A Conversation with Doc Strange

You mentioned being from the post-Dungeon Family era and being influenced by the « out the trunk » sensibilities of 90’s Houston and the Bay area. How do you think these regional influences manifest in your music?

DS – We are all just computers.  Human brains are the highest level of computer functionality.  We process information in the form of “life” and output action that creates our reality.  I was fortunate enough to come from a time period where the southwest region of street music was leading the way.  At that time, you had to be coherent and solid with your point of view.  You had to be clever and raw.  You had to be catchy, witty and aggressive.  You had to have a “give zero fucks” independent spirit.  That is the soil I come from.  It manifests in my beat selection and creation.  It manifests in the fact I rap intelligent and ignorant at the same time.  

What role do you think nostalgia plays in your music, considering your influences from Rap City/Yo! MTV Raps era and 90’s East Coast rap?

DS – If you listen to “Espionage!”, “Business Is My Only Pleasure “and “Ya’ll Still Can’t Rhyme Like This”, that is the complete heart and soul of those projects.  The lyrical wordplay of boom bap era is prevalent.  It’s me.  Video shows back then were diverse.  It’s not even nostalgia.  I am the living present of that era.  My whole being is comprised of rap videos as church and the Source magazine as the Bible.  Way back when the Source was actually real and relevant, of course.  

You mentioned wanting to tour Europe and Japan. What steps are you taking to make that a reality?

DS – I am collaborating with a producer based in Paris right now, David E. Beats.  I am reaching out to Hip Hop influencers and artists in Japan.  That is job one.  I need to work with creatives in those places and contribute to what’s cracking out there.  

Could you share some insights into the symbolism and themes behind your song « DARTH VADER TINT »?

DS – Darth Vader is Black, beautiful and sinister.  That is how the beat strikes me.  The title speaks to that point.  It also is literally referring to “limo tint” or as dudes used to call it when I was coming up, “Darth Vader Tint.” You cannot see who is inside.  Might mess around and get a ticket for that, at least here in Texas.  

What do you hope listeners take away from « DARTH VADER TINT » and your album as a whole?

DS – It’s jamming on a high level.  It is not just me battle rapping or ego tripping.  It celebrates an attitude we all have inside of us.  The feeling of putting on new clothes.  My music smells like good quality weed.  I don’t look at it the same as others.  I see myself as someone who makes an audio mood altering drug.  That is what makes me a doctor.  

Looking ahead, what are your goals for the next year in terms of your music career?

DS – I want to concentrate more on creative relationships.  I want to raise the bar on my production and do for others.  I am going to refine my visual approach.  All of this is for me to eventually be able to offer my services to other creatives.  I want to share my recipes, so to speak, for a price, naturally.