What up world! We recently had the pleasure to interivew one of the hardest working dudes I know… There is a huge buzz going around about his summer hit, music videos and recent album release… he’s all “About Business.”
Anonymous: Humble, for peeps that do not know who you are, would you describe who Jason Lewis is? I don’t wanna hear about Humble Tip, but about who Jason Lewis is? Are you married? Kids? In school? Day job? …etc.
Humble Tip (HT): Jason lewis is a college graduate who works full time and also is pursuing a Master in Health & Wellness. I do not have any kids and I am not married. I’m waiting on that man, that’s serious. I’m just the average dude, working in corporate America and trying to please God daily.
Anonymous: What’s the last book you read?
HT: Revisiting America: Readings in race, culture, and conflict
Anonymous: Favorite food?
HT: Pizza, hands down.
Anonymous: Favorite movie?
HT: Bad Boys 1 & 2 (sorry, but it’s the truth)
Anonymous: Favorite cartoon?
Anonymous: What’s the one thing that just erks you?
HT: Men who never take responsibility for their actions
Anonymous: Fam, really, What’s up with the GLOVES and SCARF all the time, we’ve seen you wearing them in pics, videos and in concert? Are you always cold? 😉
HT: Haha, I started wearing the gloves because about a year or so ago, I had an outdoor concert, and it was so hot, that my hands were sweating very badly. In the middle of the concert I dropped the mic because it was slippery. Ever since then, I started wearing gloves and I haven’t dropped the mic since. Plus, it’s a branding technique, I never thought that many people would start noticing it, but it separates me from other artist, and artist distinction is key in this game.
Anonymous: I’ve seen your face plastered all over the net in what I think is a great attempt in marketing your new project “About Business.” I’ve spoken to a few people who swear you have a label underwriting your expenses. Do you have someone financially backing up your ministry or are you truly independent? If you are independent, how can you afford, recording and pressing the projects, the videos, the banners ads, etc?
HT: Man that’s a good question. Trust me; I am as independent as they come. I am a good money manager. When I get paid from iTunes, or from a concert or from hard copy CD sells I reinvest that money back into the ministry. I don’t eat off of that money. I have a full time job, that’s what I eat off of; enjoy entertainment and use for everyday living. So I guess the answer would be reinvestment. I work real hard fam, and I pray for wisdom on how to utilize the finances the Lord has blessed me with.
Anonymous: What advice would you give an indie artist that may be reading this interview hoping to break out as an artist and really market their music ministry?
HT: If you really feel God has called you to it, you have to be willing to sacrifice some things. Too many times I see artist who think they are entitled to something and they don’t want to work. They don’t want to work on the craft, on marketing, anything. Faith without works is dead fam. If God called you to it, stay diligent, persistent, and keep putting out quality music that is unique and innovative. And never forget that all of those things come AFTER your personal relationship with Him.
Anonymous: Political question: Health Care has been on the minds of the American People for most of the summer. Some argue that reinventing the heath care wheel is an expensive and strategic move for Government take over. Others argue that we only want the rich to have health insurance. Yet others argue that we can agree that Heath Care needs reform, but is a reinvention needed? What is your take on Heath Care?
HT: I don’t believe in this “everybody should be equal stuff”. If I’m grinding harder than somebody else, than I am entitled to more than they are, point blank. So, I’m not really feeling this whole universal health care thing. No one needs to be in charge of my insurance accept me. Period. But I do think it’s a strategic move by the government, they’re up to something man foreal. It’s entirely too much activity taking place in the government with the forcing of digital cable, and the forcing of H1N1 vaccines, and every car having to have gps systems in the near future, man it’s all leading up to what we all know is coming.
Anonymous: For the Geeks: PC or Mac?
HT: PC. I’m a regular guy and not complicated at all.
Anonymous: Internet Explorer or Firefox?
HT: Firefox seems more reliable to me.
Anonymous: For the Gamers: XBox or PS3?
HT: PS3 to the death. I love the controls and the gameplay always is easier to adapt to.
Anonymous: Favorite Game?
HT: Tekken 3. CLASSIC
Anonymous: Bro, tell us about your new project “About Business.” Who are some of your guest appearances? Who produced ya tracks? Who did ya graphics?
HT: The most noticeable guest appearances are Drama and Maub. But I usually like to put my younginz on, so I have other guest on the project that many people don’t really know about, but they are nice none the less. Man I go coast to coast for production but I didn’t work with any Christian producers on this project. For the graphics I stayed in house with Technique Design Labs. They keep giving me heat to work with.
