Cam Carter Chops It Up With HHW

HHW Staff

HHW: Introduce yourself to our readers, let them know your name and where you’re from.

Cam: My Name is Cam Carter.

HHW: When did you start music?

Cam: Since I was a kid, I have always been fascinated by witty lyrics and how artists are able to tell stories with their music and connect with different types of people throughout the world. When I realized I had a gift in songwriting, I just kept writing until people started to take notice.  It wasn’t until I won a rap battle in Austin Texas that I realized I was any good. After that it was back to Memphis soaking up game to prepare for the road I’m paving now.

HHW: Have you had a career that wasn’t in the music industry?

Cam: I’ve had many odd careers that wouldn’t make any sense on a resume. However, the one I’m most proud of is that I’m a Japanese trained sushi chef. That was a challenge for sure because their culture is very strict and there will always be a lot of pressure when you’re dealing with very expensive ingredients and very spoiled customers. Not only that, I’m a southern-white male that has no business holding a sushi knife. At first regulars wouldn’t even let me touch their plates. My weakness was my speed and consistency, but over time I earned enough skill and respect to be gifted the head chef’s knife at Sekisui, the most traditional Japanese restaurant in Memphis at the time. Real talk, every sushi job after that I got for wielding that knife.

HHW: If you could get advice by any artist in the industry, who would it be and why?

Cam: I’m a little biased here but it would have to be Lil Wayne hands down. He single-handily changed the music industry. Lil Wayne is one of few artists that can drop an album and it spike albums sales across the board because consumers would pick up other albums while going to buy his. That’s heavy. Not only that he’s one of the few entertainers that literally grew up in the music industry and could see the changes and the trends and adapt and keep it true to himself and be successful. We’ve seen him already birth three super stars with Nicki, Drake, and Tyga. I believe I’d be more creative in his hands for many reasons.Especially considering all the knowledge and experience that he has in this industry and the things he had to learn the hard way with Birdman. He would make a weapon out of me. Me being 5’6 and an 80’s baby with the same last name would also make a marketable gimmick.  However, when Lil Wayne is able to pick my brain and sort through my strengths, we wouldn’t need any gimmicks. Just hip hop.

HHW: What or who influences your music?

Cam: I like the story telling and pain of 2 Pac and Nas. The boldness of Kanye and Jay Z. And the clever bars and concepts of Lil Wayne and J Cole. I wouldn’t say any artist directly influences my music. To be real, I deliberately remain uneducated with all the music circulating around. “I feel the less of their music I listen to the more original I can be on my own”. There’s so many popcorn style artist that pop and flop. I’m more focused on having my biggest influence be myself and implementing real life and real situations into what I record.  It is good to study the market and its trends to see what you’ll be up against. But when I rap, I am competing against my own clock and myself. I want to help people with my gift.In order to that I have to make music for myself. It’s something that I love so it’s therapeutic for me. I believe that’s what hip hop and music stands for: Telling the truth and conveying a real message that isn’t polished up by Hollywood. Music can save you life in this time in age. My biggest challenge besides the marketing is puzzling it all together.  If I can take The Beatles, Pink Floyd, and Sublime and mix it all into a bowl, then infuse it with 90’s hiphop with modern 808s that’s my standard.

HHW: What’s the process of creating music for you?

Cam: When I’m brainstorming a new concept for a song a lot of the time it starts with pen and paper. Being able to channel energy of everyday life and arrange it into words is my favorite part of doing what I do. “Most of the time the music is already there you just have to find it”. Then when it gets to that point, “I try to just hold the pen and let the music write itself.” Other times… I just go on YouTube and find some random piano riff and let the vibe carry the rest. If there’s something I like so much that I can’t recreate I’ll reach out to the producer and buy the exclusive rights to the beat which can get costly being an independent artist, but that’s part of it. When I do that I get the paper work done on the spot, showing that I own the rights to the beat.  If I collaborate we’ll discuss the music and just agree on the splits on the split sheet. After I have the composition part out the way then I’ll just book a two hour slot in a studio and record and outsource the mix to someone else I trust. I was always told record like there is no mix, and mix like there is no master.

