Detroit hip hop producer Lord Jessiah has been hard at work developing the brand of Black 7 Productions along with Sun Tzu Cadre, while crafting his unique blend of soulful beats with hard core socially conscious hip-hop. Having initially establishing himself within the production team of the Michigan based group and Wu-Affiliates, Dezert Eez, Lord Jessiah is now poised to release his first full length studio album entitled “Grounds Of Detroit” (G.O.D.) in March 2013.
Lord Jessiah boldly warns that this project is the opposite of current contemporary hip-hop that has taken over the airwaves, and promises to deliver the cutting edge hard core fundamental hip-hop that has been missing for over a decade. The “Grounds Of Detroit” (G.O.D.) album presents a collage of their hometown (Detroit) which is illustrated through rugged beats and aggressive lyrics. As things are getting ready to pop off we got to catch up with the Detroit homie and it went a little something like this..
Hip Hop Lead- Ok so for starts how did you come up with your name Lord Jessiah?
Lord Jessiah- Peace! First off I want to thank you for your time breaking bread with me with this interview. My name is based in my culture which is I-God, which is shown and proven through living out the principles of Supreme Mathematics. My full name is Lord Jessiah Allah and I belong to the Nation of Gods and Earths. A “Lord” is one who has elevated himself to a state where he has the ability to influence others to improve themselves. “Jessiah” means the “Just-Savior” or “Allah’s gracious gift” which is having proper knowledge of self. Allah is the Black man who is in tune with his God-Consciousness and uses this awareness to better himself and others.
Hip Hop Lead- We know coming from Detroit isn’t an easy task, but it seems like things aren’t getting better out there. How has this bad economy and crazy crime rise in Detroit effected you and your music personally?
Lord Jessiah- Word, it’s hard here in Detroit, we have been leading the Nation in unemployment for the past few years and it doesn’t seem to be getting better anytime soon for the common man/woman out here. It lets you know everything is real out here and there is no cake walk for anyone nowadays. We’re all struggling out here. The thing about it is that these trends are now prevelent in a lot of areas across the Country and I always like to tell people that Detroit is a microcosm of things to come in more places. For this reason, I feel that many people especially those in urban areas will relate to the style of music I am bringing.
Hip Hop Lead- Would you say your soulful sounds comes from living in the D?
Lord Jessiah- Without question! That and my upbringing. My family has some strong musical roots, many of my aunts, uncles, cousins even my mother played and instruments and/or performed. Most notably my uncle Andrew “Mike” Terry (RIP), one of the Original Funk Brothers in Motown. He worked with just about all of the young talent coming through the door, Marvin Gaye, Four Tops etc. Plus he and George Clinton were real tight they started a record label together. All these jewels I didn’t get from him until shortly before he passed away. He was so humble I would have never known it.
Hip Hop Lead- What made you wanna get into Hip Hop production?
Lord Jessiah- Well I started off aspiring to rhyme very young, I think I was like 9 when I wrote my first bars . So back then instrumentals were hard to come by so me and my cousin used to make “record and pause” tapes. Everybody who is from that era in the 80s & 90s know what I’m talking about. So it went from rhyming, to doing that and rhyming, to beginning to want to make my own sounds. I ended up buying my first drum machine when I was 15 and been doing it every since.
Hip Hop Lead- Who were your influences to get into music?
Lord Jessiah- I would definitely have to give that credit to my mother. She had me involved musically at an early age and never discouraged what I was doing always told me to keep pressing forward .
Hip Hop Lead- What projects have you released to date?
Lord Jessiah- As far as up to this point this “Grounds Of Detroit” album is my first official release. My first credits musically came from my brothers Dezert Eez album “Ghettoboxx” released in 2010 through N-Cendiary/Universal. However, I have been heavily involved Wu Tang Management’s Wu Tang DJs Stainless Promotions mixtapes: Mixtape Murdah II, Behind Enemy Lines, We Got Next, Students Of Shaolin 3 which were released over the past two years. As well as several mixtapes hosted by DJ Butter B as well.
Hip Hop Lead- With that said your new debut album, “Grounds Of Detroit (G.O.D.)”, is on the way. What is the exact release date of the project?
Lord Jessiah- Actually the album is available now on Bandcamp for listening and retail. It was released on March 13, 2013 (3/13) which is also the area code for Detroit. 313 also when you add it up comes up to 7, when in Supreme Mathematics is the principle God. Hence you have “Grounds Of Detroit” (GOD) released on (3/13) (7). This album was destined to happen.
Hip Hop Lead- That’s deep! What type of tracks can we expect on that project?
