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A Conversation with Shwayze

Declan Sullivan and Mike Bartlett | Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Two weeks ago, a pair of Scene writers interviewed the music duo Shwayze in promotion of their new album “Let It Beat.” The half of the interview involving producer Cisco Adler appeared last week. This is the (printable) portion of the conversation that transpired between Scene writers Mike Bartlett and Declan Sullivan and rapper Aaron Smith, a.k.a. Shwayze.

Mike Bartlett: So, do you have a favorite song to perform or a favorite place to perform at?
Shwayze: “Get U Home” is really fun now ‘cause it’s a crazy, upbeat track that gets everyone hyped up. You know, like a rock ‘n’ roll show where everyone is jumping up and down.
MB: Yeah, definitely. I’ve listened to the whole new album and I like it a lot. I like “Daze Like This” a lot. That’s a good song.
S: Ah, good, man. Yeah, we were just at home for two months, and we knocked [the album] out. But yeah, “Daze Like This” is dope.
MB: Yeah man, but living in Malibu — that’s the life.
S: Oh yeah, exactly. Have you guys ever been out to Malibu?
MB: Yeah, I went out and visited Pepperdine for a week. It’s heaven; it can’t get any better.
S: Yeah, it’s a good spot.
Declan Sullivan: Did you grow up in Malibu, or did you move there?
S: I moved there when I was 5, so I basically grew up there. I was born in Santa Monica, and I lived in Florida for a year or two when I was a little baby.
MB: Do you think growing up in Malibu has had a big effect on your music? Does it inspire you to write what you do?
S: Yeah, of course — you’re a product of your environment. The first record really only showed one of our sides, but in this new record we really show all of our sides. It all kind of got thrown in the pot, you know what I mean?
DS: Yeah, definitely.
MB: How was working with Snoop Dogg on “Livin’ It Up?” Was it insane?
S: I mean, it was definitely a dream come true. I’ve always imagined working with Snoop, so the fact that we actually got to do it was dope. Unfortunately, the way we did it was that we sent him the track, and he sent it back, so we didn’t actually get to work with him in the studio. But he’s a homie, he loved being on the track, and he killed it. He took it to the next level.
MB: Yeah, definitely, that’s awesome. But I bet when you actually work with people in the studio, you get to build a lot off of them and learn new stuff.
S: Yeah. But that song was already done, and then we were like, “Dude, let’s get Snoop on this!” But yeah, we definitely have to work with him in the future.
DS: Is there anyone you really want to work with that you haven’t yet?
S: Definitely. There are a lot of people I’d like to work with.
DS: Well, if you could pick one person or group to collaborate with, who would it be?
S: Living or dead?
DS and MB: Living or dead.
S: Well, I just saw “This Is It” this week, so I’d have to say Michael Jackson. I mean, he has all that great music, and he wrote all his own [music]. I’d love to work with him.
MB: Okay, here’s your chance to be a movie critic: Is it worth going to see?
S: I think so. If you love Michael Jackson, you’ll like the movie. It’s a go.
DS: You’re doing that Party Rock Tour right now; what’s it like being on stage with LMFAO?
S: They’re dope. They’re our friends from way before. Sky Blu and I went to high school together. We used to rap together all the time, and then just five, six years fast forward and we’re both on tour together. It’s very surreal.
MB: When I’m hanging out with my friends sometimes we try to rap, all in good fun.
S: Rapping just changes the way you look at things.
MB: Yeah. Actually, when we talked to Cisco, he told us to look up Chris Young the Rapper, whose freestyles are pretty ill. Is he fun to work with?
S: Yeah — actually, just the other day, we were in the car rolling around, freestyling. I love that. He’s a genius freestyler. Download some of his stuff. He’s going to blow up.
MB: Anybody else who’s coming up?
S: Beardo is coming up, everyone on Banana Beat … oh, and LMFAO. This tour we’re about to do is going to be out of control. Are we coming to your city?
MB: No! We talked to Cisco about this. You’re going to Des Moines, Iowa, but not to South Bend.
DS: Yeah, talk about a slap in the face!
S: Oh, wow. (Laughs.) How far of a drive is it?
MB: From Malibu to ND?
DS: It might be a bit. (Laughs.)
S: No, from you guys to Des Moines. I think we’re going to Chicago, too.
DS: Yeah, on Nov. 22. We’ll definitely try to get out there and see you. One last question before you go. Who is your favorite band or singer alive right now?
S: I love Andre 3000 from Outkast. Also the Red Hot Chili Peppers. They’re my favorite band.
DS and MB: Well, thanks for talking to us.
S: No problem; it’s been great talking to you guys. Maybe I’ll see you in Chicago.