Prolifik (Force 5 Records) “Cabin Fever” interview FLH Exclusive

Chad Thomas Carsten: Describe hip-hop in your own words and what the genre means to you?

Prolifik: Hip-Hop I feel consists of a stylized rhythm such as rapping with a snare and other instruments.  Its urban culture makes the genre unique in its own way and continues to grow making it the most popular genre of music today in my opinion. Hip-Hop has played such a huge role in my life, rather if I was depressed or needed a boost of motivation, a rap record was always something I’d play. I’m into all different kinds and genres of music, but Hip-Hop has been one I could never get enough of.

CTC:  How old were you when you first discovered hip-hop music, and are you able to go into full detail on which rap records you first listened to and how they made you feel?

Prolifik: I was about eleven years old when I first discovered Hip-Hop & Rap and I was instantly hooked.  2pac & Biggie were the first two emcees I have ever heard and I was just blown away.  Their lyrics were incredible and the instrumentals made me feel a way that no other sound ever has. It was around the year 2000, and as I started exploring more rap artists, discovering the Wu-tang Clan, N.W.A, Bone Thugs-N-Harmony just to name a few, Eminem and Nelly were both releasing platinum albums at that time.  Since they were both from the Midwest, they were being exposed more in our area and I could just really relate more to their style. “Country Grammar” was one of the albums that really caught me.  I remember my older cousins would come rolling up with that album and I thought damn that shit knocks. Then there was Eminem’s “The Marshall Mathers LP”.  That album is the reason why I love rap music.  It was like nothing I’ve ever heard in my life and the dude was so real.  I just could relate everything that he was saying. When my relatives saw that I was getting into rap music and really enjoyed what “Slim Shady” delivered, they showed me this cat named “Tech N9ne” and a group called the “Insane Clown Posse”.  Around that time, Tech dropped “Absolute Power”.  When I heard that, Tech became my favorite emcee right off the bat. Just his passion and his unique rap style by chopping was something I’ve never heard and I was truly amazed. My cousin used to give me CDs of ICP like “The Great Milenko” & “The Amazing Jeckel Brothers”.  They were so different and flat out bat shit crazy I thought it was the rawest thing ever. I was instantly a Juggalo and really didn’t pay too much attention to commercial or mainstream Hip-Hop anymore. I was just all about the underground!

CTC:  Are you able to describe the feeling that went through your mind the first time you held a mic in your hand and how you knew hip-hop was the path to follow?

Prolifik: I wrote a lot of poems when I was real young.  Most of the time I would write them to a song I would be listening to. As I got older I turned that more into creating my own songs.  Once I recorded my first track, I knew right away that this is something I could do my entire life. Just the whole process of putting an entire track together is an amazing feeling, especially when you’re at a young age. Being in middle school at the time, I recorded tracks for years before I actually played my first live show.  One of the main reasons is that I wasn’t even old enough to get into the bars or venues. The first time I played live was an inexplicable feeling.  I was so nervous, but when people started feeling what I was doing it was like nothing I’ve ever experienced,  It was just pure adrenaline and happiness running through me as I’m up there. It’s weird because even till this day I get so worked up and nervous before every show I play constantly asking myself “What the fuck am I doing? And why?!” But when I attend a show that I’m not playing I’m asking myself “Why am I not up there? I should be playing!” So I can be a love hate relationship at times.

CTC: How did growing up in Wisconsin influence who you are as a recording artist today?

Prolifik: Every region of the country has their own sound and style of music. The Midwest has always had a darker feel to it, more of an aggressive and depressing sound. A lot of strange people and tragedies have come out of this state, and I think that was just more relatable to me. I grew up in a small town out in the sticks where there wasn’t too much to do but spend time outside.  I felt that gave me more time to explore my mind and expand my creativity. What I’ve heard from other artists from the Midwest allowed me to intertwine that with my writing and create the image I was visualizing.  Being a fan of the underground such as ICP & Twiztid really influenced my style.  With them being from Detroit, and myself living in the north woods of Wisconsin, there were certain aspects that I could relate to.  So I would take what I enjoyed from them and add my own style and craft to it.

CTC: How did music as a whole save your life?

Prolifik: There were many paths I wanted to take growing up.  I just wanted to become something and never wanted to settle for a normal life.  I’ve always strived for bigger and better things.  If I put my mind to it, I wanted to be the best at it and I still live my life like that. Music I felt was just the one thing I could really rely on. I dropped out of college to pursue my music career, hung around a rough crowd that didn’t make the best decisions but they were close to me.  Instead of getting into trouble, I just focused on music. My drive for it was like nothing I’ve ever pushed for and with all of my hard work, allowed me to grow and expand as a musician.

