The Kansas City rap veteran tells DX what it means for his career to hit this historic milestone.
Kansas City rapper Tech N9ne [click to read] was prepared to sell his millionth independently released album, spanning a catalogue of over five acclaimed discs [click to read]. His most recent release, Killer [click to read], helped the veteran emcee reach his million-mark destination.
"I found out that I had cracked a million when I was just on this tour with Kottonmouth Kings. I think it was a week ago or maybe two weeks ago; I don't know," revealed Tech N9ne to HipHopDX
Thursday afternoon. He added that his manager's weekly routine helped
them determine that the quiet milestone had been achieved. "Travis [O'Guin] calls me every Wednesday, and he tells me the Soundscan for all my albums. He got to Killer, and it's moving pretty damn fast. And Killer took me over the million mark. It took us over the [mark] quicker than we expected. It was so wonderful."
Perhaps a testament to how achieved the feat, which arguably (based on
the definition of "independent"), is a first for a rapper, Tech celebrated by performing a show. "It
don't really set in until [I did] that show that night, and it's sold
out and everybody's screamin'. When I said, 'Thank you for making me
the number one independent rapper nation,' everybody went crazy. And I
have to sit up there in front of 4,000 people and look at them yell at
me because of it," he said with a laugh.
The event means a great deal to the artist personally, but this is not something he intends to brag about. "I'm
in awe. I'm not big-headed, you know what I'm sizzlin'? 'Cause I know
what the bottom feels like. To come from down to so far up, and
everybody callin' us [for work and shows], it's a wonderful thing." The rapper, who debuted with 1999's The Calm Before The Storm, recounted that his first show, in San Diego, California, had seven people in the crowd. Today, Tech N9ne tours over half of the year.
"[Barack] Obama ain't gonna win [the Presidential election] at home, sittin' with his wife. [John] McCain
ain't gonna win on the golf course. You have to go from place-to-place
and speak to these people, and touch these people. And that's what I've
done. And that's what Strange Music has done." Winning his own election of sorts, this accolade adds to Tech's marketability. "This makes other people look my way. My quest is to get my music to the rest of the world, and the world don't really know," he said in an emphatic whisper.
As far as that Strange Music, Tech spoke highly of his label's first group act, Skatterman & Snug Brim. The Kansas City duo just released Word On Tha Streets. "I was amazed by their shit back in the day. We had the same producer, DJ Icey Rock, who hooked us up. Skatterman and his clever lines and Snug and his distinctive voice, I had to have 'em on Strange Music." The album features both Paul Wall [click to read] and Young Buck [click to read]. The album is in stores now.