MJ here with Hip Hop Forum Magazine, and I’m excited to have the opportunity to chop it up with Detroit’s own L Hussle. Let me first thank you for taking time away from your schedule for this interview! You have been musically inclined since you were a young child, mostly with instruments such as the trumpet, piano, and drums. At what point did you switch the instruments for the microphone?
L Hussle: At ten years old I would just rap over everybody’s songs and make my own up. My cousins used to tell me how I would change the song.
MJ: What was it about the genre of Hip Hop that was most appealing to you at a young age? Has anything changed now as an adult?
L Hussle: Hip hop was sending messages shining light to our people so they learn from different areas. Hip Hop has changed so much now it’s like the form of emceeing has died down, and all you have is bubble gum rap AKA mumble rap.
MJ: You were part of a couple of rap groups early on. Talk a little bit about that experience as it is quite different than a solo career.
L Hussle: I started off with a group titled Home Grown. I was the youngest out of the group and everybody had different views and wanted to be in control. Nobody focused on the bigger vision. ATF known for Avery, Tracey, and Ferry parks and streets from the neighborhoods we lived in. In that group the fellas didn’t have the drive to make it. I believed in them more than they believed in themselves. Circle Boys, was a group I joined with my partner Young Rado. We did tons of music, shows, etc. But at that moment I knew I couldn’t do the grimy music anymore I had a son…
MJ: Loyalty Records LLC is well known in the Detroit area. Tell us about that creation and your involvement.
L Hussle: Me and Young Rado were cool with each other. He was in another group and I myself was in another group, but we both decided that we wanted to make an impact on music. We wanted that music to stand out and for something so we established Loyalty Records LLC in 2007. We both became the Co CEO’s and I sign artists, produce, and write as well.
MJ: I want to take a minute to acknowledge your dedication to create clean music that not just your fans but also children can be proud of and become motivated to pursue their goals and dreams. It is very rare for artists to put out “clean” music. Many artists confirm to the latest trends and lose themselves, you have not! Talk about the importance of that.
L Hussle: When I became a solo artist I still battled with making music so when I dropped my debut album “True Story” I still had music with cursing in it but I knew after my son was born that I was done with making music that my children couldn’t listen too. I wanted to make a difference.
MJ: Let’s talk about your first solo album “True Story” which you also produced. You mentioned you “stepped out on faith” for that album. Elaborate on that, also elaborate on the development from thought to creation of the album as well as what you expected fans to gain.
L Hussle: When I started working on “True Story” part of me was like keep it hood and another part of me was like keep it clean. I told myself I’m doing both and get it over with it. Some songs had cursing in it but some were clean. Overall I was happy with the way it came out because it was my thoughts and what I was feeling at those moments. I call it my contradiction album since I produced it I made majority of the album unto my liking. I wanted people to hear what I was expressing lyrically. When it came to the fans I just wanted them to appreciate me for doing what I was feeling in those times. No matter what you, do what makes you happy.
MJ: You are working on your forthcoming project titled “Picasso”. Without giving too much away, give us a little 411 on that album. How do you think you have grown as an artist from “True Story” to “Picasso”?
L Hussle: My new album “Picasso” is my best body of work from everything I’ve done so far! I worked with a lot of producers and I collaborated with a variety of artists and I took my time on creating this masterpiece. I believe timing is everything so I didn’t rush it. I was being patient with this album and I’m glad I did. I grew from “True Story” to “Picasso” a lot because instead of producing the beats and writing the music I took my time writing hit songs. I want people to really understand that I’m an emcee!
MJ: Besides giving the youth a musical outlet, how else do you differ from other artists out now?
L Hussle: I differ from other artist because at this point in my career I want to make music without cursing or using the “N” word. I feel you can deliver a message without using those words plus it makes you more creative when you’re writing.
MJ: You are from Detroit where music is definitely hopping out there! From the different areas you have performed what major differences do you notice from the Detroit scene?
L Hussle: When going to different cities to do music it’s extremely different. For example, in Atlanta they stick together no matter what when it comes to this music and they welcome you strong and stand behind the music period. In Ohio as well, if you’re hot they’ll support you.
MJ: Speaking of performances, give me three words to describe a performance by L Hussle.
L Hussle: Phenomenal, fantastic, mind blowing!
MJ: If MJ scrolled your playlist, what top three would I find regardless of genre?
L Hussle: Nas, Rick Ross, Maroon 5.
MJ: As we wrap up is there anything else you want the world to know about L Hussle?
L Hussle: L Hussle is here to bless you with timeless music that you can play forever and most importantly around your children. Follow me! @LHussle on Facebook, Instagram @TheRealLHussle, Twitter @lhussle, and Snapchat @thereallhussle.
MJ: Here at Hip Hop Forum we appreciate your contribution to Hip Hop, much success, salute!
L Hussle: Thanks for having me and I appreciate you Hip Hop Forum, salute!