HHW: What differentiates you from other artist?

Cam: What make me the most different is that I care, probably too much. I’m not in this for a hit record or a Ferrari. I’m here to build a legacy and make something that is timeless. I feel like I’m articulate with a backstory that can relate to more people than most with social boundaries. Demographically I have no limit and with that the whole world is my audience. Some of that came from living a double and triple life. I’m not proud of most of the stuff, but it allows me to learn and grow to who I am now. I came up in the hood and many people I was associated with then are either dead or in prison. I had divorced parents so as soon as I got a vehicle I was back and forth between two states. I learned to manipulate and make moves at an early age. But in school I blended in and made good grades, played sports and graduated college. Outside of school I was selling drugs and doing anything I could to make money. Even though I was raised right and came from a good family, it was God, sports, and music that saved my life. I chose to put myself in bad places and what it did was teach me lessons most don’t ever learn. I appreciate life and kindness and love. I had to see a lot of evil and terrible things to be able to appreciate things like that. Throughout all of it, the good and the bad… all I did was write and sharpen my skill. Being able to jump into different perspectives and understand people from my own personal experiences is probably what separates me from other artists the most.  Especially considering that I can relate to more races than others can, even it’s not directly through the music that I put out

HHW: Have you ever released an album?

Cam: No, I have released 5 studio singles, and have two more set to drop 02/14/20 and 03/11/20. I am currently working on “Halo into Hell” my debut album. However, I have about 400 songs that I’d consider worthy of recording. I’ll revise and structure that into something special once I get to that point.

HHW: Tell our readers what to look for next from you.

Cam: “Self destruct” features my guy Ray K, the same artist/engineer on the “Lost in the in Crowd” record. That drops February 14th. I have a couple more up my sleeve with him I’m pretty excited about. ESPECIALLY “fake sunsets” I’ll keep that in my pocket for now. Also I have another one with Teddy called “Lot on my Mind” that’s dope. She carry’s the vibe on every song I’ve done with her. “Anything for that Body” drops 03/11/20 and that was done by Ghostwriter LA. That’s a little different than most of my stuff but it’s a powerful message and I love that song. “Pink Panther” drops in the spring. That’s a strip club record that features the legendary Kingpin Skinny Pimp, my good friend from back home. A couple solo projects like “Just Listen”, “The Letters from the Better Me”, “Still Modest”and “Spaceships” are also set to drop this year.

HHW: Are you currently on any tours or have any future shows booked?

Cam: Yes, I am performing at the Whisky a Go Go in West Hollywood, California on April 16, 2020.  I’ll have some dope artist in the building that night so it should be lit. I’m pretty excited to get on stage and make this come to life. For now, I’m building the catalog, designing the merch and getting the “Knee High” video launched this summer. I’m a Gemini and have ADHD… I just hope I’m blessed with an ambitious tour manager once the splatter paint settles because I’m ready to run with it and never look back.

HHW: What do you hope to get out of your involvement in the music industry?

Cam: What I hope for is to touch lives and witness all ethnicities come together via my music and have them never feel empty or alone. When it’s time to turn up, we’ll turn up together. When it’s time to bust moves, we’ll bust moves together. When it’s time to cry and mourn, we’ll cry and mourn together. When it’s time to rejoice, we’ll make more music. I want to work in an industry where I love my job so much it’s never work. Once successful I want to utilize the influence to help others that lack the guidance to pursue their goals. There are so many talented artists and talented people of all aspects that are neglected every day.  What I want is to build the Walt Disney World of hip hop and allow everyone to jump through my mud and dream and have a chance at becoming what they set out to become. I believe that’s my purpose. To let others, learn as I’ve learned. I’ll have to go through some dark places to reach some of the lost souls. But that’s part of it. The music business is a sacrifice. The artist sacrifices time and resources and lost rapport with people in order to build something to market to someone that must sacrifice time and resources to consume.  So, to summarize everything into five words “I just want to have fun”.

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