Lord Jessiah- You can expect wall to wall bangers bro! An album with no fillers that you can play over and over and over again and not get tired of it and you will pick up something different from it every time. It’s an album that has the pulse of the streets, for the streets. Grounds of Detroit, it’s animated music hence a reason why I chose to go with animation for the cover. But trust me that’s just to take the edge off.
Hip Hop Lead- What is your favorite banger off the album?
Lord Jessiah- That’s a tough question for real because honestly there are so many favorites to me. If I have to choose just one I would have to go with “Win Lose or Draw” ft. Bronze Nazareth, Phillie and Drugs TheEmCee.
The beat is rugged and aggressive and the lyrics match up equally. The other two in the running for me were “Sharp Shootaz” ft Alius Pnkkl and O1 from the Almighty Dreadnaughtz and “Night of the Living Dead” ft. Rome, Phillie and Drugs TheEmCee. When you listen to the album you will know what I mean it’s a solid album Bro.
Hip Hop Lead- How has Lord Jessiah evolved since your early days in this game?
Lord Jessiah- In my early days I had the drive without the knowledge. Now I have the drive with the knowledge. That’s a problem for some of you out there. Plus being around the likes of Bronze Nazareth, Phillie, Kevlaar 7 and Sun Tzu Cadre it forces you you push through your threshold and reach another level.
Hip Hop Lead- So being as seasoned as you are, why the long wait for you to drop that first album?
Lord Jessiah- I would definitely have to attribute that to joining the military and being away from being active in the scene for almost 8 years while serving. Otherwise I’m sure I would have dropped already, but things happen for a reason and had that have happen I may not be apart of what is going on right now with Bronze Nation which is a coalition of The Wisemen, Dezert Eez and Sun Tzu Cadre. A very strong unit.
Hip Hop Lead- As far as your company can you tell us how you first linked with Sun Tzu Cadre to form Black 7 Productions?
Lord Jessiah- Well I’ve been a part of Sun Tzu since around 1997 which is when I moved back to Detroit from Virginia and furthered my education by building with the Gods at D-Mecca Street Academy in Detroit. I graduated high school and joined the Army the next year and was away from the body for about 8 years. While I was away the Gods were still adding on as I was when I had the time to, so when I returned home I was determined to make a push with this music really hard. I had to come up with a brand for my music so I came up with the name “Black 7” around 2004-2005, which is the core of the Nation of Gods and Earths Universal Flag and also represented what I wanted to bring to the music.
So Black 7 Productions is actually a separate entity from Sun Tzu Cadre but was formed in order to help further the common goals of the group which was to leave a substantial mark in Hip-Hop music. So when I formed that, I really began to push forward and network and get not only my beats heard, but also the music that Sun Tzu Cadre was creating at the time, a double-edged sword if you will.
Hip Hop Lead- To be clear who exactly makes up Black 7 Productions and what services do you guys offer?
Lord Jessiah- Like I stated in the last question, Black 7 Productions was formed by me in 2004-2005 and was to be used as a vehicle to drive not only my beats and music, but the music of Sun Tzu Cadre.
I saw early on the importance of networking and establishing relationships both business and personal with people. Black 7 Productions is basically my production company and along with being an emcee, I am always looking to work with artists that share the same drive and vision to bring high-caliber music to the people. If you need that heat out there get at me, exclusive, non-exclusive leasing let’s get it! Because at the end of the end if I shine, you shine and vice versa.
Hip Hop Lead- Outside of Production we know you emcee. Out of the two which really fills that void for yourself?
Lord Jessiah- Yeah no doubt. My origin started off with being an emcee but once I started making beats I knew immediately where my drive was. I like laying the canvas down so that other artists or myself can paint pictures on them. A good producer knows how to capture the elements of other artists and make them blend together. He knows who or what fits and what doesn’t and executes on that. I will always be a writer at heart, that’s also what helps me to make beats because I know what emcees are looking for most of the time but at the end of the day my true love in this music is producing.
Hip Hop Lead- One song that intrigued us was “Grassy Knoll Rap”. It was basically like going back to the basics.. just dope beats and ill rhymes. How did the creative process come together for making this record?
Lord Jessiah- Word thank you bro I love getting feedback from things we are doing it means a lot! “Grassy Knoll Rap” is a track that Ant Live produced for the album and it really kind of evolved organically.
Initially it started off as a track for the MF911 album. He hit me with the track he was like “Yo I just want yall to go in God!” and “I want to shoot a video for this by the end of the week!” I’m like cool word, I listen to the track and wrote the verse in like a half an hour. Shit we all zoned out, myself, Sarah Lee and Drugs TheEmCee.
