To compete for a championship, you gotta assemble a team that has the perfect balance between superstar, experienced veterans, rookies, and free agent pick-ups. Dame Dash, Jay-Z and Roc-A-Fella have been getting their GM duties on by constructing super group State Property. And with a franchise player in place in Beanie Sigel, and Freeway approaching perennial All-Star status with the success of his debut album, Philadelphia Freewayit’s time to develop the young scrappers, and for the off-season—or in this case, between album—signee to show and prove.
With the Young Gunz scoring a hit with the success of their anachronistic sounding, “Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop,” State P is still in the game, despite star player Sigel on the bench facing federal gun charges and a separate attempted murder charge. Prepped with their game faces, the Philly five of Chris & Neef, Oschino & Sparks and Peedi Crakk are poised to show Chain Gang Vol. II is proof that the team has their sights set on more than just the Eastern Conference. With improved role players, they are trying to do what the ’01 Sixers couldn’t do: win it all.
AllHipHop: Why the decision to not put out the movie and album at the same time, like how y’all did before?
Freeway: Cause the streets needed the album. State Property is just so hot that they was just calling for it and we had to do it, you know?
AllHipHop: Can you explain the difference between the two State Property albums?
Freeway: On the State Property 2 album, we actually took the time and sat down, and put songs together. On the State Property 1 album, it was just like a bunch of songs that we was doing and then put it together. It wasn’t really planned out or nothing. They was just like, we gon’ do a State Property album.
AllHipHop: I’m in the Philly area right now and “Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop” is getting’ crazy play here. What’s it like on tour, are the other spots feelin’ it? Are they open to it?
Neef: Hell yeah! If you look at BDS we ain’t just getting spins in Philly. In some places they didn’t even know the song, they just rocking with us, you know what I’m saying? It’s just catching on to them. But, most cities we was killin’ it. We tore everything down.
AllHipHop: Your track kind of sounds old school with the beat.
Neef: It’s new school on the old school.
AllHipHop: Word, and is that what y’all was trying to do?
Neef: Yeah, like we ain’t…we just knock out songs. We do songs. We don’t think one is hotter than the next one, you know what I’m saying? We just knock them out and it just became a hit. We just threw it out on a mixtape, The Youngest in Charge. We did our own mixtapes, DJ Enuff hosted them, and we just put it out on there and like, mufuckas just started playing that s### by they self. These DJ’s started playing it by they self without it being out. And then they had to put it out there, they had to vinyl it up and get it out there, with no choice, because it was getting’ hot. And once we started getting 500 spins they had to shoot the video.
AllHipHop: And how do you feel about that new Joe Budden track (“Fire”) that is out? Cause your hooks is similar.
Chris: That’s crazy; I don’t know what’s up with that. I don’t know if he heard it, and went and did his, or if he had it in the cut, I don’t know? It’s all good.
AllHipHop: How long ago did you record “Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop”?
Chris: A couple of months ago. We heard the beat and then we put it out on our mixtape, then n##### followed up on it. We put it out first.
AllHipHop: Who laced the beat?
Chris: A guy named Digga, from up N-Y. I heard he had an attitude when we put it out.
Chris: Then when they started spinning it, and they got that change right—it was all good.
AllHipHop: Are you gonna go out and tour for State Property 2?
Chris: We going right back out.
Sparks: Oh fa’ sho’, in fact we are on a radio tour. It’s gonna be crazy.
AllHipHop: Peedi, are you looking forward to anything being different on tour now that your face is in videos and magazines?
Peedi Crakk: More people listening, more ears. Cause that’s the main thing to me, to be heard. All of the fame and s###, that come with it, the money come with it, you know what I mean? But I like for my music to get heard, especially when people appreciate it, and people know the words to my rap. I love that; I get my kick out of that.
AllHipHop: Your flow is real unique, people are describing it as sing-song, how’d you start rhyming like that?
Peedi Crakk: The flow? I don’t want to say I don’t know. I use to spit fast as s### when I was a young boy. I use to spit fast like Fu-Schnickens and like Das EFX, and all that s###, I use to rap like that when I was like 13. It stems from that. My spit game is fluid, like I can take it anywhere. But, I’m not really a slow-flow type dude. I’m not into the slow flow; I like to keep it moving.
AllHipHop: I also wanted to ask, on “The Come Up Show” on Power 99(Philadelphia), Q-Deezy (radio personality) said that the Young Gunz came up with the whisper-style rap that Jay-Z uses, is there any truth to that?
Neef: Nah, we all get stuff from each other; we get stuff from him and he gets stuff from us, he pick up slang from us. We from different places, he from New York and we from Philly, so we just pick up on each other stuff, you know what I’m saying? That’s just being around each other; it just go down like that.
