After overhearing a static voice going on about some strange activity happening at a local gallery, I grab my hoodie and follow two policemen to the location. Upon arriving not knowing what to expect, the two are face to face with a frenzy of people running in all directions. Taking action the two rush for the door. Putting my hood up I sneak in behind, somehow blending with the running crowd. After making their way inside, the policemen look around wearily. With dim lights of black and blue and abstract paint on the wall. Posters describing an event for a group by the name, CRIMEHOUSEUSA, I notice all as I’m still trailing in the shadows. I feel calm while one could tell they feel tense and nervous. I think to myself,
“You’re police officers? Isn’t it your job to go into weird places like this?”
My thoughts are then interrupted by a rather loud and exclamatory,
“Who are yo-”
That’s when I saw him, a young male who stood in an artistic fashion. In front of him the two policemen were frozen in a trance as one might describe. I slowly approach him while retaining the calm sense I had while entering the gallery. He looks at me and then I ask,
F. What’s your name? What’s your sign? Do you like cheddar cheese? What do you do?
O. I’m ODD PAPI. I’m a vampire business magnate but the zodiac tells me I’m a lion of some sort. I’m more of a Swiss/pepper jack nigga. And I set moods.
F. That relates spiritually. I see myself as more of a wolf compared to your lion. Swiss pepper is that business for real. What type of moods? Artistic moods, odd moods [had to do that], what type?
O. I feel. I feel. And my moods are just thick and deep. They just put something heavy on you. It’s nothing you just ignore. That’s the effect I go for. From then on out it doesn’t matter.
F. I follow that for sure, very interesting. So building on those moods, how exactly do you put that into your art? Also what do you do specifically?
O. I produce, write and record music as well as creative direct events photoshoots and videos. But I treat everything like an experience that I have to creative direct like an event or video. That’s how I create moods within my art.
F. Very intuitive on how you treat things. As far as what you do, you’re basically just a jack of all trades. [I actually hate that term but it’s fitting currently]. I’ve actually had the honor of listening and viewing your work. You’re easily one of my favorite artists of this generation. Do you have a specific piece or project you’re most fond of? Also that is really a lot of things you do at once. Do you have any way of housing all of that? Like a collective or anything?
O. The one that hasn’t dropped yet. That’s always gonna be my favorite. But my fav release so far is definitely “REPLAY” a single from my Vampire Wedding LP. And I’m currently in the process of developing my creative family into a full blown label. We go by CRIMEHOUSEUSA.
F. The fact that you can say which will be your favorite and which is your favorite right now is great. Keep that confidence and you’ll continue doing great things. Any details you can share on “Vampire Wedding”? Also an entire creative family? Fuck the label “collective”. Anyway, is there anyone in CRIMEHOUSEUSA who is releasing any projects soon?
O. Vampire Wedding is a conceptual project about the blessings and blendings of my ties in the high art world and grimey hood world of St. Louis; how they both feel to me mixed into the sonic elements of my music. Big southern bass and 808 percussion over glassy, heartfelt synth melodies. Akin to the styling a of R Kelly, PARTYNEXTDOOR Ginuwine and Travis Scott. It drops in spring 2017, March most likely. Oh and CRIMEHOUSEUSA is currently home to 3 artists including myself, my brother Vintage X, Kaytez and Eaiyt (pronounced “8”). They are all working on a string of debut singles each for early next year.
F. That sounds very in-depth and artistic. Creative isn’t even the right word to describe that, way more. I as well many others will be on the lookout for it when it drops. Is there anything else you could say about it briefly? Are you a Vampire yourself? These are the real questions. What can you tell me about CRIMEHOUSEUSA? Are you all one sound or just a mix of various. Maybe someday I’ll be able to interview them as well.
O. I appreciate that, G. Yeah, Crimehouse is just all fam, we have our ups and downs and shit, whether it be something petty like spilling soda on the couch or a clash of ideas on how to move on the business end, but there’s no team I’d rather be pulling things together with. What makes us different both personally and sonically is what makes us a strong collective. No comment on the vampire thing.
F. No doubt, my dude. That’s family though, not even a collective but just family. It’s always a plus to having that type of relationship with people. Will there ever be a group project or is that classified? Aye I wouldn’t tell if you were one to be real. But before we close this, do you have anything you’d like to say? Any tips for those wanting to run a collective, make music or anything else? Thank you massively for taking the time out to do this. Much love to you my dude.
O. Many group projects to come. Like legit, after everyone gets introduced as individuals, just crazy crossover collaborations all around. That’s one of the biggest shock value elements of modern music and we love vining together anyway. Biggest thing about starting a collective though, is just keeping the feeling that was always there. Like, not forgetting y’all was just niggas that liked sitting 4 asses to a couch playing PS3 and freestyling in a cramped Acura and scoping hoes at the local art exhibits way before y’all decided to be business partners. Don’t let the pressure of productivity keep you from wasting time with the people you love. As long as y’all together and focused, y’all gonna get it regardless. And as far as making music? Best advice I can give is not to be afraid of that weird style that you fantasize about. Those chords that sound out of place, that drum pattern that bangs in a really strange way. If you legitimately like it, than math and science both say that you most likely have a fan base somewhere on the face of the Earth. Create like you’re already established.
F. Fuck, that sounds tight. I’ll be ready for it all. Those are great words of advice that seems like a lot seem to lose sight of. Keep it up. As for music advice, I personally relate to what you just said and I’m sure many others will need to here the same. Once again I gotta say thank you for having this interview with me, it’s always a great time speaking with you. Stay up and keep grinding. Also don’t go outside in the daytime and stay away from garlic too; terrible for your breath.
By this time, the music has faded out and the two policemen from earlier are seen running away frantically, almost as if they’ve seen some sort of Vampire. I take note of all the information I have learned and then find an exit out of the back. I then pull out my phone to listen to a song that Odd recently had dropped. It’s titled, “Poppin“. As the vibes build, I think to myself, “damn I just had a conversation with the St. Louis Vampire.
Gordon “Francis” Hanners.
Writer / Founder of Oh My Francis!
All Inquiries: Instagram: @Franciswarhol
Odd Papi is on instagram at: Oddpapito
You an listen to POPPIN by Odd Papi here: ODD PAPI – POPPIN