In 2006, I interviewed one of the trailblazers for conscious rap, Sadat X. He is a teacher, a coach, a firefighter and an enormously talented emcee. He etched his name in hip hop history with the group Brand Nubian and has continued to put out great music over nearly three decades.
We talk about his job as a teacher, accepting help in the process of putting out a new solo album, his experiences traveling the world, the importance of good live performance, getting advice from Greg Nice, and much more.
You can find him here:
Yo check it out swag cowboy lifestyle boy, Brand Nubian, you know, I'm saying Lord Jamal, Sadat X, Grand Puba, Alemo. You know, I'm saying we're gonna put it on like that. Welcome to souls of hip hop - throwback edition. Between 2004 and 2015, I interviewed many hip hop artists and recently discovered some of the recordings in my archive. We want to share a selection of our favorites and bring you these throwbacks in between our regular episodes. Enjoy. Today's throwback episode, we talked to one of the trailblazers for conscious rap. He is a teacher, a coach, firefighter and an enormously talented emcee. He etched his name in hip hop history with the group Brand Nubian and has continued to put out music over the years; Sadat X. In January of 2006, I had the chance to interview Sadat at one of his shows with Greg Nice. Here it is: Since your last solo album, Wild Cowboys, it's been almost 10 years but now you just blessed us with a new solo album. What have you been up to? I just we're working doing different projects and stuff like that like different songs with different people. Recognize that are you here yet? That will be next year. Next year. It is time to talk about that? I guess on how to scout and rock, rock song with them. I'm going to go back to New York on Broadway and rock and rock and roll been working working on teaching school kids. Can you tell us about your background where you grew up? Well you know i'm Sadat, from New York City. Originally from Bronx, the BX. Where I live at is Melrose. In Jackson. That's where I live at. And then right here, like I live right here is Melrose and Jackson right here is Paterson. That's AG if I go a little further down, that's a forest. That's Diamond D, Fat Joe, Buckwild. I go up the hill to Nelson Avenue if I go up. That's Greg Nice. day hybrids right there. So and then I moved to New Rochelle, but I'm around I'm here in New York City. Who inspired you to start rapping? And who do you look up to? And the first record I was all for one. That's when Grand Puba when I was young, Grand Puba always he was rhyming ahead. And he take me to come on. Let's go Grand Puba. Lord Jamal. But, like, for a while, you know, I know a lot of people, you know, I know Greg says like 86 to 8088 89. Things to go, like five very good business. And I'm not good business. He told me to actually do this. And I listened, listen, never to own and listen to what was your motivation to do music? And how did you experience it blowing up worldwide. When we first made the record, it wasn't about I just was happy to make a record. He's just a great thing to make a record. And to be heard. I just wanted people in my neighborhood to hear it. And then when, if other people hear was great, and when I came in first time I came to Europe, the first time I came to Europe, I went to Copenhagen. And and I was like, amazed because people from Europe heard the record. And I didn't I didn't think that they would hit a record and in Copenhagen, been over Europe a whole lot. Just as a good thing. You know, I met a lot of people, a lot of friends. You know, we was in the 5% nation with teaching, you know, a lot of times that's why sometimes I don't I don't listen to the 5% nation A lot of times, but I still listen because they teach you that that you're not supposed to like why people not but when I meet when I go to Europe, I mean why people black people, Asian people, Spanish people, and it's all good, you know? If they friends they friends, we good? You also work as a school teacher in New York, right? Yeah, I teach at a school I teach special education. And I teach like the bad boys like the one the bad boys and I teach him and you know, we go into class and they punch up the computer and they call me Mr. Murphy in the back Mr. Murphy used to wrap you wrap a brand new man. We didn't know you rap because you know they didn't like what I do is on Fridays. Usually in my class on Fridays. We have a thing where I let them bring in the CD that they want to bring in and if we finished all the work, and I'd be like you can play your CD and we listen to whoever 50 cent you al Santana, listen, we break down and and they liked it. They like Mr. Murphy. I didn't know you Ryan, I think Yeah. They don't know the data x. They know Mr. Murphy can you tell us about the process of creating your newest album black October? Well, and the album, you know, I didn't know how it was going to go down because, you know, I didn't have a lot of money to do the album. So I had to ask a lot of people to help me, you know, rock and rock Helter Skelter. They helped me diamond D as my man. He helped me. Aguilar was just a whole bunch of people come through and he helped me pee pee brothers. I've read them from England. They always help me p brothers. Money boss, you know, so they helped me like money boss. They from where like money bosses sounds, you got some jobs. We got paddison. This many bosses over here. They like soundview, they helped me like people helped me. You release the album on the label female fund music while female fund actually is he's in here somewhere. My man Peter, Peter, he's here. You know, we don't have a lot of money. But it doesn't matter about the money. Because when I first started ramen, I didn't care about the money. You know, I just like to run I like people to beat in. I like to run and do this. So I never