Interview: BIG DREEZ | Going Hard
1212MAG: For the people that don’t know, tell them who you are…
Big Dreez: Yeah, my name is Idreez “aka” Dreez. I got the aka Dreez because alot of people didn’t want to say Idreez, so they usually call me Dreez for short, you know. I got that from my big cousin “Man.” He’ll be like; Idreez man, because I’m “god-body.” Yeah, my name is Idreez. He’ll be like; “I can’t say that shit.” and he’ll just be like; “Dreez, come here.” Hey Dreez, and I be like, I guess that’s my name now, so everybody else just started calling me Dreez. But it fit though, you know, so i just say, alright. But since I’m 6’3, damn near 350lbs, I put big in front of it. They call me “Big Dreez,” so I’m Big Dreez.
1212MAG: where you from?
I’m from Brooklyn, New York. Born and raised in the downtown section of Brooklyn. Downtown Brooklyn, in the housing projects by the name of Gowanus. Gowanus Projects, born and raised there. Alot of my mom side of family is out Brownsville. I use to play the fence, man, back and forth, you know, but my home is definitely Gowanus Projects.
1212MAG: ok, can we get a brief synopsis of your career so far?
Big Dreez: Right now, I just put out one big single that took off because of the features that I had, The feature that I had on the single. I had Cassidy on one of my single call “Go Hard,” Cassidy featured Right now that’s just going through the roof man, with the views. I appreciate the people, hitting me on YouTube, you know, giving me good comments and stuff man, on my career. Got over 60k views right now and we only have the video up for two weeks man, so that’s nothing but love, you know. My first introduction to the world was the feature that I did with one of my songs, but I had Little Fame from my home team, M.O.P., jump on the feature and that took me to the roof, you know. Alot of people wanted to know who I was and you know, it was a great introduction, you know what I mean. So that was one of a big feature that, like got my career going to the top. So that was pretty decent.
1212MAG: what made you want to get into doing music?
Big Dreez: Coming back, watching some of the old school cats, you know, get out there and grab the mic and express themselves over some great beats man, I think, that’s what makes me want to get into music, cause I want to do what the older cats were doing man, grab the mic and, watch the crowd reaction, you know, with the oohs and aahs man. I always wanted to be the center of attention, that’s just me man, you know. That’s me, so I wanted to grab the mic and do the same thing and once I really got into the rhythm and I started writing my little raps and, you know, the kids at my age at the time, will give me the same reaction like the adults was doing at the block parties and stuff. I was, I felt like the man. Now I’m the center of attention, you know what I’m saying. That was dope to me man So I just kept writing man, and just, you know, just kept doing what I wanted to do, saying what I wanted to say, and I got the crowd reaction. I always love to be the center of attention, as you can see.
1212MAG: who was some of your biggest influences in music?
Big Dreez: Some of my biggest influences in music, I’m gonna say, I’m gonna use my home team. I’m gonna say them first, M.O.P., Little Fame and Billy Danz. I say them because they were a big influence, because you know, back in the days listening to music, listening on the radio, you know, we can’t, you know, it’s like a—how you say it? It’s a, it’s a mirage. You know what I’m saying? They’re there, but they’re not there. You can’t touch then, but you know. It’s funny, you know what I’m saying? What I mean by that is that they can’t , they can’t be touched, you know what I’m saying? When I say influence, they cannot be touched, I got influenced because this was my own home team actually doing what the stars are doing and everybody else, not only just my family, our immediate family, but strangers out there is actually playing their music and praising them, you know, like celebrity. They became a celebrity status. So now, just like, wait a minute, they did it. You know what I mean? They are celebrities now. So they were a big influence to me. You know what I’m saying? And my second person, I got to say this man, is Jay Z man, because Jay Z, you know, he never stop. His love and his passion, and Jay Z talk to the world, and give them his life. And he pretty much does what—he pretty much did what I did. You know what I’m saying? Like he did the out of town hustling thing, I did the out of town hustling thing, you know, and he actually put that on wax man. He gave the world a vision of what’s going on, and if you listen to some of my music, I talk the same shit he talk. You know what I mean? So, Jay Z was definitely a big influence man. And not only did he get the—you know, the hood backup behind him, he actually got the big corporate world to back him. You know what I’m saying? They get behind him and his music. You know what I’m mean? So, I was kinda turned on, on how he took the ghetto to Wall Street, basically. To sum it all up, he just basically took the hood to Wall Street, man. And he’s doing it, so he’s definitely an influence, man.
1212MAG: if I ask you to describe your music to my readers, what would you tell us?
