Get Familiar: Protoman

Get Familiar: ProtomanFlorida rapper Protoman has been steadily building a following of loyal, devoted fans through the Internet and local street work. The long-time MC introduced himself before his upcoming release of his new free album. Also, hit the bottom for an exclusive new track from the album.

Name: Timothy McClure

Age: 25

Hometown: Fort Lauderdale, FL

Label/Group affiliations: FW4S, BLS, Party Monsters, Alligator City

Discography: Analog LP, Grey Area LP, Kill The Radio w/ Fusik EP, 86’d w/ Sebino EP

How did you get started making music?

I just wanted to be a part of Hip Hop culture. I sucked at all the other elements. Rap was the one that stuck.

When did you start rapping?
I’ve been rapping since I was 14. That trips me out just saying it now.

What was the hip hop culture like growing up in Florida?

South Florida has always been dope. When I first got started the culture was very vibrant. DJ, MC, Bboy,Graff battles were everywhere. Miami had tons of New Yorkers who had moved down. They brought that vibe. You also had the Miami bass movement still lingering, we still had low riders. Now we have Donks. For those early years the local scenes were very productive. So much talent. Everywhere you went, every party, someone was down. Someone fucked with hip hop shit. I miss those days just riding the bus or the metro rails. We use to skate and everybody we skated with wrote graff or did some shit. The culture is still there. I just think it was way more thick when I was growing up.

If you could do something over again in your life, would you? What would it be and why?

One thing i’d say is to have bought a van and self-toured more when gas was cheaper. I regret not hitting the road more when indy hip hop was thriving, the economy was doing great and kids were throwing shows non-stop all across the states and attendance was great. Networking and trading shows (hometown for out-of-town). It’s a different world now and a lot more expensive for DIY touring.

So what is the touring environment like for you now? Do you spend a lot of time on the road?

I don’t spend as much time on the road as I should. I’ve played tons of shows, all over America. But I’m not that type of artist to be on the road for 9 months of the year, thank god. Kidding. Not really. Touring is stressful and lonely. It’s fun for like 4 days then you want to go back home. I’ve always admired bands/artist that can tour non-stop, I really do.

Tell us about a great music memory that you’ve had.

Seeing KRS-One live. Hands down. Never experienced energy like that in the crowd and on stage. He totally exposed to me what a show is suppose to be about. A real performance. Creating an impression that fans will always remember.

What kinds of specific things did you take away from KRS-One’s show?

I’ll tell you one thing, and maybe I shouldn’t say this, but I will ’cause it’s really cool. It wasn’t at the same exact show, but I talked to a soundman who had ran sound for KRS before, and I was just stating how much I love his shows and what he thought about running sound for for KRS. The soundman said before the show KRS briefed him that during his set he would keep yelling/asking him (soundmand) to, “turn up the mic”. KRS said, “I know the levels will be good. I know I’m asking you to turn them up, but don’t. I’m just saying that to get the crowd hype. Pretend your pushing the fader up if they look back at you”. It’s a placebo effect to get the crowd way more into it. Things like that, man. I love it.

What’s in the future for you, short and long term?

New full-length out before 2012. Some secret stuff in the works. Long term..I just want to own a DeLorean and a house where I can throw parties at where the cops won’t get called.

Protoman – I Be Up Late [Prod. Shawn Wayne] (aboveGround Exclusive)

Download/stream a 20-minute mix of Protoman’s work below. Also, check out his BandCamp page for new releases and fresh tracks. Look for Protoman’s newest LP, available for free download, next week.

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