It’s been awhile since I’ve listened to hip-hop or R&B music. Classified’s new album has brought me back. His recently released self-titled studio album made its debut at number one on Canada album charts. It’s a healthy dose of reality in a refreshing “makes you think” and has an distinct Canadian feel to it.
Rhyming about real subjects and relating to his audience has always been an important goal for Luke Boyd more commonly known as “Classified”, who has remained a staple in the Canadian Hip- Hop scene. A man of many hits, he has had singles reach varying positions on the Much Music Count Down including two platinum and one gold single in the last three years. With a multi-talented voice both on and off the stage he started his own independent label in 1995. Half Life Records has grown to promote not only his own music but other stellar Canadian artists like Jordan Croucher, Chad Hatcher and Mic Boyd.
Kind enough to take some time away from the studio, I got Mr. Classified to agree to a short phone interview as he was busy prepping for the upcoming tour starting in March.
Sounding very much at ease the conversation started to flow,
CT: How has growing up in the East coast influenced your music?
Classified: (Calling Enfield, Nova Scotia home) I’m influenced by my surroundings and the people around me.
CT: Can you give me a tour story?
Classified: I’ve been on the road for about ten years and it’s planned out. Wake up, prep for the show, get to the venue, grab a nap, have a drink, maybe a sandwich, do the show, and fall asleep on the bus and repeat. Sometimes there are a few parties thrown in.
CT: Is there a story behind a tattoo you have that you can share?
Classified: I got my first one about seven months ago and it’s my girls (Taylor and Kayla) names on my arm.
CT: Can you describe the writing process for you?
Classified: I usually start with the music first and work with the beat. I have a home studio where I spend most of my time. Writing one liners while grocery shopping. I talk about real life and my experience. It’s a lot of back an’ forth. So it’s an easy transition.
CT: If you could have a superpower which one would it be?
Classified: Fly. I don’t like flying so to just pick up and fly out the window would be perfect. And I grew up with superman.
CT: Favorite song you have written and story behind it?
Classified: The Maritimes was written after I started touring and lived away from my home for a while. I wanted to explain and talk about many of the Maritime s stereotypes that many people seem to believe. (It’s a fun song.)
CT: What’s the story behind the name?
Classified: I was waiting to get in the studio when I was 15 and ended up reading the paper. I had been thinking lately about what rap name I wanted to use. The word Classified caught my eye and I rolled with it.
CT: If you could collaborate with anyone, who would it be?
Classified: David Miles, (who hails from Halifax Nova Scotia) is featured on Inner Ninja and I am currently producing some tracks off his new album.
Most recently picking up the Juno 2013 for Rap Recording of the Year, making a living traveling and doing what he loves, Music has helped keep Classified grounded along with his loving family. There is buzz created about the upcoming tour that kicks off March 21st, 2013 in North Bay Ontario. Check out http://www.classifiedoffical.com/ tour for the most recent dates. Frequently on twitter and Facebook he can be found on twitter @classified and facebook. com/classifiedmusic