Closed Sessions has been pacing all levels of the local scene here in Chicago for awhile now. Today, they continue to open a new chapter by announcing a new signing today with Cleveland native Kipp Stone. Alongside the announcement came Stone's first release on the label, "Seen It All" with new teammate Boathouse. The track is a dope entrance into the new signee's world as he explains how he's able to move through different locales and environments while remaining himself through it all. He takes that fully-fledged worldview to the label that has been hitting on all cylinders as of late and wrapping a successful first year with Kweku Collins. To get more on the signing, we caught up with Closed Sessions' head Alex Fruchter and Kipp in a pair of Q+As below.
Why this kid, what makes him special?
Alex Fruchter: I’m a big fan of the kind of hip-hop music that Kipp makes, and the kind of person that he is. Similar to when we met Kweku, this deal didn’t take a lot of thinking. Everything fell into place naturally. I think Kipp is a dope emcee, his team is solid, and he expands CS both in sound and style as well as in location.
How does this fit in with the overall roster?
Alex Fruchter: I love how diverse our roster is and Kipp fits because he sounds nothing like anyone else, yet has that same raw aesthetic that Kweku, Boathouse, and oddCouple have. He provides a different perspective that we can learn from, and he can learn from us. It’s the best kind of relationship.
What are you particularly excited about.
Alex Fruchter: I’m excited to continue building Closed Sessions, to reach new fans, and hit new heights in the music industry. I’m looking forward to watching Kweku, Kipp, Boathouse, and oddCouple grow as artists and people. I’m excited to continue celebrating a hip-hop culture and music that I love.
Explain how the relationship came about?
Kipp: I have been working with my manager Truth for almost four years developing my sound. In the last few months, we started ramping up the sound and because of that, I snagged some solid attention. That's when Closed Sessions came into the picture. We shot down to Chicago, zoned out over some oddCouple and Boathouse tracks. Now the deal is here.
What's your background and what can we expect?
Kipp: To sum it up, I'm from East Cleveland, Ohio. I started rapping and making beats in '08. Met Truth in early 2012 and been working ever since. I think that moving forward, you can expect to hear me painting a picture of what it's like where I'm from. I'm not talking bad news all the time, because we still have fun in Cleveland. We're the underdogs so we can't rely on gimmicks and songs that only pop for the summer....we have to go for the respect, and I only know one way of doing that - bringing the real.
How excited are you to work with producers like oddCouple & Boathouse?
Kipp: I've been wanting to work with a new sound for a while. I've done some dope tracks at home with Mr. Anderson, Touch Money and Blockhead Johnny, but it was time to add more to the sound. BH and OC definitely got that drama I need to make my upcoming EP The Grand Design have an edge. So I'm pretty excited.
What attracted you to Closed Sessions?
Kipp: I really like the fact that they are a small unit with long reach. I like being in simple situations with minimal politics and no bullshit. Mike and Alex been solid since the day I met them. They accepted my current team the same way they accepted me.