Big Dreez: You have to understand where I’m coming from and you got to be a boss to understand what I’m talking about. Like I said; my life is a very an abstract picture that I paint for my listeners, you know. To you it might sound, it might seem a little weird, but when you actually listen, you get to understand what I’m saying and understand where I’m coming from, what I’m talking about, you know. This is boss talk. I don’t talk nothing but things I’ve done in life, big boss shit. Driving Mercedes-Benz, in the back of Maybachs, whipping Lamborghinis. If you see me out in Miami, sometimes you’re going to see Big Dreez in the Hurricane or you’re gonna to see Big Dreez in the Wraith, with the stars in the hood, you know. That’s how I play, and that’s what I talk about.
1212MAG: what’s the one thing you want fans to get from your music?
Big Dreez: … is to understand who I am. To know that my life could have been taken away from me. Well, I’m not going to say my life, my freedom. So—even though I’m speaking and talking to you about what my life is about, make no mistakes, when being in this industry and I left that alone, I’m happy. I’m at ease. I’m comfortable. I don’t have to look over my shoulders no more, you know. I don’t have to worry about when the police get behind me, am I dirty. Not anymore, man. So at the end of my music, I talk it. I’ll let you all know what the life was like, you know. But in the end, you can hear the tiredness in my voice, like yo, I’m tired of this, man, you know. Maybe, one day this thing will be over. I did what I had to do, cause I had to do it. You understand? I had to do it. Alot of people didn’t, you know, alot of people who have a silver spoon, I didn’t have silver spoon when I grew up in my mouth, man. You know? I ended up with three felonies. And in this society, when you have that much, those many strikes, you know, on your record, they look at you as a habitual, that you’ll never change. So to live as a law abiding citizen was never an option. It’s not an option for me. I had to get out here and do what I had to do to survive, you know. The music save me, man. The music save me.
1212MAG What outlets currently offer your music for the fans to enjoy?
Big Dreez: Currently, you can catch my newest single, “Go Hard” featuring Cassidy and Don Rella. You can download that on Itunes and you can also see the video on YouTube under, subscribe under my YouTube channel, Big Dreez. Actually, excuse me, you could catch the song also on Tunecore, Spotify. Them Pretty much some of the engines that I’m using right now to distribute my music.
1212MAG I have to ask, how did “Go Hard” featuring Cassidy and Don Rella come about? The track is fire by the way.
Big Dreez: Appreciate that. The feature actually happens just on the spur of the moment. My family who is “Barber shop Pop,” I call him Pop, but everyone in the world knows him as “Barber shop Pop”, Thanks to B.I.G., the “Notorious One.” May he rest in peace. That’s another one of my brothers. Barber Shop Pop had good ties with Cassidy he was like “yo, I think you should do a feature with ‘Cas’ man. You know he’s lyrical, you know. He’s hip-hop, and pretty much you’re the same. You’re a lyrical acrobat like himself. So I think you two would sound good on a song, you know.” So you know, I took him up on his offer. Reached out to “Cas.” You know, “Cas” was very diplomatic about the whole thing and everything. You know, he went with it, you know. He called me and told me to send him the beat. I sent him the beat. I set the studio time and date, and he made it, and he was there, and he came, and delivered the pain, man. That’s Cassidy, man. So I say hey, you know
know. He called me and told me to send him the beat. I sent him the beat. I set the studio time and date, and he made it, and he was there, and he came, and delivered the pain, man. That’s Cassidy, man. So I say hey, you know
1212mag: what is the favorite song from your protect and why?
Big Dreez: I’m currently working on a project now. My project that’s coming up. It’s called “Before the Deal.” My most favorite song on that project is called “Dope Baby.” its my most favorite song of the project is because it has that boss feel. It’s like when I’m talking, talking my lyrics, I picture myself in a white linen Louis Vuitton suite, sitting in the back of my Maybach, with the curtains drawn. smoking on my cigar and just giving the world, just giving the world that Rick Ross fell, man. Yo, shout out to Rick Ross, man. Ricky Ross, man. Like his music, man. Always love what he stood for. Now, the other stuff, of course I don’t stand for that, but, as an artist man, haven’t met him, but as an artist , I like his music. And it just, it just has that feel. And when I listen to Ross, man, I listen to most of his albums, man. And he always have that one joint that just has that big boss feel, man. You know what I’m saying, when he came out in his suit and tie, always blazer, shoes. You know what I’m saying? Letting the world know I’m the boss, I’m here. So definitely, “Dope Baby” got that feel, man. that’s why that’s one of my favorites, man.
