EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW - VC (VIOLENT CONTENT)
Devon 'Ace' Watson
Ace: Welcome, you are sitting down with FMC Magazine. We have the pleasure of sitting down with the very talented VC today. So first and foremost, you go by the name VC, which stands for Violent Content, but your music is extremely conscious. How did that name come about?
VC: It all came about when I was with my cousin at the photo studio. I was letting him hear some of my rhymes. I would always tell these stories about different social issues in the world, or I would just talk about things that’s going on, where people make certain decisions and it plays out a certain way. As I got to rapping it, he was like, “man, that’s some violent content.” And it just stuck. It was originally supposed to be my first album title, but I liked the name, so I just went with it – Violent Content. Just talking about real stuff that goes on that’s in your face. The principles behind the way in which we live life.
Ace: Looking at your resume, you’re more than just a rapper, you’re a creative as a whole. When it comes to music, which came first, music or production?
VC: Definitely music. I started out as a rapper. I ended up finding my other gifts for two reasons. One is because music was very expensive and the resources weren’t readily available. So I started trying to find out ways how I could support my homies, because I was a real people person. I wanted everyone to make it as a group. I would find out how do you operate a camera, or how do you make a beat. Since we didn’t have $500 to $1000 to afford all of these things. I just started studying different things, asking a lot of questions. Once I got to college at Eastern Michigan University, I saw a platform to where I could actually apply all the gifts and talents that I had experimented with over the years.
Ace: Shoutout to Eastern Michigan. When it comes to your music, the content, and the message, would you say your experience at the collegiate level sculpted your music or do you rap more about what you lived growing up as a child and what you see now today?
VC: Its kind of like 50/50 because I already went up there with a purpose in my heart. In college, I learned more from the experience from actually living in the college environment than going to class. I came up there from the hood. I went to Texas for year, due to some family issues, to live with some relatives, and that was the first time I experienced “in your face racism.” I’m talking about students that claim they was in the KKK leaving nooses in my locker, all kinds of stuff. So when I got back to Detroit, I had a change in mentality. Like, this is how certain people see us as a race. I kind of wanted to change that and let people know what’s going on – we’re destroying ourselves. Once I got to college I had to be a little bit more professional in the way that I do things. Also present like, hey this is our struggle. We’re not just ignorant people. We’re not just out here robbing and stuff. We’ve been systematically conditioned to live a certain way. So I try to create content, programing, and events to try to combat those stereotypes and uplift people.
Ace: Speaking of creativity, you’ve gotten a chance to interview people like Big Sean, Migos, and J.Cole. As an entertainer you’ve been on the stage, you’ve rocked crowds. Do you prefer to be the man behind the scenes, or do you prefer to have the spotlight right on you?
VC: [Laughing] I actually prefer to be on the stage. That way I get to deliver my message straight to you. I get to do it in a way that I feel that it should be done. When I’m behind the scenes, you got to kind of work with the person and their vision, and how they see things. A lot of people don’t really have the same purpose that I have, even though they might kind of, we can work together. I prefer to be the person presenting the message.
Ace: You’ve gotten a chance to work with some talented people, and intern with 50cent, G- Unit, thisis50.com. What would you say is the one biggest takeaway from that experience?
VC: Fear. Overcoming fear. I’ll be honest with you, what I’ve learned recently is that I’ve missed out on a lot of opportunities just from pausing – from being hesitant. It’s like you got this big moment and it could change your life, or you could be rejected and things could continue as usual. So you kind of just do a little bit. Just do your job, instead of saying this is what I have to offer, and I feel like I can really contribute to your brand. I would always kind of put that to the side and say, this isn’t the right time. I don’t want to come off as an opportunist. Little did I realize, that’s what you have to do. You have to network on a whole ‘nother level. Not just do business as usual. Do the interview, go home and then wonder why you still in the same position you were in a year ago. That’s the biggest thing that I got, just to overcome that fear and go for what God really put in your heart.
Ace: Coming soon, about a month from now you have a new single getting ready to drop with a pretty severe message behind hit it. Tell us a little bit about that.
VC: I have a song called “I’m Not Stressed,” and it’s apart of the I’m Not Stressed Initiative. Basically I’m going to sell the song on iTunes for a dollar, and 50 cents off each sale will go towards paying somebody in Flint or Detroit’s water.
Ace: Speaking of making a difference, when it comes to making an impact and using your creative voice to really impact the lives of others, why is that so important to you?
VC: I kind of understand that the reason why I’m getting these opportunities in the first place, is because there’s a purpose that was designed for me. I use to think that I thought it up, but it was actually given to me. I have to be responsible with that purpose. To make sure that I’m using it in the way that it was orchestrated for me to use. A lot of people need help. A lot of people need to know God. A lot of people just need general assistance. You don’t have to be all churchy or spiritual to really just help somebody and uplift them. I really can’t really give you the correct answer, it’s just like a lot of conviction. My heart doesn’t feel right when I move a certain way. I have to keep pushing.
Ace: I know you have a pretty cool partnership going on with the Flint Project, tell us about that?
VC: There’s a lady named Tiffany Bell, and she started a website called The Detroit Water Project. Now its apart of an even bigger initiative called The Human Utility. People can either anonymously help pay someone water bill, and it goes straight to their water account. Also, if you’re struggling or if your water has been shut off by the city, you can tell the website that you need assistance. It doesn’t give out your information and it goes straight to you account. It’s a really good tool to help a lot of people in the short amount of time that they need.
Ace: How can people get in touch with you? Where can they find you?
VC: Yeah it's Violent Content. You can follow me on Instagram @vcbeats. You can follow me on Twitter and Snapchat at vtudda. Facebook at vcbeats. Get with me. The single will be dropping on sound cloud. It will be on iTunes. It’s called, “I’m Not Stressed,” produced and featuring my man Taevin Thomas. It’s a beautiful, uplifting song. We trying to keep it lyrical. We trying to get it back to hip-hop that don’t make you fall asleep. Follow the movement!