First time I heard Willz P was when he was recording with Marcus D’tray, and his voice was so soulful, i knew I had some hooks for him to do. Once we started working together we saw we had chemistry on sparking ideas for songs, and ever since, we have been trying to master the art of songwriting. Never knew our relationship outside of music would go in the direction it has, with out a doubt Willie is one of my few best friends. We have been through a lot together, good and bad, and I’m grateful for someone like Willie Pruitt in my life. This is one of those rare times, where the art brought something bigger than music, dont get me wrong, we make great music, but the friendship is way bigger. I chose this video because I think your able to hear what I heard that first day I heard his voice.-by Monstalung
Doing it for Fun Theory: 808 Circus #juneizsoundvizion Day 21
It was 2012 and up to that time I had been real strategic about my music projects and their releases. Using research, feedback, i guess, my own kind of analytics you could say. This is hard to do when your as close to the music as a producer, or songwriter, I don’t use numbers when I create (actually not true, music is nothing but numbers), I mean, it’s emotional for me, but when you run a independent company like mine you wear a lot of hats, meaning looking from a lot of different perspectives. I wouldn’t do it like that again. Artist need to be 100% creative without distractions, they just have to find someone they trust to handle their business, this is harder than making the music, but after doing it the other way, this time around, I’m going to find someone to represent us, and I’m going to do what I do passionately, make music and perform.
This new attitude and concept was spearheaded by my latest project at that time with my friend who plays drums Chris Audia, it was called 808 Circus.
808 Circus was a live DJ / Drummer act, we did live remixes, and mashups to classic hip hop, and rock on stage, anything with energy, with a custom made light laser effects show. Oh, and we also wore Morph Suits, costumes, wigs, and wrestling mask that hide our identity by the way, and it’s some of the most fun I have on stage.
Chris was playing drums for a local rock group called Shadow of a Martyr, and we (6’6 240) had done a couple shows with them, I think me and Chris was the contact person for both entities and kind of hit it off immediately through working out stuff for our bands to collaborate. Jump a year or two later, we both have free time, no current music projects, we always talked about jamming out, so we did.
The first practice we knew we had something, more important it was fun! It was exactly what I was looking for, and I got to apply my new theory to it, don’t think so much, just have fun, and I did. What that “just have fun” really means to me, is trust your art, trust what you like is dope. Me, Jathara, and my brother 6’6 240 wrote a song about blind faith on the Big Boi tactics album, it was time for me to walk it like I talk it, been on that path since, I highly recommend it.
Best thing about 808 Circus for me is the friendship with Chris that i value more than anything. We think a lot a like, we are both family guys, and hard workers. Musically we come from 2 different worlds, we both like each others world a lot, we just don’t know much about the other world, but honestly that to me is what makes it work, fusing our worlds.
After a few practices and pow wows we knew we both liked ENERGY, and we both like theatrics with live performances, the kind of stuff that might be hard to talk a full band into doing, but me and Chris was always on the same page. The gear, and load in, and load out, that it took of to create our vision (costumes,instruments, lights, sound) for live performances was extremely physically taxing, friends would help when they could, but sometimes it would be just me and Chris, but it would be worth it, but damn we needed roadies.
We had to slow it down because of a surgery I had to have, and Chris starting a family. I truly miss this project, and can’t wait to get back to it, I have so many ideas for what we can do, and so does Chris, when the time is right 808 Circus will be back.-by Monstalung
My birthday is June 17, which is always followed by Fathers Day, did not know how this year would be for me since this would be the first Fathers Day with out my father, and it was not the same, but it ended up being one to remember.
June 16, 2016
It started the night before my birthday at 123 Pleasant St for the #juneizsoundvizion show, which was just awesome with performances, and reuniting with my crew. A-Breezy flew all the way in from Los Angeles, and my brother 6’6 240, surprised me and drove in from Cleveland, which was a double treat;
1. We both started Soundvizion together back in 1999.
2. We are extreme Cleveland Browns, and Cavalier fans, and we had Game 6 on at 123 Pleasant St.
Best of all my Son, came in from Washington DC also, and having him there was just the icing on the cake! We reminisced, Cavs won, and performed together, and when the clock hit midnight I was 50 years old. Special night.
