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Murs Q&A

Saying It When No One Else Is

After releasing 2004's critically-acclaimed Murs 3:16: The 9th Edition Murs and producer 9th Wonder are back at it again with Murray's Revenge. The collaboration marks a musical shift for the Los Angeles rapper, who is distancing himself from the Living Legends crew to pursue his solo endeavors. Murs performs with labelmate Supreeme, April 27th at Agenda Lounge in San Jose. He spoke with SF Station from his tour bus in Kansas.

SF Station (SFS): Didn't you used to live in the Bay Area?
Murs: Yes, I lived in the Bay Area for four or five years.

SFS: Where did you live?
Murs: All over, but mostly Berkeley and East Oakland.

SFS: Is that how you met the Mystic Journeymen and the rest of the Living Legends?
Murs: Yeah, basically around that time we all met somewhere in the Bay Area.

SFS: On your new album the track "D.S.W.G. (Dark Skinned White Girls)" stands out. It's not a subject you hear other rappers talk about. What motivated you to write that song?
Murs: Exactly that, it is something that nobody talks about. Most of my songs consist of material that no one talks about. I have a lot of homegirls that are like that and you meet a lot of girls on the road. Mostly, in my personal life I know a lot of girls like that and they deserve a song. It just came up with one day when I was riding around with my boy Slug from Atmosphere. I don't know where it came from, but after I came up with a title I thought it had to be done.

SFS: Do you try to rap about topics that other people don't touch?
Murs: If it's interesting enough I think I want to say it, especially if I don't think anyone else is going to say it. A lot of rappers strive to have a different style, or a different beat, or necklace, or car. I just try to say the things that everybody's thinking, but no one is saying. Everyone can relate to it, but no one is saying it.

SFS: Murray's Revenge is the second solo album you've done with producer 9th Wonder. How did it go the second time around?
Murs: I guess just the same. It was a familiar situation -- the same type of creative energy. We were both a little more excited because we knew that people were actually waiting to here it. When we started the first album we didn't really know each other or if people would like it. I guess it was a little more comfortable knowing that we had some people that were ready to listen to what we were going to create.

SFS: Has working with him two albums in a row changed the way you write?
Murs: I think so. Every project I do makes me a better writer. Any time you work with a good producer you grow as a writer. I definitely grew a lot.

SFS: How are things with the Living Legends these days? A lot of people were disappointed when you didn't go on the last tour with them the last time they were on the road.
Murs: I probably won't be on any more Living Legends tours. Everything is cool. We all still talk. When their shows are in L.A., if it's cool with them I'll show up. Since I don't tour with them on a regular basis, I don't like to just jump in. We're releasing a new compilation this summer and I'll be on that.

SFS: Why aren't you touring with them anymore?
Murs: I've got solo tours to do and stuff like that. I just can't do it. It's too much work. I've got to do my solo projects and I don't want to be forced to make the decision.

SFS: How are things going on this tour?
Murs: It's a tour; it's work. We've gotten our tires slashed, we've had our fights, and we've had our share of drama. We've had a couple sold out shows and one really bad show. There's been some asshole sound men and real cool sound men. There have been some cute girls and a lot of ugly girls -- some-not-so-cute girls. There are lots of guys that want to take pictures and shake hands. I've met a lot cool people. It's been a tour -- the
good and the bad.

SFS: You sound a little road weary.
Murs: I've done the road. It's unpredictable, but it's exactly what I've come to expect because I've done it so much.