(2)Dope Questions With Shawn Chrystopher

blame it on Meka February 27, 2009

Next up on the (2)Dope hot seat is one of Inglewood’s up & comers, Shawn Chrystopher. We talk about individuality and conformity, the city of champions and why the Staples Center > Great Western Forum [1]. Check it out.

[1] It’s the Forum all day, eh day for me though.

In a world of conformity, what do you think takes to stand out as an individual?

Every person on Earth is different, that’s a given, but for some reason, in music, artists tend to try their best to fit a mold and play things safe.  There is a very thin line between major success and major failure, and some people are just too scared to fail to try anything different.

I tell my friends all the time that there are many similarities between basketball and music; more specifically the Lakers.  If there is 1 second left on the clock, and the team is down by 1, there’s no doubt in anyone’s mind that Kobe is going to be the one to shoot the shot.  If Kobe makes the shot at the buzzer, the entire city is on his side; everyone loves him.  However if Kobe misses it, everyone’s mad at him and wondering why he didn’t shoot a better looking shot.  Then there is Luke Walton. Whether Kobe makes or misses the shot at the buzzer, everyone still feels the exact same way about Luke.  Well many musicians want to play it safe and rather be Luke Walton and maintain the little notoriety that they’ve gained than to put themselves out there and be Kobe.

So, in order to be an individual you have to not be afraid to fail, do something different, and be confident that when that buzzer sounds, your shot is going in the basket.

Inglewood is becoming the new melting pot for a diverse range of artists from the West. What makes this particular city stand out from the rest?

I think Inglewood is so much different than many cities around the country just because of its actual position geographically.  Growing up in Inglewood, I’m 5 minutes away from Los Angeles, 10 minutes from Hollywood, 10 minutes from Beverly Hills, and 10 minutes from the beach.  With that being said, the music that is coming out of the city reflects that heavily; it’s not one-sided.  The artists in Inglewood have experienced the highest of highs by traveling to Hollywood to party every weekend, as well as the lowest of lows in just struggling to keep our heads above water Monday thru Friday.

People really see that and feel it through our music, and relate to many of the topics in our songs; we’ve just been getting the respect we deserve as of late.

BONUS: Great Western Forum or Staples Center, and why?

This is hard. Even though people reading this will probably be mad at me, I’m going with the Staples Center.

There is so much history in the Great Western Forum, but everyone has that “what have you done for me lately” mentality and the the Staples Center is where we won our last 3 Championships, where Kobe went baseline on Yao Ming, and where Kobe dropped 81.