Reggie B about his forthcoming 74 minute space funk odyssey “DNA” to be released via Tokyo Dawn Records on October 21st:
Reggie, why call the album “DNA”? How would you describe it, what does it mean to you?
Well, I believe that the body is a mirror of all things in the universe and that the Creator encoded sacred information, maybe the answers and instructions to the truth of it all into our DNA. I also believe that sound, vibrations and frequencies can move not only people spiritually, but move physical objects and everything that has a vibration. Even the rock sitting on the ground is vibrating, so what better way to convey that idea then with sound!
Your fascination with Egyptology and space, what brought that up?
I don’t have a fascination with Egyptology. I don’t call it Egypt, that is a Greek name, but I do delve into Khemetic Sciences. The true name for Egypt is Khemit, I am simply into the origin of things and Khemit and ancient Africa are a big part of it. Let‘s face it, the origins are there! The Dogan really fascinate me because they have an uncanny knowledge of the universe and can draw maps of the cosmos precisely and tell of an origin story starting in the Sirius solar system about the seed of life. Now I know I butchered the story a bit lol, but there you have it. And there is that theme consistently throughout Africa.
You’re often called a hip hop artist, but the album doesn’t necessarily show – where do you see the connection?
Man, I am a 70s baby and an 80s/90s kid C”MONSUN! My house was a musical house and we had a great education on all music but hip hop is a HUGE part of our culture, especially in those decades. I am not just a musician and a singer, I am a producer and my bread and butter was producing beats for cats for years. I think I have very rarely produced tracks for R&B cats, probably 90% was for hip hop artists. Just listen to a Reggie B album. It’s all perspective I think, because I also consider D’angelo, Jill Scott & Bilal to be hip hop artists to a certain extent, or simply a part of the culture- just different sounds.
We heard that the album track “Databan” is one of Dam Funk’s favourite tunes of the year. You’ve also been producing new songs with him, DJ Spinna, Onra, B. Bavo etc. How do these collabos come together and what can we expect next?
Well me and Dam met some years ago in LA at Funkmosphere, actually I was there with Onra. I have tried my hand at mastering his new album, not sure if he is going to go with them yet, but I don’t see why not. DJ Spinna is like a big brother to me man. One of his best friends lives here in KC, my other big brotha Joc Max, and he brought us together about four years ago and we’ve been working together ever since. I’ve actually been inducted into his Dome Crackers collective with him, Joc and Grap luva. And me and Onra will always do work together man, that’s my homie right there. Leonard D’Stroy is also like my brother, we just work well together. I have spent whole days at his house making tracks together, man we have knocked out 8-9 joints in one day. We’re now planning a live show for album – some real musicians doing real things on stage without too many gimmicks, just straight getting down! It’s like church!! HAHA!
The influences from Prince are rather strong on your album, but there’s obviously a lot more to it- which other art influences you most?
Too many to name man but I really LOVE Frank Zappa a lot, seriously one of my favorites of all time, big John Coltrane cat ya know, Miles Davis, anything from the Funk Mob / Parliament / Funkadelic, Stevie Wonder, The Beatles, James Brown is definitely in the TOP, Sly Stone, Roy Ayers, J Dilla, Battle Kat, DJ Quik I really love that negroid! Sun Ra, Digital Underground, Wendy & Lisa, Pink Floyd, Michael Jackson, Marvin Gaye, Donny Hathaway, and I will stop at Jimi Hendrix! He was the best to ever do it, period!
And who are the parasites you want to free the world from as mentioned on the intro track?
The entities that run the world from the shadows that only survive off of the suffering, death, blood sweat and tears of humanity. Hotep.