With this Avenue Interview we had the opportunity to get to know an emcee from Portland Oregon by the name of Mat Randol. The very talented young man explains to us his very unique story on how he started rapping, making music, and his manifesto for the next year.
VS: Mat Randol from Portland Oregon, can you tell us about what the hip-hop scene is like in your city and how did NBG form?
MR: I think the scene here in Portland is at a gold rush point, and we NBG are right in the thick of things. NBG manifested itself in 2002 on the dirt road called Seneca Avenue back in 2002, It was my friends Saint, Michael, Mason & Myself wanting to be rappers and we needed a name for the group so we all started saying things as we were walking back to my grandmothers house and mike blurted out Neu Beginin.. V.O.I.C.E. added the “Global” at the end a couple years back. We all agreed that would be the name of our squad.
VS: Can you describe any particular events or moments that led you to pursue music as a career? Can you point to any one artist as being your biggest musical influence?
MR: Yeah, My friend Omegadson (Mason for short) and I have been close since 2nd grade, we have this competitive friendship. Started out as who can run he from school fastest, who beat who in one on one etc. fast forward to 6th grade he starts free styling out of nowhere when we were working route paper for The Oregonian, I couldn’t keep up, I sucked. So it made me want to become something.. I started writing rhymes and kept challenging myself to get better ever since then.NaS I would say is my main inspiration lyricist wise.
VS: Around what age did you become serious about music and get in the studio regularly and record? Can you think back to what your first recorded song was about?
MR: 15, when I found out how to record on a computer, I always had my own set up just refined it over the years.
My first recording might have been to The Lox “Fuck You” instrumental and it was most likely a horrible freestyle.
VS: Haha freestyle over a classic record to start your career off, that’s awesome. If you had to choose one member of the Lox to collaborate with, who would it be?
MR: Right? maybe i manifested greatness somehow… Haha Jadakiss forsure..
VS: Jadakiss vs Nas, if you had to choose to get 16 bars from only one of them, who are you choosing?
MR: Nas of course.
VS: The story telling in your record Wisdom is amazing, I can see it all happening as you rap, was that based on a a true story of you or one of your homies?
MR: Thank you fam, was hoping I was on the right path with that one, honestly i draw inspiration from my life, their lives, shit i see walking down the street etc. so for that one its a combination of all of those things add in a little fiction and you got Wisdom.. haha
VS: What is a day in the studio like with Mat Randol? Lot’s of laughs, Lot’s of people from NBG in there with you? Or do you need to be solo?
MR: Best way to see how a session is like with me is to YouTube “mat mixed it” that can show you a preview. I like being surrounded by the team and by myself it just depends on the vibe of the day.
VS: So being inspired what’s going on around you, do you feel like there is a certain type of record you probably wouldn’t ever do, for example a trap or turn up track?
MR: I don’t wanna say never to any type of record because music is based off moods for me, how I’m feeling at that time.
VS: What is something you want to accomplish before 2015 is over?
MR: I want to accomplish releasing these few projects I have in mind, do well during my performance in LA, and anything that can add to my momentum along the way.
VS: On this day next year, where do you see yourself? In geographical terms and careerwise.
MR: If all can work out I see myself either here but hardly here, LA or NY with more of a following then I have at the present moment. Manifest.