We recently got to chat with one of our favorite artists and the father of one of our biggest singles, shrimp. During our interview we talked about life, music, the future and pretty much everything in between. Fans of the artist and new listeners alike should all give this a read as it provides some very interesting insight into his process, the Atlanta music crowd and what it’s like to make music under a house divided. Let us know who else we should interview and as always keep it tuned to DatPizz.
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Start by telling us a little about how you even got into music. How did you even end up with the name Shrimp?
my parents are huge influences to me, ive always been surrounded by all types of music as a kid. my dad was in a metal band in college, so i grew up on a lot of heavy and classic rock. my mom was a music major, so i also had a lot of classical and jazz in my life as well. when i turned 9 i started to play guitar, then moved on to production when i was 14. been doin em both ever since. as far as the name shrimp, it was originally just supposed to be a producer name for beats that i wanted to sell, just crazy bangers. i thought of it when my friends started roasting me and called me an “ugly ass shrimp man”. i thought it was hilarious so i just went with shrimp, it really does portray me well though haha
Have you been rapping/doing vocals since 14 as well or did that start later on?
that started a bit later on, no one was buying my beats so i said fuck it ill start rapping on my own shit. at first it was all a joke and i rapped about really fucked up stuff like murder and drugs n stuff, kinda like a tyler the creator mixed with suicideboys. it was just really raunchy stuff. to fit the image, i used to be $hrimp. i made a lot of tracks, some including “late night nut”, “ass eater freestyle 2k15”, and “$tinky ho”
So when can we get those for the discog?
well thats the thing, my parents found my music and forced me to take it all off the internet, i lost it all. i got a new computer too so i lost the files and everything, im so upset about it those were classics
Was that recently? We had a question about how you mentioned that your parents don’t know you rap on an Instagram live stream, do you still feel the need to hide your music from your family? And if so, why?
nah that was around 2015. and yeah i never told them about my music because i honestly felt like theyd never appreciate it or be proud of me for it. they were always very into me playing guitar, so this was a change for them. recently, i decided to jus go ahead and tell em, and theyre actually really proud of me and they like the message i give in my music, its a lot better than what it used to be lmao. i wanted to be able to get my numbers/fan base up a bit before i showed them, jus so they knew it was something to be proud of ya know? i didnt tell em about it till i hit 10k on the elevator video
You blew up seemingly out of nowhere with “itll happen” and “pretty lies”. How did you position yourself before the release of those tracks and why do you think they took off so fast?
definitely had to do with my association to 6dogs, he reposted those tracks which kinda put me on the map. but i actually made pretty lies about a year before i even released it, i was too nervous to put out something where i was singing. i never really thought theyd take off like they did, they were just lil tracks i made for fun, it was cool to watch em grow though.
Are you still nervous to release some of your music or have you gained enough confidence to do what you want?
oh for sure. i am constantly nervous about what im making, if its not good enough ill trash it completely. ive got 5-10 songs that have gone no where because they just arent good enough in my opinion. even showing my friends new songs or beats scares the hell out of me
You mentioned the Tanlines video on ELEVATOR earlier. Can you talk a little about that video? How did the ELEVATOR connection come about and who else was involved in the production?
no stress haha i got all night. and seriously shout out to my boy 6 dogs, he hooked the whole thing up for me. hes honestly one of the most down to earth friends i have. as far as production, my whole gang was in on it. we all went on a hike in the woods and my buddy clancy (clancethemance) brought along his old VHS camera and shot the vid. it was a really cool experience, just good nature with good friends. all of my friends put their 2 cents in as far as shots and direction, it was a group effort. shoutout 2 thoughtcrime
Can you touch on what exactly Thought Crime is? Who are the members and what do they all bring to the table? And how did you guys connect?
