WGM x Rice the Sound Transmitter Interview 3/10 / by Randy Ortiz

WGM coming thru with Rice the Sound Transmitter keepin it live and scratching for y'all! Not to long ago my ears wowed at listening to the skilled turntablist recently featured in Passion Hi-Fi's last mixtape and HAD to get in touch with the man. Well here we are... I got the chance to talk to Rice for a few annnnd he also cooked up a exclusive WGM vid. Really now... how dope is that?!! So peep the video below, and have a read into RTST's world. [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WuvaheSOcL4&w=500]

So Rice where do you transmit from? I transmit the sounds invading peoples' ears and infecting their brains from Chicago, IL.

From the Chi, that's wassup! Who or what put you on to Turntablism, and how long have you been doing it? I've been DJ'ing for about 6 years now. I guess it all started in 7th grade when my older brother put on DJ Qbert's "Demolition Pumpkin Squeeze Musik" in his car. He put on this track that had Q cutting up Street Fighter samples and I thought that was really dope. One day, I secretly took that mix out of his CD case and put it on my walkman (hah, a walkman) and blasted it before and after school. That mix consisted of classic b-boying breaks with Q cutting over it. At the time, however, I had no clue what the hell what those breaks were (or even what a "break" was), but it was just so funky that I couldn't stop listening. As I listened, I kept wondering to myself, "How is he making those scratches? How is this even possible?" From that time onward, I started listening to a lot of DJ mixes and a lot of Three 6 Mafia, hypnotize minds stuff hahah. Fast forward to the start of my sophomore year of high school. There were two influential movies that started to shift interests into becoming reality, the documentary "Scratch" and DJ Shadow's live DVD, "In tune and on time". DJ Shadow was becoming my favorite DJ/producer at the time and the live DVD he put out pretty much nailed it on the head. In that concert, there's a close up of him doing a scratch solo during his song "In/Flux." When I first saw that, something clicked. I watched it over and over again before watching the rest of the performance. Seeing him move that crossfader back and forth along with the record was mind blowing to me. It answered the question I posed to myself when I first heard that Qbert mixtape. Scratching was something I didn't just want to try, it was something that had to be a part of me. The documentary "Scratch" pretty much made added to that statement. To me, that movie felt like an introduction to turntablism. For those who don't really know what turntablism is and how it came about, that's the movie to see right there. A few months later, I asked my parents if I could get turntables and a mixer for Christmas and that's where it all began. From there, I taught myself from watching videos on the internet, imitating other DJ's scratches, and just messing around, scratching after school.

DJ Shadow can definitely do it up, I loved Brainfreeze with Cut Chemist. What was your first piece of equipment? Haha, my first set of equipment was a Numark "DJ in the Box". It consisted of two Numark TT1610s turntables and DM950 mixer. The turntables were belt-driven, which is a no-no for scratching and the mixer had the crummiest crossfader in the world. I didn't really notice the flaws at the time haha. I was just super excited. But when I started learning more and more skills, they were definitely limiting me from getting better. It was a learning experience with those though. I like to refer to them as the "Noobmarks".

Ha! I bet you was ballin with it at the time. Ok seriously I can't follow your hands on the videos, can you slow down? I'm sorry, my hands don't have ears to hear that suggestion. Maybe a beer or two (okay, maybe 7 beers) might solve that.

Alright beer is in the mail then hehe. Do you see the Turntablist craft losing it's passion with people using samples or software to add scratches to their tracks? To me, pre-made scratches sound real wack, especially when they're put on tracks. People should know that if they're going to add scratches to their tracks, they're going to need real DJs and turntables to handle it for them. Scratches from like a turntable emulator or something pre-recorded from a website with free samples or loops doesn't sound natural to me. The pre-made or emulated stuff is just for people who want to make their track sound like shit. Does it affect the turntablist craft in anyway? To a certain extent, yes, because it can give people who listen to the fake-cuts a bad impression of what scratching can sound like. It could give them the impression like, "Oh, anyone can do that. That's not music, that's just noise. There's no timing involved, no rhythm blah blah blah". Turntablism has complexity, timing, and rhythm. Hell, it even has soul.

I agree, nothing like the real deal where it adds to the track and it's not just inserted to the track. Speaking of adding... my first hearing of your work was in Passion Hi-Fi's tape, how did that come along? Prior to the Passion Hi-Fi tape, I did a couple of tracks on my homeboy Sev Seveer's mixtape "T-Roy's Deli" (which by the way, you all should find and download, cause its FIRE). I did some cuts for this track titled, "Picture Perfect", and it also featured Savant the Lyricist. Savant liked my cuts in that track and he asked me if I could do the cuts for any of his upcoming projects. I agreed and then a few months later he sends me a track from the Hi-Fi mixtape that had him, Phashara, and Longshot on it called "Say Ya Prayers". I did the cuts and from there it was buttery goodness.

Do you have any upcoming projects you want to mention? I'm doing more cuts on Sev Seveer's upcoming mixtape and EPs. Show wise, I'm playing down at University of Illinois on April 16th and 17th for the Hip Hop Congress' Hip Hop appreciation month (that wasn't a mouthful).

Ok before we bounce I have to ask you a very important question... Silverhawks or Gatchaman? I'm going to have to say Battle of the pl...I mean Gatchaman on this one.  I never really watched Silverhawks, but isn't it's supposed to be like Thundercats in space? Too bad in space, nobody can hear you HOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

Ahh I see what you did there... hehe. So I'd like to thank Rice the Sound Transmitter for passing thru and showing love to WGM. It was dope and that video is some fresh shit homie. Another Giant amongst men! People check Rice out, and follow him with the links below!

YOUTUBE, FACEBOOK, TWITTER, FLICKR, MYSPACE