Anonymous: My personal favorite track is probably the beat box joint… you straight killed it! What’s your favorite track on the album? Why?
HT: I think my two favorite tracks were “We Aint Going Nowhere” and “Burn, Burn” just because I really felt like I went in on those tracks.
Like on “We Aint Going Nowhere” I say, “Relax and take notes, Christ gave me His words and said these words you may quote/ so I parade the Gospel around like a float/ We aint going nowhere is what I scream, like a float/ I should have drowned in sin, but His love kept me a float.”
And on Burn, Burn the topic is just so serious and the piano line is so alluring it really captures you.
Anonymous: What track has gotten the biggest buzz?
HT: “S.P.F” and “The Good Life” hands down. S.P.F because the dance is a little revolutionary in the Christian game and the “The Good Life” because it has such a pop feel, but the message is still clear so it hits two very different markets.
Anonymous: “My Pride” is a pretty sincere joint. Over the last few years, there have been several artists dropping joints describing their challenges with pride, but that seems like the only struggle discussed within CHH. And quite frankly almost always comes across self-righteous. Why don’t we hear artists talk about struggles like pornography and sexual immorality, these seem to be most prominent in CHH. Do you think CHH needs more transparency? Do you think the artists would feel judged by our community if they talk about such topics?
HT: Uh Duh, cuz its embarrassing, you already knew that. What artist want’s to say, “uh hey, 2 weeks ago I had sex with someone”. I mean that’s just the reality of the situation. That’s why I respect Flame from CM so much because on his second project he went in and told about how he “ventured into porn” and “told Tonic that he was going to have to chill” as far as putting the mic down. In the public eyes porn is like that unforgiveable sin. But I do think it needs to be discussed in further detail. I know I have had my bouts with it. I never really struggled with it like that, but there were those times on the CPU when I knew that Christ wasn’t pleased. I never spit about it though because it was never a major struggle of mine and pride was.
Anonymous: I gotta be honest, I’m an east coast, back packing, classic hip hop fan. So I tend to favor the hard hitting boom bap beats and the straight in your face, raw, lyrical joints and love that word play. Again, I gotta be honest, that SPF joint comes across trendy almost cheesy to cats like me… but it was a HUGE summer hit. I’ve seen footage of cats repeating the lyrics with you on stage and doing a dance to it… so, to get to the question, how would respond to cats who question your artistry as an emcee because it’s not their flavor of hip hop?
HT: At the end of the day the only thing that matters is lyrics. Point blank. In my opinion, you can’t deny the lyricism of that track. K-Drama delivers extremely tough truth, D-Maub kills it with his flow, and I come through delivering my usual comedic, clever and witty punchlines. Some people think it’s corny and that’s cool. But, when I do a show, and 300 people are all smiling, doing the dance and having a good time, I’m happy. I get to the end of sets and people are chanting S.P.F, S.P.F, its fun man. Plus, as an artist you want to be diverse. I feel like a lot of Christian emcees never want to think out of the box, if they’re east coast they only want to do east coast type tracks, they never smile, never want to do fun tracks and really move the crowd past a simple lil head bob and hand wave. And then on the other end, I think some artist only want to jump up and down and get krunk but they never want to give true lyricism. I’m trying to do both, and you’re bound to get people who aint feeling it, but a lot of my fans are, and I’m cool with that.
Anonymous: What do you want to accomplish as an Christian Hip-Hop Artist? What do you want to accomplish as a Minister of God’s everlasting, redemptive and life changing Gospel?
HT: For me as a person I just want to be used in whatever capacity the Lord sees fit, be it as a musician or as a Sunday school teacher. I want to serve the Lord. For me as an artist I want to constantly work on the art of rhyming and writing good music, not just good hip-hop, but good music. As far as the ministry, I want to reach as many people as I can with the message of the Gospel. And as far as my impact on the industry, I want to do the impossible. I want to take this genre to heights we thought were ridiculous to even dream about. Rev. Jerry Falwell said, “have a vision so big, that unless God intervenes it will fail”, I have adopted that mentality.
Anonymous: Bro, thanks for kicking it with us… the platform is yours, tell cats whatever is on your heart!
HT: Love Christ first and show His love to your brothers. Hate sin so much that you don’t want to be close to it. And do you, regardless of what the rules of this music game are, if you feel it’s hot, in your heart, DO IT, as long as it doesn’t contradict scripture.
Ministry over industry and favor over finance.