CTC: What does the hip-hop world need now from today’s society to keep the genre alive and fresh?

Prolifik: I think in today’s society (especially with the younger generation coming up) people need to stay true to themselves and bring something different to the table. You have to be unique in your own way and find what fits you.  Too many artists I feel try to be who they are influenced by, which is okay, but you need to take that and learn how to make it into your own craft and image. Every day a new artist will emerge and bring a new sound which is a much-needed aspect in this genre of music.  But to keep it alive and interesting, you need to come with something that people never heard before.

CTC: On average, typically how do you spend your time throughout the week?

Prolifik: I work a steady job, get my forty hours, and look forward to my next day off. *Laughs* I enjoy being outside.  Anytime I’m not at work or in the studio, I’m out hiking, camping, fishing, etc. Really any outdoor activity. I’m a very active person. I also enjoy going out with the crew or just sitting back at the crib enjoying a few adult beverages…I can honestly say I love to party. I’m also a huge sports fan!  Believe if there’s a sporting event going I won’t be taking any calls at that time. But realistically, I spend so much time on my music that it’s not only taken a toll on my outside life but it has ruined relationships and friendships as well.  Sometimes that’s just what it takes.

CTC: What inspired your hip-hop name Prolifik?

Prolifik: I was just always fascinated with the term, especially when it would be used in a sporting event describing a certain athlete. The definition is “To be productive, producing in large quantities or with great frequency” I remember when I was in middle school, a little bit before I started writing my own songs, a teacher came to me about a book report that we had to do.  She told me she thought I did an outstanding job and that I was a “prolific” writer, That instantly stuck with me and it made me want to become a better a writer in general. As I started getting into rapping, I just felt like the name was something unique and really described me as an artist, I’ve always been really lyrical and more of a story teller with my rhymes. I was constantly writing and putting out new material.

CTC: Why should the underground hip-hop scene be paying attention to your career right now

Prolifik: I’m at the highest point of my career as of right now.  I’ve been around for a long time, 12 years to be exact and I’ve just started to be exposed. A lot of people knew who I was in the Midwest, but I really didn’t start getting national recognition up until last year. I dropped a few group projects throughout my career, but last year was my first full length solo record, Est. 1990, and it spread like wild fire.  Top ratings from magazines, interviews, it was all starting to come along. A lot of people thought I was just an overnight artist that came out of nowhere who didn’t pay his dues, but that wasn’t the case. Last year was a huge year for me, dropping my first solo record, playing over 20 shows and to top it off signing a record deal with “Force 5 Records.” I just feel I’m more hungry than I’ve ever been in my life, and I just want to become better every day that I wake up.  I have the confidence that I need now and I truly believe my upcoming album Cabin Fever will be the best material I have ever created.

CTC: If you had to choose a horror movie to describe your live stage show, what would it be and why?

Prolifik: My goal is to make my stage performance more energetic every time I play.  I always keep that in mind when I’m writing new songs and searching for instrumentals, slowly adding on to my set to make it more interesting and live, I’ve always been able to rock a crowd, and with the help of my cousin who brings a lot of energy and humor to the stage, it can make our set pretty entertaining. If I had to choose a horror movie to describe my presence id have to go with something like “Friday The 13th” or the “Blair Witch Project.”  My theme is like a lunatic that survives out in the backwoods, so with my music and stage performance I like to bring people into that kind of world.

CTC: How long have you been involved with the Wicked Wisconsin scene?  Do you have any personal memories you’d like to share being involved with the Wicked Wisconsin scene?

Prolifik: I’ve been with Wicked Wisconsin since the beginning.  I owe so much to Rick Dogg, that if it weren’t for him I wouldn’t even be a part of this underground scene or Force 5 Records. Rick first came to me in ’08 and explained to me what Wicked Wisco was and if I wanted to be a part of it.  I was more than happy to become a part of a movement that had so much talent like Dark Half, The DRP, Maniax, Brew City Butchers and the list goes on. I was by far the youngest, but the entire movement welcomed me with open arms. I learned a lot from everyone.  Damien & Geno played a big role in my career as well. They supported me to the fullest and would always give me advice and how to become better on where I wanted to be. It wasn’t just a movement to me, these guys all became family. I played my first show under Wicked Wisco in early 2009 at an event called “Wicked in the Woods” that was set up by Psycho Civilian, and the rest is history. I went through a majority of my music career being under Rick, not as a boss but as a mentor.  By taking me under his wing, he’s helped me more than anyone and got me where I am today.  Whether it was critiquing my music, or helping me print up merch, he always played the role of an older brother. I have so many great memories with WW but could never forget the times we had with Geno Cultshit. I remember the first time I met Dark Half and it was when they went by “Insane D & Genocide.”  It was around early ’08 and Tech N9ne came to play at The Rave/Eagles Club in Milwaukee. Everyone was pre-gaming in the parking lot in the middle of the day and there was a huge crowd surrounding one individual.  It happened to be Geno.  He was free-styling about his favorite topic at the time, which was banging Grandmas. One Juggalo had an acoustic guitar playing along with Geno as he was free-styling and singing about some of the funniest shit I’ve ever heard.  He was blowing everyone’s minds! It was just amazing how talented he really was. I really don’t think majority of people knew how gifted he was and what he really could have become. He will be forever missed. R.I.P Geno Cult Shit

