EarthGang Live Through Music: Spillage Village, Jamming With Mac Miller, & J. Cole's Psychic Predictions

Few songwriters are as uniquely sensible as Johnny Venus and Doctur Dot, identified collectively as EarthGang. The Atlanta duo have been placing in work since highschool, inserting themselves into the expansive pantheon of Atlanta greats. Alongside fellow lyricist J.I.D, the group fashioned Spillage Village, taking their dwell expertise to wherever might need them. From there, endurance and fervour paid dividends. People started to take discover from Mac Miller, to Ab-Soul, to J. Cole. Now, the pair have joined the ranks of Dreamville, taking part in a pivotal position in one in all hip-hop’s most celebrated rosters.

They’ll seemingly outrap your favourite rapper, all whereas retaining a razor-sharp humorousness and melodious joie de vivre. Conceptually, the pair stay elevated. Their upcoming album MirrorLand has been likened to a film, and their three-act trilogy of Rags, Robots, and Royalty showcased a imaginative and prescient past the right here and now. And but, that sense of gratitude, of affection for the artwork of constructing music, stays evident, even after their quickly increasing success.

When I spoke to EarthGang, the pair had just lately returned from the KOD Tour, the place they shared the stage alongside J. Cole, Young Thug, and Jaden Smith. Throughout their time on the street, many tales developed in flip. Some hilarious, others tragic. Yet the gratitude was evident of their respective voices. In reality, their outlook was infectious in its optimism, translated of their energetic reflections on previous and current. Whether speaking about music, their come-up, fellow artists, or the late Mac Miller, EarthGang floor their phrases with a deep-rooted sense of admiration for the craft, and people who observe it.


HNHH: Hey, that is Mitch from HNHH. How you guys doing?

Johnny Venus: Chilling, Chilling.

How was tour?

JV: It was superb. It was flat out unbelievable. Everything we might have wished and dreamed for.

Doctur Dot: This is like top-of-the-line excursions we ever did.

JV: Like the Too High To Riot Tour with Bas was one for the books however this one proper right here. It’s simply stuff that legends are manufactured from. It’s similar to stuff you inform your nice grandkids and stuff. One for the books.

The loopy factor is it feels such as you guys are nonetheless solely getting began. You guys have such a prolific charge of dropping music. I really feel like the most effective is but to return.

Venus: These amateurs are actually doing it!

Nah, man! You guys are nice.

JV: Nah, I really feel you although! It’s actually cool. It is admittedly cool for therefore many individuals to be put onto us and it’s their first time and we’re on stage with Thug and Jaden and Cole. It’s like “I by no means heard of those guys earlier than!” We’re introduced subsequent to those names so we type of gotta convey it.

Absolutely. I imply, your materials speaks for itself in my view. You’ve received an excellent physique of labor. I’m certain it was an excellent expertise. But earlier than we begin speaking in regards to the KOD Tour, I’d like to have a look again on the Spillage Village motion. How did you guys come collectively?

DD: Yeah, communicate on that, man! I like to speak about that. Spillage Village was an concept that me, Venus and JID got here up with once we was up in Virginia. We have been all homies. We have been three homies from Atlanta in Virginia, at school rapping. We have been all hanging collectively and rapping collectively, and we have been like we should always actually make this a factor. We ought to decide to it and we began calling ourselves Spillage Village. It was simply one thing we might simply at all times say once we would go to events and go to the studio. Then once we received residence again to Atlanta, we actually made it right into a motion. We began doing exhibits throughout the town underneath the identify. All of us collectively on stage collectively.

JV: Yeah. Every time we come residence, folks ask us like do you’ve any recommendation for upcoming artists? I be like, very first thing is, don’t cease. Because no matter we was going via, we saved making music. We simply saved making music after which we received residence, we simply saved performing. Like any kind of present. Pay to play kind of exhibits? Yeah bro, we did that. Every Monday we might carry out at Club Crucial, spend like $30-50.

