Stop sleeping on this Baltimore emcee
When describing Baltimore rapper ClrConscience’s self aware, spoken word type of flow, be careful not to use the word “Woke”. The densely lyrical emcee boldly proclaims in his acapella freestyle that “Being woke aint sh*t”. While he may not have any interest in this generation’s trendy label for the so called enlightened minds, one things for sure: ClrConscience makes the kind of music with potential to awaken those snoozing everywhere. His heavy subject matter and gritty, B-more delivery will be on full display on his upcoming project “Strictly 4 My Negus”. He chatted with us a bit about his come up, and his dreams for the future. Enjoy!
Photography by @gioncarlovalentine
1. Where are you from and how did your upbringing lead you towards making music?
Baltimore, I’m from west Baltimore County to be exact. Growing up I wanted to be in the band, but you had to pay to be apart of it. I’m assuming that you to pay for the instrument as well as the classes and my parents weren’t with that at the time. Later in life I wanted to be lawyer, then an engineer, and then a journalist, up until now where I’m going to school to be counselor/therapist as well as pursuing my music career. I didn’t actually get into music until I was about 18 or 19. One of my close friends use to always want me to freestyle with him back when we went to CCBC Catonsville. It was just for fun initially, but then we started to feel like we were pretty decent at it and started to take it seriously. Overtime, my friend ended up joining the army and I kept at it. I was going to school, working, making music, and eventually I started performing. It took a lot of growing personally and in the craft, but eventually I molded into the great artist that I see myself as today and I’m only getting better.
2. What would you consider to be your sound? What are some themes you like to explore?
I don’t necessarily like to subscribe to one specific sound. However, I would say that my natural vibe is very Hip Hop and/or R&b Soul, whether modern or more old school. If I had to compare my sound to any artists, I’d say it definitely has some Wale and J. Cole influence. I definitely aim to expand my sound at some point in the future though. As far as themes go, there’s not much of a limit at all. Whether it be about relevant issues to society, love, sex, my personal vices, or whatever else. I write about whatever comes to mind.
3. What’s your creative process like? What inspires you?
My creative process is very random and it comes in spurts. I could literally be at work and then just have to grab something to write on when I have an idea. Though, when I feel something and then start writing, very rarely am I able to finish it right at that moment. I usually keep coming back to it and writing more moment by moment. The piece isn’t really done even when it’s done though, because I tweak it so much before it reaches what I feel like is a solid finished product. As far as what inspires me, it could be anything. Anything from my life experiences, someone else’s that is close to, art, or just a simple conversation with someone can inspire me. There’s really no limit.
4. What would you change about the music industry, and the world if you could?
Well, the things that I would change about the world if I could would drastically change the music industry overall. However, to try to answer that, I think I would want things to go into the direction of what Chance The Rapper
is doing as far as being an independent artist. I hope more artists start following that idea and take it a step further by starting their own labels as oppose to signing to many of these huge labels that care nothing black people or the culture. Either that, or sign to a label that actually does care about the people and the culture. As far as what I would change about the entire world if I could, I would start by having every group of people that has had their land stolen get it back (as well as get back their resources). Then, I would make it so that people of African descent that suffered through western slavery get their due reparations as well as free mental healthcare. Lastly, I would have every different group of people go back to the land that they originated from, make it so every different group of people respect each other (their land and possessions), and ultimately aim to create some sort of world peace from that. Though ideally, if I could go back in time and change the world then I would eliminate currency from ever being created, make it so the world’s greatest atrocities never happen (for example slavery, the holocaust, and etc.), and make it so every group of people respect each other (their land and possessions). Thus, aiming for the same result, some sort of world peace.
5. What are your dreams for the future?
I have many dreams for the future. Ultimately, the dream is to reach peace as well as happiness in myself, my relationships, and in my life in general. To be more specific though, I want to continue to create/release music and build my brand up to a huge level in order to better my life as well as the lives of my fellow people of African descent. I want to own my own label in the near future, or just put myself in a position to never have to sign to one of these huge labels that care nothing about the culture (something like Chance The Rapper
). I want to finish my degree in Psychology. I want to do some level of counselor/therapist work and play my part in bettering the mental health of minorities (especially people of African descent that went through western slavery, because I personally believe like we need it the most given all we’ve suffered and continue to suffer to this very day). I want to find effective ways to make Psychology and my art work well together. I want to visit Ghana and then Japan in the near future. I want to travel, visit, and even live in different places in the world for periods of time to learn as much as I can before I die. I want to find real love with a woman sometime within the next few years and realize these dreams as well as hers together. I want to pass on a torch of success to my future children and have them continue to push the legacy forward in their own way. I will accomplish all of these dreams in the future.