Meet the Artist: Crimson Alchemist
Equipped with her backwards hat and hard-hitting beats, Crimson Alchemist blessed the stage at our last Stay Laced event with CLEAR intentions of making a lasting impression-- she succeeded. I later linked up the Alchemist herself to get to know her a little bit better. Her sound is big enough to put on for the entire city. We're trying to change the game up. So let's start here.. Meet: The Crimson Alchemist.
Alright, let's kick this thing off. Where did you get your start?
Crimson Alchemist: I started rapping when I was eight. Kids from my block would come over to my house and start up cyphers with my dad and older cousins. I wanted to be like the older kids so I started writing and presented my raps to my dad. Now that I think back on it it's kinda embarrassing! (laughs out loud.) Believe it or not I didn't step into an actual studio until I was 19. That's when making music started to get serious for me.
Your name is very catchy. Why did you choose The Crimson Alchemist?
Crimson Alchemist: Funny thing is I've only had the name for about a year now lol. When I was 18 I was known as Crimson Kiid haha! My favorite color is red but I wanted a more unique stage name. Something people would remember. With so many artists having "Kiid" in their name I dropped it more so as a coming-of-age type of thing. I added "Alchemist" on the end because it compliments my way of putting songs together, as if it were chemistry. It's also the name of a character from another anime I'm very familiar with called Full Metal Alchemist. (For those that are reading yes I am a big ass nerd lmao!)
You've got some crazy punch lines that catch the attention of listeners (including myself). How did you find your style?
Crimson Alchemist: Thanks I appreciate that a lot! As a kid I was influenced by some amazing lyricists such as Nas, Common, Big L, Redman, Wu-Tang Clan, Slum Village, Black Thought, the list goes on! I also study people on how they react to certain songs when I go out to open mics around the city. So, in a way, my style is constantly changing. Not only to cater to the listener's ears, but to also challenge myself into stepping out of my comfort zone.
Your rap style and producer (Jay808) style sounds similar to that of Eestbound, Wondagurl & Tre Capital. Have you ever heard that before?
Crimson Alchemist: Nope this is a first for me! Thank you! I love Wondagurl's production, and I hope to work with her one day! The fact that she's only 19 is mind boggling! This is my first time hearing about Eestbound and Tre Capital, but I just checked them out and you definitely put me hip to some dope music!
Who inspires you in rap? Both locally and on the main rap scene?
Crimson Alchemist: As of late I've been listening to a lot of J. Cole, Logic and Childish Gambino. Cole just makes music for the soul off rip, Logic's quick flow and metaphors gets me every time, and Gambino's 90's references shows how much of a charismatic rapper he is. Man. They give me hope for new school Hip-Hop. As far as locally there's one artist that has stood out to me for years. His name is Noveliss of Clear Soul Forces. Anyone that knows me knows that I'm a huge anime fan, and his cartoon/anime punchlines hit EVERY TIME. He's just awesome.
If you could work with 3 producers in the game, who would they be?
Crimson Alchemist: Let's see. I would work with Pharrell, Timbaland, and Dr. Dre. Now if we're talking producers of ALL TIME I'd have to put J Dilla and Nujabes in the equation! Dilla because he's one of the GOATS of course (My choice might make me seem bias but whatever, it's Dilla.) and Nujabes because the production he did for one of my favorite animes called Samurai Champloo. It's crazy because both producers were born on February 7th, the SAME exact day, and both are no longer with us unfortunately. I always wonder what direction Hip-Hop would be in if they were still here...
Out of all the songs you've recorded, which is your favorite and why?
Crimson Alchemist: My favorite song is definitely my single Dairy Queen! For the first time ever I played a part in the production process, which was dope! The mastermind behind the beat, A.D., who also happens to be my cousin, sat down with me and I showed him some tracks I was interested in sampling. So I showed him a track from a childhood favorite of mine called Sailor Moon. He grabbed it, looped it, and added some kicks to it and bam, there it was. I added my input here and there but he gets all the credit for putting in so much hard work into such a great track! And the rest is history.
What is the rap game missing?
Crimson Alchemist: The rap game is desperately missing more female LYRICISTS! I say that in all-caps because a lot of people don't understand the difference between a rapper and a lyricist. A rapper will follow the trends and make songs about things that are irrelevant to their listeners, but a lyricist will lead the pack and make music that the listeners can relate to, give them the nostalgia that they secretly want, and last but certainly not least and no matter what the age is, MAKE PEOPLE GAIN AN IMAGINATION AGAIN. Trust and believe, we're out here. We're just tucked away doing an open mic at the Liquid Flow MAC or the Baltimore Gallery, waiting to be discovered. *winks*
Where do you plan to be with your rap career at this same time next year?
Crimson Alchemist: Next year I want my rap career to be at the point where I'm doing shows in different states, networking with more artists, and hopefully planning some gigs overseas. Nah to hell with that, I WILL BE PLANNING GIGS OVERSEAS!!!
Lastly, what's next for you? Any shows coming up? Got any mixtapes or Collaborations you're looking forward to?
Crimson Alchemist: I’ve got one show coming up. I JUST performed at the Inspire Me Music Showcase at The Yellow Wall the other day, and the other is the I'm On A New Level Showcase at Dreamland Theater out in Ypsilanti! I am currently working on my next project with a very talented producer that goes by the name of Mark Cooper, who is representing Soundproof! I'm not gonna drop the name of it until probably late summer though do you'll have to wait on that haha! I am also working on a secret event that'll be held at the end of the summer and I'll be releasing further details on that in about a month or so. I stay busy!
There you have it, Folks! This girl has crazy energy, insane work ethic, and goals bigger than the parameters of our dear Michigan’s state lines. I hope this interview gave you a slight insight into the busy, hard-working life of Crimson Alchemist. The homie is a beast, and you’ll be amazed when she finally lets herself off the leash. Check out more of the gracious offerings from this killer emcee on all links below!
“Stay True, Stay Fresh, Stay Laced”