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We promised you an exclusive interview with Chamillionaire last month and here it is! The Record sat down with the Grammy-winning rapper in Mumbai on the afternoon before his performance for VH1ís Hip Hop Hustle to talk about his hit song Hip Hop Police, what the lifestyle of a rapper is like, the price of fame and his advice for aspiring musicians. We got some great insights from the rapper so check it out!

The Record: Tell us about the inspiration for the track Hip-Hop Police.
Chamillionaire: What inspired the track was me wanting to go against the grain and do something different than what everybody else was doing in the States. I wanted to make a song that was kind of reflective of the times. The song is about hip-hop police and the people that are policing hip-hop you know. Nowadays the controversy surrounding the language and hip-hop is kind of crazy and I felt like I wanted to make a record about that. Itís a story-telling record so I wanted to find someone that could tell a good story thatís why I went and got Slick Rick [to collaborate with] who is legendary.

TR: Why do people feel the need to police hip-hop?
Chamillionaire: I think people nowadays just want to point a finger so much, you know. There are so many things wrong with society and people always want to find the easy way out. So they will point a finger at music for raising kids nowadays when really I think itís just parents, you knowÖ itís parents that need to be raising these kids. When thereís a lack of moral support in the house, they want to find something to blame and it becomes hip-hop and artistes because weíre bigÖ I guess weíre revered highly by younger audiences so I can understand why they do that, but I think itís unfairÖ Itís music, you know what I mean?

TR: Youíve said that you wanted Ultimate Victory as an album to play out like a motion picture; tell us more.
Chamillionaire: Ultimate Victory is put together with concepts from beginning to end. Thereís a moral to the story at the end of the album and the Ultimate Victory title is about really enjoying and appreciating life. Thatís when you really win, when you have the ultimate victory. People argue for money, and all this other stuff and theyíre miserable throughout life so [the album] is really just about enjoying life.

TR: What is the average day in the life of a star rapper like?
Chamillionaire: I definitely want to let people know that itís not about models and Moet bottles all the time! (Laughs) No Ferraris everyday and all that type of stuff. Thereís really a lot of hard work that goes into this type of stuff, people really have to see that. Sometimes you get no sleep and you have to be on a plane early, you will be doing hundreds of interviews, you go to sound checks, you perform at different shows and venues and to really keep yourself visual in the media, especially if you are a global artist, is a lot of work. There are a lot of interviews you know; and not just magazines, thereís TV, thereís other kinds of press and I think thatís the hardest part of it. You have to always be alert and Ďoní all the time. Itís hard work; itís not just about models and throwing money around.

TR: Share some memories of what it was like when you started out in music.
Chamillionaire: I used to be selling mix tapes out of the trunk of a car and I had this dream of being a big rapper. I actually wanted to be a basketball player at first. (Smiles) But that didnít work out and rap ended up being something that took off for me, I started becoming a bigger, popular rapper in the region and it just started getting bigger and bigger. I remember early on, some people would take my CDs, when Iíd try to sell it to them, and theyíd throw it on the ground and as I started getting bigger and doing more shows, I would see the same people that were throwing my CDs before, in the front row in the crowd! I started to see change as I got bigger and then when I finally signed a major deal, a lot of the underground fans were really rooting for me because theyíd been seeing me for so many years just trying to make it. Thatís when my single Ridiní took off and I sold 1.5 million records.

TR: What is the one thing that has surprised you most about being successful?
Chamillionaire: Itís very different than what you might think. Fame is such a powerful drug and even if you donít change, people around you change. People treat you differently, they scream when they see you, you canít really go nowhere! You might want to just go and do something simpleÖ For me, it just makes me appreciate some of the simple things. For some people, it does go to their heads. To me, it makes me appreciate something as simple as being at home and being in my own bed because Iím never at home, Iím always on the road. So you know, you have to find the good parts about it and enjoy it.

You can read the rest of our exclusive with Chamillionaire in the November 2007 issue of The Record Music Magazine available at your local newsagent.


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