Undone: Bigg Ceaser talks new video, A Story Untold album, racism & more
With his next project A Story Untold set to drop in the near future, Canadian recording artist Bigg Ceaser has released his latest single and video.
The song “UNDONE,” produced by Cornwall, Ontario’s Woodlyn Beats and featuring Jor’Del Downz, sees Ceaser looking back and reflecting on his life and career in the music industry.
“‘UNDONE’ is the result of me really thinking deep about how far I have come in life,” the veteran lyricist told us in a recent email exchange.
“It really has been a long and winding road. At this point in my career I just really want to make quality music. I feel that a lot of rap these days doesn’t really say much at all. So I wanted to make a radio ready song that kept the integrity of my pen game. Actually say something with it.”
The accompanying video for “UNDONE,” directed by Alexander Ciprian, does a great job capturing the essence of the track.
“When I met up with Alex to shoot the video, we wanted to make it look like I was just going about my day while I thought to myself about where I have been in my life and where I want to end up.”
While our recent interview with Ceaser focuses largely on the new single and what we can expect from A Story Untold, he also opens up about some of the tough situations he’s been dealing with lately. From relationships ending to adjusting to sharing custody with his son, Ceaser has had no shortage of weight on his shoulders as he worked towards completing the album. But, ultimately, it’s fueled his creative spirit, and created a desire for growth and change.
“All of these experiences have forced growth and forced me to look at myself and what I need to change to become a better, stronger man. They say pressure makes diamonds, right? So this album is all ME while under pressure, no filters or contrived persona.”
Check out the the video for “UNDONE” and our Q&A with Bigg Ceaser below. You can find Bigg Ceaser’s music on various digital streaming platforms including Apple Music, Spotify, and TIDAL.
Q&A: Bigg Ceaser
HipHopCanada: Welcome Bigg Ceaser and congrats on the new release! Before we talk about that I wanted to ask how you’ve been holding up during the pandemic? How has your creative approach been impacted by the change to rules and regulations?
Bigg Ceaser: Honestly, the first two months of lockdown were rough. I had to adjust to being quarantined alone after a recent break up and it shook me hard. I smoked a lot of trees and hash but once I sunk my teeth into the new album it became a blessing. The slow down granted me time to really cultivate something tangible. I lived in the studio, between making my own music, producing and engineering for other artists and maintaining my graphic design and multimedia services, I didn’t go out much regardless of the pandemic. So my creative approach was ignited by the shut down, this album ultimately gave me an escape from the stresses of dealing with the pandemic.
HipHopCanada: What inspired you to write the new single? Is there a particular situation that sparked the creative process behind it?
BC: I have been doing a gang of self discovery in the last 12 months. Realizing what is really important in life, thinking about what I want to leave behind for my son etc. “UNDONE” is the result of me really thinking deep about how far I have come in life. It really has been a long and winding road. At this point in my career I just really want to make quality music. I feel that a lot of rap these days doesn’t really say much at all. So I wanted to make a radio ready song that kept the integrity of my pen game. Actually say something with it. I’ve noticed rappers hardly ever show vulnerability but the ones who do have generally created art that resonates with listeners. And I feel that is what I have created.
HipHopCanada: What lead you to choose the producers and guest appearance featured on the single?
BC: I was really looking for a current sound, something radio ready. My boy Woodlyn Beats from Cornwall makes some serious industry style beats. I asked him for a few options and what became “UNDONE” was the one I liked the most. I sent it to Jor’Del Downz with just the verses and bridges. He is seriously one the most talented artists I have ever met. He is a MC, singer and producer who creates a product better than most of his peers in my opinion, bugs me out how he has such a great ear and manages to engineer records being blind. Salute Jor’del for real. He was able to really capture what I was trying to say with that chorus, IT MOVES ME DEEPLY. It’s one of the best collabs I have ever done.
HipHopCanada: How did you connect with director Alexander Ciprian?
