Inglewood’s newest rising rap star, Skeme, has managed to single handedly infiltrate the rap game. In such a short career, he’s worked with some of the hottest names in hip hop, including The Game, Nipsey Hussle, Dom Kennedy and Wale. When it comes to creating music, Skemedoes not play. His raspy voice will make any woman quiver at hello, but has the strength and just enough gangsta to make any street dude vibe out to his music.
Don’t let the raspy voice fool you though, Skeme’s grandparents raised a gentlemen with true southern ways. Even with that said, he lives and breathes LA. Inglewood bred a king (or should I say Duke?) and with the recent release of Ingleworld, Skeme is on his way to claiming his crown. In years to come, Skeme’s name will be recognized amongst some of the rawest to ever spit. Even on his claim to fame and a 30 city tour in two days, Skeme found the time to sit down with me at his favorite spot in LA, the Diamond Supply store, and chop it up before he leaves.
Lizzy: I’m sure you get this question every interview, but I’m interested to know, how did your name originate? How old were you?
Skeme: I was 13 years old, this older dude, rest in peace, one of the big homies from Centinela park, gave me that name. I just ran with it. I got the spelling though from a tag artist out of New York named Skeme.
Lizzy: Nice, very nice. So you’re from Inglewood…
Lizzy: What part of Inglewood did you grow up in?
Skeme: Crenshaw and Manchester
Lizzy: Ok, so right up the street. How did growing up in Inglewood influence your music?
Skeme: On a certain level, it makes my music real, I think that’s what’s important
Lizzy: In 20 to 30 years from now when people are looking back and they think about Skeme, what is it that you want to be most remembered for when it comes to your music?
Skeme: I want them to remember my personal style of music. Everything is authentic. Oh , and making a lot of money. (He chuckles with a huge grin on his face)
Lizzy: (laughing at his sly remark) ‘Chasin down a mil before you turn 25′
Skeme: (still smiling) Exactly
Lizzy: How old are you?
Skeme: 24, I got another year to go, but we’re close. We’re close.
Skeme: We on the way
Lizzy: So you said, you’re a westside nigga.
Skeme: Right (nodding his head in agreement)
Lizzy: With some down south ways.
Skeme:My folks are all from the south so, I spent a lot of time down there, but I’m westside to the core. Born and need in Inglewood.
Lizzy: Aside from the south, have you gotten the chance to travel and experience different parts of the world?
Skeme: London, Canada, I don’t know if Mexico counts.
Lizzy: Yep, Mexico counts. Did you learn any Spanish?
Skeme: I mean yea, but not in Mexico (slight chuckle)
Lizzy: Has any of what you’ve seen and the different cultures you met had any influence on your music?
Skeme: Yes definitely, it’s broadening, your eyes and ears are widened. Everything becomes different, so that’s what I attribute that to.
Lizzy: Ok cool, so I would say it’s pretty early in your career, but you’ve had the opportunity to work with The Game, Dom Kennedy, Nipsey, Iggy and all these dope artists. Is there anybody on your list that you’re still excited to work with?
Skeme: Yea for sure, a lot of people, like Erykah Badu, Andre 3000 and Pharrell.
Lizzy: Yea he’s killin it right now
Skeme: Yes he is
Lizzy: So you’re going on tour in a few days, what does that feel like?
Skeme: It pays the bills, that’s what we’re aiming for and getting in touch with those cities and what not. Going to show love to the people. That’s always a cool thing for me, especially coming fresh off the album. It’s always love, I love performing.
Lizzy: I love hearing that. Ok, so what are your top 3 favorite spots in LA? Whether it’s eating, shopping, whatever.
Skeme: Well we in one right now. (He’s referring to the Diamond store).
Serving spoon over off Centinela and Fendi at the Beverly Center. Oh and Record Plant.
Lizzy: Dope. Now I know this going to be tough, what are your top 3 west coast rap projects of all time?
Skeme: Doggystyle, All Eyes On Me and Street Gospel, Suga Free, shout out to Suga Free, I think a lot of people slept on him.
Lizzy: I agree. Ok, so what your top 3 westcoast rappers of all time?
Skeme: Man, (as he takes a minute to think) wow, Snoop, Quick and Cube.