We have been working as camp counselors. We have been struggling school youngsters like everyone else however we might take no matter cash we had and go carry out these two, three songs and folk would have a look at us like who’re these guys? Who are these weirdos? But the identify caught. It traveled and that’s all that mattered like consistency.

DD: Yeah. Picking up on what Venus mentioned, that Club Crucial, I don’t know if it’s nonetheless the identical, we been away for a minute, but it surely was T.I’s membership, bro.

JV: Folks nonetheless be in there performing.

DD: Yeah, I do know folks nonetheless be in there doing exhibits. We was in there doing open mics and freestyles and all kinds of shit. Off the highest doing freestyles and shit in there early, simply because we heard folks be getting picked up and blowing up out of there. We didn’t know no different manner. And we from the Westside, however we was like, we in that shit.

You guys have been actually grinding again then.

JV: Yeah! When I received residence like final weekend, I used to be calling this Uber and this dude, we have been simply speaking and I’m prefer it’s so loopy, I simply received again residence and I used to be like, “we was on the street with J. Cole.” And he was like “maintain up, you ain’t EarthGang is you?” I used to be like, yeah bro. And he like “man that’s loopy, I keep in mind when y’all was acting at Apache!” Apache is like a type of spots, like a nightclub the place they do open mics and we might are available in there and like actually pay to play!

He was saying the identical factor. Like, “I’m so proud that y’all nonetheless touring and y’all saved it up”. Because lots of people get aspect tracked. Lots of people be like, man this simply ain’t for me. Yeah bro, for that to return full circle, it’s simply superb.

I learn you guys have been doing a little engineering by yourself materials too. Just type of actually like a DIY strategy to it.

JV: That was straight a necessity, yo! When we went to College, even again in Atlanta, once we was recording in High School, the one purpose we had entry is due to two of our companions. One was named Dex, we went to High School collectively, and one other one in all our companions, Mercy, he’s like a producer out right here. He makes nice music. He went to center college with me.

They each had studios at they crib, and like me personally, that is my first time ever seeing a studio, not to mention a studio in somebody’s home. So, I used to be like, you realize, “oh wow, that is the place we recording.” But once we went to varsity, we didn’t have that, so, that complete first 12 months, we was making our personal information, we was sneaking into the liberal arts college as a result of they’d their very own studio in there.

We would go away a rock on the door and like one, two within the morning, we might simply open the door and sneak into the studio. We’d simply be there till we left. The custodian was cool, he would are available in there now and again and be like oh “y’all simply in right here recording y’all cool.”

Nice. I do know you guys have lots of influences exterior of hip-hop, and I used to be questioning for those who really feel like there are benefits that come from increasing your style to incorporate different genres.

DD: Yeah. I believe increasing your self in any manner to assist improve your development is a bonus. It’s straightforward to get a technique and get stagnant.

JV: It’s actually straight up about curiosity and inquisitiveness. If you at all times looking out and at all times making an attempt to be taught extra and making an attempt to show your self to extra, you’re going to ceaselessly be a conduit, you realize what I’m saying? Whether its power, whether or not it’s musical data, whether or not it’s cash, networking. If you’re at all times consistently searching for additional data, you’re at all times going to have extra and have the ability to give extra.

Like even once we determined to go to high school, we have been like, nah we wanna go to high school exterior of Atlanta. Now our path is completely different from let’s say a Migos path, or a Young Thug’s path as a result of they got here up recording with Gucci within the metropolis. That’s a phenomenal factor, however we was like, we doing one thing completely different as a result of that is what we wish to do. It’s paying off for us in a phenomenal manner.

No doubt. I needed to really discuss among the stuff that’s happening in Atlanta. I noticed Cyhi Da Prynce tweeted out that the best lyricists alive proper now are from Atlanta, and I believe with out saying something, he’s enveloping you into that blend. So, I’m simply questioning, do you’re feeling like he is perhaps onto one thing there?

