[INTERVIEW] Rainman: Bigger Pictures, Bigger Things (interview by Koze)
OHH - INTERVIEW
It has been six years... Six years since we've heard a full scale release from Brisbane MC Rainman.
It seems to be coming more common practice for Bris rappers to keep the people waiting (Optimen, here's looking at you too).
Recently I caught up with Rainman to chat about poor eye sight, Bigger Pictures, and why it's taken so long to drop.
- Koze [K]: Yo, what it is Ray;
You've just dropped 'Bigger Pictures', your sophomore album - Tell us about that first up.
Rainman [R]: Man, it's been a couple years in the making and along the way I've linked up with a whole bunch of people who contributed to making it.
At the core of it is myself and Sammsonite. Obviously I rap on everything but I also worked on a bunch of the initial beats, chopped the samples,
added drums, did rough structures and cuts - and handed them over to Sam to take them from there for bass, maybe synths, better drums, whatever it
needs. Sam also recorded all my vocals and most of the guests and did pretty much all the final mixes.
Beyond that core, on guest beat duties guys like Count Bounce (TZU), DJ Bonez and Mangohig (Sietta) brought something to the table, while Chasm, Cam
Bluff and Calski are each behind two beats. In terms of guest rappers, Muph, Tommy Illfigga, Seven and 4TH (Vegas Aces) all came through, as did
Calski. There are also a few other guest vocalists on there - Laneous, Kel On Earth (Bankrupt Billionaires), Youka and Leah Carr. DJ Butcher did cuts
on a couple tracks too.
So yeah, quite a few people involved in this one! I guess after the first album ('Fire in the Belly'), a few more doors opened in terms of working
with other artists and I've been happy to experiment and see what works. There's a few more collabs that didn't quite get there in time for this one
too. I definitely enjoy working with different peeps, bringing different flavour to it and different ideas and techniques.
- K: I know it's only early days, but how's the reception of it been so far?
R: It's been great so far man. Both my mum and my aunt have picked up multiple copies and have been loving it. Haha, that's actually true but yeah,
beyond that. It's been pretty good too. As you said, still early days but there's been lots of good feedback coming through on Facebook and Twitter
and in person and I already had to send extra discs to Obese in the first fortnight, so I've actually had to order a repress now so that's promising.
Before the album as well, 'Can't See You', 'Darlin' and more recently 'The Valley' were out there and getting a bit of love so that's been cool. The
reviews will start to come in soon so we'll see how they go down too.
I don't think anyone's started a hate thread on OHH yet either so that's positive sign too I guess! haha.
K: Haha, you've been lucky in that regard so far!
There's a certain light heartedness that comes through on Bigger Pictures; on tracks like Duck Face and Can't See You more so than some others, but
even some of the more serious joints have a bit of a positive up beat feel to them.
Did you mean for the release to have a bit of a cheerful lack of seriousness?
R: I'm still flying under the radar for now I guess!
Nah, wouldn't say I meant to have a cheerful lack of seriousness but I was probably more open to letting humour come through in what I was writing and
less inclined to stay in the darker places for too long. I mean a lot of times I write to get something heavy off my chest or to vent about an issue
but I then tend to then turn it into something that takes me away from that, something that helps get me back on my feet, that feels good to be
rhyming about live and hopefully gives back something similar for whoever's listening. So I guess there is something probably underlying it all. After
the music stops, I'd prefer everyone to feel better, not shitter!
Like with 'Count Blessings', I started writing the verses when I wasn't in the best mind state but by the time I'd written the first verse I wanted to
get out of that and move on from it so it turned into a reminder to try keep things in persepective when you're down. If you're reasonably healthy,
got fam, friends, food to eat, a place to live - that's a whole lot of things not to be glum about.
In 'Can't See You' - I didn't want to just whinge about how bad my eyesight is and how I can't drive because of it and it sucks trying to read the bus
numbers and recognising people and all of that. I mean, it's all mentioned in there but the overall tone is fairly humorous. I wanted to give a bit of
an insight into something that's a big part of my daily life but not in a way that made anyone, especially myself, get miserable about it.
- K: Aha, so that track is actually as true to life as it's made out to be?
How often do you have people come up bugging that you've ignored them?
