By K.B. Tindal
Hip Hop Vibe Staff Writer
Suddenly, there is a mainstream ear for Philadelphia hip hop, again. The area has deeper hip hop roots than most care to remember, as Will Smith first put the city on the map alongside DJ Jazzy Jeff as The Fresh Prince. Years later, Eve and State Property gained more attention for holding down Philadelphia’s rap scene.
The recent run was brought about due to Meek Mill’s emergence and every Philadelphia artist with a plan is making moves, now. Among these artists is Rob Stashiz, who has become a fan favorite on Hip Hop Vibe. His music has stuck out and a fan reaction so strong had to lead to some form of contact.
This week, Hip Hop Vibe had a chance to talk to Rob Stashiz, as he is a cancer survivor who is working on his music. Rob Stashiz spoke on where he passion originates from and how he’s overcome so much. Defeating an illness known to take lives makes success in the rap game a rather small challenge.
Read the entire interview below:
First of all, you have overcome a lot in your life, surviving cancer and all. This is the type of disease that has forever changed countless families, how did you manage to overcome it? Overcoming cancer at the age of fifteen had a to do with God first, the doctors second, whom specialized in that medical field at Temple Cancer Center in Philly, and my family being supportive, having a whole lot of faith and praying as well as me being a fighter wanting to live. The Man knew I had a future I couldn’t see and I guess He needed me to accomplish what He has set fourth on my journey. He just wasn’t ready for me to be done with life yet, and now He’s giving me work to set out and show I am witness to his miracle.
Defeating cancer is something only a percentage of people diagnosed do, so you defied the odds. Do you think this has given you extra confidence as an independent hip hop artist? Yes I do and can feel the confidence, just through my situation made me a stronger person which helped the artistic side of me being able to be a better lyricist. I’ve learned to channel my emotions in song format and begin to put together realistic experiences that actually happen to me or around me or even to others, suppose to me just being a corner rapper and everything just shoot’em up BANG BANG!
Philadelphia, your home city, has experienced a hip hop resurgence in recent years and you’re definitely a part of this movement. Can you explain how you intend to change the entire hip hop scene with your music? I want to be able to be one of those household name artists where when you hear my music, it’ll make you think about your own situations and possibly help those figure out and see that DAMN Rob went thru all that diversity and came out swinging and winning against some of the craziest odds. I want to give hope through my music and for people to say ”I can conquer any obstacle too if he came thru fighting for his life.” Some will never understand, let alone experience, so I want my fans to look at me and know when they see me or hear me to feel hope as well as being a deep passionate artist that stays consistent, just knowing when you think of Rob Stashiz I want them like ”OOH I KNOW THIS A BANGER IF STASH ON IT, I NEED THAT DOWNLOAD OR I NEED TO COP THAT!” I’m just trying to make sure I bring trophies home for my family and my city, Philly, cause it’s too much miss guided talent here I would like to reach out to once I’m in a position.
Can you talk about your mixtape, Road To Perdition, which is hosted by DJ NoPhrillz and released last year? My Road To Perdition project, which is currently available on DatPiff.com and ”YES SIR” is hosted by my good bro, Philly’s own Legendary DJ NoPhrillz. We put that joint out in September 6th 2013, which is a special month and day, because that’s my grandmother’s birthday and she passed away, so I dedicated that mixtape to her on that particular day. That joint is like my Makaveli, meaning it’s a real personal project to me.
Will you be teaming up with DJ NoPhrillz for your next project and can you let us know what to expect from your next release? Phrillz and I are definitely going to put another classic banger together, but I’m going to take my time and work the last mixtape we have out shooting videos, plus I have these singles on my plate to build my buzz up more before I drop another mixtape. I will be putting out an EP though, no title yet, maybe before 2014 is out or early year in 2015. I’m a perfectionist so the production has to be 100 cause the lyrics is always on go mode ya heard!
Artists are finding innovative ways to push their music, such as Wale linking up with Jerry Seinfeld for his latest artist. Given his criticism of hip hop in the past and him being a fellow Philadelphia native, would you ever do a project with someone like Bill Cosby? I would do a song with Bill Cosby, because first, I know it’s going to be something epic and deep. Second, Dr. Cosby is not impressed with rap music, so if I got the opportunity, ”DAMN RIGHT” I’m going to seize the moment. I’ll probably ask him to do the hooks like talking something heavy with a little bit of comic relief, but we’d be addressing today’s society around the world not just in Philly.
Who are some people you want to do music with and other projects in the near future? Man, my wish list is long but I works with anybody that’s about their craft and their business. I’m a hip-hop fan of this music life so if I can feel or see where a certain individual is coming from we can always get that work in. It can be underground, mainstream, any race long as we can make a difference and show unity thru our music I’m all in. Everything I do has to have a meaning and a cause we not just rapping bout some B.S. nonsense cause I’m from that era you better be saying something or you not making it with me real rap. feel me!
What type of impact do you see your music having on the industry when it begins to be heard more by the masses? I want people to feel my impact, like when X came in the game the hustle hard grind greedy mentality being able to turn up the fans with the party joints, being able to give my fans the pain music, the motion picture stories painted thru my life, and the get money hustler talk. I want the masses to hear of me and be like ”WHERE THE ‘F’ THIS KID BEEN, AIN’T NOBODY PICK THIS ROSE OUT THE CONCRETE”. I feel like I have to bogard, shine, and outwork whoever in at my time basically.
Can you let the people know where they can follow you on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram? The world can follow me on facebook Rob ‘Stashiz’ Thomas, hit me on Twitter @RobStashiz and Instagram @robstashiz. I want to say Thank You and Salute the HardBody grinders wherever you get it at!
Follow K.B. Tindal on Twitter @KBTindal.