HipHopDX: What inspired the title “WiLD4TheNight”?
k-os: Well a lot of things. People definitely know [A$AP Rocky] has a song entitled “Wild For The Night” but that A$AP song is inspired by a Busta Rhymes and Rampage song from the 90s Golden Age [which was] a song that I loved as a kid. The title “WiLD4TheNight” really says it all because I am not saying “Wild For The Week” neither am I saying “Wild For Your Whole Life,” the song is called “WiLD4TheNight.” You know that one moment where you just don’t care? And ain’t nothing wrong with that! I think all human beings need to be like that once in a while in this world. If more humans would just “WiLD4TheNight” maybe egos wouldn’t have to “wyle all day erryday.” Not that I can speak for other humans, but for me I know sometimes I need to let loose.
I think one of the underlying concepts around “Conscious Rap” or when people use the term “conscious” or “positive” is that we may be considered to be against having fun. Everybody wants the guy who is “conscious” not to drive a [Mercedes Benz] or [Rolls Royce]. But like KRS-One once said ”’people want the conscious rapper to be like a barefoot prophet with a wooden staff and broke.”! Of course, certain types of girls can’t like him, he can’t stunt. And he isn’t allowed to be sexual. Because the stereotype is that if you’re gonna be positive you’re not allowed to be a sexual human being. With this video I wanted to try to break some of those stereotypes and just have fun. If you are human you should be able to relate to people and if you actually do have something positive to say, people should want to listen to you because they see you having fun as opposed to presenting a stiff, uptight image where it may seem you are against having fun, which can spoil other people’s good times. Who wants that? Isn’t Hip Hop essentially about peace, love and having fun? Isn’t that how it started? We are entertainers at the end of the day. “WiLD4TheNight” is sort of my statement on dropping knowledge in music in a new and different way where an intelligent person is given the leeway to do those fun things that the people who “typically” don’t drop knowledge do. It’s one thing to be thought out and calculated on the microphone when you’re in the studio but when people leave the studio we all know fun is had! Maybe it’s just that the dudes who are having a certain type fun just don’t talk about it on their records. Sometimes being conscious is just omitting the facts unconsciously.
I remember reading De La Soul interview and to me De La is so aware of what they do always. They are genius! And in the interview they asked Posdnous, “Why don’t you talk about poppin’ bottles in your music” and he was like “Well maybe I do pop bottles but there’s so many other things to talk about when I hold the microphone.” I agree with that fully, but at the same time, in these days and times, you can also now approach that topic of partying. You can cover that topic because it makes you more human to do so and people will see “Ok, even though this person has something to say I can still relate to them because everyone likes to have a good time and let loose and be wild for a night, everybody.” Hopefully if you’re a healthy human, you know, that’s living a full life on the planet: You want to have fun and you gotta be wild sometimes.
DX: I know you mentioned that you’re Canadian and your hometown is in Trinidad and you kind of got a mixture of both into this music video. What was that like going back to your hometown and filming this song. Was there a specific theme that you’re going for?
k-os: Trinidad is an interesting place because not many people know about it. Sometimes when I am in a taxi the driver will ask—because they hear an accent when you’re talking on the phone or something—”Are you from Jamaica?” That’s what everyone asks you all the time if they think you’re from the West Indies because to North Americans, once you’re from the West Indies, to a lot of people you’re automatically from Jamaica. Trinidad is an island that has been influential in my life and has a rich culture, as you can see in the video. That culture has never really been exposed, so part of my motive was to show people that Trinidad is just hella cool and we know how to have a good time. Trinidadians are also notorious for having dope rappers. [Phife Dawg], from A Tribe Called Quest, and Nicki Minaj are Trinidadian. Foxy Brown is also Trinidadian and so is MF DOOM. There’s a lot of “Trinieez” in America! You see with someone like Nicki Minaj how colorful she is. A big part of that is her Trinidadian roots and culture but she is American so it’s kind of taken for granted that she’s from New York or wherever she’s from and that her thing is a New York thing but it’s a Trinidad thing to the bone—that flamboyancy and that wildness.
Trinidadians are wild and we’re very South American. We’re just off the coast of Venezuela so we got that Brazilian Carnival real bizarre aspect to us. It’s also soul music, it’s fun. I wanted to show that and I also wanted to show how West Indian culture and American cultures are very different. You know, for the most part, most of us West Indians in America or Canada just assimilate to being American or Canadian when we got here and very few of us have spent time in our home countries that our parents are from. So I kind of just wanted to basically, with the production of this song totally insert that and say look “I am from Trinidad but I love American music and it has influenced me my whole life.” If I have to go someplace and call it home though, it’s not Africa and it’s not America. It’s Trinidad. Trinidad is like my mecca, and to be honest, since I’ve came back from there this year I feel like a different person. I’m just a little bit more grounded and I understand myself a lot better. I’m not really swayed by certain things, by certain ideas any more. I see through the propaganda. It’s like getting to know who you really are to an extent. Partying into the wee hours of the morning kind of confirmed why I am how I am and how I’ve always been: simply a fun loving guy. North American Conservative culture is a little uptight and they can make you feel guilty for being “free up” but Trinidad kind of set me free in a way and it’s great that I got to experience that freedom as I go into the studio to finish this record Can’t Fly Without Gravity. Because now I know my album title is true, for sure.