AllHipHop: And how’s your relationship with the Dip Set, cause you know, we always hear a lot of stuff about how cats is beefin’ on the Roc.
Neef: As far as me and Chris, we show love to everybody. We here to get this money, we ain’t got no time to be about nothing else. Cause it’s business with them. It’s business with everybody else. Me and him, it’s personal. I don’t really have no problems, I love everybody. [Laughs]
AllHipHop: Free, with the first State Property, that was your jump off, with the second album do you feel like you’re in more of a leadership position for the rest of the group? Is there anything you try to do for them?
Freeway: Yeah, whatever they need. If they need me to go to shows with them, or if they need me for support for songs, whatever, I’m there for them. We like a family, everybody helps each other, they help me.
AllHipHop: Peedi, when you came into State P, was there a transition period or did y’all click right away?
Peedi Crakk: During the time of the first State Prop album, I was already kinda a part of State Prop, but the album was already finished. I was there when they was recording that one. I been knew B. Sig from Philly, and me and Freeway was in a group when we was younger. I knew Omillio Sparks and Oschino. We all from Philly, so everybody knew each other so it was easy. When I signed to Roc-A-Fella, it just clicked like, that’s Crakk.
AllHipHop: On our Website, we have a big rumor section. And about a month back, there was a rumor that you (Peedi) had a track going at Dame Dash. Is there any truth to that?
Peedi Crakk: [Laughs] Yo, you know how much s### I hear, man? People pray for your downfall, man. It’s f##### up, too. Maybe a year ago, nobody would’ve even gave a f### about me. I wouldn’t even been on a Website. But once you come up just a little bit, and you get a little famous, and a little recognition, a little money, everybody want to take a shot at you, you know what I sayin’? That’s ludicrous.
AllHipHop: The second single is gonna be Oschino and Sparks?
Sparks: Oh yeah, “Want Me Back,” Oschino and Sparks, fa’ sheezy, baby
AllHipHop: When is that going to be hitting radio?
Sparks: ASAP, we looking for a video treatment and everything. It’s on!
AllHipHop: Do you see this album treating y’all how Freeway jumped off from the first State Property album?
Sparks: That’s what they [Roc-A-Fella] trying to do. Break us in as artists. Beans broke Freeway that way, this record broke Young Gunz, and the second one is gonna’ break us, then it’s on. Then we stand out. But it’s a movement, it don’t stop. Then after we do our thing, we come back and do another one, it don’t stop!
Chris: It’s not a Beans and Free album. They was flooded over that joint [the first State Property album.] This time it’s more me, Oschino, Sparks, my partner Neef, Peedi Crakk all over that joint. We got a couple of features, we got the boy Twista, Lil’ Cease, Dirt McGirt, and of course, Jay. We didn’t need that many people, we deep ourselves. It’s everybody on this joint, and I’m all over this joint.
AllHipHop: Whose decision was it to feature y’all on it more this time rather than Beans and Free?
Chris: Ah nah, its just we came with all the heat. We was on our J-O constantly bringing songs, they couldn’t deny. We earned that spot.
AllHipHop: Since you’re the new edition Peedi, what is it that you bring to the State P 2 album that was missing without you on the first one?
Peedi Crakk: Fun and Club. There wasn’t no club s### on the first one, besides “Roc the Mic.” Not taking anything away from the first album, I respect the first album. It was a lot of street s###, and it reflected from the State Property movie. The movie was really based on some street s###, so I guess it served it purpose with that. But the second one I wanted to widen the crowd out more, besides just street n#####. I broaden the crowd.
AllHipHop: And you’re dropping another movie?
Sparks: We definitely gonna shoot another movie.
AllHipHop: So how are your roles in this movie?
Sparks: The script is still being written right now, so I can’t really get into details.
AllHipHop: So how you like doing the movie thing?
Chris: I’ma do all that, but I want to get my rapping career straight first.
Sparks: You know how you get broke in the first time you make love? It’s like I’m addicted now; I’m turned out. But the music opened the door for everything.
AllHipHop: Are y’all looking for more screen time this go round?
Sparks: I was the co-star of the last one. Fa’ sho, I’m shooting for more time, you know? You can’t deny me, why would you want to? [Laughs] I think I’m gonna be in plenty more movies! Watch ya boy Omillio! Holla!
AllHipHop: Any last thoughts?
Neef: I just want to tell the people, we coming man. Look out the Young Gunnerz, Chris and Neef, we on our way. And thanks for everybody who supported from day one.
Sparks: You heard “Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop,” check the second joint “Want Me Back,” it’s major. Oschino and Sparks definitely on that.