Entertainment Magazine

2Mello Interview

Posted on the 28 March 2013 by Timothy Purdy

In his latest album, aptly named Chrono Jigga, 2 Mello ( Matt Hopkins ) mashed up Jay-Z and music from the video game Chrono Trigger; something you will not find everywhere. As a nerd, you can hear 2 Mello mention Dungeons & Dragons and video games throughout his work, which I have to say satisfies my geeky side.

Now, I know everyone is not a geek or a nerd or otherwise uncool. (Hipsters, you know who you are ). However, you have to take the time and check 2 Mello's latest album.  Just do it. Now. DO IT.

In the meantime, check out an interview I did with 2 Mello though e-mail bellow!


How would you describe your music? In your latest release of "Chrono Jigga" you mashed up, quite well, Jay-Z and music from the video game Chrono Trigger. However in your earlier EP's like "The Patterns EP" you were rapping. Which path will you be taking in your future works?

Chrono Jigga was actually the first time I had ever touched video game music. It never really occurred to me to sample it before, but it did work well. I usually get most excited to make loops from samples of soul music, foreign jazz and funk, or just rare neat sounds and then fit it into a solid beat. But at the same time, I have also always desired to do something more electronic and synthesized, which you can see in the Patterns EP. I'm probably going to make a lot more like you hear on the closing track of Patterns, PRETTYWEAPONS. I'm going to be making more video game remixes and mash-ups, both full albums and one-offs. And then, I should also return to the mic soon, both singing and rapping, with a traditional hip-hop album. Right now it's just a matter of figuring out what to do first.

On "Chrono Jigga" you spend over a minute on the Outro talking about what you are not and the types of idols today's youth get in the rap scene. What kind of person do you hope to be for the youth today that listen to your music?

 I hope to seem very down-to-earth and reasonable--someone that kids would listen to without feeling pandered to or feeling like I'm didactic. Like an older brother that actually gets who you are and is trying to help. I have made my share of mistakes trying to be someone I was not, but I learned from them and I can use that now.

How has your parent's music taste influence your own? In your Bio on your Scrub Club Records page, it mentions that your mother listened to Motown while your father favored psychedelic rock. How do you, if at all, infuse those music styles in your own?

Their taste didn't particularly cause me to like those genres as much as it just gave me very differing types of music from the very start of my life. It sort of opened me up at the beginning to think to look for different stuff from what I was hearing on the radio or in kid's movies. I knew there was something else out there. In that biography, I think I also mention finding my soul music. Now, I don't mean soul music, though I will admit I tend more toward Motown than psych-rock--I mean the music that moves your soul in particular. People will say "I listen to everything" but there is always one. For me, that is jazzy hip-hop and cinematic electronica like trip-hop. Those two styles have affected mine the most.

Has spending your whole life in Lexington, Kentucky limited your creativity in anyway? You use the internet to get your music to peoples ears and to build a fanbase, but does living in a city with just over 300k residents offer the creative outlets and inspiration you need?

It's not so much living in one place that limits me as the nature of the place itself. Lexington is amazing at supporting local talent in most areas--but not hip-hop, for some reason. And don't think that it's because we're too "country" or "white" to get it--we're actually a pretty diverse little city. But we don't have a going-out culture, a culture of discovery and excitement here, and that is required for hip-hop to flourish. The culture here is established on old Kentucky traditions and those that flourish embrace those same old traditions. It is also very hard for me to get local crowds to support something new and original; most people here have tastes dwelling in the top 40 or have dug as deep into music as they want to and don't care to find new things. Basically, the culture is lacking.

You hold a bachelors degree in English Literature. Where did you go to school and did you plan on becoming a rapper / producer while in school?

I went to school at the University of Kentucky, right here in Lexington. I have been producing since I was in middle school, so I really was a rapper and producer in college and had been for some time. I produced four albums while in college. But I have never wanted to look at it as my career. For one--you never connect money to the thing you love, or stave it off as long as possible. But also, it is just far too risky and hard to try and pursue a career in the music industry with how badly and obviously it is dying. The industry that was built and established through classic record companies cannot keep up with the times. If I ever do make anything close to a living with music, it will be as an indie artist because I believe things are moving toward artists being in control of the money they make again.

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