned a trade and he did it. I have another guy…there’s so many guys that just started from graphics, that do music and I feel like, ‘Whoa, I did this? Then we call all do this.’ Just like my label, it has a bunch of homies from the streets. It was just a thing, like, this is the meal ticket. I was kind of an inspiration to some of these youngsters that were coming up.

You look at the whole game in general and…not to diss fools but at the end of the day a lot of fools are just waiting to see what Capone–E is doing so they can do it like him. But it is a good thing regardless. At the end of the day they are trying to make (something) positive but everyone just has to go in their own direction and be themselves. And at the end of the day it’s all positive. The West Coast has been neglected with a lot of the music that we have…from the media side it’s really hitting the streets hard and people are buying it and people are doing good. It’s a blessing in disguise, ya know.

Dubcnn: I hear you. Now, I want to talk about…you mentioned being out there grinding and I want to talk about your presence in social media. But before I get to that, you mentioned West Coast. Being Hispanic do you get tired of the Chicano Rap or the Latin Hip Hop or Gangsta Rap or West Coast…do you get tired of those labels? Or do you embrace those labels?

Mr. Capone-E: I don’t really...I’m not into the Latin scene, I’m not Latin so I’m a South Side, I’m raised in the varrio. I’m from a hood out here so I was raised in that mentality. We’re doing rap at the end of the day. We might have a different style…like everybody has a different style. Some people have a little different swag, style or steelo. I mean we have a different steelo in our kind of music. It reflects West Coast in general from L.A., down San Diego and it spreads everywhere with that West Coast influence that I do is what a lot of live in the West Coast. It’s been neglected...I don’t like the name like, ‘Yo, it’s Latin Rap or Chicano Rap’ even if they call it Gangsta Rap, whatever…we’re West Coast, we’re universal. I’ve been in Germany and the UK and guess what? Over there they are doing the same thing we’re doing, it’s just a different style and swag.

Dubcnn: I hear you. I like that. I like the way you answered that man. I want to talk a little about your presence. How have you embraced technology? Because especially when you have your video, I Did You Wrong and it is so highly viewed on Youtube. Being able to have that presence and that wide reach…how do you embrace technology to help you?

Mr. Capone-E: It’s like you gotta be up on the game in technology. That was one of my weaknesses for a long time. Like, I had a myspace page and I didn’t even know how to run it. Next thing you know, I open it up and someone just opened it up for me and I looked at it and there were 200,000 whatever followers and all that. I’m like, “huh?” They said, “You gotta use this to your advantage.” So I started messing around with it and sending out these little bulletins to let people know what’s up. And the next thing people started booking me for shows. And I didn’t even know how to reply back to them, you know what I’m sayin’?

I’m not gonna lie, that myspace made money. I was like, ‘Whoa, I’m sleepin’ on this.’ And then we just barely started the Facebook about a year ago…and we were probably late again. And that has already started to reach 100,000 likes on that page. The social media is strong. You gotta be up on game.

Another weakness we had was on the Youtube channel. We barely started a youtube channel this year. So all of these last 11 years there was a guy that used to put up all of our videos and I think he had 6 million views and then somehow…I don’t know the guy, I don’t own the account and he lost the account and ended up disappearing. He ends up closing the account and he ended up putting someone else’s videos up there…and boom, there goes all of our videos off of the internet. I was like, damn because we lost all those views.

So I learned how to start the youtube channel...it barely started this year and only five months in we have 1.3 million (views) so now we have 11,000 subscribers and we are moving on up. But if we had started from the gate we would have done much better. So all the new artists coming out they need to get their channel going and get the media social stuff going because if you wait a year or a month then you are falling behind and everybody is stepping ahead.

Dubcnn: I hear you. The most recent project is Tears of a Soldier, right?

Mr. Capone-E: Yeah. Tears of a Soldier is my newest project that I dropped. Basically it is just a reflection of all my time as a soldier in this rap game. All the tears…the good and bad because at the end of the day you’re getting the good and the bad regardless. It was kind of an outlet. I felt like I had to bring out Tears of a soldier into all of this rough stuff and all of this bull crap in the rap game. It’s a soldier kind of letting his tears out, ya know what I’m sayin’.

Dubcnn: I hear you. Nothing wrong with that. So let folks know how they can stay in tune…how they can pick up the album and where they can go…all that good stuff. Because one of the cool things that I see and I gotta give you kudos in terms of distribution and whatnot because you now have distribution in 7-11s in Southern California right?

Mr. Capone-E: Yeah. Well our music is up in 7-11 and we always go real good at 7-11 when we put our product in there. You know, all the homies are in the hood and they go in there to get their 40 oz. or something at 7-11 and our CD is moving off the shelf so they are taking a lot of our catalog. They took a lot of our pieces. So our music is all distributed through 7-11. They keep asking for more…different titles and it’s a good thing. That just shows you that our music is really hitting the people and its really moving units and it’s like independently we’re killing the game. It’s all because of the people out there that are supporting and keeping it real back. So it’s all love. Hip Hop in general, ya know.

Dubcnn: I feel you. So let ‘em know…any last words for Dubcnn? Let them know how they can stay in touch with Mr. Capone-R.

Mr. Capone-E: You guys thought I’ve been in it for a minute…sh*t, I’ve just started. This is Mr. Capone-E, you gotta check me out on Facebook. Check out our website and in 2012 we are coming in with the next phase of Hi Power. The next level. We have Ray J, Twista and all these radio jams…West Coast mixing it up worldwide. Hi Power...and Dubcnn, one of the OGs of the West Coast and holding the West Coast down so keep checking Dubcnn. Because they got the West Coast Connection and the West Coast on Lock.





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