thoughtcrime is my gang, includes casanova, hanzo, clancethemance, 6dogs, fair, and goico. its all music and art associated, if we arent doing music, we are doing something else. usually when we all get together, someone will be making music while others are shooting vids or pics, and others are drawing. its just a big artistic collective of my best friends. i met casanova and clance in highschool, then reconnected with them later on after they graduated. they then introduced me to hanzo and fair and goico, which is when we decided to create thoughtcrime. we made a tape and did some shows, then i introduced them to 6dogs later on. its just whole hearted gang shit
Is that tape still available anywhere?
yeah on the thoughtcrime soundcloud, its pretty rough but it was our first tape, we were all still learning. majority of the shit i did on there was yelling and making bangers haha, we made it in 2016
Beyond Thought Crime, from you to 6 dogs to Clout Cohen to Staryu, a new scene (or as we’ve coined it; the “Atlanta Clout Cult”) has arisen in Atlanta with a different sound than what’s typically associated with the city. How connected are all of the artists in this scene and how much of the sudden success is due to an orchestrated effort?
its all very connected. ive met a lot of cool artists that are all very supportive even though we arent doing the norm. its all love down here majority of the time for artists, we all just love creating. many people are very open minded down here, so even the most obscure shit is still loved. its an amazing place to be for art and being different
You mentioned how you met some of the members of Thought Crime, but how’d you first end up linking with Clout Cohen and 6 dogs?
with 6dogs, he went to my school and he knew i was an engineer. he hit me up and asked to come over to record. at first i didnt want to because i dont like strangers bein in my house, but he seemed cool so i was like yea sure
How is the connection between local collaborators like those three similar/different from ones across the country, like lil hawkboy or 5kirr?
its definitely a lot less accessible for those around the country. im able to link up with star, 6 or clout anytime. but with 5kirr and hawk its not easy at all haha
Semi related but I’ve always wondered, in 6 dogs interview he mentions recording at a friends house (which i assume is you), were you the person that he was with when attempting to record the Herse video? If so would you be able to tell your side of the story of that night?
i was the friend he was recordin with, not the one for the vid tho :/ i didnt learn anything till the next day at school when he told me about it
How did the “ok uhhhh shrimp!” vocal tag come about, whose voice is it, and is there a story behind it?
6dogs was at my house recording and he was like “dude lemme record ur tag”. so he recorded about 4 minutes worth of tags, and out of all of em, that was the one we all loved. staryu was there as well and we thought it was so weird that it was jus perfect
What about the other tag, “i really like that new shrimp man”
thats from an anime called “orphen”. i looked up anime shrimp and got lucky as hell hahaha
Let’s talk about your most recent project “The Shrimp Tape”. Despite the connections you’ve mentioned, everything besides the cover art by namfondok is credited to you. Why do you choose to work solo and what advantages/disadvantages does it have for you compared to collaborating with other artists?
i work alone because ive never been someone who likes to work with people. i dont work well with others, i get nervous about what they think rather than being confident in my work, its one of my worst traits as an artist. i just like to do what i want without any input from others, plus i get 100% royalties lmao. the downside of that is that other people have different views and opinions which can be helpful, i just dont like branchin out like that
With that being your first solo project under Shrimp, what did you learn in the process of making it and how do you feel about how it was received by the public?
i learned that making a tape is mentally fuckin exhausting. i didnt even open my production software for 2 weeks after that, i was so burnt out emotionally and mentally. i poured everything i had into it. i feel like it was well received for a first project. it put me out there and showed people what i was capable of. im planning on my next album being much more versatile and better than the last, at least im hoping for that
When do you think we can expect that follow up, and do you plan on releasing singles off of it this time around?
im hoping for early 2018, january or february. itll be a 10-12 song album. and yes i do, probably 2 singles spaced out between now and then
Even with your inclination to work solo, are there any dream collabs that you have?
suicideboys for sure. id love to work with chon too
Should we expect a Shrimp x 6 dogs collab in the future?
