23 BLOCKS & MORE
As soon as I saw that the album “23 Blocks” existed I knew 1 World Magazine was gonna cover it. Damu and Mitchy Slick are two of the Rap World’s most respected individuals still rappin. In the streets, on the mic, you don’t want smoke with these San Diego Superstars.
These first questions are for Damu. Tell us about the music you been putting out lately. I got a Single called Dago Push. Me and the homie LooseLyric put out the album Loyalty Is Rare. They sleeping on it. There’s some knocking shit on there. I think I dropped about 5 singles last year. Fo Dat B, I dropped some shit with Big June and Black Mikey called San Diego. I also did a song with San Quinn and Shady Nate called Run These Streets.
23 Blocks, how did the idea first come about? Me and the homie (Mitchy Slick) did that Dago Push that just sparked it up. We got back to work. Me and Mitch, we been rockin for a long time. Me and Slick been rockin since the beginning, so it wasn’t hard for us to get together. We knocked that shit down in about 4 sessions. We got chemistry. I would say it was the early 2000’s we did our first cut together. For a minute I had stopped doing music. Once I did a couple songs with Slick, did some shit with my boy Loose. It kind of brought back the energy. Me and Mitch got together and started doing songs. It turned out to be 23 Blocks.
For those who don’t know what 23 Blocks stands for, tell us? 23 Blocks is 23 blocks in San Diego full of the bullshit. It’s the Brims and the Lincoln Park’s hood. All into one.
So when Damu stepped away from music all these years, what were you doing? Without going into anything illegal. How were you eating? I’m a jack of all trades. I got my businesses going. I got my Food business going. Doing catering, that type of thing. I’m a Family man. I been raising kids, that’s who I do this for (Be fruitful and multiply. It’s about the bloodline). Enjoying the regular shit. I’m a real regular dude. I enjoy the regular shit. I ain’t really into the ol’ Hollywood thang. Not at all.
Back to 23 Blocks, what are the Singles on that? We dropped Pump Fakin’, then we dropped Elevate. Now we just recently dropped Field Shit.
I listened to 23 Blocks, it has a new and classic sound to it. Tell us some of the producers who are part of it. Kye Russaw outta Oklahoma, Cricet, 600 From Tha 7, Main Ingredients, there’s about 6-7 different producers who are on this album.
We both are still trying to get the word out about 23 Blocks. What’s next? What are you working on now? I got my solo project, which I don’t have a title for yet. I got an album with my homeboy Black Mikey. That’ll be the next shit dropping. I just dropped a single with Twisted Insane called 6Nineteen. This track is a single for the compilation that I’m dropping. It’s a collaboration of the West Coast, Florida, New York. I got the Carolina’s, Maryland, its going down. It reminds me of something from back in the days. It reminds me of something like Master P’s West Coast Bad Boyz. Rappers from all different spots, that’s what we doing. It’s called No Statements.
We were speaking on support today as compared to 15 years ago. I recommend you press up CD’s for 23 Blocks. You know more than me that dope always sells. No matter what it is. Dope is not a digital thing. Digital things get used for FREE, and seen and listened to for FREE. That’s not support. Support is money, support is time, effort. That’s support. That is some real shit. Because that is some bullshit, this new streaming shit. It’s like we got to give this shit away for FREE. Damn near. It’s some bullshit.
It is bullshit. You came from the game where if someone wanted your music they had to pay at least $10 for it. And they did, no questions asked. Now digital #’s make someone hot or not? Digital #’s can be faked. That doesn’t make a real Rapper. What I don’t understand is the small amount of payback you get for your streams. That shit is some bullshit. Highway robbery. It’s got a lot to do with ignorance.
“Yeah Dat, that was the first song we did together. But we was rockin way before then. I had already been through rappin. Slick was just a gang member. We fucked around and got his ass to the lab and he fell in love with that shit. So we had been in studios doing musical type shit.”
Mitchy Slick is one of the West Coast’s most successful underground rappers. Though he’s done more than his share full of major moves, his foundation was built in the streets. Like Damu, I’ve interviewed Mitchy more than a couple times in my career. Every conversation usually outdoes the last one.
