There aren’t many artists who get a chance to release an album of some of their best works years after their original success. Most artists can only look back at their creativity with fond memories of their best work of the past. Mikey D was able to release the Calm Before The Storm album under the banner of: Elements of Hip Hop in 2013. The album Calm Before The Storm was a prelude to his latest work: Day Of D’Struction. Day Of D’Struction is the album which answers all questions about Mikey D and his reputation as a lyrical beast. DJ Mercury and DJ Slice are Official members of Elements of Hip Hop and DJ’s for the group. The interview below speaks on what Day Of Destruction is truly about as an album. Mikey D paints a clear picture of some of the lyrical battles he has had. He also details his travels from neighborhood to neighborhood battling MC’s and entering cyphers along with his then DJ Johnnie Quest.
Mikey D was part of Laurelton’s own super group the Clientel Brothers. Mikey D also released several singles and an album produced by the late iconic producer Paul C. He formed Mikey D & The La Posse and also signed with Sleeping Bag Records. Mikey D was entered into the 1988 New Music Seminar and won the belt. After he won the belt he was unexpectedly challenged by the legendary MC Melle Mel and won that battle as well. Interestingly enough the tape of that battle has never surfaced. Yet other clips of that event are on You Tube and on the Web. He eventually became the Lead MC in the group Main Source replacing Large Professor. Mikey D was also rhyme partners with and has known LL Cool J since the 80’s. They were so close at that time that Mikey D was the one who gave Cool J the idea of naming himself “Ladies Love” Cool J. This is just a brief snap shot of the history of Mikey D. This is the interview about the album: Day Of Destruction. This is the album that takes all of the stories Hip Hop Aficionado’s have shared via witnessing: the trailer “The Making Of A Legend”, park jams, underground tapes, songs, albums, word of mouth, You Tube comments, Hip Hop forums and transforms those stories into sonic form and reality. The Urban Legend now becomes a living breathing entity that you can purchase and play on your digital devices. Enjoy the interview and support the movement.
JH: How did the idea for making Day Of D’Struction come into being?
Mikey D: The idea actually came from my producer Ligalize. We talked about music from the past. We talked about music now. At the time when he got in contact with me, I wasn’t really active. I wasn’t feeling the music. I wasn’t doing anything at the time. I was in a down time. He was like yo, we have to bring you back. We need to do some Frankenstein sh**. He was telling me how dope I was. I wasn’t really feeling myself like that. He was telling me how I inspired him. My influence on his career. I was looking at what I was doing, so I eventually said lets do it. He eventually started sending me tracks, and I was blown away by the tracks. You know Ligalize is from Russia. I did not know he produced. I knew he rapped. He was sending me tracks and I was catching a flash back from the chemistry between Paul C and Myself. It was almost like a rebirth. When he first started sending me tracks, I was still drinking my brews and all of that. I was in my house listening to his tracks. When I stopped drinking, and I really started listening to his beats, I was like WOW! Then I started writing to his tracks. The chemistry that we have even though it is a long distant relationship, it is like a rebirth of me and Paul C. That is why it is coming together so great. He wanted me to smash MC’s. So that why we titled it Day Of D’Struction.
JH: What can your audience expect to hear from you that they have never heard before? One part of your career is the records that you made. Another part is the battles that you have had. Some people have never heard the battles and never have heard the underground tapes and have only heard your records. What can your audience expect to hear from you that they have never heard before?
Mikey D: Actually there is nothing new about the album. I am doing what I have been doing. It is just produced a lot better than I have been doing it. It has evolved, and you really can hear my passion. This album is not like my earlier projects. When I was just doing it because I just wanted to do it. I had people in my ear telling me you should do this type of record or do that type of record. I have complete creative control. I am working with a dope producer. I have 2 dope DJ’s. So with this album people can definitely expect to hear a variety. It is not all about just battling and being a dope mc. It is all about making good music and good songs. I am giving them a variety of everything. I am telling stories. I am flipping lyrics and letting MC’s know, you might want to back down a little bit. I am getting personal. People can feel the emotional side of me on certain songs. They are going to get a variety of everything. It’s all of Mikey D. It is like Back To The Future. It is all of Mikey D back then, but wrapped up into one project. You are getting everything! You are getting the full Mikey D.