I came up with the chorus and let Ant hear it. That’s when the vision of the song changed and it became more of an anthem song, like “Yo we tired of this bullshit rap and its time to shut it down!”. We added Mainy Main from MF911, Alcatraz, Chevy Van Dyke, X-The Detecvtive, LRB. When people hear the song and see the video this is what they get from it, a return to the raw, rugged beats and lyrics we were used to.
Hip Hop Lead- This might get you in a bit of trouble, but we got to know. There were a lot of dope artists on that record… now you are on the hot seat and you have to tell us who had the dopest verse on that record (laughs)?
Lord Jessiah- Aww damn you gonna make me do that huh (laughs). Ok ok. Yo on the real I’m gonna have to give it to the Vet Mainy Main from MF911, I love his voice, delivery and word play on this one. My dude LRB from Houston I would put next.
Hip Hop Lead- It was dope to see a video for that record. How did the video come about?
Lord Jessiah- Believe it or not most of that video was shot in a few hours of work besides the shots that were filmed out of state. We just took it to the street and let the music speak for itself. Ant Live filmed the video too! It all came together well considering time constraints being that he had to head back to Houston. We wanted to capture a gritty type of feel which I think he pulled off well. It’s a dope song by itself the video just added on to what we did musically.
Hip Hop Lead- Any new projects coming out after this? Any features?
Lord Jessiah- Oh yeah no doubt myself and Sun Tzu Cadre been busy over the past year or two crafting the angles of attack on yall. Sun Tzu Cadre dropped “The B.I.G”(Blackman Is God) album on February 22 this year which I have lyrical contributions on, I also have lyrical contributions on the following projects: Phillie of The Wisemen’s solo album “Welcome To The Detroit Zoo” produced by Bronze Nazareth which is available now, Ant Live “Run With The Wolves” produced by X-The Detective releasing this year, MF911 “Return Of The Bloodsport” releasing this year, Bronze Nazareth “Thought For Food 3” also releasing this year.
I have production credits on Dezert Eez’s new EP “Witches Brew” which also features production from Bronze Nazareth
Hip Hop Lead- Hit me with 8 of your favorite bars you ever spit…
Lord Jessiah- Word I’m gonna give you something off the album:
Meticulous metal clincher/The Trauma Center/Casualty Winner usually left in the dust of a sprinter/I tell em’ bear down and take your lumps/Surrounded by losers and chumps/Product’s environment/Violence begets violence/I’m where the sirens beam/But police never intervene/AKA Land of Your Shattered Dreams/So wake up and smell the coffee/Fuck smelling roses/Shit aint pretty especially when the semi’s drawn on imposers.
Hip Hop Lead- Who does Detroit lean towards for more inspiration … the Nas and Jay z’s or the Snoops and Dre’s?
Lord Jessiah- On the real Detroit is such a diverse city musically you liable to hear some of all the above here. It just depends on the given time. At one point the city was really heavily West Coast influenced, hell this is the city of Gators bro so they was on that for a minute but it has shifted substantially.
Here at HipHopLead.com we like to ask our features some questions that really are out of the norm. We do this because it gives the fans a broader outlook on you.So lets get it cracking ….
Hip Hop Lead- Eminem in 2000 or Eminem in 2013?
Lord Jessiah- (Laughs)To be honest I never was a fan of Eminem. No knock on him just never got into him. I’m more of a Guilty Simpson fan from any span of time. If I have to make a choice though I would have to say 2000.
Hip Hop Lead- Other then music what do you do with your time?
Lord Jessiah- For the most part I’m with my family if I’m not working on music. I try to be there for them as much as I can. I grew up in a single family home and even though I’m no longer with their mother I still make sure I hold them down and spend time with them. It all starts at home.
Hip Hop Lead- Tell us a hidden talent you have?
Lord Jessiah- (Laughs) I have nothing to hide. A talent is a gift and a gift is meant to be shared if you take it for granted you won’t have the ability anymore so I say whatever you are good at as long as you are not a savage in pursuing it by all means go full steam ahead with it. Share your talents with the people.
Hip Hop Lead- Do you think President Obama has done enough to help the people of Detroit?
Lord Jessiah- No and I’m going to leave it at that. We could do a whole separate interview about my views of Mr. President.
Hip Hop Lead- My dude .. what particular person or event in the main stream annoys the hell out of you?