What was 2020 all about for Mitchy Slick? The last couple of years I been trying to dedicate the most of my mind space on figuring out how to break into this legal Cannabis shit. So a lot of 2020 was homework for me. I did knock down a few important thangs during the year. I first started to try and fuck around through the first efforts putting out these films. I did a lot of movie filming in 2020. Music, I dropped music. Got a couple of milestones knocked down. I actually got to fuck around and work on this film called Baby Gangsta. That’s what kicked off 2020 for me. I shot it with a bunch of real active OG’s from all different neighborhoods all over Southern California. Mostly L.A. tho. We put together a movie that has a message. Throughout the year that’s basically what the push was about. We put in all our time and invested all of our efforts. In every aspect of shooting it, directing it, to wardrobe. To set design. All that shit was done by real actual homies from the hood. Not just a homie that grew up in the hood. But a homie that’s actually from the hood. Active members, having Bloods and Crips coming together showing we can do next level shit like make major films. This wasn’t no low budget shit. We talking about hundreds of thousands of dollars invested in the creation of this film. Shot out to my homie Westbred Diamond. Yall go check out the movie right now it’s on Amazon Prime. It’s called Baby Gangsta movie. From there I got to start on a project with my potna from San Diego named Qua, he got a company called Fresh Yard Records. Through Fresh Yard Records and connections we had I got some work with one of the Artists who inspired me. Pretty much was the main artist that inspired me to even want to grab the mic and become a West Coast Representative and that’s MC Eiht. I got to do a song with MC Eiht. That was a dream of mine. To work with one of the niggas that I felt did the shit the way I would have done it. Far as his craft. It’s a song called Reputable off the project called The Gathering. Freshyard Records put it out and it’s totally produced by Sir Veterano. Me and Sir Veterano worked on another album all of 2020 I’m about to drop right now. It’s called Everybody Hates Mitch. It’s all produced by him. It’s featuring everybody from E-40, Jay Worthy, SP, Silky Slim, he’s another Southern California street King that a lot of muthafuckas may not know personally about. But he most definitely is barred up like the best of them. I got him featured on a song called Choosey with the homie Ise B. I got Bosko on the album. Bosko even on that muthafucka, dope ass hook on a song called Daygo Cali Nights. That’s a project coming soon. But we created it all of 2020.
Then I ventured off into these French Bulldogs. I been having French Bulldogs but actually started Showing Dogs. You know, showing dogs, going to shows. Breeding dogs. It was a busy year. A real busy year. I kicked 2021 off with the album me and Damu-23 Blocks. So that was 2020-2021. That came in and had me and Damu getting that off. I even dropped a song with C-Bo in 2020 and a video. It was off the DJ Crook project. That’s an old friend of mine. It’s called Keep It Real. Rep’d It is the name of the song. It’s me, C-Bo and Anonimiss. Then I shot a movie with Nick Cannon in 2020. It should be out in a few months. It’s a movie called She Ball. It was a movie put together by Nick Cannon and Baby (Cash Money). It got Chris Brown starring in the movie, Faizon Love, D.C. Young Fly, hitters in that movie. It was a hell of an experience doing that. I also got a song on the soundtrack, me, Eric Bellinger and Ne-Yo are on that shit. Featured on the record I did. I don’t have a title for it yet, we gone call it Why He Gotta Be or Big Homie. It fucked me up to hear Ne-Yo sing some shit I wrote. Basically I been getting ready to drop this new album I got and putting out this pack. I’m finna do this dope ass merch pack. Fly shit tho, not no bullshit. Fly shit. And I’m doing it with Original Good Stocks, a company outta San Diego. Me and Damu gonna smack them with the hardest CD, with the dope art tho (poster), also t-shirt and some dope ass house shoes and shit that come with the pack. It’s gonna be some real Gangsta/Hipster pack. It’s hard to price it under $300.
I like the idea of merchandise packs. I like new creative ways to do the same old thing. I always tell Indie Artists about physical merch and it’s not about getting a million sold it’s about selling out of what you have in stock. It’s really to give to the fans who really give a fuck about yo shit. It’s for them right there to let them know they’re really fam.
What’s different about your approach when you make music now as opposed to when you started years ago? Now I’m usually finding that I’m making songs to be long lasting songs. I make a song to be a hit. When I say hit, I might not necessarily mean a powerful mainstream hit, but most definitely if you go to any California street function, the demographic that I make music for- function. That I’m in the rotation. Wherever that is. Whatever group I fit in, I try to make music that I know, everytime I make a song I know that they gone like it in that environment. When they all get together for this or when they all get to the car show. When they all get to the motorcycle rally. Whatever it is, you gone hear Mitchy Slick’s shit. So that’s my approach. Now I’m trying to make songs even bigger. Not only am I trying to make Hood Hit records, I’m trying to make big hit records too. It’s more challenging now for me to make a song that’s competitive on that level.
We talked about many things. This was mentioned. This was it seems like for the most part, maybe I’m not looking at this situation or that situation but it seems like everybody that I ever fucked with in the game, had a relationship with. And they actually made it and got successful, blew the fuck up. Damn near each and every last one of them switched up on me once they got there. I’m talking about the very successful ones. Like the muthafuckas that was with us in the studio, and now they up and Ö. all of them, all switched up. To where, so much and so often whether it was an Artist I use to let sleep on my couch or did some shit for them and then blow up and get signed or a producer who was with me every day, whatever. Then they hooked up wherever they was actually trying to get to in the first place and they actually got around that circle. Once they got to that level, the access switched up and it changed. The access changed. So I was like, is that what you do? Is that part of the game? When you really get crackin, is it like some secret society that says listen, we gone let you blow up, but if you blow up you can’t fuck with them niggas right there! You can’t fuck with them niggas no more. Cause that’s how much they changed.
“Now I’m trying to make songs even bigger. Not only am I trying to make Hood Hit records, I’m trying to make big hit records too. It’s more challenging now for me to make a song that’s competitive on that level.”
– Mitchy Slick