Posts Tagged ‘Interview’

Catch Wreck Interview with Spare Change News

Catch Wreck sits down with Kevin Emile of Spare Change News to talk about his career in hip-hop, how he wound up where he is, what its like working with a band and what to expect down the road.


Bohemian Beats: SCN Chops It Up with Boston’s Avant-Garde Hip Hop Artist, Catch Wreck

Q. Where in Boston are you currently residing?
A. Roxbury, MA

Q. How would you compare Boston to other cities you’ve been in or know about?
A. Boston has a very unique mind state I would say. The people are disconnected, their living in their own zone. The people don’t really travel outside of their own comfort zone. I think it’s racially divided and unequal. I think there are a lot of issues with racism that don’t get addressed properly. On the other hand there are many cities that have a pattern of racial profiling or a pattern of police brutality, but here in Boston I think it’s unique that we have the longest history of it given that we have the first police department in the nation and the primary function of it was to catch slaves and return them to their slave owners whether they were free or not. So we have the longest history of racial profiling and also inspired police departments across America.

Q. How would you explain Boston’s Hip-Hop scene currently?
A. Number one as a Hip-Hop scene I feel we should focus more on controlling our own things. Whether its a media source, an outlet to distribute music or promotions I feel we should have more control of our music and how we handle it. But we have a great Hip-Hop scene in terms of the talent, I think it’s unfortunate that some of the best artists receive the least attention and the less talented ones get the fill of it. But we definitely have a great diverse group of talented people here and whether or not they receive the recognition they deserve I think it’s great that we have that.

Q. how do you rise above the stereotype of being labeled just another Boston rapper?
A. I do way more than just Rap, that’s how I rise above that. In my free time I work with a lot of different kinds of grass roots organizing for the community. I work with teens during the day; I try to be a mentor or an older brother to the youth. So I have a lot more going on than just being a rapper. Even musically I do more than that. I’m also part of a Rock Band called Sweatshop because I enjoy expanding my craft and taking part of fun opportunities like that. I just rise above the overall stereotype that as a rapper all I do is just Rap. Even in my music, I don’t objectify woman, I don’t promote negativity, which some think Rap is all about, I avoid talking about those subjects and only paint the most realistic picture of life for the listener.

Q. How do you go about creating music to give to your fans?
A. It’s almost selfish sometimes because I’m driven by personal expression, how I feel and what I believe should be put out there. My creative process all depends on the moment because at the most random times I can come up with a few lines that I have to write down right then, come back to it later and zone out to it. Or some days I just throw a few beats on and write down how I’m feeling or I collect the bits and pieces scattered in my mind from the day and connect the pieces together into a song.

Q. You’re a solo artist, and also lead in a band, Sweatshop. Where did the fusion come from?
A. I had the concept of being in a rock band from a young age. I use to draw pictures of myself in a rock band. The fusion of the band began one night I was performing at a house party when I was introduced to my drummer Jonas Mayer through a mutual friend and we were discussing ideas about music, most importantly starting a band. He knew a bass player “Mark Vincent” who brought us to our recording space. From there we brought along a guitar player and then a singer. The whole process wasn’t easy. We dealt with complexities in choosing who to have with us and perform but the selection we chose is great and performing with a band is the greatest feeling ever. And I also love the fusion between Rock and Hip-Hop.

Q. Where do the name’s CatchWreck and Sweatshop come from?
A. The band name Sweatshop comes from our rehearsal space which is a curtain factory. When you enter the space it reminds you of a Sweatshop, which was my first comment from a joke I made about the space. My stage name CatchWreck took longer to come up with after going through different names when younger. My first name Conscious Young was given to me by Kyle Jason who at the time was a musical mentor to me and was also the producer for Public Enemy. Upon meeting Public Enemy I got flown out to the studio in Long Island which was at Chuck D’s home and inside I was given the name Conscious Young. After going by Conscious Young, I started going by Catch 22 until I came up with CatchWreck which is an acronym for “Creating Arts To Cause Havoc When Revolution Engages Conscious Knowledge”.

Q. What are some of your favorite songs to perform with the band?
A. We have a song called “Freaky Baby” which is fun to perform because it lets the audience get loose and have fun. “Fight back” is great because it’s a “get people going” kind of anthem because of the build ups in the song and people like unexpected surprises so that song is fun. In fact, there’s no song that I don’t really like performing. My band and I don’t stick to concepts so we enjoy playing every song on the set list we put together. “Revised” is a song we do which is deep and personal and I use it as a release and I think people in the crowd can relate to it.

Q. Are the songs you create for your solo work similar to what you do with the band?
A. Yes and no. When you’re working with a band everyone has to be on the same page with each other. It’s just a different type of energy but it all comes from the same place. A lot of the songs I’ve made as a solo artist creating Hip-Hop can be transferred to the music I produce with the band and vice versa. Its just the way its expressed, like I said it’s a different type of energy.