cared about the money. You have collaborated with almost every MC in the industry. Is there anyone you haven't worked with yet that you would really like to? There was a couple of people that I like, like I did a song. Like I did a song with Jay Z, but people never heard it before. And hope they gonna put it out soon. I did some Jay Z. And that album with my man, Greg. No. So we got an album and I'm telling you, that's gonna be the one. That's what I'm really working towards. Is that one because, you know, me, I'm more laid back. But like, Greg night, he's party person, party. Party, you know, I'm saying so a lot of people, like they're going to dig on me. That's right. You know, and that's the only It's him. And maybe one or two people that tell me your ex. That's not it. If they tell me that, if Greg Comey, that's not it? It's not it. I change it, you know, I'm saying and that's that's how we get down. You know, so I'm looking forward to that. Like I said, Man, we just trying to live right now we just trying to live, we are here doing shows and like that. If you could go back in time and teach yourself something, what would you take back? If I had to go back, I would take performances, because a lot of artists, they come to Europe, they do two or three songs. And they just like, maybe smoke too much or be high. And they don't, when people come to the show, they want the whole show, because they pay euros to come to the show. Yes, Swiss francs, they pay francs, and they want to see a good show. And if you don't do a good show, you know, that's that's whack man. To me, man. I don't care how much money I'm getting. If these people come to the show, and I have to do a good show, if I don't do a good show. I feel bad. You know, I'm like, Yo, I didn't do a good show. Don't count. I want people to when they come to a show, and he said that I want them to say so that was good. No, I want them to be like he was Hi. And he only did three songs because a lot of times, artists come from America. And they do like two or three songs or whatever. And you can do that in America. But here in Europe, the people, they want to see a lot of things, and you got to do a lot of things. It ain't like how it used to be like a lot of artists now. They don't they don't know how to perform. You know, a lot of artists is big in the United States, but they can't come to Europe, because they don't know how to perform. They only have one or two songs, and they don't know how to do the rest. If you got like I want to stage into one or two songs and leave, you got to fill out a whole hour You know, I'm saying you gotta you gotta you got to make the people like you and want you to come back because shit. For artists like me. I do more shows in Europe than in New York, New York. Right now. It's not the place not to play. Why not? Because everybody want to come to the club and be like, this is wack, man, because I like to come and have a good time and get sweaty and can have a good time and dance in Europe, people like they said they appreciate it more, I think right now. Last month, the media reported about you getting some charges. Are you able to clarify any of that? Well, I know a lot of people seen some on the internet pricing I got in trouble or stuff like that at night, you know, it was some bullshit, you know, but I have to pay for it. You know, because I haven't gotten or whatever. But, you know, I have to pay for it. They want me to pay. I want to go to jail. But maybe I have to like maybe like, like eight months. Because I got in trouble. It was my own fault. I shouldn't know that. I see that. And I tell people they think going to jail. And doing that is cool. That's not cool at all. Because now I teach in the school what I fucks me up now. No, I'm saying and I can't I probably can't teach in the school normal. And I love my kids. You know, I'm saying it's fucked up because I don't want people to think of me like that because I My easygoing person, I'm not no gangster, I don't want to be a gang. Man. I'm far if again, over there. I want to be over here. You know, I'm saying I don't want to be I'm not no gangs, nothing like that. I just like to come and drink, smoke hash. smoke some weed have a good time. Because, like I said, like, these times, it's the best times of your life. You know, I'm saying, like, when I when I'm 60, 70 years old, I c n say, Hey, I went to Switzerlan. I went here. And then I had m t good people. We had a good tim. We have a show. And it was a l good. I don't want people o think of me as no gangster lik, because I'm not at all. Not t al Do you have any last words you would like to share with our listeners? I just want to give a shout out to everybody and female for my man. That's my man right there. He's, he's female, fine. My man Greg. Like, I wouldn't came if I would have had to come with somebody else. I wouldn't came but I can't regret because I know Greg is a party person. And when he's going through, you're gonna see some real shit tonight, because, you know, he got he beatbox and all that, like black people know, he was talking with Tila rock. Number Tila rock from back then, where we as a high school, he was already doing shows. No, I'm saying he was he already in high like 80s, 86, 85 you know, s he knows about shows, you now about doing things. That's why when he tells me someth ng, like, yo, you're not doin it right, or you need to do thi. I listen, you know, I'm sa ing because he kn Thank you so much for the interview, Sadat. Our theme music was beatboxed by Denis the Menace and produced by Zede. A big shout out to the brothers from Switzerland. The background music was produced by Taki Brano. A big hank you to our brosky from rovidence. Our podcast asically runs on coffee. To eep our show running. You can upport by buying a coffee throug the link in our show notes. I a Candy. I'm DJ Razor Cut. And t is is souls of hi