interview SIR JINX (PART 1)  (May 2008) | Interview By: Chad Kiser

Today, Dubcnn sits down with the “Game Warden”, the infamous Sir Jinx! Known as a producer on more than a few classic albums like “Amerikkka’s Most Wanted” and “Death Certificate” for Ice Cube, the “40 Dayz & 40 Nightz” album for Xzibit, as well as being the cousin of that other well-known west coast producer known as Dr. Dre, Sir Jinx commands the respect of both the old school and new school heads. In Part 1 of this exclusive interview, we talk about the obvious subject of Ice Cube, his relationship with Xzibit, the direction that west coast rap is heading and much, much more!



Interview was done by phone in May 2008

Questions Asked By:
Chad Kiser

Sir Jinx Gave Dubcnn.com A Shoutout! Check That Here


Dubcnn: Yo, Jinx, what’s up wit’ it , man?

What’s going on? Let’s do it!

Dubcnn: I know you get asked a lot about working with Ice Cube, and being Dre’s cousin so…

It’s all good, but everybody has their own opinions and questions about it. It’s like somebody asking about 9/11; everybody got their own questions about the same thing. I don’t mind it ‘cause there are definitely people who want to know about it, so I don’t mind; I’m not really geeked on it. I’m not offended like some people saying, “oh there’s more going on in my life”! Pretty much, the two people I worked with ended up being the top of the food-chain.

Dubcnn: Well, summarize, then, how you and Ice Cube got connected.

It goes real far back. We lived on the same block, and we was basically around the same age. We wasn’t really real good friends in the neighborhood, but we turned out to be into the same thing. He was into sports, and I was into break-dancing and hip-hop, which he ended up getting interested in as well. Come to find out, I lived down the street and I had turntables, a mixer and stuff like that. That’s pretty much how we hooked up.

Dubcnn: Are you and Cube still in contact?

Not really.

Dubcnn: So you being on the “Raw Footage” album isn’t something that we can look forward to?

I’m open. What me and him have behind closed doors is a little different, but I would love to see us work together; the whole world wants to see it! Some of the material that he went in a few different directions, you know, that’s on him, he’s his own artist. I would love to work with him, but we ain’t talked about it. The last thing we talked about was the Westside Connection, and that shit hit the ground like a fucking egg!

Dubcnn: Cube seems to have stepped it up pretty good with his “reality/political-rap” style over that last year or so with songs like “Why We Thugs”, “Gangsta Rap Made Me Do It”, and “It Takes A Nation” leading the surge. What do you make of that?

Well, you know how it goes with MC’s, they pretty much write their own stories, but sometimes they get help. He gives the consumer what they want to hear. When you’re in the light that he’s in and doing the movies that he’s done and doing, it’s like one hand watches the other. If he was on some real super-gangsta shit it probably wouldn’t be a good thing, you know, with the movies and stuff. We’re getting older, so to impress the crowd for doing something that you never did before, rather than doing what you would want a kid to do in the future is different. I think he’s more geeked into that he has kids, his kids are older, and at the point of him going back, he has a choice. A lot of MC’s didn’t even want that choice in the beginning so they chose to do other things.

He chose to do those types of issues, and then he did some gangsta issues. So he was around artists who can be gangsta’s, but can’t be political. He was one of the artists that was able to be gangsta AND political, to where he has a choice now. Just like Prince, where he does all kinds of music, but in the end result you get a choice out of that type of artist. Like, “What is he going to talk about now”? That’s the best thing to where some artists come out and, not to call out Beanie Sigel, but Beanie ain’t going to say no positive shit on his record. You’re not going to go for that, or look to his record for that. I like Beanie, but I know that if you’re looking for some ‘keep ya head up, brother; society is on our back’, you’re not going to hear that from him. At the same time, you won’t hear no ‘dope-dealing, on the block, selling pure cocaine’ from Ice Cube.

Dubcnn: Do you have a favorite, song or project that you worked on with Cube?

Nah, not really. It’s so far away, it’s like saying which one of your childhood drawings is good to you. I mean, it’s cool, but there’s been other things that I’ve done that I think are real dope, but didn’t get the advertisement that the Ice Cube project got or the Yo-Yo project got. Some of the projects that I really like are one’s you’ve never heard because of how they were made, rather than how they came out.

But a lot of that stuff with Cube, I really wish we could go back in and remaster that stuff, and do it in a time of now because that era is over. We definitely need to bring that music into the digital form. I might like that music a little more, due to the fact that that music is not clear. The Xzibit music is more clear because technology was more advanced later when I started working with Xzibit.

Dubcnn: What are some of the projects we might not have heard?

I did a song with Isaac Hayes that I like. It’s not the fact that I like the song, but I like how the song was prepared, how it happened, and what I learned out of it. It’s not just a song, it’s like when you meet a girl: you get her, you have sex with her, and you bust. The bust is the song, but meeting her, hanging out with her, and all of that changes the bust, you know what I mean? So all the songs is good, but sometimes the preparations, like with me and G. Rap; Warner Bros. paid for us to have a room at this real expensive hotel for 3 months, and I live out here! So that was a good thing. He was a different type of artist to where I deal with Xzibit and we went all over. We travelled to work on his album, so his record and the songs that I did mean more to me than it just being a song, or being in the studio. They all mean something to me, but none of them are better; the era’s are different.

Dubcnn: How did you hooking up with Xzibit come about?

Well, the situation with me and Xzibit turned out to be what me and Cube should have been.

