Published in Blog, Mills Record Company. Tags: Interviews, Kansas City, Music.
With about a decade and a half of beat tinkering behind him, Seth Morris recently released a new mainline electro-funk track with “theHunt,” which is how I was introduced to his music. To say that he “dabbles” in music sounds dismissive of both his interest-level and creativity, but under his c-Logik moniker Seth dabbles, in that he doesn’t feel any desperation to unnecessarily hurry projects, or produce and play simply for the sake of doing so. As part of the local Grand Flow crew, he’ll have some new music dropping before long with them, but for now he’s taking it easy.
Where does the name chopLogik come from?
c-Logik: Ah the name. Well I always considered myself a logical thinker. I used to read a lot of philosophy, my favorite probably being Martin Heidegger; which helped carve out the “logik” for me. The “chop” part was kind of ironic. I used to know a kid when I was young whose nickname was Chop. I thought to myself, “Man, I’m glad I don’t have that nickname” (seemed synonymous with a fat guy). But I ended up using “chop” in relation to the way I was cutting samples up. Needless to say, I’m in my late 30′s and fitting the “chunky” title now.
In the first track I heard of yours, “theHunt,” there’s a cautious balance between sounds: I hear robust bass burps, sultry vocal snippets, and a voiceover sample, but it’s mixed nicely where everything is quite fluid in terms of how it all flows together. Do you take any time to plan how your songs are going to develop or does each track take shape as you go?
c-Logik: You know, I rarely take time to orchestrate composition. But it also depends on the production style I’m using. The past few years I have been disciplining my production without sampling. This forces you to somewhat have an idea the road you want to travel when it comes to composition. But I would say overall, the best outcomes are ones which are most organic and free flowing.
On the Dan Matic track you recently co-produced there’s a rolling jazzy piano vibe, you’ve gone smoother with your Lana Del Rey and Ellie Goulding mixes, and on your YouTube page you’ve shared clips from both underground hip hop staple Busdriver as well as local blues outfit the Stone Cutters Union. All of that’s to say that your musical interests would seem to be a little all over the place. How deep’s your record collection and how much does it inspire the the music you make?
c-Logik: I spent much of my learning years trying to fit into a certain production technique and remain there, and I always quietly held contempt for this unspoken law. I love when groups break out of their boundaries and collaborate with something people may not expect. I think it shows a veracious comfort in yourself as a musician. What really got me into production was my longtime yearning to engineer. I am a firm lover of all genres of music, and can find production appreciation in nearly everything. I grew up to classical and jazz and blues, and have gone through phases of everything else. I found some really rare 60′s Russian jazz footage for that track. The contrast you hear in some of my posted tracks is really my sample based style, and my straight sample-less composition style. Recently, I’ve been trying to get these two techniques somewhat blended to a point of consistency, which I think will be best shown on a new remix I did being released on the upcoming Ink Slinger Infinite EP by Evolve from the Texas hip hop group Evan Ill. I can go from a chill vibe spectrum to golden era boom-bap. My records I collected together with Doctor Okeh, probably a couple thousand at least, currently consist of mostly soul, jazz and classic rock, with sprinkles of wonky children’s records, and library sounds. I’m a sucker for old instructional style recordings, or vintage promotional vinyls.
Question in the form of an answer: “Solid Colors.”
c-Logik: A few things come to mind. A safe way to dress, glad that Ice-T wasn’t that descriptive, earth tones are my favorite, and solid colors are just necessary to balance emotion. I mean I grew up with Atari 2600, and I’m just fine… Nintendo released NES in 1986, ADHD was voted into existence in 1987, just sayin!
You were out west in 1999, around the same time that you started creating music. When did you make your way to Missouri and did that time in Sacramento guide you creatively at all in the years that followed?
c-Logik: I spent a couple years in Sacramento and it was my first time really away from Kansas City. I think it really gave me perspective of hope and desire. I used to hear the term “stuck in the bubble” when speaking about Kansas City, and I really came to digest this after leaving the nest. I think there’s a plateau of success (most) people can achieve here, and sharing in that optimism that seems to exist in the West was a fire starter for me. Being able to think in a national context for a platform helped me push myself.
Who are Mr. Glimm, Dutch Casey, and Grand Flow?
Darius Glimm and Dutch Casey, were alter egos I created when working on some projects in the past. Dutch being the most recent for a Grand Flow record, that in the end [I] decided not to release. Grand Flow was a name we came up with for the project which included Negro Scoe, Doctor Okeh, and Rythmonster, but are turning it into Grand Flow Classics for the new record label we are starting (with Rythmonster). I really enjoy mystery when it comes to entertainers. This also includes performances. I could do three or four shows a year and be OK with that. Some like doing two a week. Personally I think that’s a bit self-destructive. You never want “(sigh) oh that guy again” to fall out of anyone’s mouth. Different names are just a fun way keep people wondering… Moving forward, I’m keeping c-Logik in lock, just short for chopLogik
Rapid fire finale: Favorite local MC? Favorite Kansas City DJ moment? Best and worst things about Dancefestopia?
c-Logik: Ouch, OK…. Brother of Moses; Hip Hop and Hot Wings at the Peanut; shamefully and with great disappointment I was unable to go to Dancefestopia last year. There [were] a lot of acts I wanted to check out.
[This article first appeared at Mills Record Company.]