Artist Spotlight: Curtiss King

Words By: After Dark

If you need to know one thing about Curtiss King’s work ethic, its that he stays on the grind. Not the cliché grind that most rappers wolf about all around the world, but the grind that causes most artist to quit. King is a self-proclaimed habitual risk taker, an emcee, producer, video director, editor, optimist and the list is more than likely growing. Its rumored that he sleeps three hours a night and by his current output, I’d say this is fact. At the moment Baby Sinbad is causing tsunami sized waves on land and in cyber space. But don’t mistake his current status as an overnight success story. Curtiss King (born Dwan Howard) has been building momentum since graduating High School in 2003. His current catalog is too vast to add up, but within his catalogue you can find his production blessing artist such as Murs, Ab-Soul, Kendrick Lamar, Noa James and countless others. Here’s the thing about Mr. King, he could ride the coat tails of those aforementioned artist but he doesn’t. His latest full length release Atychiphobia proves that he is holding his own and even living legends like Nick Carter have been paying attention. Ab-Soul let Curtiss know heaven isn’t far, but I think he’s known that since he hit the stage at Paid Dues in 2012. I chop it up with Curtiss after the jump.

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INTERVIEW WITH CURTISS KING

Beats of All-Nations
For some people optimism is a constant struggle. Especially in a world of naysayers and unbelievers. What keeps you optimistic as a human and an artist?

Curtiss King
For me and the 29 years of life I’ve experienced, optimism has never been just an option, it’s always been merely a requirement for survival. Staying optimistic in the face of intimidating circumstances will keep you sane, it will keep you going after a dream many never see to the finish line. Optimism is all you have in those times when you don’t have a dollar to your name. Optimism will make you work on beats when your lights get turned off and all you have is 2 hrs of laptop battery left. Optimism will make you use those 2 hours to sell beats to turn those lights back on.

 

BOAN
Cancer has touched everyones life in some shape or fashion and you touched upon this on your 2012 release of Fvck Cancer. What was some of the most inspiring feedback that you received from your fans after releasing it?

CK
When I released “Fvck Cancer” I had no idea I’d receive the response I did. The last thing I wanted to be perceived as was an opportunist rapper exploiting something that painful to get a song heard. However when I performed that song and people understood my message and conviction it started becoming a every show occurrence of a fan meeting me after to share their story about how Cancer has effected them. One fan in particular wrote “Fvck Cancer” on a dollar bill his grandfather left him as he was dying of Cancer. I’ll never forget that.

BOAN
Creativity can be elusive for some. It comes and goes for others. It seems that it’s always on for you, do you ever find the jet pack on “E”?

CK
Haha I see what you did there! Hell yeah that happens! I’m human just like everyone else. There are times where I’m dry humping my creative juices and the well runs dry. In times where the creativity is low I just get away from making music for a few hours and read a book, watch a movie, go to Target or anywhere removed from where I make music. Sometimes when you hit a creative block you just have to find a place you can go and hit the reset button real quick and get your energy back up. I do it all the time.

BOAN
TDE dropped Ab-Soul’s “Tree Of Life” which you produced, and within five hours it had about 56k plays and within 24 hours it had 182k plays, let those numbers soak in for a minute, how do you feel about THAT?

CK
That’s crazy, I didn’t even have a chance to peep that. I don’t know man, I’m just thankful for the opportunity to work once again with one of my favorite artists, Ab-Soul, and see the music reach so many people. I never take that for granted.

BOAN
Okay, Justin Beiber’s black baby (PAUSE) we want to know the name of that baby and we also want to know what possessed you and Murs, and how did you get Will Smith to cameo in the video?

CK
Haha! If I had to name that baby I’d call him MURZILLA BIEBER. To be honest, “Justin Bieber’s Black Baby” was Murs’s creation, I just merely created the background music. That video was good fun. I made my cameo as the Fresh King of Bel-Air. The homie Murs is one of the dude’s I look up to in this industry and I learned so much from him the weekend we shot that video. Memories I will forever hold with me.

BOAN
Technology has advanced to the point that a man or woman can make the worlds greatest song and release it to the world with a few clicks and of course a lot of talent. What forms of technology are you utilizing and what advice would you give young kids that look up to you?

CK
My best advice would be to use what you have, but never NEED what you have in these social networks. If you think you need Twitter followers, Facebook likes, and Youtube views to make a profitable career you’re not thinking about the long term. Myspace wasn’t forever and neither will these other social networks. Never forget to connect with human beings face-to-face, handshake-to-handshake. Technology is beautiful. Embrace technology but learn how to live without it. Reach as many people as you can spreading your idea of truth, love, and good vibes, but don’t forget to connect when you disconnect from the internet.

BOAN
Each year your proverbial stock seems to double, you’re everywhere, what can the people expect from you for the remainder of 2014?

CK
Simply put, MORE MUSIC. More music as an artist on CurtissKing.com and more music as a producer on CurtissKingBEATS.com. More blessings are sure to follow the more I work.

BOAN
On behalf of Beats Of All-Nations, I just want to thank you for your time and wish you much success. Peace.

CK
Thank you to Beats of All-Nations for having me.

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