JV: Man, he simply know what the town is about! We simply scrappers, anyone from Atlanta, we survivors bro! Put us wherever, we gonna survive. We gonna come out on prime. So, it don’t matter what we do. If we artists, musicians, mayors, medical doctors, we gonna scrap, we gonna come out on prime. We gonna do it our manner, so for certain, I agree with him 100 %.

So, on that be aware, when it comes to lyricism, I used to be doing a deep dive via your catalogs. Really type of attending to know all the lyrics and actually being attentive to writing as a result of I discover actually, from a writing perspective, among the finest out proper now. Super thought-provoking. There’s rather a lot to unpack there. I gotta ask about your writing course of.

DD: It’s loopy bro! We actually be tryna be humorous bro. That’s the sincere factor. We wasn’t tryna be intelligent and that’s the factor! [laughs]

The humor is unquestionably famous. But I’m simply curious, if you guys sit down in a studio session and also you hear the beat, what’s the method like. Are you collectively? Are you doing this by yourself? Is it extra of an inside course of, or is there lots of again of forth?

JV: It’s something man. It can go any manner. It’s like being in a chemistry lab and having a unique experiment to strive on a regular basis. It’s a bunch of instruments, a bunch of components. It’s type of such as you received a blindfold on and also you simply strolling round grabbing issues and you want, oh this what we received? Like Macgyver fashion. Let’s do it, let’s make one thing with it. I really feel like that’s what creativity is about. Creativity is about utilizing what you’ve and making new issues out of.

For certain. So, wanting again on the KOD Tour, any memorable tales you’d wish to share?

[maniacal laughter from both]

DD: I received one! This is an efficient PG rated story I can share. When we was in Texas, first time we ever met Lil Uzi, we within the inexperienced room, we received hella weed, we received hella Texas women strolling round. It appeared like an old style Paul Wall video in there. I’m in that bitch. I received the tattoo artist in there. I’m in that bitch getting tatted up like individuals are watching and filming me getting tatted. Who walks within the room? Lil Uzi. When he come via, he dap niggas up, we chop it up for a min. Get jokes cracking. It was nice.

JV: Uzi walked into the dressing room type of like a superintendent or one thing! He had his palms behind his again, like he simply walked in, like “what y’all as much as!” He was dolo.

DD: It was simply loopy. After Uzi walked in, everyone simply knew EarthGang inexperienced rooms was lit. Now we inexperienced room legends for all excursions ceaselessly and ever.

That sounds fairly legendary. Do you guys have any plans to hyperlink up with Uzi sooner or later to make some music?

JV: For certain. Definitely. Most undoubtedly. We received extra tales. When we was in Minnesota. So, like throughout the present, we’ll go to the riser to look at Cole’s efficiency as a result of everyone help everyone. Thug was there, we have been there, Jaden was up there. Next factor you realize, Thug and his folks simply take off from the risers and so they head via the hall via the entire facility.

We following, everyone strolling, there was simply this huge commotion, like this huge ol’ struggle once we was going exterior the place. We walked previous the place, we walked previous the struggle, it was all tense, we maintain strolling, we following, we don’t know the place we going, it’s like twenty, thirty folks strolling. We going up escalators, via little backdoors, hidden alleyways.

DD: We crossed a bridge!

JV: Yeah, we crossed over a bridge! Next factor you realize, we pull up within the Timberwolves observe facility. They shut off all of the lights and so they simply throw like thirty basketballs on the ground. All our camp is on the market taking pictures hoops. And it’s similar to man, folks don’t get to see this aspect of artists, or this aspect of tour life. It was simply nice for everyone. This was just like the fifteenth, twentieth metropolis. It was nice for everyone to blow off some steam and shoot hoops.

It simply type of gave us that point to bond and play horse. That idiot Jaden don’t even play basketball yo. Fool hit the half court docket shot. Everybody was like “Ohhhhh!” It was like bro, you actually lit proper now. It was simply nice occasions.

On that be aware, I wish to type of take it again to the previous for a second, you guys toured with Ab-Soul and the Black Hippy again in 2014. How would you say these two excursions have in contrast?

