Interview and Photos by Dom Ellis
Circa Winter '15
At eight-years-old, Bizzy Crook proclaimed his love for hip hop and dreamt of rocking stages across the nation. Now -some 15 years later- he’s in the dressing room at the House of Blues preparing to hit the stage for a packed house.Upon first listen you might think you are hearing braggadocios bars about the illustrious life of a self-made 20-something with no fears and no doubts, but read betwixt the lines and you’ll discover Bizzy Crook actually raps in self-fulfilling prophecies and metaphors that go right over your head. Crook has encrypted thoughts of depression, family, friends, sacrifice and success and layered them with an easy to digest patina for the masses to enjoy. Once decoded you get a sense of how humble the Miami native’s verses really are and that below the surface he’s speaking from the heart.
How does it feel to be rocking a stage Tupac was on?
It’s fucking crazy. You know what’s crazy we were watching the video earlier. The last time I was here we watched the same videos, just watching his energy is crazy. ‘Pac was on this stage so you got to represent.
One of your biggest influences is Eminem, why don’t you sound like him?
Man, I don’t know! That was the guy that made me want to rap but it depends how much you listen I think. It’s somewhere in the content and the topics, like, yo, Eminem was big on the suicide thing and that happens to be my story, too. I just think it’s not obvious but it’s definitely there.
Do you think your fans can relate to the depressed and suicidal thoughts and listen to you to help them through it?
Yes, I hope to for one I think it’s something everyone in the world can relate to whether they admit it or not because surprisingly it’s more common than we know because it’s not something everybody talks about.
You once said in order to achieve first you must dream. When and how did you start turning your dreams into reality?
It was a time when I was eight-years-old that I turned to my cousin and told her that this is what I want to do. She played me the first rap songs I ever really heard. It was a Grammy compilation album it had Eminem, Dr. Dre, Nas, Lauryn Hill all that shit on there and that day I told her I wanted to be a rapper. So from there I just have been pursuing it. Even at eight I did what I could and wrote music, as I got older I got deeper in the game.
You’re still super young, 23. Talk about what you’ve had to sacrifice to get to where you are now.
Man I had to sacrifice a lot, I didn’t really party back in the day. When everybody was partying I was at the crib trying to record. I had to sacrifice shit that wouldn’t have been beneficial years later. There was a point where everybody wanted to chill but I couldn’t, I stayed in my room and worked on my craft.
Did it suck having to sacrifice time with family and friends?
Yea, that’s one thing I’m big on family. I feel like for the last four years I have just been doing my thing but I’ve had to miss holidays but I’m going make up for all of that.
How does being away from family and friends fuel those depressed feelings?
It feels like it’s for the greater good. My mother is the most important person in my life. My drive is because of her. I want to be able to take care of moms like everybody else do. I’m cool with giving up a little time now to make up for it later.
Every time I hear about you you’re on tour. Talk about the importance of touring for you.
Man touring is very important. I get to get in front of thousands of people every night and tell my story and rap. It’s essential because you leave a lasting impression on those people. They go on to tell everybody else and then they go tell other people about me.
You’re on an indie label now. Do you have plans on going major?
Yea, we’re gone flip that. The thing about us is that we all young hustlas. Thank God but we’ve never had to settle, you know when the time is right and they want to give us something we can’t get for ourselves yea we can break bread.
What are some lessons you’ve learned in the game about music and life?
I’ve learned everything isn’t real; everybody isn’t real so we just stick to ourselves. Everybody with me is someone I grew up with; it’s a real family vibe. Even as far as producers I’m all in-house; I learned that if you just deal with your people it’s less headaches.
The game taught me everything about myself and life. From being that eight-year-old to now we at the House of Blues and we ‘bout to rock, just that dream, that eight-year-old boy’s [dream] was real. Everybody didn’t see it then but I did and that’s all that matters.