CTC: Are you able to go into full detail when you first became affiliated with Mars (Mad Insanity) and what your friendship is like today?

Prolifik: The first time I met Mars, was when he came to Milwaukee at The Rave/Eagles Club for his “Gat to School Tour” in 2009 and this guy came in like a Rock Star. He had two beautiful dancers on each side, and presented himself with so much swag you knew this guy was the real deal! I only spoke to him a few times and didn’t say much.  He was a pretty intimidating individual. About a year and a half later, I was in a group called the “Hot Box Boyz” and we went on the “Domestic Violence Tour” with Mars & The DRP and that was my first time actually spending quality time with both of them. With that being my first tour, they both really showed me a lot, but I was still skeptical about approaching them. Throughout the years, Mars and I kept in contact and had a few collabs together, but nothing really other than that. He’s a huge name in the underground scene and I’m just someone that’s coming up so at that time it was just business. Then this past January Mars flew into Milwaukee for his signing party, and to make a long story short, we just hit it off. He’s a close friend to me now, and you can tell we enjoy each other’s company.  I can go to him about anything.  He really brought me under his wing and it means the world to me. A lot of people think when Mars & I link up, the shit hits the fan. *Laughs* We both enjoy having a good time, from hitting strip clubs to climbing bluffs we’re just looking to get faded while we’re doing it. From starting off as a fan of his since I was in High School to becoming one of his prodigies is a huge accomplishment.  It’s not even all about the music.  I got his back and support him fully with whatever he decides to do in life, and I know he’s guiding and pushing me to become the best I can be in this music industry.  So there’s nothing but respect for one another.

CTC: What’s it like being part of Force 5 Records?

Prolifik: Honestly, it’s amazing, I’ve been really close to Rick and have worked with The DRP for years. I truly respect both of them and I feel like I couldn’t have made a better decision. I know it’s a business but they’re family to me now. I truly believe in the end they need to benefit themselves, but they’re also going to do what’s best for me. I’ve known a lot of the other artists who are a part of Force 5 for a while, so it was great joining a team with familiar faces. The DRP and I have done a lot of business in the past but haven’t really spent too much time outside of music.  It’s a totally different story now.  He’s one of the hardest workers I’ve ever met and he’s a good-hearted person.  He’s already done so much for me in such a short period of time and he looks out for me. I would like to pursue my career under Donny(The DRP) and Force 5 Records.

CTC: Are you able to break down your single “Rolling On” featuring Mars and what moment from your life influenced the track as a whole?

Prolifik: The track its self is pretty relatable. I think a big portion of my music career influenced that track in general. It’s an influential track inspiring you to keep pushing forward when you’re at rock bottom but yet get thrilled and excited from the dangers life can bring us. The chorus was written by Mars, mixed & mastered by Intrinzik and also found us the lovely lady that did an outstanding job singing the hook.

CTC:  Your upcoming Force 5 Records debut Cabin Fever drops this winter! Are you able to dive into the album’s lyrical content, production, and what hip-hop fans should expect?

Prolifik: This album, like I’ve said before, is my best work to date. I also feel that it is the darkest material I’ve ever released. My first album had a handful of Horrorcore tracks but Cabin Fever is by far more of an emotional album.  A lot of aggression was put into this project, and I did that for a few reasons.  One being with what I went through personally the past 8 months turned me into an angry and depressed person, so I was able to convert that into this album.  The majority of the album is produced by Leprikon and he did an outstanding job! We linked up online and he made a lot of custom beats for it. I was able to explain my vision and plot for it, and he knocked it out of the park. I also have production from Saint Sinna and Kamikazi (BrainSick) to add a little more diversity to the mix. The entire album is mixed & mastered by Lo Key.  I’ve been a fan of his work since the mid 2000’s and I really enjoyed how he mixed his tracks.  They have a very dark and wicked sound and the way he uses certain effects is exactly what I envisioned for Cabin Fever. It’s the first time I’ve worked with him and so far it’s phenomenal. Another aspect that I really worked on was creating more solo tracks.  A few people mentioned to me that I needed more material just by myself and I really took that into consideration.

