Rochester, N.Y. native Pounds has been a driving force in the underground scene for awhile now. From releasing a slew of EPs and mixtapes, working on a limited retro fashion line to acting, the ever working emcee has found a way to diversify his portfolio immensely. He is currently primed to drop his new LP, There Is No Mafia, on September 4th. So we hit the homie up to chat about music, life and the whole nine.
First of all, congratulations on the forthcoming project, ‘There Is No Mafia.’ Can you give us a quick summary of what to expect?
TINM is a lot darker than my last release ‘Trafficante’ with Buckwild, which was a more polished version of my sound. It’s very personal and coming from a much angrier place.
Purchase ‘There Is No Mafia’ here on August 28th
You do have more than a handful of projects in the bag from the Oh No produced ‘Borgata EP’, the ‘Tuna EP’, and the ‘Pee Wee Kirkland EP’ produced by Fith. How was the process of creating this new project different from the ones before? Are you sticking to 1 producer or using multiple producers?
TINM is a multiple producer project. I picked the beats through producer submissions and even produced one on there myself.
It’s been a learning experience. It’s definitely a lot more intricate than I was initially prepared for, but it’s like any other business venture. It’s all about progressing and evolving, which we (Borgata Farms) are doing with our 3rd strain release, “Cannoli,” and live resin diamond concentrate.
You have also partnered with CMNY for a vintage collection. How did you link up with them and what should we expect from that collaboration?
We did a very limited digital scale capsule t-shirt/hoodie/SnapBack, which sold out the same day it dropped. You will definitely see another collab coming soon.
What has been a seminal experience for you?
I’d say my last release ‘Trafficante’ was kind of the point where I started really moving into other lanes than music. Focusing on branding, products, and different ways to spread my wings on my creative side. I’ve got a lot on the way and even more after that.
Is there a particular song or musical passage that never fails to move you emotionally?
I’ve got a handful of songs that take me to that place. Probably “Live Forever” off of ‘448 Grams.’ That one definitely gets me every trip. Just super vivid and a lot of pain behind that one.
If a movie about your life in music was to be made, what interesting/strange moments and stories would you share to make the movie cool?
A lot of meeting different industry personalities and parties…probably more so shit I can’t really discuss in an interview.
Are there any other interesting facts about you that hardly anyone else knows?
I’m a fat fuck but most people don’t know that I don’t eat any kind of meat or dairy. I’ve been vegan for a year, but didn’t fuck with that shit for a while before that.
What is the greatest thing about working in the music industry? And what would you change if you had the opportunity?
I just love doing what I love for a living. A lot of people don’t have that chance or option. So I’m embracing it with everything I got.
Looking back, what have been the most important moments in your life so far?
The birth of my children for sure. Not a whole lot of importance before that. Being a father is something that I consider a privilege.
What have been your biggest highlights?
Not one in particular. But as a whole? Having people buying my music and merch, and really genuinely fucking with what I do.
Who have been the coolest, most memorable people you’ve met along the way, and how did they make an impact on your life?
Honestly, all the artists I’m around and have met. I love being around different creative minds. Whether it’s music, art, or fashion. They tend to be the coolest, and are always influencing me and helping me push my art forward.
What has been your strangest celebrity encounter?
Fuck. That’s a tough one. I’ve met a lot and they’re all fucking weirdos.
Who would be your ideal dinner guest, living or dead, and what would you serve them?
Chris Farley and I would definitely be making sauce and meatballs.
What are the greatest songs, albums, books, movies, TV shows, websites you’ve ever come across?
I barely listen to rap. I listen to a lot of ‘60s, ‘70s, and ‘80s classics. I’m listening to Depeche Mode right now. Haven’t read a book since high school. Sopranos is the greatest show ever made. Goodfellas is the greatest movie ever made. And the only sites I go on are Supreme, Nike, and Ralph Lauren.
Name 5 songs (yours excluded) that we would expect to find on your iPod or music player.
Fuck that’s real tough.
O.C. – My World
Norman Connors – You Are My Starship
The Weeknd – Gone
Pat Benatar – Live Is A Battlefield
The Eurythmics – Sweet Dreams
When you’re sitting on the porch, age 97, what achievements would you reflect on and smile?
Being a great father and knowing I did the best I could to provide for them and my family.
“Jenga” Produced by Teyo off ‘There Is No Mafia’
All music can be purchase at: https://pounds.bandcamp.com/music