JV: Yo, the primary time we met Soul, all of us got here on the bus. It was us and G. Them fools gave us similar to a lot weed simply off prime. It was like “what’s popping? It’s good to have y’all on the street. Here’s weed. Enjoy.” It was dope as a result of lots of people don’t know, we didn’t receives a commission for that tour, they simply gave us that chance and for those who actually about your grind, you gonna take that chance and take advantage of it.

So, we was packed like seven deep in a Chevy Traverse with baggage for like a month. But they actually reached out to us on day one like we glad to have y’all, bearing presents. It was type of the identical factor this time, apart from like we are able to eat, we didn’t should be packed. But like Thug despatched us bottles and stuff, like everyone was simply displaying love.

All the excursions we been on man, everyone simply been displaying love prefer it’s a communal ambiance like whether or not it was with Soul, or the late nice Mac Miller, with Bas, with Thug, with Cole, everyone simply had a communal ambiance. It’s been lovely. Sometimes we have been struggling like with Ab Soul, after which typically you bought catering like with the KOD tour, but it surely’s nonetheless love like no one treating anyone like they lower than. Everybody respecting everyone.

EarthGang Live Through Music: Spillage Village, Jamming With Mac Miller, & J. Cole's Psychic Predictions

Awesome. I didn’t know that aspect of tour life. You take the camaraderie as a right if you have a look at it as a fan. You know what I imply? But you guys are on the market for on the market for months.

JV: Yeah. For months. Like you see folks on a regular basis and this tour particularly, folks have been going via a lot. Like my father handed two weeks earlier than I went on the street, and lots of people don’t know that.

I’m so sorry to listen to that.

JV: Thank you. I recognize that. Lots of people didn’t know that. Word began to get round, folks have been simply checking in on me and ensuring I used to be alright. Then the final week, the final two weeks, our DJ instructed us, he was like man one of many mild dudes, the graphic dudes, his father handed whereas we have been on the street. He ain’t get an opportunity to go residence.

We have been actually in a position to bond on widespread issues like maintain one another up throughout exhausting occasions. People don’t perceive prefer it’s actually robust on the street. You get to construct to that household. We had sleepovers with this man Thug on the bus, like taking part in GTA, like that common stuff.

GTA 5?

JV: Yeah. Thug received all of the cheat codes. He hopping over buildings and shit!

Who’s the nicest at GTA although?

JV: I imply all you doing is robbing folks and beating folks up with cheat codes. It’s not that onerous. But Thug was hearth with it although. He simply rampaging. It’s simply chaos.

I have been there with Grand Theft Auto. But I needed to ask about one thing, on extra of a somber be aware. You talked about Mac Miller, Rest In Peace. I do know you guys collaborated with him on “Monday.” Is there something you’d wish to share in regards to the experiences you had working with him.

JV: Aw man. Mac was actually the primary tremendous well-known particular person we ever met. We carried out shook palms with folks, however Mac was like the primary person who was like, Oh that man can’t go to the mall with us. He can’t simply exit and stroll round with us. But on the identical token he was like, essentially the most real particular person. He invited us to his residence, he invited us on the street with him. Just strictly off the truth that the artistry and the respect for the artistry was there.

He revered the individuals who have been round and so they revered him. It was a household ambiance. Like he was our brother, he handled us like brothers. He despatched us beats and stuff. When we made information with him, he didn’t cost us nothing. It was similar to yo, let’s simply make music, let’s do it. I respect y’all, we are able to smoke, kick it like we brothers and we didn’t don’t have anything bro! We didn’t haven’t any kind of offers, no kind of followers, all we had was our music.

DD: We didn’t don’t have anything to supply this man. Nobody even appeared our path till he make clear us. He tweeted out the “F Bomb” video, and off the “F Bomb” video we have been in a position to tour with Ab Soul and off that, we have been in a position to meet Cole, and after assembly Cole, we was in a position to signal to Interscope. He pushed the domino.

JV: He was the primary particular person!

DD: On all the things.

