Just when I thought the local celebrity status I stooped so low to earn while competing in “Dancing with the NEPA Stars” was nothing but a distant memory, I was invited to be in a rap video filming in downtown Scranton.
“I manage a rapper who loves your column,” read a message I received. “He has a part just for you in his new music video.”
Naturally, my first instinct was that the invitation was actually a setup for me to get shot. Since my lifestyle is one big death wish, I also naturally agreed to appear in the video.
When the manager picked me up, I met a rapper named Kontempt sitting in the passenger seat. When he told me he had been drinking all morning as he raised a nearly emptied red Solo cup, I knew I was in good company.
The next few hours were spent day drinking on top of a parking garage in downtown Scranton as I played a shady guy in a hoodie that suspiciously hands someone a duffel bag in a rap video. Sorry, Mom and Dad.
As I got to know Kontempt more at the video’s wrap party, I was impressed to discover that when he decided to record his album he constructed an at-home studio in 24 hours – and more impressed to discover he was just days away from opening up for hip-hop legends Salt-N-Pepa. He was the type of dude who makes his own luck, while remaining selfless enough to mentor others along the way, most noticeably his talented musical protégé K. Simms. Quote me now: Kontempt and K. Simms are going to be the next Macklemore and Ryan Lewis. That’s why I made sure I did his first interview.
THE WEEKENDER: Why was it so important for you to film your new video in Scranton?
KONTEMPT: Scranton is my hometown. To me, there was only one place to shoot this video. I want to bring Scranton up. I want to put Scranton on the map. I love this area. I love the people in this area.
W: You’re not only a rapper, you’re a young entrepreneur building your own empire with Global Dreams Entertainment. What can you tell me about your company?
K: I started an indie record label, a DJ service, artist services… Basically, I wanted to encapsulate everything music into one business. I wanted to cut out the middle man. We’re the recording studio. We are the distribution.
W: What advice would you give young artists in the area who want to make a name for themselves but might not know how to get started?
K: I’d tell anyone who wants to get in the game to come to Global Dreams and talk to us. I could mentor you. I have no problem helping other artists. There’s a lot of music in this world, and I think a lot of it has to be heard.
W: There have been famous rivalries in hip-hop. Is there as much rivalry in the local scene or more of a brotherhood?
K: I’d say more of a rivalry. We’re all fighting and climbing up that greasy pole to get to success.
W: It’s all coming together, as you produced an album now available on iTunes. What’s the album called?
K: “All In.” I put everything I had into this. All my emotion. I went all in.
Then I asked him if he ever incorporated peanut butter into his sex life.
Get the answer in a video exclusively at theweekender.com.