written by Hugo Lunny
Classified is one of those artists that you wouldn’t expect. Coming from Halifax, Nova Scotia, this rapper has been going for about a decade, consistently touring and recording.
It seems as though despite the strength of the Canadian dollar, the world has yet to fully absorb how talented Canadian artists are. However, despite the setback of not getting full recognition, Canadian rappers continue to put out material so that when the rest of the world finally catches up, they’ll have a compendium to listen through.
MVRemix caught up with Classified once again, to read our previous interview please see below.
MVRemix: Canadian Hip Hop still hasn’t made the impact in Canada after a great number of years and everyone continues to wonder why Canadians don’t support Canadians – why do you think that is?
Classified: There’s just not enough outlets. I hate to say it ‘cause it’s been beat to death, but there’s just not enough outlets – radio, press, etc. There are only 6 commercial urban stations in the whole country – compared to like 100 rock stations…
MVRemix: What do you think can or should be done to change that and bring more of a spotlight to the country’s scene? Is forcing Canadian content to be a larger part of radio play lists the answer?
Classified: No…’cause like I said – there is only six stations. I honestly don’t know what has to be done; or else I’d really be pushing to make it happen right now. I think touring is very important ‘cause you can bring your music to people’s towns and make it more personal, but having more stations, or more business minded people in the hip hop scene would really help. I could probably count on one hand the number of real business people trying to do something in the hip hop scene in Canada…and for a country this big it’s gonna take a lot more.
MVRemix: Is music in Canada (Hip Hop specifically) up to par with that of the US? Do they dominate for a reason?
Classified: Honestly, Canadian hip hop is way better. Do you hear the bullshit the States is dropping/playing these days? 90% of it is garbage; cookie cutter, dumbed down, “learn my new dance” songs.
MVRemix: How has your internet presence affected your audience and sales?
Classified: If it wasn’t for the internet I don’t think I’d be in the position I am. When I first started that’s how I got my music out. Even now I have people listening to my stuff overseas, etc. I don’t have distribution over there – so that’s all thanks to the internet.
MVRemix: What prompted you to first record a song and from then on, what made you want to pursue it as your career?
Classified: The first song I recorded was just for fun – I was just playing around. Then I wanted to see if I could make something better, and so on and so on. I just have a lot of fun making music and if I can support myself doing it, I’m good.
MVRemix: Comparing Classified now to ten years ago, what’s different? Describe a day in the life of you rapping then versus now.
Classified: Well 10 years ago I was working – so I’d go to work 9 to 5, get home around 6 and do music until about 10pm – so I’d get a good 3 or 4 hours in. Now I sleep in till 10 usually. start doing music around 11, and go as long as I want all day. So I definitely have a lot more time, but I found living a normal life (working/etc.) gave me things to write about and it kept me in tune with the every day person which made it easier to relate.
MVRemix: Tell me about “While You Were Sleeping”
Classified: It’s a compilation of my last 10 albums – just showing people some of my earlier work that they probably have never heard.
MVRemix: How does it compare to your previous releases?
Classified: It’s a combination of all my albums, so it really is a reflection of my career and my growth.
MVRemix: What’s the next single off of the album?
Classified: “Ain’t Hard to Find.”
MVRemix: Which song are you most proud of writing and why?
Classified: Probably “Beatin It” – ‘cause it was an idea I had for a while, and no one has done a song like that. I like doing songs that aren’t verse/chorus/verse/chorus, and I thought it was a really creative song and came out exactly how I wanted it too.
MVRemix: Which movies have had the most impact on you?
Classified: “Blood Sport,” “CB4,” and “American Ninja.”
MVRemix: A la “Fight Club,” “If you could fight any celebrity, who would you fight?”
Classified: Will Ferrell.
MVRemix: Follow up – Would you win?
Classified: Nah…we’d both start laughing and having a great time instead. [laughs]
MVRemix: An interview at this point in time would be incomplete without some question of the US political race. So, who would you like to see win and why?
Classified: I don’t know, and honestly don’t care. I don’t even follow Canadian politics that much – so for me to have a point of view on something I know nothin’ about just isn’t smart.
June 1999 Classified Interview
November 2003 Classified Interview
March 2006 Classified Interview