Indio Prather is an emcee’s emcee, he’s studied the game, he’s studied the greats and now it’s time to execute. “Just My Thoughts” is his magnum opus for the year, he’s been through the trials and here’s what came of it. Indio is not about the glitz and the glamour he just wants respect and to see the culture move forward. I had a chance to meet Indio at A3C and shortly after the release of his EP, I was able to ask him some questions about the project and his time at A3C.
Dead End Hip Hop: For those who don’t know who’s Indio Prather?
Indio Prather: To quote Langston Hughes for a second, “Being me, it will not be white. But it will be” and another quote from James Baldwin “The responsibility of a writer is to excavate the experience of the people who produced him”. For those who don’t know me I’m an: Emcee, producer, writer, and jack of all trades. Most importantly I’m black, an uncle, son, cousin, flawed and trying to get my s*it together like the rest of us. I can go on and on with paragraphs of my description and still feel it wouldn’t be done justice so to sum up who I am? I’m an experience in the flesh like we all are that isn’t easily placed into a box of descriptors for someone else’s comfort.
DEHH: You just dropped your EP “Just My Thoughts” what inspired you to drop this joint?
IP: what inspired my latest release “Just My thoughts” was a lot of pains and ups and downs. It was a catharsis to get out of my system all that aggression and hopelessness. For those who don’t know me, I have my share of demons and ailments that I’m not really gonna go super in depth with here but let’s just say mood swings and depression kicks my ass a lot. Swinging back around to “just my thoughts” it is definitely more traditional in approach than my prior release “think tank diner” in regards to tone and hooks/song structure. I love to experiment with all these things but I also kept in mind the average listener isn’t gonna give me a no name 15 listens in a row to get something. That’s why this project was way more streamline than normal. I actually have 2 bonus songs that are more experimental for purchase on my bandcamp and website if folks want to hear more weird things going on.
DEHH: I had a chance to chop it up with you at Atlanta’s A3C conference and you spoke on the importance of the potent lyricism in today’s craft, talk to me a bit about that.
IP: I personally feel words mean things. I take my word very seriously, I take my craft very seriously. I may not take myself seriously and love to joke and talk s*it but nobody ever questions my dedication to the craft of lyricism. I wouldn’t call it a lost art per se, because cats can still do it but I honestly think wave riding and fear is a big reason why folks don’t want to push boundaries cause they are comfortable where they are. I don’t like it, but I do respect it cause end of the day some of these people have kids and have to take care of them. I would love to sit here and tell you, oh you can get paid off it (you can but it’s a long ass battle to get there) easily but it’s a struggle with the market being inundated with loads of subpar and mediocre people. I still find myself trying to break into a market that looks at me as a soundcloud rapper (I’ve been doing this since AOL 2 week trial discs dog) and I’ve been rhyming since 11 and started to take it seriously at 17.
DEHH: Back to the music, you had Peace to Mateo, Doc Illingsworth and Rufio Jones on your project. What was it like working with them and what listens did you pick up during your time with them?
IP: Peace to Mateo, Illingsworth, and Rufio Jones are my guys and I wish them nothing but the absolute best. I still bug them from time to time with recipes and random shenanigans. They are cool ass dudes honestly who are some of the best people I’ve ever worked with. Doc and Rufio talked me out of quitting rap music cause they genuinely see something in me as an artist and that gave me a battery in my back. Cause after 2017 before that detroit trip I was done and burnt out and was gonna just go back to college and work in an office somewhere.
DEHH: What do you want people to walk away with when they hear “Just My Thoughts”?
IP: What I want folks to pick up from “just my thoughts” is that I labored over this and put my all into it from my neurosis and depression to the mood swings and how I handled my portion of the production it being varied. I want this to be taken seriously for more than a one off thing. I don’t want this to be disposable to people and they’re on to the next one in 2 weeks. I want this to stick to your ribs for a while and pick every detail, remember every bar, every cadence.
DEHH: A3C was a life changing experience for me, what was your experience like that week, what did you walk away with and what tips would you give to other artists looking to make it out there?
IP: Tips and tricks I got from my time at A3C this past year is: handle your business (ie. signing up for PROs, learn about publishing, get everything in writing, etc.), networking is king, genuinely built friendships are hard to come by so hold on to them, keep your word when you give it, take responsibility for your actions, set your price and go about your day (cause folks waste time), and I can keep going on. Basically keep on your square and be as professional as possible given the situation. Also, it was good running into you at A3C sto.
DEHH: Rumor has it you have a packed 2018 coming up, can you give us any insight?
IP: For 2018 what effort you can expect from me is a New album as well as a book. That’s if we don’t get put into a nuclear winter or die from sweltering heat due to global warming lol
Biggest thing I want remembered about me is I stand on everything I ever said and that my bond is my word (more or less).