This interview with Donny Goines was made by J.U.ICE back in ’09.
I’m baaaaack. What’s good ya’ll? After a little hiatus due to school work and some other bullshit, Juice is back with another interview. This time I sit down with an artist who definitely knows a little something about being on the grind: Donny Goines. Extremely passionate for his art, Donny works hard to give his fans some of the realest music out today. If you don’t know him, get to know him, because after his debut LP, Minute After Midnight, the sky’s the limit for the New York-based emcee.
Keep reading for the interview.
Juice: I recently got my hand on a copy of your debut LP, Minute After Midnight, so first, I wanted to give you some props. Definitely one of my favourite and also realest records released last year. Were you happy with how everything turned out and did the reception of the record meet your expectations?
Donny: As far as the music I’m very happy because I did everything exactly how I wanted to. I didn’t have to compromise my artistic integrity nor do any “trendy” songs to get my message across. I really put 110% in that album and my audience really seemed to enjoy it. Minute After Midnight was just how I expected my debut to sound and I’m pleased because the people are happy.
Juice: What’s Donny Goines been up to since the album’s release and what do you got in store for us in 2009?
Donny: Right now I’m working on several different things. The next thing people will hear from me is “The Breakfast Club” album which is something I’m currently working on now. It will feature many different artists such as Mistah F.A.B, Naledge from Kidz in the Hall, Rain, Term, Skyzoo and many more. On the production end I have Kwame, 6th Sense, Cook Classics, Statik Selektah and many more. Wont let all cats out of the bag but suffice it to say that its gonna be a problem. After that Im dropping a West Coast inspired Mixtape with DJ Warrior so look out for tons of new music.
Juice: Like your music in general, Minute After Midnight spoke about many topics that are real to you. There’s a lot of bullshit in today’s hip hop world, which is why MIUNEX tends to endorse more artists like yourself rather than the Ricky Ross’, Lil Wayne’s, etc (no disrespect). What’s your take on the state of the industry right now?
Donny: You summed it up in one word pretty much. Theres alot of Bullshit out there these days but I try not to focus too much on the nonsense, just the good stuff. Bottomline, I am the type of MC that really wants to make classic material and an impact in the world musically so I really take my craft seriously. I cant speak for others but I know that I cant stand the bullshit so I don’t put it out there for people.
Juice: This question pops up everytime I get a chance to talk to an artist. Gets a little repetitive for me, but I always wanna know (and I’m sure the readers do too) how they got into the rap game. When did you first get into rapping and what attracted you to it?
Donny: Well basically I have been into Hip Hop for awhile now. Since the moment I first heard Biggie’s “Juicy” I knew that it was for me. I started freestyling when I was 17 but I didn’t really take it too serious to be honest. I had moments where I thought I could do it but never really pursued it. Then in early 2006 I saw a movie called “Fade to Black” and I swear I had an awakening of sorts. That’s the only way I can really describe it. I knew at that moment that music was what I wanted to do with my life. Since then I’ve been going hard at it.
Juice: If you had to choose one track to introduce an individual to your music, which one would it be?
Donny: If I could choose one song to describe me it would probably be “Do it For Hip Hop” Prod. by Dj Static (CHECK IT OUT ON YOUTUBE: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ekEv6yjDb9s). That’s one of my favorites right there.
Juice: What’s your plans for the future as far as record labels go? Do you plan on signing to one anytime soon, or you just going to keep doing this independent thing?
Donny: Until I can find a label that understands me as an artists and is willing to take chances then I will be independent. I actually love the freedom of being unsigned because it allows me to create music uninhibited. I don’t answer to anyone but myself and at the end of the day I am the boss. On the flipside though, you can only do so much at this level, its hard to really break into the game this way but where there’s a will there’s a way.
Juice: And oh yeah, before I forget, what’s the status on you doing shows north of the border? Did you get that legal shit worked out yet or am I gonna have to smuggle a brother into Canada?
Donny: Yes I am still currently banned from Canada. It really sucks too because I love the country and really need to be up there but the way its looking now I wont be able to enter the country until I clear up these issues. They truly are minor ones that just take a lawyer and money to handle. I’ll make sure to do so soon so I can rock out up there with all my Canadians who love Hip Hop.
Juice: The first thing I see when I enter your homepage is the quote, “If you don’t know my name I’m not working hard enough”. Your work ethic is inspiring to me. What keeps you going though? I know you’re not swimming in cash right now, so what’s motivating you to keep putting in work and releasing music?
Donny: Truthfully what keeps me going is the love of the people such as yourself. If it was money I would’ve given up a long time ago but my motives are different then most. I love the energy and the rush of it all. I am inspired by the many talented artists out there and just great music. I love what i do and I wouldn’t have it any other way. Money comes and goes but times like this are timeless. I love Hip Hop.
Juice: Anyway, that about wraps it up. Once again, I just wanted to give you props. We know you’ve went through some hard times, and I want you to know we’re backing you the entire way. Just keep working as hard as you have been and shit will all fall into place. Any final words for the people out there?
Donny: Thank you man, that right there is why I do it. I just want to say that I love anyone who loves me and even if you hater me I still love you. Look out for The Breakfast Club dropping soon and hit me on Myspace, Facebook, Twitter, whatever.