We interviewed Minneapolis entertainer Prof before he stepped onstage at Soundset 2018. Lets dig in.
Chris Taylor: Nice to meet you, man. So, what’s it like to perform in front of your hometown fans, especially now that Soundset is a destination rap festival?
Prof: Is this just audio, or is are you gonna write this up?
Chris Taylor: Yeah. We’re gonna transcribe everything.
Prof: Okay, so transcribe this. [Prof reaches up into the air and triumphantly shakes his fist] So, I’m a nationally touring artist now, and I work as hard as I can, and I go all around the country and shit, but coming back to Minneapolis for something this big is like, I’ve worked my whole career to … I’m sowing my oats.
I’m going out there planting seeds. I’m farming. Rhymesayers has been farming like a motherfucker for Soundset, obviously, so this has popped up. So I can vibe with that because I come home, and it’s almost like Thanksgiving. It’s like when you collect everything. What is it called? Harvest.
Chris Taylor: A harvest? Yeah.
Prof: You know what I’m saying? It’s like, okay. A lot of hard work. This is the biggest it gets for us. You know?
Chris Taylor: Yeah. I feel like every year it’s getting bigger too. It’s just incredible.
Prof: Gettin’ bigger. Gettin’ bigger.
Chris Taylor: If you could host a party with anyone in the world, who would it be and why?
Off Camera Prof Staff: Ted Danson.
Prof: Ted Danson in the Hamptons, camping in the back of Ted Danson’s mansion in the Hamptons.
Chris Taylor: Absolutely perfect. That’s good.
Prof: I’m a rapper. You know what I’m saying? I can come up with this just like this.
Chris Taylor: Exactly. So I heard from a friend of a friend you broke a bed at an after-party at my alma mater in Wisconsin. What happened, and how do you feel about this?
Prof: A lot of these things are blurry to me, ’cause I’ve done probably over a thousand after-parties with whoever, and that’s slowing down. I’ve done a lot, and so the expectations are super high. That’s what the song “No” is about.
You got an after-party. Do you want to go? Let me think about it. No. If you got something incredible, if you got a penthouse on the top of the downtown here, or you got a rope swing into a fucking lake here and there, I’ll go.
Chris Taylor: All right.
Prof: That sounds like I believe you.
Chris Taylor: Okay. I mean, that’s what I heard.
Prof: You expect me to know details?
Chris Taylor: Yeah. I’m just wondering if you know any details about that or anything?
Prof: Tell me more. I broke a bed in Cali?
Chris Taylor: No, in Madison.
Prof: Madison, Wisconsin.
Chris Taylor: Madison, Wisconsin. Yes.
Prof: Was there a bird in there?
Chris Taylor: I think so.
Prof: There was a bird flying around that I was almost ate? I think I did a front flip on a bed then.
Chris Taylor: There we go. That sounds about right.
Prof: That’s not my most recent tour. That’s, like, four years ago, I think. That could have been last month. I don’t know.
There’s a lot of stories that top that but not a lot that won’t fucking get me arrested. I’m not gonna dry snitch on myself. The craziest stories you’ve heard of me are the only ones that are legally okay.
Chris Taylor: Legally? Yeah. Yeah. All right. Back in the day, when you’re doing drunk-ass shows back in the Dinkytowner, what was going through your mind when Rahzwell puked up …
Prof: Ay Rahz. Come here. There he is.
[Rahzwell proceeds to come over and sit very close to Prof]
Chris Taylor: Oh, yeah. So, what was going through your mind when Rahzwell puked up every shot he got from the audience?
Prof: It wasn’t every shot he got from the audience. That’s incorrect. It’s lore. There’s a lot of lore going around. The show started when he threw up.
So, we were there kicking it with all the fans, and there was no show. There was no opener. We were just drinking at the bar, and anybody who bought us a drink, we’d drink it.
And so, when you threw up, then the show would start. That’s how it would happen.
Rahzwell: It made for some of the most incredible fucking moments ever.
Chris Taylor: Are you the master of the puke & rally, then, ’cause …
Rahzwell: I’m not the master of none of that shit, but it was definitely a good time. It was fun as fuck. A lot of memories were made.
Prof: We had to stop it though.
Chris Taylor: And memories not made?
Rahzwell: Yeah. Memories not made, but that’s what it was back then.
Prof: We did a drunk show, and then I saw on Facebook pictures of me bottomless, crowd-surfing with my ass out. With my asshole exposed, and I don’t remember anything.
The last thing I remember is someone rolling me onto the stage. Do you remember that, at the Nomad? Do you remember the Nomad one at all?
Rahzwell: I do. I do. Actually, I do. I do.
Prof: Okay. I don’t.
Chris Taylor: Where are you sailing to next on your Swan Armada. What’s on the horizon for prof?
Prof: I don’t know. I’m gonna stay in Minneapolis for the summer. I’m gonna try and write more music, see how fast I can make another record. I’m gonna see if I can finish my record before I go on tour again which is gonna be in the fall, the second leg of the Pookie Baby tour this fall when school starts up again. I’m gonna write music and make as much music as I can.
Chris Taylor: So you work a lot with Tomas Aksamit, and he worked on the Pookie Baby project quite a bit. I’m just wondering the artistic process here. How does it go when it comes to making music videos? How does the creative process work when you’re putting together videos?
Prof: Criminal was the first video I’ve ever made that I let just someone take it away. I’ve basically heavily directed every single video I made, whether you see co-directed or not, at the end of every video, someone asks me, ” What kind of credits do you want?”
And I could say anything I want because I’m so heavily involved. The whole plot or the sheets … what are they called? From the inception of every video to whatever, I’m all the way deep. I was so busy off Pookie Baby with all this shit.
I met Tomas through the ranks, and he was gripping or DPing for some other motherfuckers who were doing my shit, and I was like, all right.
And he came through with the treatment that was pretty good, and I was like, “Well, I’m gonna just let go of everything.” So Criminal, I basically let him have free range.
There were some times where I was like, “Are you sure this is gonna work?” ’cause I’ve made a million music videos. Stophouse is slowly low-key, we’ve become one of the best music or video production companies in the Midwest.
Our production team is amazing. My direction is really amazing, and I didn’t even know that or take any claim to that. But damn, we’re there. We have a huge catalog. We have so much more even experience, and people saying that that’s their career or whatever.
But Tomas came through and was very, very trustworthy. He came through with a ill-ass video. Good to go. Ever since, when I come in, I’m like, “Let’s do this.” Sometimes, I still interject with ideas, but he had a … Yeah. He’s good.
Chris Taylor: Excellent. All right. Well. That’s everything we got, man. Prof, dude. Thank you for meeting with me. Appreciate it. So this is Music in Minnesota.
I’m Chris Taylor. This is Prof. Signing off.
Prof: That’s us.
Prof: Ah My hip.
Chris Taylor: Stretch that hip flexor, man.