14 Jan Soultrain.com Q&A: Skeme
Making a noise in Southern California’s hip-hop scene since his breakout 2010 mixtape Pistols and Palmtrees, Inglewood native Skeme (real name Lonnie Kimble) has grown to be the area’s biggest MC since Mack 10. Former associate of slain Konvict Muzik rapper Dolla, Skeme has easily solidified his status of a fixture. That means collaborating with everyone from Dom Kennedy and Iggy Azalea to Kendrick Lamar and E-40. Following years of releasing critically lionized mixtapes, 2012 saw him successfully drop his debut album Alive & Living. Never one to halt momentum, he closed out 2013 with follow-up album and personal ode to his hometown entitled Ingleworld. More of a streamlined project than his previous works, the album features lead singles “Different” and “Ain’t Perfect” featuring Wale.
SoulTrain.com: What does Ingleworld mean to an artist?
Skeme: The music that I make is always from my angle. It provides the point of view and my angle on how I’m looking at things right now. That’s one of the bigger things in my music, as everything is really a personal story for me. At the moment,Ingleworld is watching someone you started shoulder to shoulder with grow up and come up; really hustling to get something done. It’s starting to look like a serious step to being something. I think people at the moment are starting to take things more serious. It’s like a “chip off the old block” situation where everyone is proud for the guy that’s been moving for a minute now. That’s the biggest thing—I’m providing a situation where people feel as if they have a shot at music or whatever aspirations because we make it look like anything is possible.
SoulTrain.com: Ingleworld comes pretty much a year after 2012’s Alive & Living.Where were you creatively and personally going into this project?
Skeme: I think Alive & Living, I was fresh out of my situation with Baron Davis (former basketball player for the Los Angeles Clippers) and my whole camp was on edge about that. We were just trying to figure out what was going to be the next best move for us. You kind of deal with those kind of nerves and stuff when you coming out of a situation and trying to make sure you don’t fall flat on your face. My goal was trying to prove that I could be a success on my own also. For us, Alive & Living was us beating the learning curve. With Ingleworld, I took my time with putting this project together. That meant taking more of a proactive role in aspects like visuals and marketing. I actually put together a marketing plan on my own and all of that. If anything, we took a lot of time with this project. I recorded for about a year and a half, creating 177 songs just for 14 tracks. It was a different workload.