Temple rapper Brandon “B-Eazy” Smith talks about how he got into the game and where he plans to take his efforts.
Whether you like Nas, the “old” Ludacris, Jay-Z or Kanye West, upcoming Temple rapper B-Eazy has what it takes to make you listen to his music.
Brandon “B-Eazy” Smith, 19, hails from New Jersey. The Temple News met up with him on a sunny Monday afternoon to discuss his blossoming hip-hop career along with his brand and to have him answer one elusive question: Who is B-Eazy?
The Temple News: What is your major?
Brandon “B-Eazy” Smith: Entrepreneurship and business. I … [want] to run my own business as far as a music label is concerned.
TTN: How long have you been rapping?
BE: I [have] been rapping since I was 8 years old. My first performance was at 14, at a college talent show. I was just ready to show everybody what I could do. My raps [were] just punch lines and battle rhymes mainly.
TTN: What motivated you to start rapping?
BE: Well, my older cousin was a really good rapper, and before he went to jail, he gave me a stack of rhymes to keep, and my mother used to sing backup for Kool and the Gang. (Laughs) I’m just in love with music. When I was young … I just saw Ludacris and Jay-Z having fun with their music, and that’s what I wanted to be.
TTN: Who are your favorite new- school and old-school rappers?
BE: New school rappers would be Jay-Z, Kanye West and Nas. My favorite old-school rappers are Ludacris, when he had the afro, [and] Eric B. and Rakim. They influenced my style because I just fell in love with their wordplay and lyrics.
TTN: Do you categorize your music as rap or hip-hop?
BE: Definitely hip-hop. I feel I don’t sound like anybody. My beats usually have bass in them.
TTN: What prompted you to start rapping at Temple?
BE: I started rapping at Temple by meeting cool people that share the same passion for music as me.
I never doubted myself. Some obstacles were that people have a perspective of freshmen, and I basically showed them something different … I’m not just a freshman, and my first breakthrough performance was amazing.
TTN: Do you associate with any other rappers at Temple?
BE: Yeah, Aime, Fese and DJ Damage I’m really cool with. I don’t know if we’re gonna collaborate. I don’t take anything from their style, nonetheless, I take their advice. I don’t try and copy anybody – I try to be the best me possible.
TTN: And what about the haters?
BE: I mean they [are] haters. I can’t argue with them because it’s free promotion. I just try to keep my head up and make music, as well as stay focused with tunnel vision. Whenever I perform I look at that one person that’s not “rocking” [feeling the music], and I stare them down thinking you’re gonna f— with me, you have no choice right now.
TTN: What have you done to better hone your craft thus far?
BE: Doing a lot of showcases, performing on campus, Freestyle at the Bell Tower. In the beginning, whoever knows me [will] rock with me, and usually during my performance where everyone is rocking with me I focus on the person that’s not until they move to the beat with me … they don’t have a choice.
TTN: Can you name some places you performed last school year?
BE: Yeah, Delta Night at the Apollo, showcase at Pubb Webb, Best of Both World’s party with So Far Out Entertainment, and I’d go to a couple [of the] Freestyle Fridays at the Bell Tower.
TTN: Can you do freestyle right now?
BE: Yeah. ‘Her body is a Temple, I applied 2009/ Just try’na study abroad tell me where to sign/ My pen in my pad is all that I have/ It helped me scribble out the images of me and my dad/ Yeah, it’s sad I keep swimming through regrets that I had/ The flow could even convince Michael that he wasn’t bad.’
TTN: Your future plans?
BE: To have a stable fan base in Philly, Jersey and Delaware, and [create] many more crazy mix-tapes and videos. I see myself making it big, of course. Locally, I want to collaborate, but that would be after the general public appreciates me, then I can look into collaboration.
TTN: What inspires your music?
BE: Life, experiences and my future.
Fatia Kasumu can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.