Q. How do you deal with difference in creativity when working with a band when you normally work by yourself?
A. We learn to trust each and the decisions we make in terms of overall helping the band. But it’s all about trust and compromise, especially learning how to compromise when you’re going to be working with people. It’s frustrating sometimes but it is what it is, there are times when we’re dealing with uncomfortable situations but at the end we worked out the issues and moved on to create music. You have to feel comfortable with what you’re putting out, don’t put it out if you’re not happy with it.

Q. What cd’s or songs should we be interested in purchasing or listening to from you and also Sweatshop?
A. Sweatshop has a new EP coming out called “Minimum Wage” soon on the way. For myself I have an album called “For the People” which is a collaboration with Raw Intelligence at that is coming out really soon. I’m also releasing a compilation of songs that I’ve put out and people have slept on and I hope to grab a few more people’s attention with that. I’m also working on a solo album called “Generation Wrecked” which I’m just dipping my toes into and hope to put out in the near future.

Q. Any upcoming gigs we should mark on our calendars?
A. November 6th Sweatshop will be at the Middle East In Cambridge. December 5th in Jamaica Plain. December 14th at the Midway. November 9th CatchWreck will be performing at a college In Worcester.

Q. Last question Wreck, what’s a life motto you live by?
A. If you don’t stand for something you will fall for anything. I believe that saying came from Malcolm X and it’s pretty self-explanatory, you just got to have a stance on something instead of floating in the wind with no opinion on things and not knowing who you are and your feelings on certain things.

—Kevin L. Emile


Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by catchwreck - November 23, 2012 at 5:47 pm

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Jay-Z on Lettermen

I know I’m not the only one who’s anxious to read Jay-Z’s new book, Decoded. Here he sits down with Dave Lettermen on CBS’ The Late Show to discuss the new release, the music, drugs, and little guys with guns..

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Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by catchwreck - November 17, 2010 at 11:13 am

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Open Transport

Thanks to a tweet from @Asheru (the man behind the Boondocks theme..) I just checked out a documentary from ten years ago about the underground Hip-Hop scene.. Its called Open Transport..

OPEN TRANSPORT from Bert Custodio on Vimeo.

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Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by catchwreck - September 8, 2010 at 4:34 am

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BUILD: Alfie Numeric

Back in the ancient days of primitive social networking and myspace, I once came across an artist with visually stunning work and a very unique and memorable name.. Alfie Numeric, the beautiful and multi-talented artist from Los Angeles, California describes herself as a “modern day urban warrior.” At 17, while trying to achieve stardom by posting videos and music on my page, I think I thought I was in love.. Fast-forward to the future world of blogs and tweets and I (grown now of course..) found Ms. Numeric once again.. To my extreme delight she agreed to do an interview for the blog. She has not agreed to go on a date with me yet, but I am working on it…

Catch Wreck: So, for those unfamiliar, what is it that you do?

Alfie Numeric: I have two equal jobs … my career is artist/graphic designer/curator/event producer..that’s my spirit. My day job is working at the Writers Guild of America, the union for Hollywood writers.

CW: So you’re an artist of many talents..When did you find your calling and what medium did you start out with? Do you have a preference when it comes to the different types of art you do?

AN: I think it’s safe to say that my calling found me! I’ve been drawing since I can pick up a pencil. I used to get in trouble as a child drawing in my mom’s medical books, on the walls, on the sidewalk. I’ve always wanted to be an artist but as a kid, I didn’t think I could make money from it. But art chased me down in my college years and tackled me by the time I graduated.

My first medium was graphite. There is no mixing involved. No storing paints. No crazy clean up. Just you and the pencil, pushing and pulling on the paper. From there exploration is needed in growth so eventually I started toying with other mediums. Right now, I am playing with acrylic paints, glitter, wood, some clay. My exploration has not stopped.

I don’t have a solitary preference. I believe it all depends on the project and what is the best way to convey that project in the best light possible. I am learning that I am a better drawer than painter. Often time my sketches get lost in translation when I put paint on it. Because of that, I prefer working on natural pine canvases. The paint behaves more like a pencil and is more fluid.

CW: I know exactly what you mean. I gave up on painting years ago..I hope this next question isn’t too cliche.. But where do you draw from for inspiration?
AN: I believe it is safe to say that I draw inspiration directly from life. Every piece is auto-biographical. You can say that each piece is like a page out of my mental diary. People have their own ways on how to process life. Mine happens to be visual at the moment. It is even brought to my attention that the women I paint look like me. I can only paint what I know so subconsciously, I do paint women that look more like me.

CW: So its not intentional?

AN: Nope, I don’t feel that it is. I just draw and paint. I don’t use models unless I need someone to strike a pose for reference. I have been thinking of using models to diversify the subjects but when I paint, I don’t plan it out. I just dive in.

CW: Well if you’d like, I’d be more than happy to model for you..

AN: Very funny..

CW: So do you have anything in the works that people should know about?

