The first time I met D.V. Alias Khryst, I was in the offices of Def Jam and he had the makings of a star then. Through my life, I met various talents. But I knew D.V. was something special when I heard him juggle his bars and melodies so gracefully. His baritone singing rap style was ahead of its time, way before the likes of Drake, Max B, etc.
D.V. Alias Khryst has been in the Hip Hop game a long time. He started his journey with The Smith Brothers (Smoothe Da Hustler and Trigger Tha Gambler). The first joint I ever heard him on was “My Crew Can’t Go For That” from the ‘Nutty Professor’ soundtrack featuring both Smoothe and Trigger.
Watch “My Crew Can’t Go For That” Video:
You can also hear him on many underground 12 inches he released during the 90s with artists like Mobb Deep, M.O.P., Sadat X, Nick Wiz, Cella Dwellas and many more. D.V. is well-known within the Hip Hop underground scene for his unique style where he blends singing and rap vocals together like no other. But like so many great talents of the Golden Era, he pretty much got overlooked and became underrated by the mainstream, except the video for his single “Rejuvenation” which had gotten heavy media rotation on BET and MTV.
With a solid resume filled with underground gems throughout the years, he returns with his ‘Music’ project.
Before I (Shabaam Sahdeeq) get into what’s going on now, I just want to give the people some back story. I met you in the 90s at Def Jam in Dante Ross’ office. Explain to the people your intro in the game and how your journey started. What have you been up to since then?
Really, I’ve been up to putting out singles, featuring on a few records, doing some writing in the background, doing a lot of different corporate deals, and restructuring my business model and perspective on how I wanted to reintroduce myself to the music industry.
Ok, now fast forward to present time. How has the independent game been treating you?
I have to say that the independent game has been treating me pretty fair. I see growth based on how things have been going and how I’ve been engaging with a lot of the people who support my music. Not to mention the streams and how that’s playing a big part on how artists are able to sustain themselves. So I can only see it going up from here.
What’s the name of your new album and how long did it take you to complete it?
The album is called ‘Music’ and it has taken me roughly a year or two to put together. I had to wait on producers. I had to wait on mixes. Going back and forth with my partner Nick who was on the mixes and making sure the mastering was right. Then going back and forth with another engineer that I’m working with named Sam Brown from North Carolina who’s worked with super MC Wordsworth. So things were a bit challenging, but we did get thrown. And once one or two songs started to make sense, it just all came together.
Who are some of the guest appearances on the album and why?
Well I have up and coming singer, songwriter, producer and vocal arranger Vince Henderson out of Virginia. I also have singer and songwriter Khadejia
who’s featured on Jay-Z’s hit single “Ain’t No N****”. The poet Crow. Producer, singer, songwriter Dre Wonda. Singer, rapper and producer Pearl Gates. Another talented singer and songwriter Lovel. Underground legend R.A. the Rugged Man. And new reggae sensation DANJAH from East New York, Brooklyn. Everyone on the album brought a certain color to the project that was needed based on how I put the stories together. The rest is God.
Stream/Buy ‘Music’ Now:
Is it important for you to have features on your projects?
No, it’s not important. I do features based on it fitting the vibration of the project. If there’s no congruence then it serves no purpose.
How would you describe your style?
Indescribable – no room for a box to sum it up. Lol
Do you feel that Nate Dogg (RIP), Max B, and even Drake kind of ran with a style you helped create? Cause you were one of the first I’ve heard do the singing/rap style.
No, I don’t feel that way. I’m great at what I do so there’s no insecurities on how I move. No one can do what I do. People may only compare others to me based on how it’s done. But there’s a science and mathematics to how I do my thing that you would only get to know as you continue to listen to my music more in-depth.
Sounds like you’re getting a lot off your chest with this album. What’s your creative process?
I really just allow myself to be inspired by the things that I go through. The rest I leave up to God.
Who are your musical influences?
My mother, Quincy Jones, Dr. Dre, my dad, and my grandmother — God rest her soul.
What is your motto?
The best time is the Creator’s time.
What motivates you to keep making music after all these years in the game?
I simply love what I do. I am addicted to doing music. It gives me a vibration unlike anything that I’ve ever felt in my life. I’m connected to it and it is connected to me. I feel that’s my direct conversation to God and through him I speak it. Just may sound a bit different from what people are accustomed to. But give it time. It will all make sense sooner than later. I’m not holier than thou at all, but I am the example of both Darkness and Light.
What’s your studio ritual? How do u get ready to record?
To be honest, I have no ritual or no fancy way to get ready. When it hits me, I just go. It’s a very simple process. If you have to force it, the water will never run. Get it? Lol
Who are the producers on this album? And what are your favorite songs?
Leaf Dog – “New Day”
Praise – “Refuse”
Praise – “Unrecognized”
Kelzwittheheat – “G.D.M.M”
Kelzwittheheat – “Legend”
Kelzwittheheat – “Hatred”
Dre Wonda – “N.J.C”
Kenny Keys – “Reflection”
Crummie Beats – “Choices”
Kenny Keys – “Space”
Raul Supreme – “Love Interlude”
Superb Clawson – “Hurry Slow”
KIC – “Hold Your Ground”
My favorite song would have to be “Reflection”. I do love the whole album. To be honest with you, but it’s something about the spirit of that song. It does something to me. Every time I listen to it my eyes get watery.
What do you think contributes to the longevity of an artist?
His or her ability to continue when everything doesn’t go their way. Accepting failure will allow you to appreciate winning much more, in my own personal opinion.
Who are some new emcees in the game that you respect?
Too many to name and I really wouldn’t want to leave anybody out. But I do have my eye on a lot of new up-and-coming talent to say the least.
Which artists do you listen to?
To be honest, I’ve been listening to a lot of smooth jazz lately. It really helps me think better. There are words in the melodies that I listen to. Those who know music know what I’m talking about.
What’s your favorite project to date and why?
I don’t think I have a favorite project. I have favorites. Too many to name, but I will say Nas’ ‘Illmatic’, Smoothe the Hustler’s ‘Once Upon a Time in America’, and Biggie’s ‘Ready to Die’ just to name a few.
Do you plan on touring?
Restructuring all that at the moment. But yes, tour plans are definitely in effect to be determined at this time.
What are your plans for the future?
Silence is golden, but I will say this – stay tuned. The future is very bright for D.V. Alias Khryst & DGSUP INC.
Any last words that you’d want to add?
With God, all things are possible.
“G.D.M.M.” Video — Only viewable in China at: http://v.yinyuetai.com/video/3296652