BLOCADE: Well I actually got that name from my high school football days. I played running back and I would always break tackles and defenders would somehow get hurt hitting me from time to time. They would say, "you a damn Blockade", so it just stook to me and I just made it more unique by taking the K off, lol.
SPECIALGIFT: What inspired you to become a producer? Elaborate please.
BLOCADE: I use to always draw and create art and for inspiration. I would play a lot of beats and instrumentals and get immersed in the sound. I mainly listened to a lot of the Alchemist's Gangster Music themes, beat Cd's and classical music from Vivaldi. I was working two jobs back than around 2005-2007 as a cashier also at TJ Maxx. Also a graphic designer for this local t-shirt company. The employees of the t-shirt shop back than use to rap and they didn't have beats. I use to bring them beats from the Cd's I had and I saw I was good at picking beats for people. It sparked an interest on how to make art with sound instead of pencils and paints. Around this time I met two dope MC's by the name Intalek (very well known MC in VA) and Amir Legend. They would always play music in the stock room at TJ MAXX. I use to say "it would be dope if you guys use older songs and make them into your own". and Amir the Legend. They would always play music in the stockroom of TJ Maxx and I used to say "it would be dope if you guys would use older songs and make them into you own". At that time they said why don't you go and remake me this song from the Stylistics called "Break up to Make up". I went home and found that song on You tube and kept on listing to it over and over to see what I could do with it. During this time YouTube was fairly new and that's where I learned about Fl Studio and music being made with computers. I spent alot of time watching what little videos they had online and found a link to download the program. I was very new to what sequencers and chopping samples meant. I kept messing around with the program and I ended up making my first beat for them, they actually liked it, lol. When I look back those beats were horrible but it gave me the desire to keep at it. I just never stopped making beats from that point on.
SPECIALGIFT: How do you catch the contagion of excitement, that draws your listeners in?
BLOCADE: I just listen to alot of different music and get inspiration from the different sounds and the way it makes me move. I try to capture that same raw energy and make it so that the listeneres would gravitate to it and want to hear more from where that came from.
SPECIALGIFT: Some producers beats nowadays are languid to me. How do you stay away from being dull? I mean I do believe it take's spunk to become a relevant producer.
BLOCADE: Yes it does. I mainly just go from what sounds inspired me to produce and I try to adapt that same sound with whats current without sounding generic or outdated. Music is always changing and evolving so you have to look at current trends and see how you can work that into your sound. Makes you stand out without jumping on the bandwagon.
SPECIALGIFT: Will you take a moment and elaborate on your latest productions?
BLOCADE: My latest work is on LA artist Nocando, of hellyfyre club's EP called Zero Hour. I produced track seven called Oedipus. I also produced track seven called "Jimmy" off his and LA artist Busdriver group (Flash Bang Grenada) project called "10 Haters" that came out last August. I am also working on a track with VA artist Mass (From Illusive Media) and Famlay. I have some things in the works with Tragedy Khadafi and Ratchet Rush (from Wu - Tang South). I am also producing for my home team the Archerville Cartel (Sean Archer, Felonious Munk ,Jah Streetz, Itz tha Koncept and Klazik) the last three are some of the ill-est mc's I have ever heard. So we are putting in as much work as possible.
SPECIALGIFT: Is there anything in particular you would like your audience to be familiar with?
BLOCADE: I just want them to be familiar with the sound that I bring. Coming from VA we are at the bottom of the North and the top of the South. So we kinda have the sound of the east coast and the south right here, all mixed into one. I feel that you can hear that mixture in my beats.
SPECIALGIFT: Do you have any shout outs you would like to announce?
BLOCADE: I want to shout out A.D. The General and Elegant Hoodness for making this possible, I wanna shout out my boy illCosby, DJ CuttCrusader, Big Tone and DJ J + Positive, I wanna shout out the Archerville Cartel, Drama J, Mass and everyone back home that supports me and what I do, God bless y'all.
SPECIALGIFT: Where can we continue to stay updated with you and your progress?