most likely, we both kinda on our own shit right now, but im sure itll be happening soon
If i remember correctly, you said on instagram live that you no longer do any drugs. is this still true and how has being sober affected your creative process and shaped your perspective as an artist?
haha yeah im sober. havent used any drugs in forever. as an artist i feel like its helped me to branch out, even tho many would say the opposite. i used to smoke A LOTTTA weed, and it overall jus made me feel brain dead and lazy when it came to production. i wasnt excited about learning new things, but now im always on something new and interested in learning about stuff. it hasnt really changed how i am perspectively as an artist, ive always been very open minded to new stuff. its just made me more interested in trying new things
Besides your parents and friends, are there any artists/bands who have influenced your music?
hell yeah. suicideboys is a big one as far as rap. as for guitar, This Town Needs Guns and Chon are huge ones. then i take a lot of inspiration from abstract artists like aphex twin, jacaszek, and rei harakami for new ideas. im always on youtube just listening to new music, taking as much in as i can. nedarb is also a big influence to me, probably one of my favorite producers besides scrim from sb
Are you influenced by anything aside from music, for example; movies, books, tv shows etc
very much yeah. sam hyde is a big influence to me. he had a show called “World Peace” that was un fucking real. also has a book called “How to Bomb the US Government”, also unreal. its all just shit that makes you think about current events, but is also so fucking stupid that you have to laugh at it. also documentaries and old short films are very inspirational. theres this one called Begotten that fuckin blows my mind. its horrific but so artistic
Who is “tommy lloyd” and how is he different as a producer from shrimp?
well shit thats my actual name haha. and hes a more emotional producer and person overall. shrimp has a “fuck you suck my dick” attitude. the best way id compare it would be a wolf haley/tyler or slim shady/eminem situation, just an alter ego overall, and its definitely shown in the music. certain songs like “suck my dick” and some of my unreleased stuff is obviously shrimp, while shit like tan lines is more tommy
You tweeted recently that Pretty Lies was taken down due to copyright and that it won’t be re-uploaded, what happened with that? Was there an uncleared sample?
yeah there was. literally only the first few chords were a sample and someone got upset about it. didnt think it was a huge deal, everything else was mine. melodies, drums, everything. but better safe than sorry, so its stayin down. soundcloud is fucking stupid
You mentioned that there’s two sides to your persona, Shrimp vs. Tommy, and you frequently include lyrics about loneliness, depression, and heartbreak in the same songs as bars about iced out jewelry and cars. Is this an intentional decision and what’s the meaning behind it?
for sure. its because im constantly having a battle with myself internally. one part of me is saying “damn im so depressed about this n that” and then another part of me says “fuck that bitch im on one”. yuppp guitar is tommy, trap is shrimp. i was always just tommy as a guitarist, once i started producing i became shrimp. its a happy medium between the 2
You talked about your next album likely being slotted for 2018. What can we expect from Shrimp for the rest of 2017?
prolly just a few singles, some features on Atlanta Clout Cult songs, thoughtcrime media like vids n music
Does Shrimp eat shrimp? I’ve been wondering this for awhile
Actually nah, I’m not a big seafood guy, it’s why my name is fuckshrimp
Honestly im glad you dont theres something very offputting about a shrimp eating shrimp
hahaha yea on some cannibal shit
Finally, we’re curious about your future. Where do you see yourself headed? What can we expect to come out of you after you drop your next album?
shit man thats a hard question to answer. i honestly dont see myself goin anywhere, but i know thats not gonna be the case. hopefully i pop off just a bit, enough to be recognized on the street every once in a while. im sure after this next tape i will have a much wider audience, its very versatile already
Before we wrap things up, is there anything else you wanted to cover?
uhhhhhhhhh nah not really, i feel like yall got everything haha
nipz: wow we covered so much in this interview lol
nipz: adam22 gonna read this and realize he has nothing else to ask cuz you already mentioned eating ass and not smoking backwoods
shrimp: imma do a 50 minute nojumper interview where im just breathing into the mic