Let the people know how Shred the Verbal Tongue, came to existence and how you would describe Shred the artist?
In 1996 I moved to Decatur, Ga originally from Troy, NC and was in a group called Sycho(Struggling Young Can Help Others) Dwellas, The name started as Shredda. Simply because of how fast, swift and lyrical my wordplay was over hip hop beats. Kinda like a knife, My flow was razor sharp. As I got more involved in music I started to mature, thats when I decided to shorten it to SHRED. The Verbal Tongue was always apart of the name which is self explainatory. Now that I have grown up and evolved as an artist the name now is SHREDTVT
Tell us what are the feelings, emotions and drive that makes you pour your heart and soul onto the instrumentals.
Most of the songs I create is a reflection of my life in Troy, NC. I've seen and experienced so much heartache and pain at a early age, Those I know have experienced the same. I would normally pick those dark, soulful Hip Hop beats which would spark up feelings I've had to keep bottled up for years. Also things going on in the world motivates me to speak about it. Overall, My family drives me to pour my heart out, I feel like I have to be there voice since most feel voiceless. When you hear my songs you can hear my soul talking to you. I'm telling there story and mine, Its bigger than a rhyme scheme and metaphor, rapping became therapy for me.
What song have you previously recorded, that you feel is your best work? Why?
Well I record songs all the time, I just recorded a song called "Going Through It" which will be on my Shred Season III mix tape. Long story short I just experienced 2 tragic deaths in my family that happened on Fathers day so I talked about how I was feeling. As far as my best work, I think the one that most talk about and has left a lasting impression is "Better Tomorrow" The song is positive, it gives everyone hope that things will get better for them. That song has had people in tears at my show, I've had people come up to me hug and pray with me. Its so positive some think Im a gospel artist. I feel it may be my best song since most of my fans still talk highly about it.
Tell the people, how your personal life has influenced you and how you as an artist can use your experience to bring change to this world we live in.
Growing up in Troy I had to learn how to survive really fast. I had to learn how to be tough, drugs and violence is something that has been apart of my world. My parents would fight all the time and they used drugs frequently, I started selling crack not because i had to but because everybody I knew was either using or selling it. During that time in my life I realized that life was not for me. I realized I was raised up better than that. Most importantly I learned that my parents had a mental problem and using drugs was just an escape from reality. My mother had a nervous break down when I was 17, that is when I realized I had to get away, I knew I was on the verge of hurting somebody because I was hurting. My junior year in High School I decided it was time for me to do something with myself, I got accepted to DeVry Institute in Ga. That's when I became the positive person I am today, I had found myself. I feel I can change some hearts and minds by the music I create because its honest, real and relate-able. Most I know came up the same way I did or worse. I feel I can reach those who look like me and feel like giving up on life because I been there.
Who are the people that are involved in your music career, that are the back bone for your career?
Well At the current Its just me and I have a personal assistant who is doing admin work for me. I've been able to stay afloat simply because I have learned the business and I have alot of friends in the industry. I can say there are a few big name artist signed that if you asked them about me they would cosign but as far as my music career I really have just 1 other person.
If you could say anything to all your fans…what would it be?
I would tell them to tell everybody they know, about me. I think the perception is that I'm signed or something because I've been successful on a small scale. I tell my fans all the time to tell somebody about me because I'm still trying to get on.
Where can we find your music online?
Are there any independent artists, that you listen to that gives you inspiration and calms certain emotions that you may have?
Yes, I listen to a lot of local artist in Atlanta, my circle of associates in Ga gives me inspiration.
How do you feel about the “Black Lives Matter” organization? Can you explain the purpose of this group?
I feel like the Black Lives Matter organization is a great attempt to show the world the injustices that happen to people of color. Its nothing more than creating awareness about a problem in our community. People are trying to make it a black and white thing, The truth is its a wrong or right thing. We had to do something to try to build up our community, those in power making it out to be a terrorist group or something. Also its not saying that other lives don't matter, those who I believe are racist are the ones who feel that way which is just ignorant. Everybody see whats going on, The organization is peaceful, we just want to be treated fairly that's it.
Being that you are an older, more mature artist in the game, do you feel like you should cater to the new hip hop era or strive to make them understand and respect the era that you grew up with?
In some ways yes, I feel that I need to give them what they are used to but overall I'm sticking to my guns. I think its important to show the industry that you can do what they do but do it in a lyrical manner. Its not about selling singles for me. As I said before Im a album, Ep, mixtape type of artist. I'm comfortable dropping bars in that lane. However I do make those club records just to show the industry and those younger that I relate to them. Now one thing I don't relate to is artist who don't have bars, You don't have to be the most lyrical but you need to atleast pronounce your words. By the way I'm a Jeezy fan lol