| Profile: DaRun|
From: Brooklyn, New York City
Born in Cambodia and growing up in New York's Brooklyn, Darun is an ambitious individual who wants to be a voice for Asians in the music industry.
| Interview: DaRun|
interviewed on November 22,2004
- What's up DaRun? Tell us a bit of your history.
Well my parents are Chinese and Cambodian. I was born during the Communism era of Pol Pot, known as the Killing Fields. During the time of war, they swept cities, rape women, robbed everyone and took the city as slaves. Those who oppose or spoke in any other languages must die!! Where the old ones and their families were slaves and youngins of the Khmer Rouge Pol Pot are the enforcers and killers. To make a short story shorter, when I was about 1 years old, my family escaped risking everyone's lives and were luckily saved when reaching Thailand. From then on we flew to America and lived in Brooklyn, NY. Flatbush and Church Ave. was the area I lived around since, where more than 95% of the community was African Americans.
- When did you begin rapping?
I've been musical since the age of 5, but the first time I could say that I rap was when I was about 12. That's when I actually starting writing poems in melodic tunes and flows.
- Where do you find inspiration for your lyrics?
I find inspiration for my music because
- I'm an artist first.
- I feel that good art comes from hard life and emotions are what make music.
- I feel that my life and the things I have to say are not simple. They are meaningful which can teach, persuade, and inspire to change the world for our better future and for the world to acknowledge respect for Asians in every industry, especially in America.
- I feel that I'm talented and could paint pictures with words and sound so beautifully.
- Until we overcome the stereotypes of what others think of us, I will never stop! Asians need to speak up and represent themselves more in this industry, especially in America. Until Asians are respected for our art, creativity and mind, it will always remain as my life's battles.
- Is there anyone in the industry that you admire?
I admire Tupac and Nas because their music has conscience to change the world! Real and Great Artform.
- What artists do you listen to?
Believe it or not, I use to hate Tupac cuz I was caught up in this East vs. West thang. But when he died, I listened to him more and realized he wasn't the average man. I mean his life, his writings, his songs and thoughts are too overwhelming to be fake.
Nas cuz he's so lyrical and his music were about real problems of reality and struggles which he had unselfish positive answers for, you know? His artistry is excellent!! To name others, there's Biggie, Wu-tang and those who are excellent at their artwork and messages.
- How has your background affected your rap?
My background are worst than everyone who's not in my position and I feel that everyone needs to hear what i say to make this change. I feel like my music and lyrics fight for everyone who trying to reach heaven, coming from the worst and Hip Hop represents the struggle. My life is dedicated to revolutionizing the world. I feel like if I don't do it, no one has the ability to do it as good. If I can survive when I was born in a place I was suppose to die, I can overcome anything!!
- Tell me how it is to record and work for your own entertainment company.
It feels great but at the same time extremely exhausted because I do all of my music from scratch, including rapping, singing, producing, writing, arranging, mixing and engineering my own work. This mixtape that I have now available, I only produce one track on it because I want to save my original tracks for my album and also because riding on other peoples beats on mixtapes are the number 1 promotion right now. But at the end of the day, whether succeeding or not, I know that I won't just get a crumb of the pie from these major labels and that I control my own destiny.
- You performed earlier this year at the City (formerly Club Mumbai) in NYC. How was that first time experience?
Well, I've been performing since I was 5 in a live band singing, and playing the drums, so that wasn't my first time. But that night, I just came out of central booking jail 15 minutes before the show then came straight to do the show, so it was a crazy feeling, especially when the sound system there sucks and made me sound bad. It was just an occasion where everything went wrong, but I still did it.!! The cops had pulled me over on the way to rehearsal the day before because I had out of state plates and it expired!
- You are working with Blackblood productions on your first album titled "Darun". How is production going so far, and when will be it released?
My production company is called Blackloud Productions, because I feel that the music I made is like a storm that represents the rainy days of the struggle.
The label is called Heavenly Entertainment because that is my destination in the future.
At least to be from under the cloud in the rain to above the cloud controlling the reign!! u know!
As for the production goes, it is coming along spectacularly.
I have songs of every category of what life is: love, peace, pain and war.
These are the things that exist in my life and yours.
Because no great artist only listen to one type of music, they grew up listening to everything.
No art form or category is what real life is.
Life is made up of everything, so instead of just rapping or singing, my album will have both, mixing with real life experiences, history backgrounds, future goals and music which are from Asian heritage sounds and hip hop beats of today.
The album is very deep, political, emotional,revolutionary and an autobiographical, so everything I feel is real!
The album will be called "History of Relentless Dragon" which is translated from my chinese name which means just that!!
and my English and Cambodian name is Darun which is my real name and it stands for the one who's real, raw, romantic, relentless and revolutionary.
This might sound too ironic but my life deals with all types of people.
I'm real to my family and friends, raw to my enemies, romantic to the ladies, relentless to my fans and revolutionary for my Asian people and seeds.
The album will drop summer of next year! 2005.
- Who would you like to work with in the future?
I would love to work with Nas, Beyonce, Jay-Z and any other artists that I feel thats great in what they do! From Lil John to Christina Aguilara!! and my new 13 year old artist, YoungPrez. He will be the leader of the new generation. People out there, beware. This is Heavenly Entertainment. We run our own business, make our own music and control our own destiny! That's how it should be.
- Are you looking to get sign by a record label? Any specific deal you are hoping for?
I want them to recognize that I have the ability to run my own business and the talent to market and make my own music. I want a label deal!! to run my own company. If they could handle promotion and distribution, I can do everything else just fine. My plan is not to sell records only in America, but to sell all over asia, which consists of billions of people. If they're smart, they would believe in me and would probably sell more records just in Asia alone.
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