ARTIST NAME: ClipKingz
SONG TITLE: Righteous
ALBUM TITLE: Legacy Of Kingz
The Clip Kingz are a group of five individuals, Jermiside (Cincinnati, OH), L-Marr the Starr (Dayton, OH), Giovonni Pratt (South Bronx, NY), DJ Grain, and producer Mike Jay – A collective of members hailing from all regions of the United States of America.
Multi-talented in the arts of beats, rhymes, and visuals, these individuals bring old-school values with a contemporary sound.
The group was originally formed in 2015 as a video company with the idea of providing artists with an affordable way to create professional visuals; some clients include Tanya Morgan, The Lessondary, and Tha God Fahim among others.
In 2016, at the urging of Hell Razah (Sunz of Man/Wu-Tang), the Clip Kingz joined forces to create a project he would back under his Label, Hell Razah Music Group, (HRMG).
In a full year’s time, Giovonni Pratt started to lay the groundwork for an EP titled “Legacy of Kingz”, a seven-track project featuring Tragedy Khadafi, Tiona D (Griselda) among others.
Share your life story with us.
Although we are from different parts of the United States, Jermiside from Cincinnati Ohio, LMarr from Dayton Ohio, Giovonni Pratt Bronx New York, and Mike Jaye Detroit Michigan we all meet here in Atlanta Georgia.
We were introduced to each other working in the same venues and through recommendations from our peers.
It wasn’t until Hellrazah (Wu-Tang Clan) suggested we create a project together after listening to a demo we cut.
Share your press release and reviews with us.
One of our press releases and reviews would be “Blade,” and Anrfactory review of the project…
The Clip Kingz emerge with their second visual offering from the Hell Razah assisted EP, “Legacy of Kingz”. Here, over a Homage (CVG) laced track, the Clip Kingz explore morality and inner turmoil. Video directed by The Clip Kingz.
List the names of those that have supported you so far in your music career and use this opportunity to thank them.
The names of those that have supported us would be Hellrazah (Wu-Tang) Tragedy Khadafi, Da God Fahim, Apollo Ali, Tiona D, Tiona’s Manager “O.” Shyheim, Tanya Morgan, Lessondary, and more.
Narrate your experience while recording in the studio or while touring.
We are a multi-talented group, not only are we artists, we shoot our own videos as well.
So, Jermiside, who is also a member of Lessondary, a Hip Hop mega-group, came up with this idea for us to shoot an entire LP worth of videos in two days.
The plan was for us to meet the other members of Lessondary in downtown Philly. We piled up in a mini Van and drove from Georgia, to Philadelphia. The journey took us 13 hours to an Air BNB building that should have been condemned. To make matters worse, it rained the majority of the weekend. The ceiling leaked, the floor was falling apart and flimsy, and not to mention it was still wintertime.
As soon as we made it, we hit the ground running. Giovonni assisted with shooting “The Introduction” video in one room, while Jermiside was outside shooting the video for “Bittersweet.”
We were rotating artists in and out of scenes, running up and downstairs.
At one point we had to form groups and split up into parts of the city to capture different scenes.
We also had to be creative on the fly. We used streetlights for extra lighting.
We all piled up in the living room and slept. There were sleeping bags, everywhere.
When the smoke cleared we shot six videos, exhausted we all took turns driving back to Georgia.
Discuss your songwriting.
Songwriting for us is really not too complex, and we have learned how to share our skills with each other to get songs done.
For instance, Jermiside can write a verse in 10 minutes, while Giovonni already has a concept for a track just by listening to the production.
Lmarr can sing and can add an R&B element to a track. So, to put it all together, Giovonni would listen to a beat and create a concept.
Giovonni will contact Jermiside, share the concept, and Jermiside would have his verse ready, record it in the studio, where Lmarr would come up with a hook on the fly. This process was used to create the track “My Block.”
Elaborate on your future projects.
Our future projects consist of three solo LPs, another ClipKingz EP, music videos, and we are also working on an independent movie. Once everything comes together correctly, we will announce the names, and dates of release.
Tell us what you are doing to increase your fan base.
We are increasing our fan base through word, internet promotion like Reverbnation, Sonicbids, and word of mouth.
So far we are number 32 top-rated group in Atlanta, and we have been getting offers to shoot videos for other clients in the area.
Tell us that point in time you wanted to give up on your music career.
The time we wanted to give up on our music career was the making of The Legacy of Kingz EP.
Studios were losing our music; engineers weren’t mixing our project professionally even when we paid them.
It was becoming more of a headache. Plus, we found more enjoyment filming for other people.
With filming, we were in control, and we were able to have fun creating visions for others.
Go into detail on how you make your instrumentation or melody.
Honestly, it’s all feeling, with us. Once we hear the production we will share ideas of what we feel, we may even play around and freestyle a line to spark an idea.
Tell us your complete understanding of music licensing.
Giovonni Pratt handles the licensing. He owns his own publishing company, Umbrella Coded Music. He handled the copyrights of Legacy of Kingz through the Library of Congress.
He consulted the group about song splits, credit, artists writer percentages, and also registered each song through BMI, ASCAP, and SESAC.
Giovonni shared how important it was for us to own our masters.
He said “Whoever controls the ‘masters’ controls how we get paid. We are grown! We shouldn’t have to go to a record executive to ask for money that is rightfully ours because they own our project.”
State your favorite genre of music.
Well, we all are fans of old-school R&B like Atlantic Starr, Luther Von Dross, Marvin Gaye, and others. The music is timeless and inspired us as musicians. The same can be said about Hip-Hop. KRS-ONE, Nas, Rakim, and others gave us the blueprint to mold us into M.Cs.
Tell us the themes of most of your songs.
The themes of most of our songs have been based around the “Street” narrative. Songs like My Block, Hell on Earth, and Righteous have subject matter that is relative to the streets, not thugged out, or even overly violent, but pertaining more to our experiences, and lives in the Streets.
Discuss digital distribution and streaming.
Digital distribution and streaming are new ways for artists to get paid.
It also offers the entire world a chance to listen to and purchase music.
The good thing about digital distribution and streaming is an artist can set it up and do it him or herself.
In these days and times, an artist can be his own record label and release his own art through digital distribution.
The artist no longer has to sign a contract making him/her a slave to a record label.
Go on at length on what it takes to write a hit song.
Honestly, you have to connect with your audience. Identify whom you’re creating the music for. We’ve seen artists creating songs for the club without fully understanding those in the club.
Also, staying current with music trends such as sound, and style.
We have met artists that are stuck in the past, and don’t want to evolve, but want to make a hit record using a format that no longer attracts enough of the audience to make a hit record.
State your artist’s name and elaborate on it.
Giovonni, means “The Blessed One.” Pratt was adopted to describe his rebel-style persona (Geronimo Pratt)…
State the title of the song and the meaning.
The title of the song is ‘Righteous’, and the meaning of the song revolves around us maintaining our methods of staying noble in a world so evil.