Lord Jessiah- (Heavy Laughs) Everything mainstream annoys the hell out of me! I feel like when I put on the radio I just came out of a bubble because I don’t understand half that low frequency shit bro. I would say it annoys me the most that some of the people with the least talent get most of the shine. That has to stop at some point or we at least have to find a means to counter that.
Hip Hop Lead- When you first heard Lil Wayne might die in ICU this past weekend, what was your first thought?
Lord Jessiah- My first thought was one that came from respect of his family which was why would someone who has so many people depending on him to be the best he could be would seek to destroy himself in such a wreckless manner. My second thought was that the Universe was speaking to us on multiple levels. Preserve what you have.
Back To The Norm…….
Hip Hop Lead- How did you first link with Wu-Affiliates, Dezert Eez?
Lord Jessiah- First off all praises due to them brothers man real talk because if it wasn’t from 5-Star, Nivek and O’neil, I wouldn’t be having this interview. My connection with them stems back to me forming Black 7 Productions in the early days and reaching to MAAAAAAAAAAAD people like hundreds, Duck Down, LCOB, Cappadonna to name a few. I had responses but nothing panned out substantially until one day my cousin came across these brothers who were from Michigan and were affiliated with the Wu. I figured they gotta show some love I’m in their home state and low and behold 5-Star responded. They were on tour with Inspectah Deck and would be returning home to work on their debut album “Ghettoboxx”, which I produced 3 tracks, “Animal Streetz”, “Sunflower Seedz” and “1000 Needlez” and the rest is history.
Hip Hop Lead- In the “Most High” video it looked like a fun time making it. You guys were in Barbershops on stage..even smiling (laughs). It’s not often anymore you see emcees just being themselves. It’s either strip club anthems or gangsters trying to be tough. How important was it for you guys to stay true to yourselves?
Lord Jessiah- Word up! Yo that’s what is wrong with the industry now. Everybody wants to portray an image. I leave the acting for the professionals and stick to my guns. If what your doing is good the people gonna gravitate or attract to it. You don’t need a gimmick or fake ass record sells to stamp you. Let the people see that they can relate to you. I always encourage fans to reach out I’m just like yall.
Hip Hop Lead- Before we get ready to cut out of here one more question to find out the method to your madness. What are your weapons of choice when making a beat?
Lord Jessiah- Hands down MPC! I have the 2500 and 5000 right now. I had a 2000 XL which was my first one but someone broke in my old lab and stole it. I never could get into computer based production, but I know a lot of people who do it and are NAAAAAAAAAASTY with it. It’s just not for me. I hear people arguing all the time “All man I can fuck with him he use computer programs” or “That’s cheating!” all types of crazy shit (laughs).That stems from fear things changing at the end of the day if its hot its hot period.
Hip Hop Lead- Back to your latest album, we got to hear the sampler and it has that classic 90’s feel to it. A lot of the songs are kind of have that Onyx “Last Dayz” feel to them. What was your main inspiration to create an album with type of signature sound?
Lord Jessiah- My aim for this album was to take it back for one. Enough is enough already you know? When are the people going to get tired of this shit and be like yo its time for a change of pace.
I wanted offer a change of pace to what’s going on and show the people that Hip-Hop Lives. Wall to wall BANGERS! I wanted an album that also painted a picture of the streets, more specifically Detroit, and how that story can be applied to any city in America because whether the people realize it or not Detroit is the model for the future of America. This country is broke and in debt and unless the people stand up and make their voices heard nothing will change and in some cases it’s too late.
Hip Hop Lead- Name 1 song you’ve done that will have the HipHopLead.com viewers hooked!?
Lord Jessiah- If they are looking for something I produced check out for that “Win Lose or Draw” ft. Bronze Nazareth, Phillie and Drugs TheEmCee off the “Grounds Of Detroit” album. Also check that “Cocaine Niggas” by Ant Live ft. myself, Mainy Main and Bronze Nazerth produced by X-The Detective
Hip Hop Lead- Thanks for hollering at us and in closing give any shoutouts….links to your sites….F.U.’S or whatevers clever!
Lord Jessiah- No doubt it’s been a pleasure sharing things with you, we need outlets such as this to give the people a picture of who we are as artists and people word. All praises due to the Nation of Gods and Earths. Shout out to Sun Tzu Cadre, Bronze Nazareth and The Wisemen, Dezert Eez as a whole we make up “Bronze Nation”. The Almighty Dreadnaughtz, Ant Live & MF911, X-The Detective, Paragone Celestial, Chad Trutt, Venus Sky, Shabe Allah, Sunze Allah, Justis Hype, Jimmy Kang and Mook from Protect Ya Neck Records and Wu Tang Management. Salute yall!
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