Dubcnn: How so?

When I get into the studio with Xzibit, it’s just like going into the studio with Cube because, you know, Xzibit can’t boss me down. I have sold records! So, with that little bit of respect we have a good relationship. If I probably didn’t sell no records, he wouldn’t have no reason to fuck with me. But he comes and fucks with me, and I try to oblige with whatever he needs in the mysic industry in trying to make it happen for him. That’s the kind of producer I am. That’s why I can’t go out and work with just anybody because they’ll kill the messenger, if you just fuck with anybody in rap music.

I watch who I deal with, and Xzibit is definitely not like the guys out here on the west coast. I mean, he is like that, but in business terms he doesn’t have “homie guilt”. He wasn’t raised in California for him to have that guilt, to where a lot of us from out here got guilt. Xzibit can keep going, and that’s why he went further than King T; that’s why Xzibit went further than the Alkoholiks because he wasn’t holding on to old luggage. That’s what west coast people do, we hold on to old luggage. We’re too loyal for our kind, and once we bring our hood or our homies in they’re not going to sell no records. Xzibit was a first-round draft pick. They picked him and he’s still selling! He’s still doing what he’s supposed to do because of him not being from Los Angeles.

Dubcnn: To expand on those thoughts, in your eyes, what’s the state of west coast hip-hop and where is it going?

Once the west coast realizes that hip-hop is its own vehicle, and not a vehicle for gang-banging, not a vehicle for ho-ing, not a vehicle for pimping, but a vehicle for itself. Once the west coast stops relying on those elements to sell records then we will sell music. The west coast can’t sell 2 things at once, you have to sell one, and that’s good music, rather than trying to implement gang-banging and all that to sell records. 2Pac didn’t say he was a gangsta to sell records, his views made him sell records. A lot of people assume they were on the same vibe as 2Pac, but they’re not because they don’t feel it the same way. They probably went through more shit than he had, but they don’t feel it the same way. When somebody feels it more they’ll make more music out of it. That’s what he did. A lot of n-ggaz don’t feel it like that, they feel like they can just get on block and say that they’re realer than Ice Cube, and say that rap and think it’s convincing, but the consumer doesn’t think it’s convincing. So, in order for west coast rap to sell music we got to go back to what it takes to sell records, not put your business card on every f-cking song!

Dubcnn: They say Dr. Dre don’t reach back and help the west, but what…what am I trying to say here? I mean….

I know exactly what you’re saying. With Dre we just need to re-invent the wheel, and sometimes people don’t want to do that because it takes too much. But that’s Dre’s procedure in looking for artists. There’s a whole bunch of other people that might have a different procedure dealing with the music industry. Dr. Dre and that empire has been going on for the past 20 years. For somebody to come in and think that they’re going to change that, there’s just a difference. We got to go through the same thing that he went through. Somebody say they want to change the game, ok, give me the same superman outfit. Don’t ask me that same question without a lawyer; without an accountant; without a publicist; with out some money! He had all of those to start that. So, you can’t break that until somebody else has that to offer to an artist that’s trying to raise his daughter. We need another investor and that type of empire. You can’t make no Kobe over night. Dr. Dre is a Kobe. That whole environment is. Most athletes can’t even talk to Kobe; they don’t even get along with him. Why? Because he’s different! And he’s better! Duh!

I don’t get along with people good. That’s what people say. Why? Because I’m passionate about my craft. I don’t try to make a person not kick me out because my beat’s not good. Kick me out ‘cause my beat’s not good! That’s how I want to be treated. I don’t want to be treated like, “aw, you my homeboy”. And just ‘cause he’s my homeboy I can go fuck some bitches and not work on no tracks, so tomorrow when I have to deliver this song it’s garbage. I don’t think like that! That’s why I’m still around, and why we’re on the phone right now.

Dubcnn: Where’s it going to be 5, 10 years down the road?

Rap music is a job now. At first it was a hobby, now it’s a job. Everything in the world is made into hip-hop. It’s going to take some of these rappers that fell on their face to come in, turn around, and be more like counsellors. Like when Rambis came back! When Rambis went out, and then he came back to the league and started doing consultations to new basketball players, that’s where music is going to have to go. People from like time ago like Yo-Yo and Special Ed are going to have to prepare new people for the industry. That’s where people in the old school, if we want to call them that, will be able to get a job. The new school don’t understand rap. They’re just thinking rhymes, but they don’t know what part of life it plays. It’s not made to be a tool for dope-dealing. When you listen to Melle Mel and all them dudes, they wasn’t on the aspect of being the drug dealer, but rather they were on the aspect of telling you the problem. But a lot of people are telling you they’re the problem.

Music is going to change when people from my era, like Stetsasonic, Masters of Ceremony, Grand Puba, are going to have to tell the new crowd that you won’t win a talent show like we were taught a long time ago, when you get up there saying “fuck”, “bitch” and all that. You won’t win a talent show. You’ll win a talent show by saying, “We gonna rock non-stop to reach the top/and all the sucker MC’s in the show will drop!” You can’t get up there like, “fuck my momma/she’a ho”. That’s not what rap music is about. Rap music is a upliftment to give you a youthful spirit like the drums of Africa! That’s where rap comes from! We use it to tell a story, but just because you tell a story doesn’t mean you’re a good storyteller.


Stay tuned for Part 2 of this exclusive interview with Sir Jinx.



Sir Jinx Gave Dubcnn.com A Shoutout! Check That Here



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