Born and bred in South Carolina, P. Watts’ musical journey started simply as a bouncer at the club. The music that he’d hear on a nightly basis challenged him to do better. He wasn’t one of those people to complain just for the sake of it, he took action. After telling himself that he could make better music than what was bumping in the club speakers, he did. From fan to star, P. Watts’ journey is enviable. He proudly possesses all the right qualities to take his career to the next level. And with that in mind, we’re patiently awaiting his debut mixtape, hosted by DJ Burn One--The Element of Surprise. As of right now, the tease of his single, “Grown Man,” is enough to perk up our ears.
What are you currently working on?
I just wrapped up my mixtape with DJ Burn One out of Atlanta. He’s heavy on the mixtape scene right now. We just wrapped up The Element of Surprise and that should be out momentarily. There’s just a lot of feel good music on there. It’s got a whole bunch of nice features on it. It’s The Element of Surprise, so if you want to know who’s on it and who produced what, be on the lookout for it. You’ll see what the surprise is all about. You can expect it late November/early December.
Are you doing any touring or shows right now?
We’re doing shows here and there. We’re planning a tour at the top of the year. We’re trying to get some college dates and stuff. So be expecting that by 2011.
How would you describe your sound?
My sound is good, southern hip-hop. Coming from the south, I have a southern perspective. I grew up the Southern way. You’re going to get that in my music, but you’re also going to get hip-hop. I grew up on artists like LL Cool J, Kool G Rap, Wu Tang, The Poison Clan, Above the Law--all the way up to now with Travis Porter and Roscoe Dash. You’ll see a combination of every sound across the U.S. and worldwide within my sound.
Why do you feel music is what you wanted to do with your life?
I felt like it fell into my lap. It wasn’t necessarily something I wanted to do. I started out doing security at clubs and constantly hearing music that wasn’t pleasant to my ears. I thought that I could do better. [laughs] That’s what inspired me.
Explain how it fell into your lap.
I was a fan. I never thought I’d be rapping. When you look at people like…Wu Tang, you look at them as superheroes. You don’t think you can do what they do. Now, everybody is rapping and there’s a rapper in every other household. It just took the value and the art form away from it. It’s not as valuable as it once was.
The artists I mentioned from that era--you don’t think that you could do what they do. Like, Michael Jordan or Magic Johnson or Emmitt Smith--there’s not many that can do what they do. You look at it as something sacred. When the music got watered down and over saturated, you started seeing less talented people. I took a stab at it because I knew I could do better than some of these cats.
How have you been received by the masses?
Everything’s been positive. We’re at the point where the “Grown Man” video made it to Music Choice--that’s my single out right now. I’ve made it to MTV2 and MTV Jams. That’s a positive in itself. The radio has been pretty receptive to it. Definitely in the South and the Midwest markets are reaching out to us… I’m getting home support and I’m not--what that means is that some of the bigger DJ’s aren’t getting behind my movement, but [there are] a lot of DJ’s on the come up and will soon be those big DJ’s. Fat Boy, Big G, Bam Famous, LG--cats like that are really getting behind me. The reception has been positive. If you look at most of the comments on the websites, feedback has been nothing but positive for “Grown Man.” I haven’t seen too much negativity.
How do you get yourself out there?
The best tool is digital marketing--email blasts, websites, YouTube. All of that is the new age form of the streets. You can reach so many people. That’s my approach to expanding my music. It’s been proven with the success of artists like Wiz Khalifa and Yelawolf.
You mentioned things being easily accessible online and now that we’re able to be so self sufficient with technology, there’s rarely any need for a record deal.
This is the key--doing things independently. The pool is oversaturated. Why do we see only about 10-15 artists truly making noise? That’s because they invest in their careers. The internet, streets and radio - like anything else - you have to invest in it. You have to invest in yourself. You have to have the capital to make things happen. We’ve been blessed to function as a record company. That’s why record companies want to see you function as a company. That’s what we’ve been able to do as far as marketing this single. Internet is where it’s at. Radio is costly and you can’t do anything with it if you don’t have the budget to do so. Radio isn’t in the plan for most artists. Their plans are on the internet. It’s the easiest and most cost efficient way to have an outlet for success.
What kind of lyrics can we expect on this mixtape coming out?
I’m talking about what single mothers are going…The baby fathers that deal with the unstable chicks. I’m touching both sides…I’ve got a real deep song that revolves around Common’s “I Used to Love H.E.R.” It’s a battle between hip-hop and myself…It’s called “Love Song.” I think people will like it. There’s just a lot of feel good music. “Grown Man” touches on how to handle yourself as a grown man. You can work a 9-5, be married, have kids and still be as powerful as that trap boy or that dope star. I’ve got a song called “Irreplacable.” It talks about my state, my momma and all the women out there that feel irreplaceable. It tells them not to let any man hold them down. That also brings me to another song I have called, “Later.” It promotes the empowerment of southern women in hip-hop. I love women. My momma--I miss her to death. I wish she was still here. I’ve got a daughter, so I’m about lifting up women. I feel like southern women in hip-hop haven’t had their voice. My next song, “Later” definitely supports that. So y’all be on the lookout for that.
What do you have coming up next after the mixtape?
Definitely some touring, merchandising and from there, more CD’s, ringtones. We’re just trying to establish our own fan base and function as a label. If a label so happens to come our way, we’ll see what happens. Not saying we don’t want a deal, but we like the independent grind. We want to prove ourselves in the marketplace before we partner up on a venture with someone else.
Is there anything you want your fans to know or people that don’t know you yet…?
Definitely support The Element of Surprise--that’s the beginning and the introduction to me. Feel me out, give me a chance. If you like what you hear, [then] definitely take this journey with me. Let’s make a beautiful situation happen. Log on www.p-watts.com and follow me on Twitter @p_watts. Support me on The Element of Surprise with DJ Burn One, coming soon!