[Interview] Miguel & Thurz: Still California Love Pt. 2
In part one of TheWellVersed and 2DopeBoyz three part interview with Thurz and Miguel, the California artists discussed how they first met and continuing to work together despite them being in different places in their respective careers. In part two they talk about their respective projects and why it is important to create progressive art rather than bastardizing your talent for commercial sales.
In Thurz’ case, his departure from U-N-I allowed him to try something more daring. By taking a leap of faith into territory that has never been touched for an entire album, Thurz’ solo debut landed on many slept-on lists for 2011.
“I just wanted to do something that was unexpected,” Thurz says about his departure from the fun sounds of U-N-I into deeper territory with LA Riot. The album found Thurz documenting a moment in American history that was a powder keg for race relations in the 1990s. ”I like writing stories and scripts and this was almost like scoring this event in history and use it as a catalyst to show what I can do as an artist.”
Miguel will be the first to say that LA Riot is an album that everyone should hear. Although he’s in a different creative space as a major label artist with a top selling album, Miguel also decided that his latest project would be a distinct departure from what is commonplace in the industry today.
“Fuck a mixtape,” Miguel says with authority. This year Miguel has released two volumes of his Art Dealer Chic EP that was actually what an extended player was meant to be. “Everybody has done a mixtape and that concept is so overworked. I think it makes it easy to lost the value of good music. Let’s give people a concentrated amount of creativity that really means something to (the listener). Give it to them in a way that it is appreciated and you’re not just bombarded with all kinds of information.”
The two volumes of Art Dealer Chic have both featured three songs and was intended to have the listener focus on those three songs rather than release a bunch of unreleased music, slap an “EP” label on it and push it as something new.
“A lot of people have lost the concept of what an EP is supposed to be,” Miguel continues. “What I’m hoping to achieve is a sense when the creation of music was not for commercial success. When it was about the music and when people found it, it was treasured.”
Both artists express concern about today’s music industry and the lack of creativity due to commercialization. With Miguel being one of the artists in the mainstream with a progressive sound, he has made it a point to bring in artists like Thurz and some of his California cohorts and show the world that music can still be creative in 2012.
“There’s a handful of artists pushing great, creative music. It’s not bullshit. It’s not ‘not marketable’ because there’s a place for it obviously. I just want to promote art.”