JV: Everybody else that noticed us was like, “wassup. Keep grinding.” Even in the event that they knew us or didn’t know us, it was like “wassup, maintain grinding.” Mac was like yo, I’m opening up this house. We was chilling in his storage out in Malibu till like 5 within the morning simply blasting music, making information, writing. Like this my first time ever being in Malibu. Like Malibu, nigga I’m from Southwest Atlanta! I don’t go to oceans! Ain’t no oceans round right here! Ain’t no seashores round right here, bro. I’m in Malibu with Mac Miller?

DD: That was my first time in a G wagon. In Mac Miller’s G wagon.

JV: You know what I’m saying, we using round with this man! We didn’t don’t have anything and he was similar to tremendous benevolent, tremendous beneficiant. I wish to be certain folks know that about him. Like he was an excellent dude.

DD: Still is nice. Still blessing us.

Thanks for sharing that. He was good on the mic too. Like very versatile.

DD: He was so good at completely different devices, bro. Like even once we went on tour with him. That tour was like a very good tour for us. It was us, him, Michael Christmas, Cousin Stizz, we nonetheless cool with these guys from that tour. Stizz got here out on our Boston date. All them relationships was constructed due to Mac. And the best way he would have folks round and neutralize a vibe, that’s one thing you’re simply born with. It simply feels natural and it feels purposeful and the way it’s imagined to be.

JV: Yeah. We all chilling.

DD: To make folks really feel like they’re imagined to be round it doesn’t matter what, is hearth. Everybody can’t try this.

The recreation misplaced a very good one. I keep in mind listening to that whereas working…It was upsetting. Took some time to sit down in.

JV: And the loopy factor that you simply even saying that, is like we was on the street when that occurred. We had simply received to Vegas. We simply noticed him in LA every week earlier than. He got here to the present! Everybody who was on the KOD Tour rocked with him. He got here to the VIP room, he was sitting there with everyone. This is Mac Miller, bro. He was sitting there with everyone. People who purchased their folks in, their followers, no matter, he was sitting there kicking it with everyone. So once we received to Vegas. Doc known as me and instructed me. I used to be fucked up bro. It simply so occurred that everyone on the tour, we galvanized one another. We held one another up.

DD: I used to be crying so motherfucking a lot.

JV: We was within the dressing room crying earlier than the present in Las Vegas. Just tears, weeping, we don’t know what to do. We don’t know what to say. That’s my good friend. It ain’t even about rap shit. That’s my good friend. He went to highschool and shit with our managers and stuff. That’s our folks. We was blessed to be round that neighborhood and that surroundings on this tour the place we might get via it.

I by no means met Mac, however he’s an artist and I believe he’d take some consolation in realizing that you simply guys all bonded collectively and saved one another going. You know, fellow artists. I believe that’s one thing to be mentioned about that. I keep in mind after it occurred, J. Cole truly tweeted out some uplifting stuff and a few constructive messages. It type of strengthened his place within the recreation, as a job mannequin. I’m simply questioning what’s your guys’ relationship with Cole?

DD: That’s the homie man.

JV: He like the large brother I by no means had. I’m an solely little one. I come from a big prolonged household, however I needed to get lots of issues by myself. But he like a giant brother that I by no means had like and it’s cool as a result of, you understand how typically huge brothers be all in your head, tryna let you know to do that and that, it ain’t even like that. He’s simply as excited as we’re.

I received any individual that been via some issues alongside this journey I can reference it from. It’s only a blessing. That’s our accomplice, he gonna get loopy with us, he gonna get wild, he gonna crack jokes, he gonna do all the identical issues that we do, however he simply seen a little bit extra. So it’s like alright that is arising subsequent so maintain your eyes open.

DD: Yeah. Cole is sweet for the street maps. That’s one factor I can say about Cole. He predicted my son was gonna be born. On some bizarre stuff.

That’s loopy. When was it, out of curiosity?

DD: November 21st. He didn’t say the precise date however he mentioned it’s gonna be the day you get residence. And it was the day I received residence from tour.