JH: I am going into the past a little bit. Give me a picture of what it was like when you and your DJ Johnnie Quest used to go from town to town looking for MC’s so you could test your skills out on them. Do you have any memories of that, so you could paint a picture for the people?
Mikey D: I remember one that sticks out so well. It’s me, Johnnie Quest and a couple of other brothers from around the neighborhood. I remember we went looking for MC Shan to battle him. We went from Jamaica Queens into the Queensbridge Housing Projects. We were just walking through Queensbridge projects asking people, do you know MC Shan. Where is Shan at, I want to battle him. Just like that. We are walking through the projects looking for this brother. We never got with him. A dude came up to us and said. These dudes were from Queensbridge. They told us that there was brothers from Jamaica up here and they are about to get ran up on. He let the cat out of the bag. He let us know we were about to get set up. We were out of there. That is just how Johnnie Quest and me used to do it. We used to just take the bus or the train and just get off on random stops. At that time everybody was rapping. There would be Cyphers in front of stores. We would join those Cyphers and just battle them. Whoever it, did not matter. That is how we used to do it, we did not care.
JH: Tell me about the battle that you had with Kool G Rap before he was Kool G Rap.
Mikey D: We were on the train again. We had our boys with us. We were going to see a friend of ours named Vincent’s father. We were going to see his father. We went to Corona. We met his father, but there were a lot of people out. I was on my battle stuff. I said to them Who rhymes around here? We met some brothers. They were like Kool G, my man Kool G rhymes! Coincidently Kool G lived 2 or 3 blocks from where my boy Vincent’s pops lived. We went to Kool G Raps house. I will never forget my first thought was that his name was similar to my man Cool J. Before LL Cool J exploded. We walked to his crib. We battled right there. We battled right in front of his crib. He says I had the edge on him. I think that was a real close battle. Kool G Rap is nice. That is how that went down.
JH: You guys are still cool to this day right?
Mikey D: Absolutely man. I have nothing but love for Kool G Rap. A veteran, pioneer, legend all in one.
JH: What are the tracks off of Day Of D’Struction that may shock the audience in terms of the way you are approaching it skill wise?
Mikey D: I definitely think the song: “Living Proof” is gonna raise the bars. “Back To The Future” is definitely going to raise the bars. “Bless M’,” is gonna raise the bars. I have few joints with certain features that are not repetitious and they are all different. They are definitely going to raise the bars. The joint with Chris Rivers (Big Puns Son) we didn’t even title that one yet. The whole album is going to really raise some antennae’s man. A couple of songs might ruffle a few feathers. Trust me. I believe that people are definitely in for a treat. It has everything that a rap album should have.
JH: What made you name it Day Of D’Struction?
Mikey D: My name is Mikey D’Struction. Once that album drops it’s my day. That is how we are looking at it. It is not the end of the world, but it is my day.
JH: Do you think you want to bring skills to the table with this album to inspire other artists coming up in the game?
Mikey D: I definitely want to bring skills to the table. I definitely want to stop all the talk about being a certain age and not being able to do this. You shouldn’t be doing this. I just want to bridge the gap and let cats know. If you are nice, you are nice. It is not about old school or new school. It is about good music. I just want to bring that to the table. I am definitely bringing the skills. Unfortunately todays music is not even about the skills. It is about a beat and a hook. I am bringing what I do to the table. I am not bringing anything back. I am bringing the future to you now! That is what I am doing.
JH: Are there any battles that you have had with any artists that people would be surprised that you have had?
Mikey D: There are so many that I am trying to think.
JH: I remember you said that there were song young rappers from Queens were doing a live interview and they thought you were some kind of Urban Legend? Speak on that.
