Tech N9ne Balances Normalcy, ‘Something Else’
Published: Thursday, March 14, 2013
Updated: Thursday, March 14, 2013 12:03
Tech N9ne gives a new meaning to multitasking.
He’s the kind of guy who, while racing to his studio in Kansas City, takes interviews with journalists.
But it can’t just be that simple.
Tech has also committed my phone number to his short-term memory before the interview (which will come in handy when we get disconnected mid-chat by a fan). You know, on top of the brain capacity required to prep and embark on a 55-date tour, record collaborations and film promos for a still-unfinished album expected to drop this year, reading scripts for a movie he’s working on with Everlast and Immortal Technique, scouting artists for his Strange Music label, updating his Twitter feed and being a dad. Yesterday, he says, he finished putting together his Independent Powerhouse Tour scheduled to kick off one week later in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
“Twenty-thirty is, like, super work heavy to Tech N9ne, but it’s a blessing,” the 41-year-old rapper says. “You have to reboot,” he adds, specifically about remembering more than a decade of rhymes. “There are always songs I’ll remember, but for the older ones like ‘Caribou Lou,’ ‘Riot Maker’ and ‘Psycho Bitch’ you have to really reboot.”
This tour’s reboot process meant catching an oldie’s imperfections; Tech realized he mistakenly rhymed the same word in two verses of “This Ring” he hadn’t noticed before. Tech’s inspiration also reboots, even though he says the old stories from his drug-taking days sometimes seep through.
“Life is the inspiration, for real,” he says. “I’m living life everyday and just writing it. If I’m just partying, drinking Caribou Lou, I’m gonna write it. Even when I’m sad, I’m gonna write it. If I’m confused, I’m gonna write it. If I’m down on myself I’m gonna write it, and I did that a lot on this new album, Something Else.”
It’s getting harder to write, Tech says. The self-dubbed Technician No. 1 works to keep his chopper-style rhymes more intricate than those on previous albums, but it can be a tough task to refill your own expanding shoes.
“My brain won’t let me relax,” he says. “The people who say they like the old stuff better because it was darker…can’t say the old stuff was better style-wise or lyrically.”
Tech won’t let the fame get to him either. He still doesn’t have his driver’s license (for those who have seen “Psychumentary,” he still can’t parallel park), but he does buy his own hot dogs at sporting games, goes to the bars, movies and Walmart — even if that means taking pictures with 50 people.
“In a world like Strangeland, where everyone calls you God, you need a level head, ‘cause you can lose it,” he says. “I need normalcy. Last week, I got out of my house and shoveled my snow. But it let me know real quick I was a normal boy, ‘cause my back was killing me.”
Tech N9ne w/Krizz Kaliko, Brotha Lynch Hung, Kutt Calhoun, Ces Cru, Rittz, Rialto Theatre, 318 E. Congress Street, Tucson, 520.740.1000, rialtotheatre.com, Tucson, Tuesday, March 26, 8 p.m., $35 adv, $40 dos, $150 VIP meet-and-greet