Fresh off of his How The Grouch Stole Christmas tour, The Grouch took time off to inform DX about his latest project, how fatherhood's changed his perspective and how important giving back is to him.
During this tour, he partnered with Toys for Tots, an organization that gives presents to children in need, a charitable organization he was happy to work with.
"I've always wanted to 'give back' through music as well as any other ways that make sense. Toys For Tots was an obvious and easy place to start. I know from having a young daughter how much kids appreciate opening gifts on Christmas and if I can be a part of making children happy I'm all for it. I think the response we got from the drive was great and I thank all the fans who participated."
"It's something that I would like to pursue further. I think Toys for Tots is just the start. I really want to make as much of a positive impact on this world as I can. It's been a struggle for me to even get to a place where I can start thinking about doing more than helping through my music. I feel like I'm arriving now. I'm definitely looking into ways to get involved with supporting some good causes. There's just too much going on in the world to just be rapping about bullshit and trying to put money in my own pockets."
The tour also featured Mistah F.A.B. and Fashawn, artists who have stated that the tour was one of th ebest they had been on.
"I think the cast of artists complemented each other greatly. Fashawn is like the young future of Hip Hop. F.A.B. is often type casted as a 'Hyphy' rapper but is so much more and I feel I'm taking my music and maturing it like fine wine. DJ Fresh, Tito Bell and Exile are also such dynamically differend and dope DJ's. They really contributed to the overall picture as well. Aside from that, everyone had the correct attitude and the fans pick up on that stuff. The tour was also planned and run by good friends and family, we moved like a unit. Positive in, positive out."
All of this is in support of his latest offering, Three Eyes Off the Time, his latest solo effort. On it, The Grouch speaks often about being a father, especially on "Allieverwantedwas," which features his daughter doing a rendition of Beyonce's "Single Ladies."
" Nothing has been more of a wake up call for me than having my daughter. It just put everything in perspective in terms of what I believe is important now. A lot of reconfirming of what I already knew and had ignored or forgotten, plus a whole mess of new teachings. If you really take parenting seriously, it changes you and helps you grow in immeasurable ways. I feel like much of what I had been searching for has been found through growing my family and I know there's so much more coming."
Part of his growth can also heard on "Weight of the World," a song that is filled with social commentary.
"It's pretty much about some of the crazy stuff that goes on in this world today. The things that you hear on the news that are so awful you try and pretend like they don't exist but you know that they're there."
The title of the album, Three Eyes Off the Time may throw some off but The Grouch added that it has a meaning behind it.
"The 'Three Eyes' part of course is referring to the 'inner eye' or brow/ajna or bindu chakra being open. This relates to access of intuition and consciousness. I'm basically that I'm awake mentally and spiritually and that I'm vibrating at a high level. I'm focused. The 'Off The Time' part essentially means that I'm marching to the beat of my own drum or calendar. Following my heart if you will."
The Grouch has been known to be a part of various collectives including The Living Legends, G&E and CMA. His latest offering may just be another Zion I & Grouch project but he said he's got a lot in store.
" I'm always working on various projects, whatever is supposed to come will come."