CTC: Why shouldn’t this album be ignored?

Prolifik: I felt my first album Est. 1990 did fairly well and this is just on a whole different level.  It’s more organized and has a plot. I’m just at a higher point in my career and I feel that I’ve grown since my last album and honestly this project means more to me. I’m not just an average artist anymore…I’m a part of something. Like what The DRP always tells me “Welcome to the big leagues” and he’s right. I feel this album is my opportunity to show people what I can really do and why I’m signed to a record deal.  I put everything I had into this as if it was my last chance to prove not only to myself but to the world that I can do this.

 CTC: What’s the true meaning behind the Cabin Fever title?

Prolifik: Going back to what I was saying before, I’ve just had a rough year personally and being from Wisconsin I know a lot of people that can relate to the title.  We have long, harsh winters constantly being cooped up, spending many hours throughout the day inside where it tends to make you stir crazy. With so much anger and depression being held in, along with being locked up and alone in a cabin in the north woods, it brings you into the mind state of someone that just can’t deal with it anymore and finally snaps.

CTC:  What is your most personal track on the album and why?

Prolifik: I still have a handful of tracks that I’m putting together, so it’s early to say.  But the most personal track to me as of now is called “Face Lift” and it’s about my ex-girlfriend and I. I wrote and recorded the track about a month after we split, so you can really feel what I was going through, I won’t go into too much detail, but we’ve been in each other’s lives for many years and it ends tragically. It’s definitely a track people can relate to if you were with someone for a little more than half a century, and it just all comes to an end.

 CTC: How did you go about choosing who you wanted as features for Cabin Fever?

Prolifik: My previous album has a lot of features, so I held back on Cabin Fever trying to make this more of a solo album.  Don’t get me wrong, there’s still a good hand full of emcees featured on this project. With this being my first debut album under Force 5 I tried shooting for a few bigger names. I’m always looking for artists to collab with, but I only went after emcees that I felt would fit the plot of this project. D-Loc the Gill God featured on Tech N9ne’s Midwest & Worldwide Choppers really delivered something special on a track that also features King ISO & Donnie Menace!  Razakel & Smallz One both make a return appearance. My Wicked Wisconsin brothers Damien Quinn & SAW Da Ghost are scheduled, and The DRP along with Mars and Rick Dogg making their appearances as well.

CTC: Any behind the scene stories you’d like to share when first writing Cabin Fever?

Prolifik: There’s everyday occurrences that inspire the new tracks that I write, good and bad.  I caught a pretty decent buzz from my first album, but my homies always told me I need to bring something back home and take it back to my roots.  So I embraced that and created the whole theme for Cabin Fever. It’s always good to kick back with them.  They bring a lot of inspiration to my music and that’s something you’ll be able to recognize with this new album. I won’t lie though… a big portion of this album was inspired by a broken heart. When my girl and I split, I just put all of my anger and depression into this album.  It brings a great twist to the plot, so I used something that was negative to my advantage and created this masterpiece

CTC: What is your greatest accomplishment thus far as an emcee?

Prolifik: I’ve truly done a lot in my career since I started in 2005.  Released 3 different projects, been featured on well over a dozen, played more shows than I can count including the GOTJ, but what I feel is my greatest accomplishment thus far is signing my first record deal with Force 5 Records this past January. There are so many highlights throughout my music career, but this really means the most to me personally. I feel that’s what every emcee’s goal is when there coming up, signing that deal.  Sure it’s not a major label that’s paying me to where I don’t have to ever work again, but it’s a very powerful Independent label that I truly feel is going to come up in the ranks, and I couldn’t be prouder being a part of it!

CTC:  Any final shout outs?

Prolifik: I just want to thank everyone who’s ever supported me and continue too. Big shout out to for allowing me to tell my story! Wicked Wisconsin & Force 5 Records for giving me a shot at doing what I love to do.  They’ve always been my family. LSP for all their support, all my friends and family back home, every artist and producer that took the time to be a part of Cabin Fever I can’t thank them enough. Be sure to check out for all your news and updates.  You can download the Ruckus Mixtape Vol. 1 for free featuring every artist on the label. You can download my latest single “Rollin On” featuring Mars on iTunes, Spotify, Google Play, Amazon Music or anywhere digital music is sold.

from Faygoluvers


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