June 17, 2016
After a good sleep in from the show the night before, myself, my son, and a few freinds hit downtown for some socializing, we started at the Brew Pub, then hit The Apothecary, JW Thirsty for their awesome wings, and finally the Rocktop for a night cap and some rooftop kicking it. It was cool seeing A Breezy reaction to the new venues in Morgantown since she left.
June 18, 2016
Today was family time, so me and the wife, and my son headed out to Cheatlake http://www.coachscrabshackwv.com where we had just a great time, food, drinks, and the location is right off the lake, I will never forget the great time I had with my family. A-Breezy lives in Los Angeles, and it’s also where my wife is from, so the two of them get together all the time when my wife goes home to visit, and since this was A Breezy’s last night in town, me and my wife went out with A Breezy. We met her at Tin 202 on high St in Morgantown WV. You want to try the White Russian when you go to Tin 202, and we will end the details of this night here, just say, it was AWESOME!
June 19, 2016 (Father’s Day)
It’s Game Day, I woke up nervous, for Cleveland fans this was more than a game. No championship in any professional sport in over 50+ years makes you the butt of all sports jokes, we had a opportunity to get the last laugh today.
I needed to get my mind off the game, so me and my son went to see the movie Warcraft, it wasn’t bad, but not as good as Game of Thrones later that night (thats a whole other post), but it did the job. We got out of the movie an hour or so before tip off, we ordered Pappa Al’s Pizza (pretty good) and got ready for war.
Watching the Cavaliers win the NBA championship with my wife and son will be one of the best memories I have ever had. My father being here to expereince it, and talk to him about it was the only thing missing, but somehow I feel like he had something to do with it all. Best birthday / father day ever. -by Monstalung
Fresh Like Dougie was getting great feedback, 400,000 video views, and picked up by Music Choice TV on cable, everyone was feeling the team joining forces on the same song, so we decided to do a whole mixtape together. This song is off the “Santa & Soundvizion Save Christmas mixtape”. This song “Ah Ok” features 6’6 240, Ace Beanz, A Breezy, and Willz P, and they go in on the Jay Electronica track. Everyone had their own solo projects going on, but we were getting great music from the collaboration songs, we should of gave the “Voltron” idea a little more attention…maybe.-by Monstalung.
A lot was going on yesterday for me, reunion show with soundvizion members, family, and friends of my Soundvizion Crew, my favorite NBA team [Cleveland Cavs] had a must win game in game 6 of the NBA finals, and it midnight it was my 50th Birthday, yeah a lot going on.
The show was so good, every performance was just on point, Arch Jakob, and Lamar Roddick set it off with amazing sets each. DJ Strizy, and DJ Dollar had the vibe right all night. Sean Thrilla, Thack, and Hazy of Phyr Squad hit the stage next to start the Soundvizion set of right, followed by a dope B-Hyphen. We took a break from Soundvizion and Chris Allen and his live band did their thing! Chris performed songs from his new ep which dropped today on soundcloud called “The Struggle Theory”. After Chris, Soundvizion jumped right into it with Ace Beanz, Johnny Harmonic, A Breezy, Monstalung, WillzP, and 6’6 240. It was a great night of entertainment for local music and hip hop in morgantown. A great night to be spending time with people who shared passion and a dreams together, and have memories of OUR journey of creating music, and aspirations of mastering a craft, very special. My brother, 6’6 240, surprised me by coming to the show, he told me he wasn’t going to make it, he had to work back in Cleveland, we started this whole soundvizion thing so I wanted him there, but understood, it was awesome when I saw him walk into 123 Pleasant St. The Cavs won the game and tied up the series for a Game 7 on Sunday. I can say I had a great great birthday. -by Monstalung
Pictures from the #juneizsoundvizion show at 123 Pleasant St June 16, 2016
This picture is from 2008, I’m pretty sure that’s when we started doing our annual reunion show. Who are we? We are a hip hop collective (artist, producers, djs) out of Morgantown WV and we go by the name of SOUNDVIZION.
