Category Archives: dope stuff


It’s truly taken a very long time for me to recharge and refocus my efforts. Although many people have championed behind GMA and myself and shown a great deal of support and push, it has still remained a pretty lonely walk. The best analogy is how it’s said, “If you have a workout partner, your chances of holding fast to your workout goals and regimen are higher.” So basically, I’ve been really exhausting myself trying to stay SELF-Motivated. Leading up to this very moment, I’ve been going through a transformation and true realization of facts and concerns that needed addressing, which truly lends to the authenticity of this NEW video, RUN. Dig It.

from email blast:

Nearly one year ago to date, I was on a magical, vibrant and expansive equestrian farm shooting the video for “Shut the Gate,” the leading single off Good Morning Amy. In May, Director Dominic Luongo and I collaborated on the simple, sleek and special-effects driven “Just Doin’ It” video, which is climbing to 500k views on YouTube. Over the last few weeks we’ve been workin’ hard to bring you what we’ve dubbed a Long Form Video for the album’s third single, “Run.”

The visual treatment for “Run” is unlike any we’ve done thus far. Characters, sub-plots and time sequences develop organically in this video, which features many new talents, faces and locations both in and outside of Buffalo. It explores the deeper, darker side of Billy Drease as he goes through a physical transformation, experiencing love, pain, loss, recovery and renewal.

“Run,” produced by long-time friend and collaborator Trevor “TrevThorne” Drayton, is available oniTunes today. Check out a sneak peak of the video now and look for the extended feature to drop soon.



This guy I just kind of learned about through hearing his name during a casual conversation while at the studio one day. I think that Tone and I were talking about new artists, sustainability, creativity and things of that nature and we were debating on whether we were pressing a vinyl LP for the Good Morning Amy album. During the discussion, he mentioned that DJ Cutler had put him onto a guy named Mayer Hawthorne who has a very unique, throwback, 50’s, 60’s sound with a Motown aesthetic, as he IS from around Detroit. But from what I understand, this dude has a massive vinyl record collection and just as well, his music that he writes and produces has become a collectible hobby for his fans.

Check out this dudes style and the spinning Red Heart in the video is his actual vinyl pressing for this particular single. Brilliant. Not quite sure if this is what the Recording Academy is calling for, but based off of how I feel, he SHOULD be mentioned in this upcoming ceremony. We’ll see.


A throwback, not Grammy-related but Grammy worthy. In normal form, the Roots pushed the envelope of creativity with this video. Today is day 161, and as most of the posts are about Grammy winners or nominees, which the Roots can proudly say they are both, I find myself on days like today just searching for inspiration. So I thought to locate this Roots video, which was just insane and out of the box. Dig the movements, hence the song title. So, what’s YOUR next movement.



In all of my digging and Grammy Chasing, I always have to keep a grip on my roots as a reminder of what once made me so passionate about my craft. After a pretty interesting and uninspiring week, I had to dig up some of my old tapes. Erick Sermon had a single called “Hostile” which was the first time I learned of the phenomenal rap style of Keith Murray. Keith Murray to me is one of those guys who just had it all right from the jump. His name was dope, #1, KEITH MURRAY!!…Wow, no mistaking a dope government name like that. Not many rappers can pull that off. Just think, Rakim’s name is William Michael Griffin. Or how about Big Daddy Kane’s (Antonio Hardy). It’s just not the move for everyone.

#2, his voice was very unique, raspy, yet nasal, grimy with bit of a high pitch. #3, his unorthodox rhyme patterns with elaborate and sometimes made up vocab.
After “Hostile” he went on to give us the classic, “The Most Beautifullest Thing in This World,” inspired by a line from the previous record Hostile. Beyond the fact that dude was DOPE, what solidified his status in my book for being a Fly rapper, was this cat was STANDING on TOP of a Lexus. This was when Lexus was the top of the line for rappers to floss in. So, that move alone put Keith in the “Illest” category. Thanks Keith.


Tomorrow, Saturday, April 17, the video for Shut the Gate featuring Richie English, and the talents of kids of family and friends will debut at the Market Arcade on Screen #2, starting around 10pm. In case you didn’t know, my video for the single off of the Good Morning Amy album, was accepted into the Buffalo Niagara Film Festival. So, this should be an incredible night to say the least.

For those of you that can make it, I’ll see you there. For those of you that can’t, my apologies for the late notice.

Behind the Scenes:

For more information of the other films and videos/night’s agenda, view HERE.
Film Guide HERE also.


Day 41 of the Grammy Chase, I woke up to a light consistent snow and beautiful, crisp air. I shoveled early in the morning before either of the cars can make tracks on the driveway as I am admittedly OCD about keeping the driveway clean and down to the pavement. I’m feeling great for a number of reasons, one for which I can thank my oldest son for spending the day with me yesterday. All that I have to do is look around me to be grateful for my place in life. Some people don’t feel worth much or they feel worth-less, because they compare their lives and material gains and possessions to that of others, but personally, I’ve never been motivated, depressed or intimidated by other peoples lives. I’m a husband with the most incredible wife I could imagine. I’m a dad and father of two intelligent, athletic, artistic and healthy sons. I can’t count the number of talents I was blessed with. I’m healthy and despite having many emergency room visits for fractures, asthma, sutures, palpitations and so on, I’ve always been thankful and grateful that things weren’t worse. My mom, dad and sister are all well, happy, kind, caring, talented etc. I didn’t find it by looking far and wide or comparing myself to the standards of others, but by just “being.” Life’s total package is accessible to you!

On the topic of packages, the picture above highlights the WINNER of the Best Recording Package Grammy by DB&BE (David Byrne and Brian Eno). As I mentioned in previous posts, it’s incredible discovering the various publicly unknown categories and awards that are issued each year. So in wrapping up my CD package for my album, all things must go into consideration, not just the music. Check the video below for how sick this packaging really is.

Stefan Sagmeister, art director

Stefan Sagmeister, art director (David Byrne & Brian Eno)