Parlé Magazine: Your new mixtape is titled Can I Have the Club Back Please? What was the inspiration behind the name in the concept?
Mr. Collipark: I decided to come out with this mixtape because the atmosphere of the club has changed for the worse. No one’s having fun and dancing anymore, they’re on their blackberries or Iphones or doing some other shit other than having a good time.This mixtape is a big statement that I’m trying to make with music. it’s not really just about me, it’s trying to open people back up to being creative and doing music again. Not just doing what’s cool. You can just bust out and do some shit and if it’s good, it’ll make a impact. When you hear it I hope you can appreciate what I’m saying.
Parlé: You’ve seen a lot of artists come and go,what intangibles do you think an artist has to possess in order to succeed in today’s music industry?
Mr. Collipark: I think it’s a combination of things. You find your place in this business, what you are bringing to the table. I think every new artist has to determine that. If they can’t answer that question then they need to go back to the drawing board. ‘What am I bringing to the game that’s going to change music?’ I think that’s very important. if you can’t answer that question your chances of succeeding are slim.
Parlé: You worked with The Ying Yang Twins for a long time, and when I listen to them I feel like they touched on a lot of subjects that a lot a rappers really didn’t with songs like “By Myself” and “Naggin”. Do you think songs about real life issues are currently missing from hip-hop?
Mr. Collipark: People don’t realize it was those records that made their career last. We had the “Whisper”, “Whistle While you Twerk”, the “Get Lows”, and the “Salt Shaker”, but it was those records that we slid up and down every project that gave them sustaining power. And that is missing now. You can deliver the message any way you want to, it can be club and make you want to dance but as long as you’re talking about something that can touch the common man. That’s what the Ying Yang Twins brought to the table. I think people get too caught up in the gimmick side too much. I’m a gimmick guy, I’ll be the first to admit to a certain extent. There has to be some substance to any artist I work with. Whatever that angle is there has to be something there that’s special.
Parlé: As someone who has been producing for a well over a decade, are they any artists you would like to work with in the future?
Mr. Colipark: No.It feels like I’m starting over right now.I always said when you trying to impose something on the game its better to come fresh with your own, introduce your own thing to the game. It’s overkill on every record. You got Drake on every record, you got Nicki Minaj on every record. Whoever’s hot is on everybody’s shit so it’s nothing special about me working with them. There’s a young cat I’m working with right now named Translee (www.knowtranslee.com), an artist like that that’s coming out of this area that hasn’t been introduced to the game. That’s the only way to keep Hip-Hop fresh and fun is to keep new shit in the game.
Parlé: What do you think is the current state of hip-hop in 2011?
Mr. Collipark: I think’s it’s rebuilding right now, the current state of music is going back to being more artsy. It’s going back to the time of the early to mid nineties. You had the A Tribe Called Quest and the Leaders of the New School, and then you had rappers like Luke. I think right now people want to be shown something. People are tired of their next door neighbors putting out albums. Hip-Hop is reflecting the economy. It’s like you have to shift out all the bad stuff and rebuild and come with something thats going to work with the people. I feel good about it because at the end of the day when record labels are making cuts you’re going to have to be worthy of a record deal to have one and I think that’s a cool thing.
Parlé: The financial relationship between record labels and artists have changed dramatically over the years. What are your feelings on the 360 deals that labels are offering artists?
Mr. Collipark: In the beginning I thought 360 deals were unfair, but now if you have a record label and you’re putting in all this money you have to think for every one artists that succeeds you have one hundred others that fail. The level of success even for the ones who win is not as big as it was 5, 10 years ago. Everyone is still making money but there isn’t as much money for the artists or the labels. If you want to be in the game you have to roll with it.
Parlé: Soulja Boy is your protege and openly critized in the Hip-Hop community, what is your response to his detractors?
Mr. Collipark: Look at his accomplishments. You always have to put numbers against criticism, show me a successful person that has criticized him. Those are the people that I will listen to. If you have never done anything, and you have nothing to your track record, you sit at home at and write and you don’t do anything. You might have your own blog but what have you done to impact the world, not just as an artist but a human being like this kid has. That’s like the Cleveland Cavaliers talking shit about Boston right now. it’s like what are you talking about? I watched the same critics that were on him so hard as a child, when he started talking about how much money he had half of them shut up. It’s like ‘Soulja Boy’s paid now, I guess he gets a pass now’ It’s just goes to show you how much you can put into criticizing someone in this business.
Parlé: What do you want the lasting impression of Mr. Collipark to be?
Mr. Collipark: I made music that made people have a good time. I want records to be played even after I’m dead. ‘He was a guy that I can remember in high school when that record was out.’ Kind of like when our parents think about Motown, like The Temptation or The Supremes. They think back to the moments in their lives, and I think we’ve already accomplished that.