Po Politickin – Thanks for stopping by to politick with us. I was reading that you are from Queens, New York. Can you discuss your background and how you feel in love with music?
Sean Strange – Thanks for having me as well, appreciate the interview. I grew up in Richmond Hill Queens and as you know New York is the Mecca for Hip Hop so this influenced me early on. My background in music goes back to the mid to late 90’s. My older brother Jay Gill always rapped and it influenced me early on to start writing in the 90’s but nothing that I can say was memorable. And my brother used to record in a studio in Manhattan and those early songs really pushed me to do music. I started off early as a DJ but within 2 years wanted to learn how to make my own music. So I got my hands into producing while still learning to write bars. I got a beat machine and a sampler and started putting out my own beat tapes & mixtapes in my high school. Fast Forwarding to the mid 2000’s I was part of a group called No Good People which my brother was a member of as well. We were doing shows all over NYC and released a few mixtapes and started to gain a buzz in the underground. We were nominated for Best Rap Group at the UMA’s, had a charting single on CMJ & Top 40 radio as well as doing concerts with likes of everyone from EPMD to Lady Gaga. Now around 2007 I started producing for another rapper we came up with Mr. Hyde from Necro’s label. I had a relationship with Necro and Hyde because I would street team for them in the earlier years.
Sean Strange – So after Necro heard my production on the Hyde album he offered me a deal to release a solo record with his label. Unfortunately myself and Necro could not really agree on business so I moved on and got my own distribution deal and funded it out of my own earnings from shows, selling beats and hustling and on November 2nd 2010 I released my debut solo album “Street Urchin” in stores and to this day it has sold over 10,000 copies worldwide. The single for that album “Walk the Line” turned out to be a big help. The video was #2 on MTV’s Freshman Countdown. So once this album started to gain great underground exposure I started to brain storm how to get myself on some real tours. So I reached out to some connects I had in Europe & Canada as well as the U.S.A. and I headed out on my first Europe tour in 2011 which I booked basically on my own with some help from my people the Snowgoons who are great producers in Europe. Also on that tour I booked PMD of EPMD as the headliner because we had a relationship over the years and while we were on that tour we decided to do some songs together on the off days. Little did we know these songs would eventually turn into a group with PMD of EPMD, Snowgoons & Myself. Following that tour in Europe I headed out to Canada as well as back to Europe 5 more times on tours and also got the chance to open up for D12 on their USA tour which helped form another great opportunity for me which I will elaborate on later.
Sean Strange – Also in 2013 I released my second full length album for Free Download to thank those who supported “Street Urchin”. The album was titled “Truth Serum” and has earned over 50,000 downloads worldwide. Now fast forwarding to the last year and present day, Last year myself, PMD, Snowgoons & Myself released our group album “Welcome To The Goondox” in stores and it has sold over 12,000 units to date and still selling. Now present day I am doing well, great fans, many things to look forward to. I have earned 15 Million + views on you tube attached to my name, sold thousands of records, done about 500 shows around the world in the last 5 years and got great things lined up for 2015. And just so you know, this is the short version (LOL) my resume is deep!
Po Politickin – Can you talk about your name? What do you do that’s so strange? Lol
Sean Strange- There is not too much back story on the name. In the early years when I was confused I called myself Doctor Strange because I was just a weirdo on drugs that loved Hip Hop and everyone called me Strange. But I was never really crazy about the “Doctor” thing. So I used to always call myself Sean Strange as an alias and that ended up sticking with me. Now I use an alias “Sean Michael” which is actually my birth given name.
Po Politickin – I read this about you “In a market that is filled with unauthentic artists, Sean Strange stands out with his distinctive voice, delivery, wordplay and obvious love for the substance and sound of his music. Sean Strange is well known and praised by his fans for being extremely honest in his music about whatever may be going on in his life. Sean’s music has developed a cult following of dedicated and loyal fans, some who even have tattooed his artwork, name or song lines on their bodies”. Can you elaborate on this statement?
