Action colliding with destiny, Strange Music is now home to Missouri native, Stevie Stone. Thankful for a wealth of musical experiences, Strange-Man-Stone embraces the challenge of becoming the perfect “Stranger.” His music; his perspective; a reality shared through expansive bars. Vulnerabilities transformed into strengths, Stone’s lyrics introduce the insight of an ever-maturing, man and artist.
In this BallerStatus.com first, Stevie Stone discusses his continual quest, striving towards longevity and his Strange Music début, Rollin’ Stone.
Currently, you appear to be living a coveted dream; hip-hop is your profession. How did your talent and your drive earn your spot at your first label, Ruthless Records?
Actually, I got selected to go down to Atlanta to do a hip-gop and R&B showcase for Billboard. That’s where I had met Tomica [Wright]. She was listening to CDs and she liked one of my CDs. One thing led to another. I met her. I knew she liked it and that ended up happening. I was with Tomica from 2007-2010. After that, I ended up inking my deal with Strange Music.
Going back to Ruthless, what motivated you to work within that iconic imprint? Was it wanting to affiliated with Eazy-E’s legacy, or was it the faith in what you thought they could do for your career?
Of course, when you’re at the table and we’re talking — “We’re either going to be doing this, or we’re going to be doing that.” That was my first deal. With that being my first situation, I learned a lot from that situation. But, as far as Ruthless — that’s a legendary label, you know that. N.W.A., Dr. Dre, J.J. Fad, even Will.I.Am [have ties to Ruthless].
Concerning the artist and executive interactions at Strange and Ruthless, what apparent differences have you already noticed?
[Strange is] more hands-on, more structured; [there’s] more strategy.
“You should never be content with where you’re at,” this is a very bold statement.
Of course, you got to shoot to where you’re going. My analogy is that after every ladder, there’s a ladder — you got to keep on climbing. There’s a ladder itself to stay relevant, you have to stay consistent. I’ll forever be climbing the ladder, and that’s what I’m on right now. I’m on a new ladder right now. With another step, I’m going to continue to climb.
Complacency, how do you battle it and keep that motivation alive?
It was something that I was born with. It was something that my family put in me. If you want something hard enough, you’re going to go for it. No, is not an answer. No, is not an option; failure is not an option. You go for what you want. The harder you work, the more that you put out, the more that it’s going to come in.
Let’s get on your Strange début, Rollin’ Stone. I had “Dollar General” on repeat.
That’s the first time that I ever did a track like that. That’s crazy sh**, but you know what, I love that you said that. There’s a lot of people who love that record. “Dollar General” was dope. I got the record from WillPower. Yelawolf, he did the hook. They gave it to me with the hook already on it. At first, I didn’t know exactly what to do with it, until I saw this street documentary called Street Thief. With this dude named Casper Karr on Netflix. That’s when I created “Dollar General.”
With “My Remedy,” is that you on the hook?
That’s me; I sung everything on that record.
You were getting your Z-Ro on. I appreciate it when men can be melodic without sounding like whisper-kittens. You have a very nice voice.
On my album, I sung all the vocals and harmonies except for “Cast Out.” Kaliko did “Cast Out,” and Peetah Morgan did “Oneness.” Other than that, all the vocals on the whole CD is me.
With “The Road,” talk to me about its message, its lineup, and its arrangement of features.
“The Road” — that’s how I felt. That’s where I wanted the people to go. You know what I’m saying? Everything. That’s how I heard it. That’s how I felt it. More so, that’s how I felt it should have been, you know? Music is feeling…
From the album, this record contained my favorite phrase, “No real explanation, reality bites…”
That’s real sh**.
It’s simple and eloquent. You didn’t waste any words.
And what I’m talking about is EMJ. Out of town, out of bounds, it’s right to the point. We’re out of town all the time. I’m not sugar-coating or metaphorically speaking, none of that. This is what it is. “Out of town, out of bounds, violently came to life / No real explanation reality bites…” You know what I’m saying? It’s just real sh**.
I wanted to hear Lynch, Kutt Kalhoun, Jay Rock and you on a Plex Luthor / Gianni Ca$h beat. Is this something that we can look forward to?
Well, Brotha Lynch was actually supposed to be on a record, but he was working on his last joint — with a schedule like that. Music takes you there. When I hear the music, I hear the beat and I dig myself in and get lost in that beat. It’s going to tell me who I hear on there. I don’t ever force anything. I’ll put it to them. That’s definitely going to happen one of these days.
We just got to find the right track. Jay Rock and Brotha Lynch is on the West coast. Me and Kaliko, we’re right down the street from each other, because I’m in St. Louis and he’s in Kansas City. ¡MAYDAY!’s really not no problem. Anything that I ever sent to them, or they sent to me, we knocked that sh** out. You know what I’m saying? It’s just about timing and the record and all of that. But yeah, I’m pretty sure it will happen.
And if you want that, you put the frequency out there, you never know when it might happen.
Is there anything else you’d like to share with your supporters; what should they anticipate?
What should they anticipate? For Stevie Stone to continue to climb this ladder, to continue to give people good music. And, to continue to rock shows whenever I may hit the stage!