Mr Melta on Latest Release, Growing Up in Cambridge & More [Interview] [@MrMelta @BlackBudget]
For those of you that may not be in the know, Mr Melta (Chris Jones- Barrie), is an underground UK hip hop emcee from just outside the nations capital, Cambridge. Starting out on the local Drum and Bass scene, Mr Melta, has been learning his trade for around 5 years.
Since starting out in the Hip hop scene, Melta has been going from strength to strength, supporting UK hip hop acts like Fliptrix and Kyza and receiving a warm reception for his first mixtape, Meltdown Vol 1.
Currently, Melta is promoting his latest release, Meltdown Vol 2, which was release in July 2012 via respected hip hop mixtape series UK Runnings. Off the back of all this, we at Black Budget Entertainment decided to give Metla a shout for an exclusive text based interview, read below!
Tell us a little bit about yourself
Well, Im Mr Melta, a rapper/mc from Cambridge, and I make Hip- Hop and Grime, although I do dabble in other genres such as Drum and Bass and Dubstep. I make conscious, witty music that is based on my thoughts, opinions and feelings, as well as how I perceive the world. I do not glamorize crime and violence, as I am lucky enough to have not experienced very much of it in my upbringing or my day to day existence. I try and represent myself, and hope that that comes across in my music.
What made you choose the name?
To be honest, I didn’t really choose the name! I was named ‘Face Melter’ by an old friend of mine who used to book me for Drum and Bass nights, but I thought the name was a bit much, so changed it to Mr Melta!
What, if any, are the main influences for you when writing your music?
My main influences I think are my feelings at the time, if im having a rubbish time, or something is bothering me, I write about it, its kinda my way of getting stuff off my chest. I can be quite reserved with my emotions and feelings, so music is my release in a way. Similarly, if things are going well, and im enjoying life, my songs may be more light hearted. People tend to like my deeper stuff more though. I guess I should be a miserable bastard more often hahaha!
Whats it like trying to become a rapper form a rural village, outside the capital?
Its obviously difficult in some respects, as there was no scene in my village, and people would laugh at you to a degree, but once I separated myself from them, and moved to Cambridge, I found there was a local scene, which consists of some very hardworking and talented people! Its both a blessing and a curse not being in London, a blessing in that the scene here isn’t oversaturated, so you can stand out more, a curse in that some people think you are a gimmick, or are not ‘keeping it real’ because Cambridge is seen as a very rich city, which to a degree it is. I try not to put to much emphasis on where im from, although I do talk about my surroundings, because what I talk about is relevant to my life. I think people from anywhere can relate to my music because I talk about things we all experience and go through in life.
What is the main theme behind your last project, “Meltdown Vol 2”?
With ‘Meltdown Vol 2’ , I really wanted to introduce myself to the scene, as although I had released two previous collections of tracks, these where pretty much just put on my soundcloud and left there, with a bit of promotion from myself, and a few bits of radio play, I had not released anything ‘properly’ as it where. I wanted to show my diversity and have some fun with a wide selection of beats. I used existing instrumentals that I liked, and got a wide range of flavors across the project, and showcased my ability to adapt to different styles and BPM. I reached out to Tricksta and UK Runnings to help with hosting and promotion of the mixtape, and I have seen a lot of good return, in as far as bookings around Cambridge, producers wanting to work with me, a bit of local and internet radio play, and a lot of new connections and collaborations!
From the writing to the release stage, probably about 4 or 5 months all together! As I work a 9-5 job, and Stirleng, who’s studio I recorded it at does too, we had to record it mostly in evenings, so it did take a while!
Who features on the production?
Well the beats are all existing beats, but I had beats by DJ Premier, Soka Beats, Beatgeeks, I think even a beat from a Sizla track on there, but none where made for me, they where all ‘borrowed’!
How did it feel to support for artists like Fliptrix and Kyza?
Getting the Fliptrix support booking was a great feeling, as him and Verb-T and the rest of High Focus are very highly regarded in the scene! The booking itself could’ve gone better, as there where a few set time and technology issues which meant me and Offcut (another Cambridge MC who features on Meltdown Vol 2) pretty much had to freestyle our set! But its all experience, and definatley one for the resume! The Kyza support booking is again a very good feeling, and ive got to shout out Mistah Biggz and Dillah for booking me for that gig, they’ve helped me out quite a bit, and are doing their thing, so shout out B-iLLA!
Tell us a bit about your next project “Anti Swagger EP”?
Well, ‘Anti-Swagger’ is a project ive done with Stakka Lyrics, who is also known as S-class from Delegates of Culture, who where one of the first, and most influential, crews in Cambridge, so working with Stakka is an honour! It consists of 7 tracks, all produced by Stakka, and covers a nice diverse range of styles on subjects. I think we’re going to release it as a free download. Im really happy with it, and the few people who have heard what we have so far have given us really good feedback. Im excited to get it out there, as it will be my first proper release, with original production, since I started getting more involved in the scene, and getting my name out there.
Is there a release dat set for it?
Not as yet, as we are waiting on a couple of things, artwork and a guest verse, and a bit of mastering, but im really hoping we can get it out before the end of the year.
Have you got any features lined up for it?
So far I have Stakka featuring on 3 tracks, as well as fellow Cambridge guys Kosh and Dillah, and im planning on one more feature, but I cant tell you who yet, as im waiting on confirmation. If that falls through I have another artist I would like to jump on the track, but again, I cant say to much until things are confirmed.
What are the plans for the future?
Well I have just released a video for my track Day Off, which is the first track off another E.P I am in the process of making, with Cambridge producer Rumulak, which has been well received. I am looking to do a video for at least one track off Anti-Swagger as well. My plan is to release Anti-Swagger as a free download, with the Day Off video building hype around my Remulak produced E.P, which is called ‘Snap Out Of It’, which will probably drop early 2013, then I have another project lined up with another local producer, JasoKay, which will probably drop around March, and will have a different sound, then I am hoping to get the final Meltdown mixtape recorded and released before the end of next year. All the while I will be doing collabs, and hopefully getting some more shows!
Thanks for your time, is there anyone you would like to shout out?
No worries, thanks for the interview!
Id like to shout out my boys Stirleng, Offcut, Ziffamitsu, Remulack, Stakka and all the Delegates, Kosh, Rhymepad Radio, Jimmy Danger, Steve and all the Newt Labs gang, B-Illa, Tricksta and Park Street PR, JasoKay, Technically Sound, Robbott, S.O.N out in Baltimore, Deeze, Just-P, Dubble-G and Subtrax, Slang Immaculate, Dirty Dike and Contact Play, Twiggz and JTC and anyone else who has helped, supported and worked with me, and of course my lady Geri for putting up with all the talk of music! I hope I didnt forget too many people!
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