Mikey D: Yeah that was crazy. Up on Merrick Blvd. (Queens) There was an interview. I walked up. They did not know who I was. I was in my work clothes coming from Kennedy Airport. I am going to the store for a Hero and a Coors light. They were out in front of the store doing an interview. The interviewer knew me. He asked a question of the young cats. Have you ever heard of Mikey D? He used to do this and that. He is from right around here. They were like, “we heard of him”. “We never met him.” They said “he is like an Urban Legend.” “We heard about the battles and all of this.” “Nobody has ever seen him.” I was right there. For these young boys to say that about me, blew my mind. He introduced me. We got into a Cypher. I had to show them why they call me Mikey D! I had to let them know that the Urban Legend was True!
JH: Are there any others that come to mind?
Mikey D: I never forget the battle with Steady B in Camden, New Jersey. We battled. It was me and Lotto against Cool C and Steady B. We didn’t come to dance and put on a show. We came to battle. They put on a hell of a show. They were doing dance steps, routines and stuff like that. They won that battle due their stage presence. Rhyme for rhyme on our part it was total annihilation. We won lyrically. There have been a lot of times when I whipped a lot of people who are well known now. I don’t want to ruffle any feathers. There are a few. They know who they are! (laughs)
JH: We will keep it at that!
JH: Do you think the singles you have had in the past have made people underestimate your ability to get lyrical.
Mikey D: I definitely believe that. Some of the choices that were made in the singles were wrong choices. I was never able to release my total potential, because I have always had a label pushing the buttons and a manager trying to guide me. They were taking me outside of my zone. With this album I had 100% creative control. I am in a better place in my life right now. The skill set is magnetized right now. It is going to be real great.
JH: What are 3 tracks from Day Of Destruction that stand out to you?
Mikey D: I believe “Street Champion”. Also “All Alone”. Definitely the “Day Of Destruction” single.
JH: What would you say to musicians, rappers or whoever who see age as a limitation? What would you say to them? They are starting to get a little older, but still have their abilities. They think they are too old to attempt to continue with their dreams.
Mikey D: They have to understand that God gives us all blessings. If you are blessed with the ability rap or produce or whatever. Always remember that there is no expiration date on your blessing. You cannot put an age on talent. It is timeless. When I came into this game, I was a young boy. But I was good then, I am good now. I never stopped. I grew up Hip Hop. I was 11 or 12 years old. I never stopped. I am 47 years old. Does that make me too old, because I am 47 and I still spit fire. You got to be kidding me! I know Jay Z wishes somebody would have told him that. Look at Jay Z right now. You cannot put an age on talent. Blessings have no expiration date.
JH: Do you feel relieved that this album is completed now?
Mikey D: I feel anxious. My anxiety is at a thousand right now. I cannot wait until it finally drops. I am proud of the work. I am proud of the people I worked with. I am very comfortable with the situation. I am definitely excited.
JH: Do you feel you got a lot off of your chest now that the album is coming?
Mikey D: I feel that any doubts from anybody. From either the people that love me or the people that hate me. All of the those doubts will now be erased with the release of Day Of Destruction. At the end of the day even the haters will have no choice but to respect me. They don’t have to love me. They will respect me.
JH: What are some of the Collaberations on the album?
Mikey D: Canibus is on my album. The freestyle fanatic Craig G is on the album. My man R.A. The Rugged Man he is on my album. I got Chris Rivers, Big Pun’s son is on the album. I got Lot Picasso on my album. I also have Legacy on the album. Grandmaster Caz introduces me on the album.
JH: How was it working with Big Pun’s Son, Chris Rivers?
Mikey D: Big Pun’s son is phenomenal man. We met at a R.A. the Rugged Man concert. R.A. introduced us. I was happy to meet him. Chris Rivers knew who I was already. He knew my background. Believe it or not. When I was at the R.A. the concert, I went up on stage. As I came off of the stage. There were a lot of people in that audience who knew my history as well. There were a lot of white people in the crowd and these young people knew my history. It was crazy. Working with Chris Rivers was phenomenal. He is a great talent.
JH: Any last words on DOD?
Mikey D: I did it from the heart. I want to make a movement that is going to start when I drop the album. A movement where everyone helps one another. I won’t drop the name of yet. It is all about Unity in the Entertainment Community. All for One and One For All.
New Song From the forthcoming album “Day Of D’struction” – “All Alone”
Category: Entertainment News