R: Very true to life. Everything I mention in that track happens or has happened, some of it every day. I terms of people actually going that extra
step and telling me that I ignored them - that certainly happens less now. It's the people that haven't heard the song and won't say anything to me
about it that will keep on thinking I'm rude though. Might just give everyone I meet a copy of the track to be on the safe side haha.
- K: It'd be handy to have up the sleeve in case of seeing an ex or someone you've got no intention of talking to I bet haha.
Anyway, the 'The Valley' track depicts a night out in that place all too well, and the clip takes it a step further; watching it is like dejavu haha.
Did you cop many hassles from the public being out there with a film crew/camera?
R: Let's just say yes, there is potential in using a disadvantage to an advantage in some circumstances... Though often the situation works the other
way too. I sometimes think it's someone I know and turns out it's someone completely different who might just be the same build and have a similar
With 'The Valley' clip, it was a pretty small team. Just myself, Dewi behind the camera and my girlfriend helping out. So we didn't stick out too much
but yeah, as soon as you bring out a camera in a place like that there's always someone wanting to get in the frame. That was cool most of the time
but an one point this drunk guy was heckling us and it was kinda annoying coz he was louder than the track I was trying to rap along to. The he turns
around onto the road without looking and runs himself into a car. luckily for him, the car was going slow and he was a big fella - and drunk - so it
didn't phase him too much.
- K: Can we expect to see any more clips any time soon?
R: Yeah working on a clip for 'The Buzz' at the moment actually. The song and the clip are completely different to 'The Valley' so will be interesting
to see what people think.
- K: Fantastic track, looking forward to the clip.
You've got the Born Fresh Block Party in a few weeks to launch the album - any plans of touring interstate any time soon?
R: Glad you digging that one.
Getting interstate dates sorted at the moment. We've got a couple locked in so far. After Brisbane, Melbourne's up next on the 6th July at Laundry
Bar, pretty stoked with the line up for this actually. Myself with Calski, Crate Creeps (Tommy Illfigga and DJ Butcher), Candice Monique and Ishu.
Also got Sydney lined up on 27th July at FBI Social got one of the supports locked in for that but will announce more on the later down the track. If
any venues or promoters are keen in Adelaide or Perth, hit me up!
Also further ahead, we'll be launching on the Gold Coast 10th August at Never Land Bar with Daily Meds and Mr Hill too. Played that venue a couple
years back with Urthboy and was an awesome night, it's a great spot. Few more in the pipeline, will be putting the dates up shortly!
- K: Good stuff bud.
Cheers for the chat Ray, best of luck with the interstate launches!
R: Great, thanks mate. Much appreciated!
Catch Rainman at the Born Fresh Block Party in Brisbane on the 16th of June and:
Fri 6th July - Melbourne: Laundry Bar w/ Calski, Crate Creeps, Candice Monique and Ishu. Sat 27th July - Sydney: FBI Social Fri 10th August - Gold Coast: Never Land Bar w/ Daily Meds and Mr Hill
Cool interview and really dope album - everyone should check it.
[Edited on 30-5-2012 by This_just_in]
And this news just at hand / Sorry for not trying to change the world through raw urban expressionism and thoughtful upliftment, but sometimes you
just have to write a track about throwing shit at cunts / P.S. RIP Alan. Your casual gait, and sensible yet stylish taste in shorts and long socks
will be missed by all / In my youth, I wouldn\'t have predicted that the high point of my adult life would be exposure to a t-shirt depicting
Putin as a unicorn. But here we are./ Got half you blokes laughing at me, other half starting on me, julie wanting me money, i mean jesus whats the
point of even being straight i mays well just choof drink snort what ev / Gotta thank those vikings and all those years of gene mixing thanks to
pillaging and rape...both get a bad rap in these modern times but look what it brought us / All you swag fuckheads need to stop putting out mixtapes,
pretending to be people anyone gives a fuck about, donate your cool hats/hoody and kicks combos to the salvos and shut your fucking cuntholes / I felt
a bit dirty finger banging her right there infront of family but im pd so i said fuck that shit and kept going / Whilst u morons are trolling us old
geeks were balls deep in you young gf's anus. lenses all fogged up and sht. Weezing.
I think the danger ~ is that we will end up with a situation where we end up comparing apples and pears, and totally forget about the humble potato
who does so much work but is rarely given the props it deserves. - Gerling