Cold 187um aka Big Hutch of Above the Law drops the digital download of his new album, Only God Can Judge Me on April 26th. Avoiding the G-funk debate altogether, LAHHE got Hutch to talk about his label, West World on Big Shot Music, his band and his wow.
LAHHE: So where can we pick up Only God Can Judge Me?
Big Hutch: We're releasing the digital download on iTunes [and other outlets] but it won't be in stores til mid-June because that's where technology is going. It's just another way to be a little more independent. A lot of people say they are independent but have a major telling them what to do. West World is all independent money. We like the digital release because that's "right now" money, no manufacturers, no reserves to hold 80% of your money up, just "right now."
LAHHE: Did you produce everything?
Big Hutch: Yea, everything except "Look Into My Eyes" produced by Big Dre "The Decepticon" and "F*ckin' Wit You" produced by Royal Krown, another group on my imprint.
LAHHE: You're also working on O.G. Since 1967, right?
Big Hutch: Well in mid-July we're releasing a DVD of Only God Can Judge Me that will tie all the videos we shoot for the album together into one big video. It's kind of a gangsta love story, how I look at the game. When you're hustlin' you forget about the people that love you, you on the chase. There's a twist at the end, so you gotta see it. The score is the whole album but "Rock Boy", "Look Into My Eyes", "Lord Have Mercy", "Let's Get Neked" featuring LeVert II and "Psycho Pimp" are the main ones.
O.G. Since 1967 is coming like August/September. I wrote two records at the same time. Only God Can Judge Me is more like, "I'm on my own tip, I'm doing what I want to do," a throwback record. O.G. Since 1967 is all kinds of different music, that's my "wow" like Richard Pryor, dirty comedy was his "wow." O.G. Since 1967 is my "wow," the way I look at music. I studied rock, classical, funk, blues, it's a fusion. I was raised by my father Richard Hutch and uncle Willie Hutch, they wrote for The Jacksons, Commodores, Miracles....A lot of people don't understand that music is my heritage and I studied music waaay before Above the Law. I still do the Above the Law thing as well. Above the Law is working on putting out Victim of Global Politics at the end of this year, we're still hashing everything out. It's not smart for me to not do Above the Law. I'm just trying to realize my dreams. I'm not a guy that thinks I'm going to live forever, you need to get it in!
LAHHE: Are we going to be able to see you perform soon?
Big Hutch: Probably not on tour soon but when you see what I do live, it's different, as far as gangsta. I have a 6-piece band, I take it real seriously. You might see me play (piano) and rap. Most of the music on the album I composed myself, no samples except drums and loops. We are rehearsing now and probably won't perform until late summer. Follow me on Twitter/Facebook because we are playing it by ear right now. We are still shooting the videos for the DVD and I'm directing.
LAHHE: Are you doing casting and everything?
Big Hutch: I write the scripts, casting, produce and have a film crew come out to film. We just finished "Lord Have Mercy." As the videos come out and as you learn the record you'll see the story. I learned that from Eazy, how to put a project together, trying to get that "wow." Funny thing about art is you can throw a lot of money at a bad idea and it'll be ok, a good idea only takes a little money. I remember when Ruthless was one little room with two desks and Eazy would follow tour buses in an Astro van. My whole drive is to create a new business front for urban music, not just the West Coast.
LAHHE: What other artists do you have on West World?
Big Hutch: Recently me and Hazmadic did a poetry record, ["Take U Under"] like spoken word. He wanted to do something different, cutting edge but still gangsta. Music doesn't have to be typical ever. What's typical when a man puts his heart in his music? That's extraordinary. We have Hazmadic's album about 40% done. We will start recording Dirt Bags and Royal Krown later this year (two of those guys are in my band) then LeVert II, a new RnB singer is coming this fall on Big Shot.
LAHHE: Are you producing all of their albums as well?
Big Hutch: I'm real head strong about letting artists be artists. People laugh when I say "I'm a Creative Executive." But I know when to be creative and when to be the executive. Hazmadic's album is produced by me, Royal Krown is producing themselves and Dirt Bags' album will be produced by the staff of producers at West World. My focus is to help everyone else. I really care, I love what I'm doing. When I see cats that can't get deals or don't have a game plan...the East Coast and down South have that, but Eazy is gone, Suge is gone. I only want to be an artist when I want to be an artist. I learned that from Eazy, he was like "I'm not here to tell you how to be Above the Law." I want to be the new young mogul that cares about the music.