BC: We met at Unity Market in Barrie through our homies LS and Spenny, two phenomenal artists in their own right. We realized after working together we both wanted to create and produce visuals that are like movies with real cinematography. We’re both tired of the money phone, rental car, Hennessy bottle, crew in front of a graffiti wall or basketball court, point and shoot type videos. We share a passion for really pushing the envelope.
Before “UNDONE” we did an in studio video for a song I have called “Respect The Process.” He shot it and I edited it. This time round, “UNDONE” was shot and edited by Alexander, conceptualized by both of us. Just wait until y’all see what we have coming after this one.
HipHopCanada: What’s the concept behind the “UNDONE” video?
BC: When I met up with Alex to shoot the video, we wanted to make it look like I was just going about my day while I thought to myself about where I have been in my life and where I want to end up. I start out at the barber (shout out to Crown Barber & Beauty in Midland, Ontario), then I head out into nature to gather my thoughts. This video is very straight forward but the footage makes it. We were fortunate enough to shoot most of it out in Tiny Township along Georgian Bay. What Alex captured is just amazing. Introspection is definitely a main factor in a lot of my music currently. Probably stems from being an older rap artist and experiencing life for a minute and surviving it. I’m truly grateful for where I am at.
HipHopCanada: What can people expect from your next project A Story Untold?
BC: First and foremost it’s MY life story. My successes, my failures, the good, the bad, the ugly. Anyone who knows me will tell you when it comes to rap I am a purist. Most of the time all that matters is bars. And with this album the pen is still very important but conceptually things are a lot more insightful. There is a lot of storytelling from a first person perspective. My beat selection is vastly different too. I produced a few beats myself but the bulk of the album has production from SoSpecial and Toronto’s Big Sproxx, who in my opinion is the best producer on the planet. I had been wanting to work with him for a long time. I am hoping to have him mix and master this whole project. Also, it may not be the current way things are done but I wanted to create a project you can enjoy as a whole, from start to finish. The whole album tells a story. I am not focused on just dropping singles. This is what I like to call grown man music. It’s REAL but not in the cliché “keep it real” way.
HipHopCanada: How do you feel about the ongoing civil rights protests in America and other parts of the world?
BC: Thank you for asking these questions. I have been extremely vocal regarding civil rights long before George Floyd came along. I personally feel the only option is revolution, so the protests are needed. We’re talking about centuries of systematic genocide and oppression.
I also feel it’s not as much a race war as it is a class war. Race is obviously a huge trigger for many people, but if you really start to catch the play it’s a small percentile of elites vs the rest of us. It all comes down to power and control, it’s just now that people are more informed and acting on it. But my concern is once it’s not “news” anymore do we go back to the way it’s always been or actually be active in forcing change.
HipHopCanada: How do you feel about racism in Canada?
BC: 95% of my people are either black or indigenous. Both parties experience astounding amounts of racism still to this day. The worst kind is the subtle things that are ingrained into society. Things people don’t even realize are racist. White privilege is a very real thing. I try to explain the best I can that it’s not a thing people need to ask for but that it’s just granted based on the color of their skin. But I do feel we are in a pivotal time and something has to give eventually.
HipHopCanada: Ceaser, thank you for taking the time to answer some questions! Last one for now… what memory do you think will stick out the most several years from now when you think on creating this album?
BC: This album taught me to slow down. I used to constantly release music thinking that’s how to gain traction but they were all soft releases. Basically what I could do within my means at the time. This album though has been a solid two year process. I have created a real story with this album. The memories during this time are not all pleasant though. My son’s mom left me after 10 years, I then fell into a depression for a while then I started a new relationship last fall and things were good for a bit but then that ended recently too. I have had to adjust to not having my son full time either, I’ve moved three times since December on top of that. But all of these experiences have forced growth and forced me to look at myself and what I need to change to become a better, stronger man. They say pressure makes diamonds, right? So this album is all ME while under pressure, no filters or contrived persona.
I just hope people listen.
You can follow @BiggCeaserMusic on Instagram.
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