AN: Aaah, yes.. Well, we have the closing of “Portraits of the Proletariat” on July 24th. That was a group art show with my crew, the Beatrock Artist Kollective. Special musical guests are Bambu and Rhythm Natives. That’s in Long Beach CA at Dream Jungle Tattoos.


Then on the 31st of July, I am double-booked… Earlier in the day, I will be in Chinatown LA for the Make it Funky Music and Art Fest. Then in the evening I will be live painting at the JACCC for the TN Party in Little Tokyo. Outdoor concert, live art, vendors, and gourmet food trucks.

In September, I will be part of the 19th annual Festival of Philippine Arts and Culture, the largest Pilipino arts festival in Southern California. I will be painting a mural there with the Beatrock Artists Kollective.

CW: I will be sure to pass that info on to our readers. Its been more than a pleasure building with you..

For more on Alfie Numeric be sure to check out her website featuring the Beatrock Artist Collective as well as her Profile on Artslant.


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Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by catchwreck - July 19, 2010 at 1:16 pm

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10KStrong in Boston Globe

Rally addresses neighborhood violence, drugs

Youths suggest more activities to occupy peers

Jesse Winfrey (left) greets Mercedes Reid at the 10,000 Strong Boston event on Father’s Day. Activists and politicians spoke. Jesse Winfrey (left) greets Mercedes Reid at the 10,000 Strong Boston event on Father’s Day. Activists and politicians spoke. (Pat Greenhouse/ Globe Staff)
By Jack Nicas

Globe Correspondent / June 21, 2010

To 21-year-old Jesse Winfrey, growing up in Roxbury was not easy. There were few summer jobs, and fewer alternatives to the streets. Drugs and guns were just a part of life.

“You’d be hard-pressed to find somebody my age who’s not somehow connected to the negative lifestyle,’’ said Winfrey, who spends much of his time writing rap lyrics about the issues afflicting his community. “Just living here, knowing people, you get automatically involved.’’

Three weeks ago, his friend Ivol Brown was stabbed to death in Mattapan, one of four teens killed in the city last month.

Last week, Winfrey was in a corner store near his home when he heard gunshots outside.
“Had I left my house two minutes later,’’ he said, “I could have been dead.’’
But there is hope for a better Boston, Winfrey and four other Roxbury youths said yesterday at an antiviolence event at Franklin Park.

And the solutions can be simple, they said.

“More community centers where kids can go hang out together and break down these barriers with kids from different neighborhoods,’’ said Jeremy Rodriguez, 19, a student at College Bound Dorchester.

“And we need more jobs for the youths,’’ Winfrey said. “There’s a three-month period with no school and a lot of kids just have nothing to do. There’s got to be something to keep their minds active.’’

The discussion intensified when the topic of guns came up. All five blamed lax laws for the influx of firearms in the city’s poorer neighborhoods.

“There’s 12-year-olds walking around with guns, that’s how easy it is,’’ said Santiago Rivera, 20, who wore a shirt memorializing his friend Paola Castillo, a pregnant woman who was shot dead at her 18th birthday party in Hyde Park last fall.

Getting rid of guns “wouldn’t solve all the problems, but it would make a big difference,’’ he said.

The five men, all members of advocacy groups, were just a sample of the young activists at the third annual 10,000 Strong Boston, a gathering aimed at addressing the challenges in the black, Latino, and Cape Verdean communities.

The event’s founder, Jamarhl Crawford, a 39-year-old activist who greets everyone by saying “Peace,’’ said solving the city’s corruption is key to solving its problems.

“The cries for peace are great, but we need to recognize the cries should really be for justice,’’ he said.

The important questions aren’t being asked, he said, such as, “Where are the kids getting all these guns from?’’

Che Furiga, the mother of Terrence S. Kelley, an 18-year-old gunned down in Dorchester on May 28, said fewer guns and more summer jobs would help, but nothing is as important as good parenting.

“I have a 4-year-old and I’m going to protect him with all that I can,’’ she said. “And I hope everyone else starts protecting their children and starts schooling their children on the things happening out here, so we can just stop this. Stop the nonsense.’’

Noting that it was Father’s Day, Governor Deval Patrick called men to action during his speech at the event, asking them to step up not only for their own children, but also for children without fathers.

“There’s a need for adults to start acting like adults,’’ he told the Globe later. “We need to start intervening, and paying more attention to our kids.’’

Jack Nicas can be reached at
© Copyright 2010 Globe Newspaper Company.

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Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by catchwreck - June 22, 2010 at 8:08 pm

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Catch Wreck Featured on Episode 39 of “MRDL”

Local filmmaker Dante Luna has been producing a series of documentary interviews with everyone from Lord Jamar, Philadelphia Freeway, Canibus and Joell Ortiz, local people from all walks of life and recently, Catch Wreck in episode #39. Do yourself a favor and go check out his other 40 episodes touching on everything from music to film, the visual arts and politics, tattoos, newspapers,comic books…”‘Mr Dante Luna’ is a documentary TV series. It’s about learning. So pay attention.”

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Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by catchwreck - May 11, 2010 at 1:32 pm

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