Sunday, June 7, 2020

Tha' Hatchetman D.O.P.E.-T. ‎

Let's talk about Tha' Hatchetman D.O.P.E.-T, an MC based in Washington DC but who is originally from Birmingham Alabama. Two 12" were released by this artist in the late 90s, the first one is "Alphabetastyle (Remix)" in 1997 and the second is "First Strike" released one year later, both released on P.E.M Recordingz which stands for Plastic Explosive Muzik Recordingz. Both records are pretty rare and I've never seen them for sale for a very good price...

Alphabetastyle (Remix) 12" consists of one single available in its Vocal & Madstrumental versions on the Alphaside (A-Side), and Madcapella & Mad Drum Mix versions on the Omegaside (B-Side), produced by the D.L Mitchell from Washington DC. 

12" - 1997 - P.E.M Recordingz 

The second 12-Inch "First Strike" is a 6-track EP, with the 6 vocal versions on the A-Side and the 6 Instrumental Versions on the B-Side, with D.L Mitchell still on the productions 

12" - 1998 - P.E.M Recordingz  

How and when did you fall into hip-hop ? When did you start as an MC ?

Tha' Hatchetman D.O.P.E.-T. : "I was always into music as a child growing up in the South, and it was during the period when B-Boying and Breakdancing is when I became introduced to the Rap Genre. Michael Jackson was the Hottest Artist and Performer around the time that the world was beginning to shift more in the direction of B-Boying and Breakdancing. Herbie Hancock and Chaka Khan dropped: "I Feel For You" and Two of B-Boying and Breakdancing's most popular were also in the video: "Turbo and O-Zone". So my influences to understand and evolve into the culture of performing presented itself when I was currently in elementary school. The school had a type of fund raising foundation thing going on. A Business foundation by the name of "Tom Watts" had come to my school to do a presentation to recruit kids to sell their products and offered prizes of notariety to the best and brightest sellers. Their Liason had her products displayed in the school's gymnasium in front of the 3rd, 4th, and 5th Graders (My Grade at that time). One of my friends was out on the floor standing next to a Boom Box playing a Gospel Song. She was expecting him to show his Breakdancing skills to that Gospel Song, but when she asked him if that works, he was like no. She was like wait let me see if I can find a better song, that's when she put on: I Feel For You, the whole gymnasium went bananas when we heard it playing through the speakers. So my friend began to show out, and right at that moment, the lady says through the microphone: Do any of you wanna come out here and join him?! Needless to say, I was damn near on the floor while attempting to ask my teacher may I go out there, my feet were moving down the bleachers before I could finish my sentence. What I didn't know is that there was a Commercial/Film producer in attendance looking for a fresh talent to do commercials for a new chain of quick stop stores that had just started coming up in the corporate world: "Shop A Snak". He also was the son of one of my teachers and he Told her he wanted me to be his talent for the commercials. My parents (mainly my mother), turned him down. But it inspired me to keep at it. ICE T was a Rapper who's face was in the Breakdancing movies and I was drawn to his Rhyming on the mic. But soon LL Cool J came out with Radio, so I was following LL and mimicking him. But later when I first heard Eric B and Rakim... I was sold... And I was all in!!!! I started writing rhymes to the beats of records of Eric B and Rakim, LL Cool J, Big Daddy Kane, Boogie Down Productions/KRS ONE and ICE T. They were the only artists I would listen to around the time I was trying to find my voice in Rap. I would eventually get into other options while learning my Craft. I recorded my very first demo in 1989 after I met Eric (EMC) Wyatt and we found out we both had a flow that compliments the others and EPMD was inspiration for us to do it. Eric had a cousin that had his own recording studio in his Garage. I recorded my first two songs: "Criminal Stylin' and This Is How It Should Be Done" in that exact order. Just by the titles alone should give you an obvious idea of who inspired me to write those. I would play those songs day after day because I couldn't believe I finally had my own music. "

Where does the name Tha Hatchetman D.O.P.E-T come from exactly ? what does it mean ?

Tha' Hatchetman D.O.P.E.-T. : "As far as my name as an Artist : I started out as "D.O.P.E. ONE" (KRS Inspired) but Eric was freestyling in the dining area of a Taco Bell while I was beating on the table, and he said "My Partner DOPE-T" in a lyric, and while he was still freestyling, something about it "clicked"... So I went with it!!!! But let me be clear, this (Freestyle) happened before I ever had the blessing of recording my first demo. The Hatchet Man moniker came later... D.O.P.E.-T. means: Demonstration Of Poetic Execution Terrorist(Style). Tha' Hatchet Man was added later when I began to notice how other local rappers fearedy presence whenever there was a Live microphone anywhere near, inspired by watching Jason and Michael Myers Horror movies and the whole thing with other Rappers not wanting to get on the Microphone whenever I was present, so I took it on and it fit. "

How did the connection happen between you and the producer D.L Mitchell  ?

Tha' Hatchetman D.O.P.E.-T. : "D.L. (Shon) Mitchell was introduced to me through a former friend while I was a resident student in Job Corps here in Washington D.C.. My former friend took me over to a friend of his whose sister was dating him (DL)... He told his homie about my skills and I spit Alphabetstyle on the spot, while I was still Rhymin'... He called D.L. on the phone and told him he needed to get there asap. DL pulls up about an Hour later, I spit it for him, and he was sold on producing the tracks for it. We lost contact after I released the First Strike 12 Inch and I never saw or heard from him since. I started looking into production from other producers who mainly had celebrity resumes (solid ones too)."

Were you affiliated with a group at that time ?

Tha' Hatchetman D.O.P.E.-T. : "I had written "Alphabetstyle" in my beginning tenure as a student at my first Job Corp Campus in Albany Georgia. I would go home for a visit and had a friend (Derrick/D-Love) who was an R&B Group that was signed to "Ichiban Records" based in Atlanta. He was also apart of the Military and his group dispersed over technicalities of another 4 member R&B Group stealing their name. So Derrick would eventually do his own thing for all the talent in the neighborhood, me and Eric being his priority project as (Twice Da' Hype at the moment) we recorded a two song demo: "Make Em Dance To This" and "Drop Somethin' Funky" with the help of a up and coming local Rapper (Rob D) who also had a 12 Inch Record out with his DJ (Hard). We eventually found out that there was already a group under the moniker of: "Twice Da' Hype"... So I was already the type to always draw and create logos and play with words, so I kept thinking about what could we call ourselves and I brainstormed: "205 (Birmingham's Area Code) Caliber (Kalibur) I was feeling it, but I felt like there's something else missing. So I kept playing with the words until I got this meaning: "205 K.A.L.I.B.U.R." (Knowledge And Lethal Intellect Bringin' Unlimited Roughness). But me and Eric were growing apart as a duo and a bad live showcase at my current High School (West End High School) helped us part ways for a while. "

205 K.A.L.I.B.U.R. - From Left to Right : EMC / D.O.P.E.-T. / DJ A.K. - Photo courtesy of Anthony Horn

Who did manage P.E.M Recordingz ? 

Tha' Hatchetman D.O.P.E.-T. : "P.E.M. Recordingz was originally my music publishing company that I went under to release my records on an independency, no one (other than God and his Blessings) has contributed anything Financial for any of my records. I left the group thing alone and decided to do it on my own under God's direction. That's because any and every other person I tried to form a faction with felt we should follow what majority of the groups and artist were doing (using profane expression) and I stood on God's word and principles and kept the music clean... "

Mad Props to Anthony Horn a.k.a Tha' Hatchetman D.O.P.E.-T., thanks for your time !

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