7 questions with: The Emcee Al N. York


It’s been a minute since I’ve been on my blogging. I apologize for the intermission but a girl’s gotta pay the bills you know? The first inteview I did on this site was with a young lyricist out of Florida who goes by the name of Al N. York. He dropped another mixtape the beginning of this month and hit me up with the hopes that I’d post it. I obliged, of course, because the kid’s got talent. He can spit, but he’s also got something to say. It is the balance of lyrical prowess, musical intelligence, substance,and relatability that is most alluring about Mr. York and will endear him to those who love hip hop and respect it as an artform not just a way to get “on”. His new mixtape “The Commercial” does not dissapoint. From the melodic title track in which he lays claim to 2010 being his year to break the glass ceiling to the infectious bounce-worthy “Limelight” which loops a young Biggie proclaiming “…now I’m in the limelight ’cause I rhyme tight” flawlessly into the hook York brings you into his world , the world of a young rapper who is hungry, ambitious and ready. There are a few slight bumps in the road as York slightly dims when in attack mode. Chest puffed and trash talking York still shines, yet his lyricism takes a back seat to his machismo. In my opinion York is at his glowing best when he allows his poetic soul to merge with his sharp tongue, trading quick jabs for round house kicks, allowing his skill to become his greatest force. The verdict: a nice addition to your mixtape collection, plus when he blows up you’ll be able to say “I don’t know bout yall but I been up on him since he dropped……”

HBBNG:  Since we last spoke have there been any big developments that have taken place concerning your music? Have you found yourself garnering more attention in your city since the release of your last mixtape Homeless Millionaire? Have you found more people associated with the entertainment industry checking for you?

AL N YORK: Yes, I have been making a transition from the underground to being known to a lot of the major players in the city. I actually saw one of the biggest promoters in the state who is based in Orlando named Mercedes Streets, she was in a Ace Hood Promo van, I pretty much stalked her.. had her pull over, and handed her the mixtape. Later that week she expressed how much she enjoyed the mixtape. A lot of similar stories, and I feel w/ the release of this new project.. It will elevate a new level.

HBBNG:  How have you matured as an artist in the past 9 months?

AL N YORK: As an artist I always wanna mature. I know for a fact Homeless Millionaire wasn’t for everyone, you’ ll see now the songs are more [well] rounded, and lyrically I always feel I have to improve, plus with me working on more original material I have to perfect my song making abilities, and always strive to improve.

HBBNG: What’s the signifigance of the title The Commercial?

 AL N YORK: The significance is tha length, a commercial is just an interlude or a prequel to the actual show. The commcercial  is only 9 songs, and just like something midway thru my underground career. I think that though its short, its my best project to date. So the commercial is kinda like, ok this is just an interlude in my career, but a strong one.

HBBNG: Artistically, what was your frame of mind with this new EP? What were some of the main influences and inspirations, whether they be situations, emotions etc, behind the creation this new project?

 AL N YORK: Well, urgency.. I dropped ‘Homeless millionaire’ in Jan 2009, it did what it was supposed to do, plus as an artist I knew the sound quality had to be improved cause the people who are in a bigger position to help me, are not gonna accept half ass recording and mixing. So about the beginning of  December I said ‘its time for something new’ started writing the project the 1st week of  December,  finished in 3 weeks, and im super happy [about] the outcome. My mindset, was to just get back out there, new energy for the new year, im still here, and im better than ever.

HBBNG: Who are some artists you’re feeling right now that reinforce your love for hip hop?

AL N YORK: Im surprised I loved Kid Cuddi’s album so much, it was incredible. Wale’s album was dope. 50 cent still being hungry after being so succesfull financially, even though the album didn’t sell, the art was there. Lupe’s new mixtape is amazing. J cole, who wasn’t big when we first spoke, that mixtape is very homeless millionaireish, we have the same steelo.  And a lot of people from my city doin it big are inspiring me not to fall in the back of the pack..

HBBNG:  Let’s say you have a magic Blackberry which has the contact information for everyone in the entertainment industry from rappers to singers to producers to record execs but you can only make one call. Who would it be and why?

AL N YORK: Im making that call to Jay-Z, from that call, you would be able to get in contact with anyone else. Knowin Jay gives an automatic buzz and people will listen off the strength of that co sign.

HBBNG: Finish the sentence: 2010 is my year to?

AL N YORK: My year to quit these 9-5s and make money doin what I love

Download The Commercial

Listen to The Flood/ Noah’s Arc


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