In this Exclusive Interview with UrbanBridgez.com Phreshy Duzit speaks to Aries about what went wrong and even though currently still signed to Atlantic Records, why soon he will no longer be calling the label home. In a story we’ve heard many times before, he speaks on how the best dream quickly turned into the worst nightmare & why he felt taken advantage of. Phreshy also speaks on why the members of his former imprint SMC went their separate ways, his new album “Brave New World” and his new brand Neighborhood PHCK$.
This is an important read for any upcoming artist, who has goals of signing to a major label and what can happen if you allow them to “sell you a dream!”
UrbanBridgez.com: You’ve been very vocal recently about your issues with your record label Atlantic Records, explain to our readers what is your current situation with the label?
Phreshy Duzit: The current situation is real. Not only did we have differences on creative terms but the business side was handled very poorly. I came into the situation on a very high note. I was promised a great deal of things prior to the deal that was not fulfilled later on. To say the least, I was sold a dream. At this point I am not on good terms with anybody I know personally in that office.
UrbanBridgez.com: How did they try to change you?
Phreshy Duzit: Musically, the label and I were not seeing eye to eye. At some point the only songs that were getting me any attention in that office were pop songs I was writing for others, which led them to try to convince me to stay on that route. Later on they wanted to act confused on what I was doing, saying they didn’t understand the “lane” I wanted to be in. My management then became A&R’s and got lost in translation. I was kept out of the loop and was treated like Atlantic Records stepchild.
UrbanBridgez.com: Why wasn’t the EP ever released, the joints that came in support of it were getting alot of buzz?
Phreshy Duzit: That run-around began all the friction. The HateLove EP was completed nearly a year prior to the release date. At the point I got the release date I grew way more musically. I matured as an artist. I told them to put it out, and once again they felt the need to keep giving me excuses, trying to tell me to work on more records. It was a digital release, I still don’t understand their reasoning on why they held on to that project. It was a great body of work. I know that, they know that.
UrbanBridgez.com: You mentioned in a recent YouTube video that you feel labels take advantage of new artists, something we’ve heard many times before. How do you feel you were taken advantage of in this situation?
Phreshy Duzit: Any artist that signs their first deal will have a huge sense of accomplishment. It humbles you to a point where you are so grateful to everybody that you feel gave you an opportunity. That fucks up everything, I remember writing part of a hook on a record that is now platinum and not even being credited. I got a thousand dollar check to silence my complaints. That right there is being taken advantage of.
UrbanBridgez.com: What’s next on the label front, what’s being done so you can get out of your contract and are you close to inking a new deal with another label?
Phreshy Duzit: Luckily this deal isn’t hard to get out of. It was a crappy deal. I have a few labels interested that have been reaching out to me based off the music videos I have been leaking. I’m not rushing into anything, I know what I have in my hands is special.
UrbanBridgez.com: You went back in Detroit, what made you go back home instead of staying in New York?
Phreshy Duzit: I was in Detroit, I recorded half of my album there with my producer/engineer Nylez. My family is also there, that is where I feel most comfortable and can work on my craft with no distractions. I’m back in NYC now shooting visuals and recording the final tracks to my Brave New World Album.
UrbanBridgez.com: You spoke to us about SMC earlier this year, what happened with that brand?
Phreshy Duzit: SMC consisted of myself and 3 business partners. My business partners chose to take positions at Atlantic Records. That caused a great deal of distractions on their part, I wish them the best.
UrbanBridgez.com: Tell us about your new brand?
Phreshy Duzit: The new brand is Neighborhood PHCK$. It’s a team that really assembled itself even prior to the downfall of SMC. Everything you see in me is due to the creative nature of this brand. The team consists of Nylez (Production) Butta (Visuals) Rich (Artist) and myself. Anything I released recently was a joint effort amongst my team. We’re all young and focused.
UrbanBridgez.com: You’ve been dropping mad singles and videos via your YouTube, including “Good Mourning,” which is real hot! Do you feel like you have a second wind where you’re more focused now on your music then you were once you got signed?
Phreshy Duzit: I am in a great musical zone right now. I found myself, I am not comfortable but that’s exactly what I needed. I was being misguided and misinformed, I lost the love of creating and was too focused on handling business. I am way more focused now and have way more to offer.
UrbanBridgez.com: Outside of everything else going on with the business, what keeps you motivated to keep pushing forward and not just give up?
Phreshy Duzit: Life & everything that stems from it.
UrbanBridgez.com: What would be your top 5 favorite Hip-Hop albums and why?
Phreshy Duzit: This is a tough one. So I’ll answer and tell you what artists I feel helped mold my sound. Bone Thugs & Harmony. Michael Jackson. Tupac. BIG & Kanye West. Those 5 artists all provided me with albums that inspired Phreshy Duzit. Oh yea, Fugees also.
UrbanBridgez.com: We’re celebrating 90’s R&B on our site this month, what R&B joints from the 90’s does Phreshy bump and never gets tired of?
Phreshy Duzit: I grew up on Michael, nothing specific. They were all classics to me. My mom played alot of Tevin Campbell too (laughs).
UrbanBridgez.com: You said recently many artists are in this industry and are not concerned with leaving their imprint in this game, but more so doing it to impress others…what kind of imprint are you trying to make and why is that important to you as an artist?
Phreshy Duzit: There is alot that people are afraid to talk about. Everybody right now is very political on what they choose to speak on, I don’t. My life is mine, I’ve got a story to tell. I’m a good writer, and I’m blessed to have a team that grows with me. We all have a sense of quality and a vision. I have a sound that is like no other. We have laid a foundation to make history and now is the time to execute. This is important to me because I take this seriously, I’m not doing this for fun.
UrbanBridgez.com: Is there anything else you have coming up that you want to let fans know about?
Phreshy Duzit: Look out for my Brave New World album, coming soon. My first show in NYC is coming up soon with the release of my album. Plenty of big things happening behind the scenes also, so stay tuned!