From the city of Cudahy, a small yet densely populated area located in the south eastern part of Los Angeles, comes rapper by the name of Annimeanz. Brought up in the gang-life that has become synonymous with the streets of inner-city Los Angeles, when you first take a look at Annimeanz and learn that he’s a rap artist, the first thing that comes to mind is that he’s your typical cholo rapper who raps over oldies samples and lowrider driven G-Funk. Not that there’s anything wrong with that but it is very typical of Hispanic MC’s from the Southern California area. Annimeanz, however, is a different breed of Hispanic MC who prefers the more radio and club friendly sound as heard on most California stations that play urban music. Instead of oldies samples, you’ll hear deep bass, claps, and “heys” over the beat made popular by DJ Mustard and YG. It’s a new movement of Hispanic MC’s that have gravitated to a more upbeat sound as opposed to the slower cholo rap or even the dark underground style that others have been drawn to. It’s much needed too because it’s displaying a diversity that Hispanics can bring to the table and go beyond the lowriders and into the cars that are listening to what the radio is playing. Make no mistake though – the content itself is still very “street” and West Coast based. So with all of that said we bring you Annimeanz, who is set to release his new album “The Murder Business.” Take a moment to learn more about this artist who’s making waves up and down California.
I’ve seen you working with fellow rapper Young Hu$tle a lot lately in songs and videos. Tell me about your guy’s partnership?
I see someone like that – with drive and talent – and I want to help them elevate their career. I feel like that’s just something that needs to be done in this business because there aren’t many who try to reach out. He’s got accolades of his own and was signed to Dipset West for a number of years. Hu$tle’s got a movement of his own and I wanted to be a part of it. It seemed like a great idea to join forces.
When I first started to see your name around, I noticed that you were a part of Glasses Malone’s Blu Division crew – but now you’re not. What happened there?
I just felt like it was time to step out and do my own thing. Shout out to Glasses, he taught me a lot of things and gave me the tools that have allowed me to do what I’m doing now. I sat back and watched this man run his own label for a number of years and observed the way he controlled his social media and things. I picked up some real jewels from him but I felt like it was time to do my own thing. There was a difference of opinion between us as far as the direction that I wanted to go as an artist. He felt I should have gone a different direction. There were creative differences but I believe in what I’m trying to do and so I felt it was best for me to continue in the direction that I wanted to go. I don’t want to have anybody around that doesn’t believe in what I want to do. I’m not saying that he doesn’t believe in me but he didn’t believe in what I’m doing currently. He didn’t think that certain records that I made or the sound that I’m creating wasn’t the sound for me. I respect him and his opinion but on the flipside of that there has to be a point where you have to go out and make it happen. You can’t always be in the background. If you’re a boxer and someone trains you, you eventually have to go out and fight and when you’re in that ring there is no trainer with you – it’s just you. That camp is family but I have to go out and create my own legacy.
What exactly is your sound and direction?
I like to think that my sound is a West Coast vibe with the 808 drums and the claps. People who hear the music might reference it to YG but I don’t think it’s the same even though it is influenced by it. When I came into rap, I was a huge listener of East Coast hip-hop. I never was really into West Coast hip-hop like that. I didn’t come up listening to WC and Snoop Dogg – no offense to them. For me to gravitate to a West Coast sound is big for me because coming up I didn’t vibe to it. I was more of a boom-bap hip-hop type of person. People who know me from my start, know that kind of style that I used to have. If you listen to the Cudahy tape, it’s all boom-bap hip-hop. I learned how to rhyme from listening to Mobb Deep and Nas tapes. That’s why it’s big for me to vibe with the kind of sound I do now.
That kind of explains why you stand out with your sound especially amongst your Hispanic peers. The Chicano rap scene has long been about G-Funk and sampling oldies. That’s pretty dope that you were actually able to have a boom-bap hip-hop background.
I just love good music but Glasses was the one that turned me onto that West vibe when he was making the first Glasshouse album. I came in at that time and he had already left Cash Money Records. Just hearing the beats daily over and over and hearing the different artists that came in to record their verses and talking to different producers. I learned how to create music myself and began to appreciate things like deep bass drums. I’ve worked with and have reached out to a bunch of producers that specialize in those types of beats out here.
The one thing that I’m not really into right now is rap features – unless it’s someone like Smoke Major and Young Hu$tle. Other than that, that’s it. You can’t even pay me for a verse right now. People try to pay me for a verse but I don’t really need it like that – If I’m not fucking with you then I’m not fucking with you.
That’s a different perspective than most MC’s because usually money talks.
Well, that’s the thing. Without me getting too personal, I don’t really need the bread. I’m not really here to collect residuals. I’m here to create good music, you know what I’m saying? I’m here for accolades and accomplishments. I don’t really care about the money. I feel like if you’re great at what you do, then the money is going to come.