DJ Kingpin Talks LPHH Festival, State of Hip Hop

Updated: Mar 25


PRESSED: For our readers who have never heard of DJ Kingpinvov, tell us who is DJ Kingpinvov and who or what inspired you to chase the dream?

KING: DJ Kingpin-Villain Of Vinyl (@djkingpinvov) is a lover of music and a lover of life. As a founding member of Non Stop Hip Hop Live (event promotions company) AND the Love, Peace, & Hip Hop Music Festival, I fell in love with Hip Hop after hearing The Message by Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five back in 1982. Growing up in Harlem, New York, Hip Hop was all around me and I was into everything. Break Dancing, Graffiti, Rhyming, and even making pause tapes, my earliest attempt at Deejaying. Hip Hop is me and I am Hip Hop!!!

PRESSED: What was your first ever hip-hop record you ever played?

KING: I wish I could remember, but the first record/tape I ever bought was the Fat Boys self-titled debut and I haven't looked back since. My collection, safe to say, is crazy and new and old pieces are constantly being added.

PRESSED: On that note, where do you feel the direction of Hip-Hop is heading?

KING: To be honest, most of the new Hip Hop on the radio out isn't even Hip Hop. It's a lot of misdirection, funny hair styles, buffoonery and foolishness. Hip Hop used to have substance as well as fun, but nowadays drug addicts, strippers, and culture vultures, who just want to make money, have truly been embarrassing this music I love. I will say its not everybody and I'm not an old head complaining about the newbies, but if this is the music you love, it is your responsibility to care for it and help push it forward. Other than J. Cole, Big Krit, or Kendrick Lamar on the popular side, how many of these artists out here are talking about the state of the world?? Sad to say its very few.

PRESSED: Back in the day the DJ setup was pretty simple, a pair of Technics and a mixer. Today setups are becoming more diverse, so what’s your core setup today?

KING: At my core its 2 Technics 1200's or 1210's, a mixer (don't matter which), and a gang of vinyl. Of course I keep up with the times too. A DJ should always be innovative in his or her approach and stay connected to what's happening technologically. I am a supporter of RANE & Serato and have been using them for a while now, but I am still sharp on that vinyl too, so anyone reading this please don't get it twisted.

"I will say this, if you DJ or Rhyme out here, you know my name and my skill. If you don't know, you haven't been doing this long enough."

PRESSED: What is your favorite track / record / album / mix set of all time?

KING: Favorite album of all time is The Main Ingredient by Pete Rock & CL Smooth. If you have never heard it, shame on you. I'm a fan of Hip Hop, so there are very few joints I have not listened to or own, but one thing I know for sure is there is good music and their is bad music. I listen to GOOD MUSIC!!!

PRESSED: How much do you pay attention to what's going on in the present, as far as hip hop music and general trends?

KING: I am always paying attention to the new trends coming out in Hip Hop. Now do I support them all, that's another question. One thing I will say is the DJ has become better technically, but a lot of the new fellas I am hearing are too limited in their styles. A lot of them are only playing the popular hot records. Not many are being daring and introducing their audiences to all the fantastic music that is out there. As a DJ, you are not a robot. Program directors shouldn't be telling you how to do your craft. As a DJ, if the only thing you play is Hip Hop, you are limiting yourself. As a DJ you should have your own style. Too many DJ's sound like each other and I have ALWAYS prided myself on being me. Nobody can be the Villain Of Vinyl, but how many people can be you???

PRESSED: Speak briefly about Love Peace & Hip Hop Festival. What it's purpose and your contribution to it?

KING: Love, Peace, & Hip Hop was birthed out of the need to bring more attention to the Hip Hop community here in South Carolina. At its core, it was developed to ensure that Hip Hop artists in South Carolina, and surrounding areas, had a place to truly express their gifts and become the conduit for lovers of Hip Hop culture, young and old, to enjoy all aspects of the culture together. Love, Peace, & Hip Hop began as the vision of Fat Rat Da Czar, Shekeese Tha Beast, LJ Chisholm, and myself to ensure that 'fathers & sons' can enjoy this culture of Hip Hop together. As my name suggests, my contribution is making sure that the music never stops.

PRESSED: If you had the chance to share the stage with a legend DJ/or Artist, who would that be and why?

KING: I have shared the stage with countless MC's & DJ's, especially throughout Non Stop Hip Hop Live. From Freestyle battles, Beat Battles, DJ Battles, Live Concerts, Poetry Slams, to soooo much more. My favorite artist of all time is KRS-ONE. I had the great pleasure of being his DJ back in 2016 at the Love, Peace, & Hip Hop Festival. That was definitely a career highlight for me. I will say this, if you DJ or Rhyme out here, you know my name and my skill. If you don't know, you haven't been doing this long enough!!!

PRESSED: What's next for DJ Kingpin?

KING: Be on the look out for Turntable City. A lot of great things are coming. You can find me on all social media @djkingpinvov. Pressed Magazine, much appreciated for the opportunity. Salute!!! #CantKickTheHabit

@DJKINGPINVOV


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