Twizzie & Pré [Profile]
Calgary, AB – Last month’s 10 at 10 at UBU Lounge had some killer performances, capped off by the up and coming Twizzie & Pré. Coming from opposite ends of the scene, from the battle and King of the Dot world of Twizzie to the RnB influences of Pré, the two have come together to bring a fresh new twist to hip-hop in Calgary.
HipHopCanada: How do you define hip-hop, and where do you feel you fit into that definition?
Pré: Simply put hip hop is a form of expression, I don’t think you can categorize it as just a musical genre anymore either, I think where me and Twizzie fit in, is just for the fact that we are artists in the genre. You could be a graphic artist, but still be a hip hop artist.
Twizzie: Hip Hop is a lifestyle, and there are many forms of it. Its not just Emceeing. I am an Emcee. And my job is send a message to people in a form of art.
HipHopCanada: What drives you to stay in a business that is rarely profitable and highly competitive?
Pré: Personally before a career was ever thought of I did it for love of the music, I think the most important thing to remember in times like these (the come up) is to stay focused and to remember what you’re in it for. It was never about profit, strictly for the love.
Twizzie: Yep same. I loved doing music since I was a kid, didn’t really care about profits. Till’ eventually you get older and live in the real world and realize you cant just do music ya gotta get out there and work a daily job. But my passion for music is unlike anything else in my life so I definitely wanna get to a point where I can balance both Passion and Priorities. I feel when I can make a living with just doing music that’s when I can be fully focused and create my best work, and I do see it happening for us in the near future.
HipHopCanada: Where are you based specifically?
Twizzie: We’re both based out of Calgary but I was born and grew up in the Philippines so yea I rep that a lot. Plus Pre is half flip too.
HipHopCanada: How has living there influenced your sound?
Pré:I’m not so sure if the actually city in itself has influenced my music. If anything it was the music I grew up to, I listened to a ton of rnb, from 112, Jagged Edge, boyz 2 men, old school usher R Kelly, and of course Aaliyah, bit of Dru Hill. List could go for days, but I think the rnb genre of hip hop is something that is coming up right now, as we see with fellow Canadian musician drake. And that’s where most of my influence has mostly come from other then my own personal experiences.
Twizzie: Yea my influences are artists from outside the city. But Calgary def has tons of talents and I just discovered this by doin shows the last 7 months that I’ve done shows. I’m heavily influence by punk/metal music. That’s what I did before I got into hip hop. And then once I was into Hip Hop I was into the grimy Horrocore side of hip hop but as time progressed I got into New school, Conscious now even the Mainstream side of it.
HipHopCanada: Who is your primary fan base?
Pré:From what I’ve seen, my fan base has a fairly large demographic. I’ve had girls at the age of 12 tell me they listen to my stuff, from fellow musicians my own age up to men and women in their late 20’s early 30’s. I don’t make music about flipping keys and workin in the hood, it’s just relatable. Things we all go through.
Twizzie: Id say the more Hardcore hip hop fans for me. My solo music is not for the average hip hop listener, Id say I’m kind of experimental so I don’t really have a targeted fan base. Although I got supportive Battle rap fans since I’ve made quite a name for myself in KOTD scene.
HipHopCanada: What tips would you give young artists coming up, or what do you wish someone would have told you when you first started out in the hip-hop industry?
Pré: Depends on what their ambition and goal is really, for someone just coming up, I’d tell them to stick it through and stay true to themselves. To help their song development, I’d tell them to write the songs that come from the heart, you know it’s real when the song writes itself. I never really had too much advice first coming up, is was mostly trial and error on my own, and I almost prefer it that way, each mistake is a lesson learned.. so go make some mistakes!
Twizzie: Be you. Don’t try to be nobody else. Create your own style express yourself in your own way. I swagger-jacked so many artists tryin to find a sound I’m comfortable with. But I started becoming more successful when I just did what I wanted. Now my sound and personality in the scene really sticks out. Don’t take criticism personally they are there to help you improve.
HipHopCanada: In which ways do you interact with your community?
Twizzie: Shows. Networking. Going to events to support my local artists.
HipHopCanada: Which artists have you worked with that left an impression on you, and why?
Pré: Most the artists I work with leave a good impression on me, small little gems of motivation or inspiration. EJ Negre is my visual director, and he keeps me motivated to stay on the grind, a second wasted sleeping could mean the difference between success and failure. I’ve worked with New’L , A.O.N. Fly Guy, CruZ, and now with Twizzie, and one thing they all have in common is a strong passion for music, and a great ambition along to boot. I enjoy surrounding myself with people like that, keeps me motivated.
Twizzie: My Hip-Hop crew ContraVerse. I love them. There’s me, Rebecca Dawn, Rubix, DJ Jayzen & DJ Scarlett Theres 5 of us and we all have different styles but we work together so well. We help each other improve. Most of all they are people that are close to me that have the same passion for music like as much as I do. And then of course there’s Pre. These people are inspiring to me as friends and as fellow musicians.
HipHopCanada: Which Canadian artist would you most like to collaborate with?
Pré: I’d love to work with up and comer “The-Weeknd” He’s creating a sound and influence that I don’t think has been done before. From his lyrics to his instrumentals, everything is on point. Obviously Drake would be great to work with, however I think our sounds might almost be too similar at the moment. I enjoy having diversity on a song.
Twizzie: The Weeknd , the rapper Shad or Dallas Green.
HipHopCanada: Tell us about past and present successes, as well as future projects?
Pré: I’ve really only been into the industry about a year now, however I think me and my team have a good head start. I signed my first record deal this past summer, and have been in the studio recoding my first professional studio album. Still untitled but it’s in the works to be out late summer. I dropped a short mixtape on past birthday October 19th, and received upwards of 1200 downloads within the first 2 months or so. As for short term goals here, me and Twizzie will be putting out “Songs About Her” sometime early this march so be on the lookout for that.
Twizzie: To be honest I’ve only been takin hip hop seriously maybe the past 8 months. Before that I’ve recorded 2 mixtapes “The Dirty Bazement” Vol.1 and 2 by myself. But the past 8 months has I been really grinding doing shows collaborating and off course battling in KOTD. My 5th battle will be next month. I wanna get the “Songs about Her” EP out as by March. Then start working on my next solo project. I also have a ContraVerse mixtape with my crew in the works. I wanna lots of music and hopefully tour this year.
HipHopCanada: Any last words for the HipHopCanada online community?
Pré: I just want to say thank you for the honour to be apart of this, there’s links below on how to find us on youtube, twitter, and facebook. I’d love to hear any and all feedback from anyone. I also want to just give a short message and encourage everyone to keep their head up, stay grindin stay true and be you. I love you.
Twizzie: Thanks for having us. Hip Hop definitely isn’t dead it lives in the North so lets keep it going. Our EP “Songs About Her” should be out springtime its an EP with a storytelling concept within each tracks Parts 1-3 about a relationship. Check out my battles on youtube by searching “Twizzie vs” guaranteed entertainment King of the Dot is the premier battle league in the world right now. Keep supporting Canadian Hip Hop. Lastly I’d like to give a huge shout out to Erin Thorburn-Watt for our gorgeous artist photos.
For more information on both Twizzie and Pré, check the following links.
Twizzie Music: www.reverbnation.com/twiztedsound
Twizzie Fan Page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Twizzie/135159744401
Twizzie soundclick: www.soundclick.com/twizzie
Pré YOUTUBE: http://www.youtube.com/user/PreOfficial403
Pré Twitter: @Pre_Presbitero