JV: Yeah. We was on the street with J.I.D. It was the Atlanta date. The Atlanta date was the final day.

DD: We was getting nearer and nearer to the beginning of my son. It was like properly inside the time restrict, like low-key a little bit late. Cole was like don’t fear about it. It’s not gonna occur till you get again. And I used to be like what? And it was actually the day I received again. Soon as I received again. It was loopy.

EarthGang – “Stuck” ft. Arin Ray

Man, congratulations! It’s humorous you talked about J.I.D as a result of I used to be gonna simply say, mainly each time you see EarthGang and J.I.D on the identical observe, I really feel prefer it’s gonna be good. Great chemistry there. Clearly you guys have gone manner again, and I used to be simply questioning, do you guys, possibly a little bit preview, you’ve something lined up for the longer term, perchance?

JV: Hey man. Surprises out right here!

I figured. I needed to strive.

DD: Look out for that DiCaprio 2. It’s a tremendous mission. That’s one factor I can say.

JV: For certain for certain. It’s an excellent mission. With nice options. Surprise shock.

I have been wanting ahead to the final quarter releases. There’s a bunch of fine music popping out. I’m hoping for some MirrorLand personally, however I perceive.

JV: I’m hoping too. We all hoping. We hoping wishing and praying.

It’ll be a very good one. I’ve a sense. You gave us some nice music just lately. We can’t get grasping. That’s gonna be good. What are you able to inform me about MirrorLand?

JV: It’s a film. It’s a visit. It’s an LSD journey. It’s a coming of age journey. You gonna be proven who you’re, who you wanna be and the limitless prospects of who you might be. All on this mission.

DD: And how far mild can bounce!

Well rattling, I’m wanting ahead to it! I’m glad you had an excellent tour and thanks for sharing all the things. I actually appreciated this dialog.

JV: Thanks man.

DD: Where you at Mitch? Where you positioned?

I’m from Montreal, Canada.

JV: Ohhh!!!!!!!! We love Montreal. Montreal is the place.

DD: We have been simply there!

You had fun?

They confirmed us good love man.

Canada simply received the authorized weed, so lots of people are enthusiastic about that.

JV: Montreal is a phenomenal place.

Doc: Y’all are one step nearer to the longer term.

Yeah. Well, I imply, you’re welcome again anytime.

JV: For certain. For certain.

DD: I used to low-key hate Canada however now I find it irresistible.

JV: I’ve at all times liked Canada, yo. The first time I used to be in Toronto, it was simply mind-boggling, bro! Toronto is such a worldwide metropolis, like coming from Atlanta. Atlanta is a hearth metropolis however Atlanta is turning into a worldwide metropolis. It’s like a global-southern metropolis, however if you go to Toronto, you see folks from like all around the world. Vibing and co-existing and it’s similar to man, I can’t wait till that power involves the South. The folks from the south received rather a lot to supply. Black folks from the south received rather a lot to supply the world. I can’t wait till Atlanta turns into that international metropolis.

I believe you guys have a very good foothold on tradition proper now. Atlanta is placing out nice music!

DD: Yeah. Shoutout to the path Atlanta goes in. Atlanta goes in a very good path proper now. I’m actually pleased with what’s taking place. I like seeing this shit.

JV: It’s lovely.

It’s stepping into lots of instructions too. You’ve received extra lyrically primarily based artists, some nice lure music, it’s only a mixture of all the things. Super well-rounded.

DD: Films are being shot right here. Plenty of motion pictures.

JV: Great music.

Absolutely. Well what do you guys have deliberate for tonight? 

JV: [sung] Bout to go “Six Flags: Fright Night!” Bout to go to “Six Flags: Fright Night!”

Oh shit!

DD: It’s type of chilly. I believe I’m going to look at that film Ferdinand.

JV: I want to look at Nightmare Before Christmas. Everybody ensure you try this.

That’s a traditional. Anyway, guys, get pleasure from your evening!

DD: Alright man, be protected.

JV: Thanks man!

Likewise. It’s been a pleasure.