Most rappers don't name their projects after books. But rising Las Vegas wordsmith Dizzy Wright was so taken by Don Miguel Ruiz's 'The Four Agreements' that he named his new EP 'The First Agreement.'
Ruiz's first agreement is to be impeccable with your word. As evident through his soul-bearing, introspective catalog, Wright makes a point to speak with integrity, to say what he means and to use the power of his words in the direction of truth.
For the Funk Volume artist, 2012 has been filled with milestones. His 'Smokeout Conversations' album hit No. 2 on iTunes hip-hop chart in April and he performed 66 shows in the United States in support of the album, including his own headlining tour.
And now Wright drops the video for 'The First Agreement' selection 'Fly High.' We caught up with him to get the meaning behind his new video, his feelings on his burgeoning career and where he fits into the rap world.
How did you pick the setting and the storyline for the 'Fly High' video?
I've been working with George Orozco at On Point Films for a while. We've got a pretty close relationship and I pretty much put it in his hands to set up the setting for the video for me because I was on tour. I did let him know that I was trying to set a cool tone, which I got from the music, the 'Fly High' song.
I didn’t want to be the rapper that’s all up in the video looking in the camera rapping. I wanted to smoothen things out and look like I was working on a car. It’s all based off of feeling. That’s basically how I do all my music and my videos, as well. If it feels like something that should be turned up, then I make sure it’s turned up. But if it feels like something that’s got to be more cool, calm then that’s the direction I go.
In the song, you say that Father's Day is your favorite holiday. How, when and why did you make that realization?
I'm still a fairly new daddy. My daughter's 1. She’ll be 2 in April. Growing up, I never really felt a part of anything, my family being just so discombobulated. Having my own little family to look after, support and being part of my daughter's life is something that's really important to me. I wanted to express that, but not overdo it. I just wanted people to understand it and believe it.
"I just wanted to do shows around the West Coast. Then I ended up going overseas... I just surpassed my goals so outrageously that now I'm not even setting goals. I'm just going." -- Dizzy Wright
The chorus says we can do what we want if the limit is the sky. When and why did you realize you were in control of you were doing in your own life?
This year. It was on the one 'Smokeout Conversations' Tour. I saw how successful it was. It was my first headlining tour. I saw that people were really fucking with my sound and were really inspired off of the shit that I'm saying. I was able to really touch base with the real Dizzy Wright fans.
All that made me look at the bigger picture. I feel like the limit is the sky. I’ve accomplished what I wanted to accomplish and surpassed it outrageously just by working hard. That’s where the hook of 'Fly High' comes from.
What was your initial set of goals and what are your new goals?
My initial set of goals was to just do more shows around the West Coast. I had no idea I was going to be traveling the whole world, or even throughout the United States. With the 'Smokeout Conversations' Tour and the Funk Volume 2012 Tour, I did 66 shows in the United States.
I just wanted to do shows around the West Coast. Then I ended up going overseas and doing all these other shows. I just surpassed my goals so outrageously that now I'm not even setting goals. I'm just going. I'm just going to keep working hard.
So was 2012 a breakout year for you?
I don't think it was my breakout year yet. This year was like a warm-up. I've been doing this for a long time so it was just getting people used to me, getting people on board. This year I think I did a good job of building my machine of fans and supporters and getting the blogs to talk about me. I think next year will be my breakout year.
How do you feel you fit in to the other artists that are coming up?
You can see when somebody is getting it popping and that’s where I fit in. I'm putting out projects and touring. I don't compare myself to any artists.
There's artists out there grinding and working hard that have similar work ethics to me. Joey Bada$$ is dope. So is my boy Logic. Ab-Soul is getting it in. I've met and chopped it up with some of these cats and they’re good, humble dudes.
When you start putting in that line of work, you start running into one another. It just happens like that. I feel like I'm doing something right if I'm running into people that are doing the right things as well.
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