1212mag: what is your main goal or you haven’t reached it yet?
Big Dreez: To be honest with you, I haven’t made it yet. My definition of making it is when I have, when my label, illegalNoise Entertainment, becomes a major, and I open up an outlet for talented artists to actually have a platform to distribute their music, then that’s when I’m gonna say I made it. When illegalNoise is a worldwide—Excuse me, when it’s a household name and struggling artists, will no longer struggle. They will have a platform for their music to be distributed. That’s when I’m gonna say that I made it. When my record label becomes a major label, that’s when I made it. Because right now I’m independent, you know. But when I become major, that’s when I can say I made it.
1212mag: other than writing music, are there any other talents we should know about?
Big Dreez: Besides writing music, Alot of people might not know, but —you know, I worked in the construction field for a little, small brief time. I have carpentry skills. I’m not going to sit here and say I can build a home, but, you know, I know the steps, I know the foundation in the mechanics of building homes, and restructuring homes, and you know, work around alot of — What I can I say? Work around alot of heavy duty equipment tools, you know. Pretty much, you know, renovating homes,that’s what I do on the side. Alot of people don’t know that, but, you know, I got skills in that.
1212mag: If you could bring back anyone to do a song with, who would it be?
Big Dreez: Man, I mean, that’s not even a question, man. “Notorious” B.I.G. That’s not even a thought. I mean, if I could bring my homie back, man. That would be definitely who I would want to do a feature with. I always wanted to do a feature with B.I.G. Ever since we were younger kids, man, you know, he was always out there MCing around, and he was the best around the way, man. When I say around the way, cause like I say, I told you I was from the Gowanus Projects, but mom had, you know, left my “Grams” house and she move into, Clinton Hills, Bed-Stuy area, and that’s where, you know, I met the Junior Mafia, and Biggie and everybody at a young age. Like I said, he was the nicest around that area, I was just starting to write my rhymes, man, and I didn’t want to get my mic crushed, you know. That’s one of the things that we, you know, back then, you know, didn’t want to happen, man. Cause, got your mic crush, man, that’s like somebody just come walking up to you, punching you in the face. You know what I’m saying? So I didn’t want to get my mic crushed, man, and Biggie was definitely a beast with it. But you know, he would definitely be a person I would love to bring back and do a feature with.
1212mag: what’s on your playlist right now?
Big Dreez: That’s funny you all should as that man. I love hip-hop, you know, but I’m a R&B dude. I love R&B, man. Right now, R&B. What’s in my playlist right now, that I’m bumping right now, I’m bumping Mary J. Blige right now. Mary stays in rotation in my playlist. I got a 16 changes, so, you know, I bump Mary. Far as my R&B collection, I definitely bump David Hollister, you know. I love David Hollister music, man. I love the actual, you know, just the vocals, man. He can slay, he can blow, you know. I listen to alot of Don L. Jones, you know. I got that in the playlist. Who else do I get in my playlist that you all should know about? I got Don L. Jones, Mary J., Dave Hollister. There’s a couple a more, man, but I’m just letting the world just leave with them three right there, man, you know.
1212mag: before we go, are there any shout outs that you want to send?
Big Dreez: yeah man, there’s a couple of shout outs man, that I want to give, man. I want to shout out to my man “Half” the Hustler. Shout out the “Barber shop Pop”, my home team M.O.P. I want to shout out “The Lox”. Shout out “Dice Pain”. Shout out Daizle, “Daizle the Machine”. Definitely shout out Jay Z the big homie. You know, what’s up. Shout out “Jay Runner”. That’s one of my closest peoples. shout out “Half”. Not “Half” the Hustler, but the Half from the Rangers, you know. These are my close people that I deal with, you know. Shout out to my man ILLFLO, he’s my cameraman. that’s my guy right there. He’s my all around guy, man. He does it all, you know. That’s like my little brother, man, you know. Shout out to my manager “Movie”. That’s pretty much what I got for you. If I don’t shout, you all know I’m still here man. You know, I still got love for everybody, man. Shout out to my immediate family, like my moms, my grandmoms, because those are my biggest fans, man. My moms just come around, you know. She’ll just pull up to the house and she’ll be playing one of my songs in her car, you know. Blasting it, so shout out to you moms, you know. My biggest fan,you know. Then my grandmoms, man, seventy nine years old, man, listening to my music, man. That’s dope, you know…
Interview powered by ILLFLIX | Transcription by Rose-Ann Green | Photography by illflix.com