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Hot! ESG; Everyday Street Gangsta Exclusive Interview

E.S.G –
Houston’s Everyday Street Gangsta is a Corporate Thug by Day, Millennium Gangsta By Night

by: The Journalista

Where is southern rapper ESG hiding these days?

Many have asked this question. But, ESG is where he’s always been. Houston is where he resides and keeping the Screwed Up Click legacy alive is his mission. He’s released songs and mixtapes almost every year since 1994 and he’s still got his H Town/SUC family on his side.

I spoke with ESG recently about his new album Everyday Street Gangsta (E1 Music,) his ties to SUC, got his thoughts on independent deals, the Dallas music scene and even got a lesson in Swag 101.

Where has ESG been hiding?

He hasn’t been and he says real hip hop isn’t hiding either. It just moved down south.

How long has it been since your last studio album?
Well the last official album, it’s been about five years. I’ve released several mixtapes with unreleased music. This is my year. I’ve hooked back up with Slim Thug and some more of my n****s. It’s fixing to go down this year.

How does it feel to have the album complete after a year of hard work?
It feels good. Just like buying an old school car. You slabbed out the paint and it’s ready to go. We got hip hop on smash. Knowing you’re from Houston, they try to pigeon hole hip hop. We been major for years. Its time for the world to see ESG. To see the Big Hawks and the Big Moes. People are finally coming around.

How is the album Everyday Street Gangsta different than your past albums?
Because in the past, I pretty much didn’t give a damn what the bloggers and critics said. We’ve never really cared what they thought about the music cause we always been in our own lane. On this one I made it more national rather than regional. It’s a complete album for people that don’t know about ESG.
Everyday Street Gangsta is an autobiography. If you’re a fan of good quality music, you’ll be willing to listen to the whole album. I made it more universal. But it’s still for my street and hood niggas. But everybody can relate to the album. I have my 8 year old son on there, so you know that’s not a street record. (laughs)

Tell us about the content on Everyday Street Gangsta?
I got s*** for my real niggas, my hood niggas. Got Bun B on (the single) Still Tippin.’ I got some real slowed out gangsta grooves.

Do you have personal relationships with all the special guests on Everyday Street Gangsta?
Yeah, that’s pretty much how I am. I’ve never been a dick rider, trying to leach off someone else. When Universal signed Slim (Thug), they tried to separate us. Slim went to Koch (now E1 Music.) I helped put him and Lil Flip out there. Chamillionaire, we still cool. Scarface, Master P, Baby, we cool.

How do you feel about one song deals that independent artists are getting now?
It’s good for D-town. I pretty much helped that movement as much as I could. There’s a lot of Dallas artists I was doing biz with before they was ever on the map.

I don’t knock no man on how he eat. I think that labels are more happy to have artists that have one hot song so they can sell all the ringtones. If you don’t have a second song, they throw you to the curb. It’s like a quicky with a woman, you don’t think about the longevity. They don’t have to invest in the artists. Some of the labels love dumb n****s because they don’t know what questions to ask.

How do you feel about the recognition that Dallas artists (like Dorrough) are receiving all of a sudden?
Right now with the exposure a got, they gonna already pigeon hole you.
The game has changed a lot. People starvin’ a little bit. They don’t buy albums like they use to. They gone respect me. For nine years, I stayed being booked with concerts and grinding. We just showing that we major with no major deal. When you take an artist like us, we gotta everything ourselves.

We’ve never gotten the recognition and respect we deserve. I’ve sold half a million, which really should be a million. A lot of the mom & pop stores don’t have SoundScan.

If you could teach Swag 101, what lessons would you teach in your swag class?
#1, A man should not dance when he’s drenching sweat in the club. If you got fresh and clean and went to the club, you should not be dancing.
#2, This is for my playas. If a woman doesn’t except your come on, don’t call her a bitch cause she didn’t wanna holla.
#3, This is for the women. Wear your skinny jeans, but once they start cuffin’ your ass, it’s time to let them go.
#4, If you can’t afford a real one, don’t buy a boot leg. Don’t spend $300 or $400 on a knock-off.
And #5, don’t wear tall tee‘s. What the hell is a tall tee?

Are you working with any new southern artists that we may not have heard of yet?
Well first, there’s a difference. You got your radio success and your hood success. Take ATL [for example.] In the hood, you may hear Jeezy or Gucci the most, but T.I. is on the radio. You hear Boosie in the club, but Lil Wayne on the radio. That’s how I am. Once you get in the hood you hear ESG, people that got the hood behind them. When I’m in NY. I just may pose for one or two pictures, but when I’m in the south, it goes down.

Is the Screwed Up culture where you predicted it to be in 2009?
Of course not. In the independent game, you gotta have the right distribution. It’s hard for the Screwed Up Click artists to get out there. That’s why I accepted this deal with Koch (E1 Music.) We’re glad to see SUC make any kind of noise. That goes for southern artists in general. We just trying to hold on to SUC. We gone hold it down with these country rap tunes. It’s time for artists like me to make them respect the SUC sound. We’ve been giving quality music, where people are like, ‘we can listen to this.’

Wow, ESG. You are a real n***a. We need more like you in the industry to eradicate the “shady” ones. I hate to leave you, but our time is almost up. What’s on your mind?
S***, I’m just showing love to my soldiers in hip hop, Slim Thug, Chamillionaire. We showing love to soldiers in Iraq. We showing love to all the real homies, Michael Jackson, DJ Screw, Big Moe, Pimp C.

We the new millenium gangstas. We corporate thugs. That’s what we on now. True gangstas take care of their kids, their wives and respect their elders.

Everybody hit me up on I’m a hold it down. I’m a real boss in the game, gone keep doing my thang. Sept . 29 its going dyne, not down, but D-Y-N-E!!

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