Sean Strange – Absolutely, This statement represents the kind of fans I have. For instance if you ask any fan what they love about me, they will tell you they can relate to what I am speaking on. I get constant emails and Facebook inbox’s from fans telling me that my music helped them through addiction, death in the family & break ups. And as far as the tattoo comment, I have roughly 20 different fans with Sean Strange tattoos. You can see pics on my Facebook. I have a female fan in England with my name logo tatted across her back, a girl in Pennsylvania with my album title “Street Urchin” on her ass. I got a kid in Australia with the “Street Urchin” artwork on his hand. Another with the same artwork on his leg in Montreal. A few got lyrics tattooed on them. Another guy in Toronto with my autograph tatted on his arm. Shit is deep. I have and continue to build a real CULT LIKE fan base over the years. .
Po Politickin- Speaking of a cult following of fans, who is your most dedicated and loyal fan? (Excluding family members)
Sean Strange – LOL at the family members comment. I am not one of those dudes. I run my own label and make more money independent yearly then a lot of people do at their “Jobs” and that is because of the fan base I built. I can’t pin point one fan. But I would have to say the ones who tat my music and art and name on them, the ones sending me letters and emails and coming to my shows and supporting and I mean really supporting. I love all of them.
Po Politickin – Can you discuss your current projects and plans for 2015?
Sean Strange – 2015 will be a great year. Lined up I got many releases. The first ones on deck are my album with producer Mighty Fuzz Young titled “Return from Rejection” which will be in stores hopefully March. The first single “Independence Day” is rotating heavy on radio right now, the video got picked up by MTV, VH1 as well as TV stations in Europe. So a lot of exciting things going on and I just did Sway in the Morning to promote it. Next up as I mentioned earlier, when I went on tour with D12, I was able to develop a relationship with D12 member Swifty McVay and we joined forces for an album in which I produced every beat for him on it. It’s titled “Live Evil Where Evil Live” and will be in stores hopefully March or April.
Sean Strange – Also I signed an artist to my label which by the way is named Nah Bro Entertainment, The artist’s name is Salome and she is a female singer from Switzerland. Her album is titled “The Princess of Pain” and is produced by myself & Mighty Fuzz Young and it will be out January 2015. Also I will continue to release mixtapes as I always have. Previously I released a mixtape in 2014 titled “Subliminal Facebook Comments” with features from Kool G Rap, D12, Papoose & More. I got 3 or 4 mixtapes dropping throughout the year so stay tuned. There’s much to come from me in 2015.
Po Politickin – Can you describe some tools or techniques that your use to stay motivated on your goals?
Sean Strange – Honestly I think the most important thing for me to stay motivated is never being content. I always want to outdo the last great thing I accomplished. I look at other artists who work hard and I always say that I can’t slow down. I think that’s a big problem for artists on the come up. They settle to quick and think they made it and get lazy. Nothing is owed to you; you got to earn it, as cliché as that sounds. Hunger is my #1 tool.
Po Politickin – If someone never heard your music before, what is the first song that you would want them to hear?
Sean Strange – There are a couple I would suggest. I can’t just pick one but a few would be: “Cardiac Rhythm”, “Walk the Line”, “Independence Day”, “History of Strange” there are plenty. Just you tube search me and go through the pages and pages of music and videos.
Po Politickin – We interviewed the No Good People back in 2012, what’s the current status of the group?
Sean Strange – The group broke up, We not recording any new music or doing shows together. It just ran its course. However, my brother Jay Gill from the group is taking an active role in the new label and helping with my career. Odoub from the group just released a new EP, so look for it. I am featured on it.
Po Politickin – Thanks for coming thru to politick with us. Any additional words for the readers, where can we check out more of your music?
Sean Strange – Thanks very much for having me. Just want to shout out all the fans, my team (Salome, Mighty Fuzz Young, Jay Gill, Swifty McVay & the whole D12, Snowgoons, Gustapo & Odoub)
Plus if yall want to check me out on Facebook: www.facebook.com/seanstrangemusic Twitter: @seanstrange718 You Tube Search: “Sean Strange”
Video – Sean Strange & Mighty Fuzz Young ft Saigon “Hear You Calling”
Video – Sean Strange & Mighty Fuzz Young ft Salome “Independence Day”