Clicking around with music: Pflames

Posted 11/05/2009 by coelder in Labels: , , , ,

Eight months after doing we did a Popcuts feature on Pflames, we were able to reconnect via the glory of Myspace.  He's been working hard in the studio to produce great tracks with refreshing beats and an experimental sound.  I had the pleasure of electronically sitting down with Pflames and going through the past year, the good, the bad, the judgmental rock crowd.  We got a hold of his latest demos and the exclusive release of his new single "I Won't Stop Rocking." In the words Pflames himself, "Make love and be wild."
Fire Clean by Pflames

Please Play my Demo by Pflames

I Won't Stop Rocking by Pflames

AS: Whats the story behind the stage name: Pflames?
P:    Pflames came from James Pflames which is what a homeboy who i used to do beats for started calling me way back in the initials are JP and everytyme he would come through he would just call me Pflames or James Pflames cuz my tracks were hot and it just kinda stuck...i dropped the James just cuz it really had no place lol...Yea i wish I had some long drawn out story about how I came up with it or why its important but....nope lol

AS: Right now, who do you think is revolutionizing music/hip hop?  Why do you think so? What are they doing differently than the rest of the crowd?
P:    I'm a huge Kanye Fan I love that he always tries to push the envelope a little but...he stays true to his heart and I think it shows...ummmm...i think the new Jays-Z is's shows that mainstream hip hop can have a don't have to trend hop to be successful....I think Drake is refreshing...He brings a fun element to the he takes his craft seriously but he doesn't take himself too seriously...I think that's needed...but really I'm not listening to a whole lot of hip hop right now...not to sound like an ass but I'm stuck on the energy of the indie rock and kinda electro scene...I like the rawness and the emotion of their approach to song making...The Ting Tings, Justice, Empire Of The Sun...I'm fucking with that new Felix The Housecat...We All Wanna B i did a remix of that for a contest he was doing but didn't get that joint mixed n time to send it in.  I'm all about energy and emotion and I feel like a lot of people in hip hop aren't really trying to push the culture...their trying to push sales and ring tones...I don't really buy in to that...Kid Cudi...his shit is pretty fresh though...I guess I really didn't completely answer the question lol.

AS: Could you recap this past year; Where you've performed, who you've met, rhymes you wrote and any effects that the journey has had on your music?

P:   2009 in a nutshell has been a roller coaster ride...a lot of false starts but has turned out some great material for me though. I've pretty much taken the last few months off from performing to finish my album and get my house n order...also tho I'm putting together one of the coldest bands to hit the stage with ...I'm trying to dominate festivals next year...I'm going to be the Dave Matthews of hip hop lol.

My production crew Clinic Beats are working with Don Juan and Mizery Entertainment out of Kansas City, Mo which is opening know Juan is an indie Legend...Tech Nine, Yukmouth, QD3 and a host of others...we're working out the minor details right now but keep your eyes out for The Clinic

I think I'm rhyming better now than I ever have before...subject matter...the overall ridonkulous of my favorite songs that i wrote unfortunately wont be making the album...actually two joints...due to sample clearances will b left on the cutting room floor.  I have a song called Lonely People which is based off the Beatles Eleanor Rigby and tells the story of a teenage girl's suicide attempt...i think its my best storytelling effort...its  powerful record...who knows that one might accidentally find its way  The other is a joint called Monster which i sampled from Van Hunt's never to be released Blue Note album I heard that joint and just thought it was sacrilegious not to flip it...that joint wins off sheer flow and intensity alone...damn copyright laws lol

I feel that everything I've endured the last year has made me more focused which I think shows in the attitude when spitting as well as the attitude behind the beats...its a joyful aggression that i couldn't get rid of even if i wanted to...but i don't think I'd b who or where i am if i didn't encounter everything that I've encountered recently...The music flows better when Your heads on straight lol

AS: How did you pick the song(s) for the single release? When are they due out? How can we get a hold of them?
P:    I had the hardest time picking out what songs to lead with because i had so many to choose from and I wasn't sure which direction to come out the gate with...I didn't wanna go to left field right away, you kinda got to ease people in to some of that lol...We just shot a video to a joint called "I Won't Stop Rocking" which i think is going to be incredible...It's really just a good time kinda joint something you could bump on your way to the's an anthem to help you get your fresh intact...get your mind right for a good time lol...then I'm following that with "If U Go" which is a very high energy pop record but pop in a good way lol not just pop for radio sake.

If U Go will be coming in November ... I also am re-releasing my warm up mixtape Negro Day: The Official Street Album October 15th as a free giveaway on my website

AS: What has you the most excited about the release of your new album?
P:    What I'm looking forward to the most is getting it out to the people. I've been working on these songs off and on for the last 2 years and I think they show a level of growth and maturity that's missing from music...hip hop especially. I put a lot of focus on song craft and musicianship as well.  I didn't approach it as let me make a great rap album or urban album, but let me see if i can make a great album period. I wanted to make a record that pleased all my senses and influences...and i think i I'm ready to present it and see if it leaves a mark with people
AS: What were some of the road blocks you hit during recording?
P:   Straight up the biggest problem i found working on this project was working with other people lol...I mean lining up features, well most of my features r singers, but finding the right singers for the songs and getting them in the studio was a bitch lol.  Trying to line up schedules and getting people to understand the project was a task.  I reached out to a lot of rock singers who as soon as they heard hip hop stopped taking me seriously, which was rather disappointing.  Or you would get the one's who would verbally commit but could never make it to the actual session, so I kinda had to revamp my approach to certain songs, but I think they turned out way better than my initial ideas, so I'd like to take this tyme to thank those who blew off sessions and turned up their noses when they heard the words hip hop...your lack of help has helped me make a

I had alot of things going on through the making of this album though, family issues, right when I 1st started writing songs for the album my dad got diagnosed with prostate cancer and less than 48 hours later my mother had a major stroke...which totally fucked me up and took me out my zone for awhile...after i was able to regroup...i was able to deal with it i channeled those emotions and turned them in to some of my better songs like Lullaby on the album which I wrote after seeing my mother for the first time after her stroke...her whole right side was paralyzed and she could barely talk and we were still unsure if she would make it...let alone recover any of what she lost....

AS: In recording the new album, what did you learn anything about yourself?
P:    I learned that I'm capable of anything lol I learned to follow my own path regardless of what other people are doing, whether it's other artists, fans, strangers, people n my crew, I gotta do me at all tymes. I know that's an overused phrase these days but after seeing so many people struggle to fit in and be mediocre, I have to do what I'm doing for the benefit of music and the music and culture that I represent. I've fought so much adversity making this record from within my own camp or the local community who expects me to be a fake trap rapper or dancer that it forces me to listen to myself more intently...The main thing I've learned is that I'm willing to sacrifice popularity to achieve

AS: Is there anything you would like to tell our readers? 
P:   Yea...continue to support good music...check me out on my website and follow me on twitter.

Pflames Presents The "F" Word dropping December 2009
Cop It...Support It...Endorse It...Make Love and Be Wild - Pflames

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