Potluck was blindsided. As then-recording artists for Suburban Noize Records, 1Ton and UnderRated were dragged into a feud between Brad X of Kottonmouth Kings and Kevin Zinger, partners in the record label who were going through a business divorce in 2013. By January of that year, Brad X and Zinger began supplying their sides of the story, which Potluck found out about online.
Soon thereafter, Potluck started hearing from Suburban Noize employees.
“Former employees started coming up, calling me, texting me, seeing me at shows and different things and basically having confessionals,” 1Ton says during an exclusive interview with HipHopDX. “Like, ‘Hey man, I just want to apologize. Remember like three years ago when this thing happened with your website that we were supposed to be working on and I had to not do it and all the sudden your record came out and there was no updates on the website? Really, what happened was that Brad came to me and said, “Do this other work instead of your guys’ work” and I just couldn’t get it done. He was the boss and he owned the label, so I had to listen to what he said and I never really felt right about that because you guys were always really cool to me.’
“That happened and I’m not talking about one person, two people, five people,” 1Ton continues. “I’m talking about double digits, 10, 15 people.”
Kottonmouth Kings Attacks Potluck
Soon thereafter, Potluck became the target of Kottonmouth Kings’ venom.
In April 2013, Kottonmouth Kings posted a series of comments to its social media.
“Nothing worse than slaves on the plantation sucking the slave masters Dicks-Free the Kings” was one post. Another read, “Potluck Sucks-horrible posers-We will never mention their Name again-Fuck those guys and their Manager.”
The Kottonmouth Kings’ posts have since been deleted, but screen shots are available below.
The comments were particularly bothersome to Potluck given that 1Ton is Black.Potluck was co-managed by Zinger, who is White, at the time.
“To call a Black person a slave, especially coming from a White kid from the suburbs, is something you should never do,” 1Ton says. “However you meant it to sound, after you say that, you can get slammed by all your fans. You can take as many pictures as you want with Brother J from X Clan because he doesn’t know that you said that. You can go and do everything you want, but at the end of the day, you’re out here doing shows and you’re preaching all this hippie love on stage, then you’re going home and kicking it with convicted felons of hate crimes who are out there, straight open about being racist. It’s like you’re living a double life. You’re getting out there writing comments about us, calling me a slave and shit like that. To me, in my mind, it’s straight-up racist.”
Brad X did not respond to HipHopDX’s request for an interview.
UnderRated, who is White, says that he and 1Ton actually began making music, in part, to help bring people from races together.
“It means a lot to us to help change way different people feel about different races being able to get along and kick it,” UnderRated says during an exclusive interview with HipHopDX. “That’s always been a big part of doing music for me, that I could actually be part of that movement and make that kind of thing work.”
Potluck Says Kottonmouth Kings’ Brad X Is “Phony”
Beyond the racial component, Potluck believes that Brad X had another reason to be uncomfortable with it. Potluck hails from Humboldt County California, which is the “Mecca of Marijuana,” as 1Ton calls it.
But despite being the frontman of Kottonmouth Kings, Brad X did not live the lifestyle he projected, Potluck says.
“We’re out there on the road with him for three months in a row and he doesn’t smoke no weed at all, which is fine if you don’t want to smoke weed,” 1Ton says. “But don’t call yourself a Kottonmouth King and then you go three months on tour talking about you’re getting high everyday and partying and you don’t even smoke weed one time. He felt threatened that we were coming from the legitimate place and what we were talking about was real and what they were putting out was phony. I felt like he always felt threatened by that, whereas me and UnderRated, we never felt threatened from them. We felt like, ‘Yo, you guys must be amazing at doing business because look at what were able to accomplish and you guys aren’t really about any of the shit you’re talking about.’”
Potluck Releases “Down with the Krown” Kottonmouth Kings Diss
Although Potluck had not addressed its rift with Kottonmouth Kings, it felt that it finally should tackle the topic.
“It’s like this cloud that’s hovering over our head,” 1Ton says. “All the fans want to know. They want to ask us. Every interview that we do, we got tired of saying, ‘Yo, we’re not talking about Kottonmouth,’ so we were just like, ‘Fuck it. Let’s make the song, do an interview and just be done with it so it can be in the past and we can just go about our way.’”
So Potluck recorded “Down with the Krown,” a diss track that is premiering on HipHopDX that is also included on the duo’s #StonerProblems album, which is set to be released tomorrow (May 26).
1Ton says he wanted to take Suburban Noize’s motto and flip it.
“You’re not the kings of anything,” he says. “Down with you guys now and all these years of crooked industry bullshit that you put us through that we’ve just been quiet about for all these years.”
Potluck also says that the lawsuit between Brad X and Zinger has been resolved, though HipHopDX was not able to find out the results of the lawsuit. Potluck says now that the lawsuit has concluded, the Kottonmouth Kings are again allowed to release music, which would enable it to respond to “Down with the Krown” if it were so inclined.
Despite the issues it has with Brad X and select members of Kottonmouth Kings, Potluck does not have problems with former managers Ivory Daniel and Kevin Zinger.
“I know there’s things that’s been said in the media about Zinger fucking people over and not paying them,” 1Ton says. “I’ll just say, when it comes to Potluck, because that’s all I can speak on and I handle Potluck business, any issue I’ve ever had in my life with money with Suburban Noize records that I brought up to Kevin Zinger, he made sure he addressed it and he made sure I got paid. And even if he made a mistake, he would fix his mistake and we would still get paid, which is way more than I can say about 99 percent of the music industry.”
Potluck Releasing “#StonerProblems” & Touring With Wrekonize
In addition to #StonerProblems, Potluck is set embark upon its co-headlining “The Pre Hangover Tour” with Wrekonize and Prevail of Swollen Members.
It is also looking forward to moving past its Kottonmouth Kings issues now that “Down with the Krown” has been released.
“I didn’t event want to write a song like this or even open up anything more, but it just got to that point now where it’s different people asking us all the time, so it just makes sense to do it,” UnderRated says. “It frees up your mind. You don’t have to worry about the bullshit. You just make music everyday.”
Adds 1Ton: “People can hear it and judge it however they want to judge it. They can take from it [whatever] they want to take from it, believe who they want to believe.”