Last year, Propane (The Savage Prince of Boss City) released his street album, Tha Next Problem, which was well-received by fans. There have been many rappers to build buzz, but few have built the way Propane has. While he has several releases under his belt, he credits much of his success to Tha Next Problem.
Though the album was put together by those Propane knows personally and was highly popular on a local scale, it gained him national attention. As he prepares his next album, Propane has reflected on the success of the project. Over the past year, many have gotten to know Propane’s music.
Propane has become one of the most popular rappers in both Shreveport and Bossier City in Louisiana. With both cities being close to each other, it has been easy for Propane to spread Tha Next Problem through both cities. Recently, Propane spoke to Hip Hop Vibe about what he considers his breakout album.
Read the entire interview below:
What was the concept behind Tha Next Problem? The concept for Tha Next Problem, it was a definitive album for me. It was my first album, my opening in the game. The project was an eye-opener in the area I am from. I wanted to show everyone I was the next big problem, in rap music that is, in Shreveport and Bossier City. Overall, the concept was being a problem in the game.
Can you discuss the album cover and the inspiration for it? When I was incarcerated, I earned the nickaname from Propane by other inmates. I used to call myself Professor, because my lyrics were knowledegable. But, when I was rapping, they encouraged me to call myself Propane. For short, they were already calling me Pro, so I decided to change it to Propane. When I jump on the track, I am explosive, I want to blow up the track and incenerate any artist who is on the track. This is how I wanted to approach each track and I incorporated this into my album cover.
On the cover, it is a nuclear explosion and my fist is balled because I made the explosion happen. On the cover, my head is down because I am moving on and looking for the next challenge, Tha Next Problem. To the industry, I feel as if I am really “the next problem.”
How did it feel to get in the studio and work with so many local legends? It felt good, going in I was trying to perfect everything. At the time, I felt like I needed to make a major impression every time, because they were veterans and I was the newcomers. I wanted to make music people wanted to hear more than once when I went in the studio. When I recorded and wrote a song, I went in wanting to put together a product the people wanted to buy.
Who were some of the people who inspired Tha Next Problem? A friend of mine named Cain, who was incarcerated, we used to rap together. When I got out, I pushed his music and mine. I was doing the music for my brother, who loved my music. I loved my music, I poured my pain into it. The album was inspired by my son, wanting to give him the life I never had and I wanted to make it up to my son for missing so much time with him.
What was it like when Tha Next Problem hit the streets? It was love. Everybody liked the singles I released. I ended up getting on the radio with my singles. There was a lot of radio spins, including KHAM Radio. Soon, other artists reached out to me and I got in music videos and songs with other artists. Also, I ended up making a lot of money off the album. The bulk of the production was handled by Grays Grizzly, Code Lane, and Bliss.
Out of “Ima Bring It” and “Ima Do It Good,” which single do you think was the bigger hit? “Ima Bring It” was the biggest track out of the two.
Did the strong reaction to the album surprise you? It really did. I was expecting it to help me get my name out there. However, I did not expect to gain radio play and I did not expect to gain major contacts off it. I have gotten the support from the streets and I have performed shows off the music on this album. Overall, people’s eyes were opened about what I can do, as a rapper. In this area, there are so many rappers, but when Shreveport/Bossier heard my music, they immediately picked it up and it opened doors for me.
Do you want this album to serve as your official debut album, or will you put together a debut album further down the road? Traditionally, I would have to say this album is my debut because it was the first piece of work I put together. It has a collective idea and it was the first album I put together. In the state of Louisiana, it introduced me and it did well out of the state. To the people who did not know me, this was their introduction. Because of that, I have to say this is my debut.
Would you call Tha Next Problem more of a street album still? Yeah. With this album, I was not trying to gain the attention of major labels. I put something together for the streets and the streets embraced it. But, I still was able to catch the attention of radio and some companies, so it worked out well for me.
What was your most-memorable moment when recording Tha Next Problem? Recording “Ima Do It Good” in the studio, because it was one of the first solo songs I recorded. I recorded that song with Bliss, we loved it so much and we played it back several times. When it was released to the public, it got on several websites and even landed me comparisons to T.I. The people who knew me did not expect that and it gained the respect of my peers. The first time I performed the song was also a memorable moment for me.