If you think of good rappers, I’m sure names that come to your mind are Jay Z and Eminem, but there’s one more name that you should think of and that’s our very own desi rapper, Blitzkreig aka Blitz. His lyrics lean more on the emotional side and completely draw you into them. Blitz hails from Toronto, Canada, but has an appeal that is global. His debut album, “The Rhyme Book” got him noticed, but his sophomore album, “Get Blitz” will definitely prove his longevity. I had a chance to catch up with Blitz and discuss his music, album, and future. Check out the interview below.
Roopa: Whenever I hear the word “Blitz” I immediately associate it with football – I blame it on living in the state the New England Patriots hail from. However, what does the word represent to you, and why did you choose such a unique alias to go by? Also, do you prefer “Blitz” as opposed to “Blitzkrieg” or “Mr. Blitz” or is there a third option we don’t know about? (*smiles*)
Blitz: One of my best friends, Robby, who was murdered in 2003 named me Blitzkrieg. So, since his death I keep the name as a constant memory of him. People always just called me Blitz for short, and since most people have a hard time spelling or pronouncing Blitzkrieg, I go by Blitz most of the time now. But it will always be short for Blitzkrieg.
Roopa: If you could pick a symbol to represent you like Prince did, what would you pick?
Blitz: Most probably a musical note. I cant explain how much I love music and how many obstacles it ha gotten me through. Im not sure where I would be without it.
Roopa: Are you formally trained in any music form? What genres of music do you enjoy listening to (besides rap)?
Blitz: I was actually trained to play the guitar and drums. I don’t play as much as I once did, but still jam on the instruments here and there. I love all types of music (rock / house / reggae / soul / bhangra / hindi / r&b). I love listening to house music when I’m out and partying and totally miss grunge rock music (Nirvana / Soundgarden / Green Day/ Alice In Chains / STP).
Roopa: You’re one of the few artists to pick album titles with deep meaning behind them. Regarding your debut album, “The Rhyme Book” you had mentioned that you were sharing the chapters of your life with your listeners and they could get more insight into you were by reading between the lines. What message would you like to send listeners with “Get Blitz”? Is that a subliminal instruction to go get the album as fast as possible?
Blitz: Yes…go buy the album now!!! hahaha. Its kind of a follow up to the “Rhyme Book” statement. So, its almost a question. Now that I have shared the chapters of my life, do you get blitz? Do you understand who I am and the reasons I make certain songs?
Roopa: I’ve had a chance to listen to the album and I was blown away by the line up and quality of artists you have collaborated with on the CD. You have gotten veteran singers like Juggy D and Tigerstyle, but also contemporary singers like Deesha and Navin Kundra. How did the collaborations come about? Was it difficult to organize the collaborations considering you’re based in Toronto and most of the artists you worked with are in UK?
Blit: All of the artists on my album are good friends of mine. So the process of creating the songs was natural and fun. Logistically it was tough being in Toronto…which is why it took so long to make a follow up album. But the distance is what made the creation process fun. It was an adventure which took me to many different countries and cities. For example, I flew to London to record the vocals with Juggy / mixed the track in Scotland with Tigerstyle / and flew to Toronto to film the video.
Roopa: Did you think of the songs prior to approaching the artists or did you have an artist in mind before the song came to fruition?
Blitz: It was actually both. I had no set method of creating the songs. Some of them were a result of jamming with friends and others I would create and realise I needed a certain artist on it.
Roopa: I consider rap to be one of the most “realistic” genres in the sense that people rap about events that could transpire in the world and it’s not based on idyllic notions of the artist. For example, the most somber track on the “Get Blitz” album is the “soul” track called “cancer.” Was this inspired from an event that happened in your life? Do you use your own life to inspire you for lyrics?
Blitz: All my tracks are inspired by people or events in my life. It’s important for music to reflect reality. Tracks like “Cancer” & “Robby” are the reasons I love being an artist. The party songs are fun, but I love to tell the world my story and the stories of those around me.
Blitz: Wow you got some great questions haha. Well they would most probably be: Robby / Way I Shine / Cancer .
Roopa: How did you come up with the names for the tracks on “Get Blitz”? Admit it; you picked the name “Amazing” because you foresaw that this interview would be amazing, right? (*laughs*)
Blitz: Haha your right. I cant lie I am having fun with this interview. I dunno the names of tracks are usually self explanatory so its usually the first thought that comes to mind while im listening to it.
Roopa: The rap on “Take Your Picture” (my fav track on the album) could give Eminem and Jay Z a run for their money! When did you first discover you had a knack for rap? How were you discovered? Was it difficult to break into the world of rap considering it’s not typically a genre South Asians pursue?
Blitz: Really? I personally think the rap on “Take your picture” is very light hearted and fun / not too lyrical at all. I more lean towards my raps on Robby / Cancer / Me Against The World / Aviator Shades
I realized my luv for rap when I was 12. I used to rap for my class in school. Punjabi Mc Heard my demo cd and played it in uk & the rest is history. Its a constant struggle for any artist regardless of race, but yes it was difficult being south asian. These days I find it to be an advantage tho….funny how life works (*smiles*)
Roopa: You work with RDB on “Kiss.” Do you think you will collaborate with them on any Bollywood projects? Also, “Kiss” mentions Kim Kardashian in the lyrics – are you hoping she’ll give you a chumma if you ever meet her? (*laughs*)
Blitz: I hope to work with RDB again, they are great producers and I respect their work effort. In terms of Kim Kardashian the answer is of course!!!! hahaha.
Roopa: Some artists keep the same vibe for each song in their album. However, in “Get Blitz” each track takes the album to a whole new level with a completely different sound. I don’t think any two tracks on the album sound the same. How long did you work on putting the album together?
Blitz: That was my goal, I wanted each track to sound totally different and have the music speak for itself. As mentioned earlier due to the amount of great collaborations the album took about a yr.
Roopa: Do you have any advice / words of wisdom for other budding South Asian rappers?
Blitz: Nothing happens over night. It takes years of hustling and perfecting your style before you can shine / make money. Also don’t soley rely on youtube & facebook. The art of hustling in the street and proving yourself as an MC is very integral for hiphop.
Roopa: Is there any message you would like to share with your fans and readers of UrbanAsian?
Blitz: Thank you Urban Asian for a great interview. I have more videos & singles coming very soon so stay tuned and join my fanpage & twitter. Album “Get Blitz” is on itunes & my site: www.getblitz.com
Roopa: You’re welcome and thank you also for a wonderful interview! We look forward to your upcoming releases!