I came up with the name Soundvizion back in 1998, whenever I made a beat I like alot I would see images, like a video storyboard, that’s how i knew something I created was hot in my standard, so when I started my indie label in 1999, that’s what I went with.
Me and artist Ace Beanz birthdays are one day apart in June, so back around 2006 we started having Birthday Bash events at BUCKS (R.I.P BUCKS), which was fun for us, not sure how the performances was, because we would always be pretty drunk by the time we got on stage. In 2008 it morphed in to the reunion show, June is a good time where people can get time off from work to come back in town to visit.
This year I decided to create a social media campaign around the event (at least I think so, still figuring this social media stuff out), “30 Days of Soundvizion Content and posting” via social media (website, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Tumblr). Like most things I didn’t think it all the way out, I just jumped in (bad habit of mine), and did not realize the commitment I was making. This time it was a blessing in disguise, this campaign has turned into a documented walk through memory lane, these 30 days (15 so far) will be forever on my website, and I will be able to read through it like a book, each day like a chapter, that was not the objective of the campaign, but it should of been, this has been an emotional, and therapeutic process. It’s also a gift to the family of Soundvizion, because they have been able to enjoy this also.
the initial objective for #juneizsoundvizion was to promote the show this Thursday June 16, 2016 at 123 Pleasant St, but it’s truly bigger than that, this is about a group of creative friends who had dreams, and worked together to pursue them, which made each of their bonds stronger outside of the music, simply #juneizsoundvizion means family. -by Monstalung
Alot of me and Willz p writing sessions go in the direction of whatever Willie is feeling that day, but on the day we wrote this song we were both dealing with relationship issues with our significant other. Well, my wife was home that day, and heard the writing and recording of this song, and I must say, she can’t stand the song, absolutely hates it, and i understand why. It’s hard being in a relationship with a artist, everything in life finds its way back to the art, which can become overwhelming for someone who just supports the art, its hard for them to understand that creativity is all we think, dream, talk, and breathe, that shit can get old to non-artist. On the other side of that coin, the artist who can write about their pain, and issues (not all artist can do this, some stuff is too personal for some artist) learn that writing about it becomes therapeutic, and what I have seen is that the real stuff is more relate-able to the music listener. Whats the line from the movie “Five Heartbeats, pain makes great songwriters”.
Let me take this quick moment to say this to my wife, “I know I’m not easy to deal with, but you can never say I’m boring, and you want find a man who loves you more, thanks for tolerating my passion”
No need to get into the song concept, it self explanatory, and WillzP performance of the song captured all the emotions, I flipped a Al Green sample on the beat, and it’s a perfect soundtrack to the story me and Willz P was trying to tell. -by Monstalung
Download this song for FREE below
When i go digging in the crates for samples to make beats, every once in awhile i found some vinyl that just have so many amazing sounds to sample, I usually end up making up to 6-8 different beats. I have personally defined this as “sample raping”, just taking everything, no respect for the original creator ( I do respect them, but I’m sure I crossed the line of “borrowing”), as a crate digger, these albums are very rare. I remember the first time i found one, it was the soundtrack to Death Wish 4 featuring actor Charles Bronson, but the soundtrack was produced by a young Herbie Hancock, and dudeeeeeee, the samples on that album was dope!
Same thing happened with this song “Special”, I was in one of my beat making zones, where I rank out 30-40 beats in a couple of weeks, may sound like a lot, but I had help, because this one album had many great sounds on it. It was Angela Winbush, who I sampled before, but went back to find more once I found out she produced some of my favorite Isley Brothers records, and later married Ron Isley, if she was good enough for Mr Bigg Ron Isley, she was good enough for me.
I made beats for 6’6 240, Boogie Boys, Thack all of the Angela Winbush album, but this beat called “Special” was my favorite. I was saving it for A Breezy, because she didnt really have a voice heavy sample yet in her previous songs, and wanted Ace Beanz to get a verse, because certain beats I make are just perfect for Ace Beanz vocal tone, and this was one of them. At first I didnt think A Breezy was feeling the beat, but when she let me hear what she wrote, it was just how I imagined it would go, this is one of my favorite songs i have ever been involved with.-by Monstalung