Interview: Sleazy F & Jack Jetson
2018 is the year of Sleazy. Having been involved in two collaboration projects already, with his Blah family on Cult Of The Damned’s groundbreaking Part Deux: Brick Pelican Posse Crew Gang Syndicate and his homegrown DRIPSET Vol.1 mixtape with Culps and Kdon, there is still plenty more music on the way. Sleazy is currently set to release a fresh collaboration project with Jack Jetson called Slime 4K, and is working on his new solo album, All Blahk Tracksuit 2.
Although heads may have been disappointed to miss Sleazy on the Leeds-leg of Cult Of The Damned’s Civilised Tour, this was made up for by his hectic performance at the Hi-Fi Club a week later, in support of his “brother” Ocean Wisdom on the unforgettable Wizville Tour. Although Sleazy was initially set to play at just the Northern shows, he ended up staying on the tour bus to perform each date, going back to back with Ocean at every show.
Onstage in Leeds, Sleazy was joined by local legend Jack Jetson, who together performed forthcoming exclusives from their upcoming project. After their set, Sleazy & Jack Jetson revealed more about what they have in store for this year.
Sleazy we're out here in Leeds, you're supporting Ocean Wisdom. How did you get involved with his tour?
Yeah man, we're out here. Ocean's my guy, me and Ocean've been speaking for a minute. That's actually my boy, outside of music as well as in music.
He's from South, you're from North. How did you get to know each other?
Lukas, the guy that shot From The Bits - he shot Ocean's first video. So Lukas had been trying to get us together for a long time. We kind of knew each other already through Lukas. It was just a matter of time until he hit me up, asking "Are you free? Because I'd love to have you on the tour." I hit him back straight up, we secured the bag and it was just sorted. That's my brother, you feel what I'm saying.
Is this your first gig in Leeds this year?
Yeah man, but obviously Leeds always shows love. I've done Hi-Fi club a couple of times. It was nice to be able to show people some new music. You know what's crazy? It's not just sold out, it’s packed, it’s rammed out. You could see from the stage. It was nice to be able to bring Jack Jetson out, I been doing new shit with Jetson. Had my family on stage.
You're out here supporting Ocean but you had your own solo set, didn't you let some exclusives go?
Yeah that's my slime, for real. Me and Jetson got Slime 4K coming up, that's the new project we're working on. It's just non-stop work man. It was nice to be able to bring him on and do that shit, it was nice to be able to do All Blahk Tracksuit 2 shit. It was nice to play those classics and still receive the same amount of love for my early tracks. It was nice to... not leave necessarily, but being able to go away, do work then come back and still receive the same amount of love. It just lets me know that the foundation that I laid down has solidified.
You're young but your discography of solo music and collaborations is vast...
We got a crazy discography. There's a lot of verses you haven't heard, I stay working man. Now I'm getting more comfortable with releasing music, I'm gonna be hitting up Spotify and keep dropping things on Soundcloud. Obviously I've added Dripset Vol. 1 project that I was working on, we had to scope that together then put that out. It came out cool, the reception was good. We set a foundation for them, my little brothers. It set a foundation for me, to start a legacy. I need something down that means something to me, that's authentic in the streets and in the music. We got it down to a T I think. That's what matters to me, that it's authentic. Because when it's not real - when your roots aren't real, how do you expect your tree to grow?
Let's talk a bit more about your Dripset Vol. 1 project...
It was an idea that I had, it was a tape. We turned it into a crew, into a band. It's kind of like that A$AP collective, everyone does what they want but we all produce and all look out for each other. We got a lot of big plans for that on the way, but everything's going to plan. A lot of people didn't think it was going to go to plan, didn't think the chemistry would work or whatever. But we're proving them wrong, the music's good. Everybody is happy.
That project showed you in a completely different style, but obviously a lot of people are used to hearing you with that Blah, boom-bap sound...
It was all produced by the same producer, he lives around the corner from me. That's my little brother, I've grown up with that guy. I've been kicking him up the ass for years, so it was nice to finally be able to take something from him and put him on 1xtra. Shout out Matic, man. To have him on 1xtra, have him on the A-List for interviews too and shit like that. They don't get that shit on a regular basis, they don't know how to get that shit sorted. So for me to be able to pass it onto them was a blessing, feel me.
How did the Dripset team come together?
I seen a lot of myself in Culps and Kdon, they were both sending me music back and forth showing love. I phoned Kdon with the idea, two or three days later I had him in the studio, we did Sprite and about four other tracks from the mixtape. It was chemistry. It's more like a real recognise real thing. I've been through a lot of shit. They seen the real in me. I told them, "I ain't gonna promise you I'll make you a million, but I can promise that I will teach you everything I know." That's just the trillest I could do and they're loyal. That's the difference between street niggas and rap niggas, street niggas are really loyal because we came up from a certain corner, we have to be. Music niggas jump a train wherever they want to be. I could die my hair blonde tomorrow and start singing R&B but we ain't gonna do that. We're gonna keep it 150, know what I mean?
What influenced you to dye your hair purple?
Dripset, the cover's purple ain't it so. Before the mixtape was even made, I got the tattoo on my wrist. I had the Dripset tattoo on my wrist, that's the cover for the shit. I don't go into things half-heartedly, it's either all or nothing. It's either going to crash and burn or become one of the greatest things you've ever seen. I don't think it's going to crash, so.
Jack Jetson, you're out here with Sleazy and been performing new music. What exclusives did you bring to the set?
Threats, we got the video coming soon. Filmed by Ellis Dawg. We got Pull Up, out right now featuring Lil Jay. We got the mixtape coming, Pro P and bare man on the beats. I got a project with Sleazy on my beats, saying nothing. Strange Cinema coming, all of that good shit. Hell Kitty, come on. 2020.
How long you been working with Sleazy on this project for?
We've been working just randomly for years. The first song we put out was just actual off the top. Bare of it is just freestyles off the top, on Soundcloud that was time ago. But we've been working on this project for about two months.
Have you done any of the beats?
Nah Pro P is on the beats and a few other man. I ain't doing any of beats on the Slime 4K ting. Slime 4000 is what it's called ain't it. 400 gang shit. 20x20 is 400, get what I'm saying. That's what it is.
The track and video for Pull Up with Sleazy and Lil Jay - how did that happen?
I was at Pro P's yard mad waved. That beat is so sick. We just wavily rapped on it. Didn't think about it too much. To be fair, if I could go back I'd probably put a better verse on that but it was just a wave, you know them ones? My boy Harri handled the video for that. My young G. Serene Vendetta coming out, that's the clothing line, SV. Harri's been about from day, he makes all the Dripset hoodies and all that good shit.
This new project you've got coming with Sleazy, is it an EP or an album?
It's a project, like a stream of consciousness, you get me. Slime.
How many tracks can we expect from that?
I don't know, probably about eight tracks.
Have you got more videos coming?
Yeah, Threats the video is coming. Bare videos coming, I can't even...
How is working with Sleazy different to most emcees you work with?
It's not different man, I only work with family. This is just the same man. It's more than music. He inspires me all the time. He comes up with the hook straight away. He just goes straight in. He inspires me every time. He's got so much music, Sleazy is the guy to be fair.
Have you got more solo music coming yourself?
I got a project with Northaze coming, 2020BD is a Doomed / Babylon Dead project coming. We got Strange Cinema coming, we got Hell Kitty coming which is all on my beats. Slime 4K coming, that's me and Sleazy. Also 3.5 coming as well at some point. I just made a song today with Sangria Kong, Boomerange. It's sick.
Sleazy, Jack Jetson, thank you both for your time.
Interview by Evo
Photography by Rob Searle