On Monday, the hip-hop duo Parker and the Numberman were nominated for their first San Diego Music Award.
Their Early ... EP garnered a nomination in the category of Best Hip-Hop Album, but the SDMA nomination doesn't quite capture the entire story. The two rappers, who are friends -- Parker Edison and 10-19 the Numberman -- are bubbling with ideas and concepts that sometimes breach the confines of music, spilling over into whatever media they see fit. I caught up with the two and talked about their latest video projects, the Lorna Doone DVD --available at Access Hip-Hop -- and Shortbread: The Movie (above).
Music. Community. Culture.
Quan Vu: What is the Lorna Doone DVD?
Parker Edison: Lorna Doone is like a video presentation of the last year. It's seven video clips, and as you watch them, it really does cover, like, the last 14 months. We got the original Parker and the Numberman shirts, which Access -- big shout to Third Bird Studios and A. Rogan. They did the first set of shirts. Then it really became this grass-roots thing. We really started taking control. We're gonna kinda direct traffic and make some things pop off. And that's what Lorna Doone is: You get to see it as it happens. It's kinda like this weird documentary thing, but it's based off pushing the Shortbread EP. I say --
10-19 the Numberman: Hah, that's not really what it is! We were playing with some ideas -- I don't know how we got started. And from Shortbread, he took it to Lorna Doone, and that was just the flyest s---. It was based off the shortbread and the cookies, and then the Lorna Doone snacks. And it was just ... natural selection. Evolution.
QV: So Shortbread: The Movie is on there?
Parker: No, Shortbread isn't on there. But here's the deal: What you have is like three -- it's really four -- different things happening. One is these video sets. Akira Chan was one of the first video cats that ever f---ed with us. So he did like, "Sadie Hawkins," and stuff. And then the Shortbread EP was an endeavor that 10-19 the Numberman was doing. And then we actually shot a clip that uses ... I don't know if Shortbread uses any parts of it.
10-19: It does, it does. Really, it's ... there are certain ideas, certain themes that we had been playing with for awhile. And now I think we have the ideas fully figured. We know what we want to do with these ideas. But when you're doing it on this level, the funding on the back end is hard to come by. So these things are kinda coming out in the wrong order. In a lot of ways, I feel like s--- would make perfect sense if it came out in the right order. So Lorna Doone was supposed to be out ... I wouldn't say a while ago, but it was supposed to be a lot sooner than it is, and that's just because we didn't have the funding to get it out. Then it was supposed to be Shortbread and all these things.
QV: So Lorna Doone is first and then --
10-19: Lorna Doone is first. Shortbread came after that. If you see Lorna Doone, there's a clip on there that makes perfect sense with Shortbread. It's just so out of order that I can understand why people are like, "What?!"
PE: Just for the titles, we did Shortbread the EP, which was a 6:34 of just raw music by 10-19 the Numberman. Then we get Lorna Doone, which is the seven-video clip documentary of the last year or so. And then you have The Shortbread Movie itself, which is like some 'hood, avant-garde, semi-porn, now hella gully --
10-19: He said gully!
PE: [Quan] said gully! And she loved it! Comisha T. Edwards, the chick, is so very conservative and square --
10-19: And not gully. She's the furthest thing from gully!
PE: She read the review last night. I was at a party, and I sent it and told her to look, and she just flipped! She just dug it. She's a down South chick. She's Mississippi, Gulf Coast. So maybe she just is gully.
QV: Dude, she's like sitting there drying her hair and watching porn at the same time? What other word is there for her?
10-19: It's interesting because there are certain things we'd been playing with for awhile, and if we had presented it the way we had wanted to present it, it would've made much more sense. Seeing things out of sequence, out of context -- I see why it's like, "Huh?" Kinda scratch your head. But it's interesting to hear people's reactions or what they take from it. Sometimes, I'm like, "Wow, I don't know if we were going for that." But if that's what people take out of it, hey, it's gully!
PE: You know there are no animal sounds in the Shortbread EP. There are no animal sounds.
10-19: But I was like, "OK! Maybe there are!"
QV: Hah! No, I wasn't trying to say there are animal sounds in there. I was trying to say, the guitar distortion -- that's guitar distortion, right?
10-19: Sure, it''s guitar distortion! It's not! I mean, I don't wanna -- this dude, I was chatting with this dude on Facebook, and I was asking these questions. He said it made him feel comfortable and uncomfortable at the same time. I said, "What's uncomfortable about it?" He's like, "Ah well, it's like I know what's going on, but at the same time, I have no clue. But art is best when it's ambiguous." So I was like, "What?!" Hey! And as corny and cliche as this sounds, now I'm like, "It's whatever people take from it. And I know that s--- is trite, but I'm like: There's animal sounds in it! It's guitar distortion, ya know! Go with it!
QV: See, the guitar distortion, that's just me being an idiot and not knowing what that sound is. But I wasn't saying they are animal sounds, but the rhythm of how the sounds are coming in and out is like you're walking through a jungle.
10-19: You're spot on. That's it, son!
QV: So that music on the Shortbread Movie, was that from the EP as well?
10-19: Yeah, some of it is from there.
PE: The Shortbread EP is the soundtrack to the movie Shortbread. And then there's one clip in Lorna Doone that kinda ...
10-19: It would help tie it together better. If we had presented it the way we wanted to, if Lorna Doone had come out on time, it would've made more sense.
QV: When did you put out the Shortbread EP?
10-19: Just a few months ago.
PE: You can still get it on Bandcamp.com. Get it, get it, get it.
Quan Vu Quan Vu is the founder and editor of local music blog SD Raps.com. He has also written about local and national hip-hop acts for San Diego CityBeat and the San Diego Reader. You can nerd out on rap trivia by following him on Twitter or e-mailing him directly.