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Interview: Champagne Aramis

Champagne Aramis is an Inland Empire artist that flows on beats like water across the Nile. Champagne began his musical journey at nine years old writing music as he lived back and forth between the Rialto and Fontana areas. Aramis grew into a respected individual in the IE for paying respect to those that came before him and maintaining a level head growing up in dangerous areas. The young stylish prodigy released his first EP last year Chase A Bag. It's an seven-track EP that sounds like a blend of Larry June and Tory Lanez. He can be seen performing at local events in the Inland Empire and is planning to release his second EP later in the year under his label Everybody Eats The Family.

Jay: I first met you at an Audio Dope event at Firewater in Ontario. Your stage presence was phenomenal as the crowd was tuned in. Describe how you grew your stage performance from your earlier days performing at shows.

CA: It's been times when growing up, I never even done a talent show. I started performing in 2020 at a weed shop. I learned that I still have to perform at the best level I can even though the crowd might not be into it. You still have to give them a show as they're buying weed in the shop. Somebody is always going to listen in the crowd. I started grasping more on performing my favorite songs to jumping now to where I'm trying to be performing my songs without vocals in the background and getting the show mixes popping with more adlibs.

I'm growing in building my tone with stage presence. I do breathing exercises, meditate and drink tea before the show now. I remember getting cottonmouth on the stage one time looking stupid on stage and never wanted that moment to happen again. I take those types of lessons and figure out how I can better prepare for the next show. I even started watching a couple of artists perform on Youtube with and without the vocals. It helped me improve crowd control. The first time you saw me, it was the first time I added more crowd engagement.

Jay: Let’s talk about the Everybody Eats The Family brand. It’s a brand that focuses on music and clothing. Has the brand ever thought of expanding to more avenues or is the brand focused on just music and merchandise?

CA: It's expanding to different avenues like photography, artwork, and videos. The music and merch go hand in hand as well. We started this in 2021. The publishing followed the music shortly after.

Jay: You just dropped your newest single Fly. It was a two-minute jazzy song where you give praise to your family and slick talk to your competition. Is this single a warm-up for the upcoming EP?

CA: Expect more fire-ass vibes and fly shit. The next project is going to have more jazzy sounds. I grew up on jazz thanks to pops listening to Miles Davis and hearing those jazz instruments regularly. If I hear a bit of saxophone, I have to kill it because those types of instrumentation capture my attention. The family gets praise because they molded me into how I am and even how I represented myself as an artist. The nieces and nephews always watch me on social media and ask when my songs are coming out so I got to be a positive influence on them.

Jay: What are some musical influences?

CA: A lot of the indie artists. I'm a big fan of J. Cole, DJ Quik, Ice Cube, Pac, E-40 was constantly on the radio. I drafted towards J. Cole and the Southern artists because of their deliveries and authenticity.

Jay: You and I are both basketball aficionados. We talked about this tweet I made explaining the importance of vertical and horizontal networking in music but in basketball terms. Sticking to basketball, who would be your all-time starting five and why? My starting five is unpopular but it’ll be: John Stockton, Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Tim Duncan, and Kareem.

CA: A.I. for the culture and his influence. His influence was very heavy on the music world. I still remember the Jadakiss Rebook and everyone wanted to dribble the ball like A.I. for sure. For the two, I'll go with the Bean, Kobe Bryant. He's an influence on strong-minded mentalities. Three, I got to go with Bron for his dominance and consistency. Timmy is missing nothing on the backboard, so he'll be the four. He's dominant defensively and rebounding. It's still unbelievable that he never won a Defensive Player of the Year award. Shaq is the greatest big man ever to me due to his dominance and he played for my team the Pheonix Suns. So he'll be the starting center.

Jay: Give me your favorite music album and why.

CA: Rhythmalism by DJ Quik. Yeah. If not that, I would say Kanye West Late Registration. That shit was fire.

Jay: Why that Quik album?

CA: Everything sonically sounded like "is this from Compton?" The sounds on there feel like it's closely based on the IE sounds. Everyone here listened to that type of music. Suga Free was influenced by his production. Sonically, the production was super next level to me. To hear that project every morning was a part of our lives. I Used To Know Her was tough, and he was talking shit in a fly manner drinking wine, eating Cheetos, and watching NBA games.

Late Registration is a classic to me. Some things I really liked there were The Game features and the commentary from Deray Davis. I look forward to doing skits and things like that on that album. Ye and his production were dope. A lot of shit I listen to, I began writing music around nine and wanted to do something to those songs as well. Those two albums told me to keep writing songs and see where it takes me.

Jay: Who are some indie artists that you would want to shout out?

CA: Noa James, Jayellz, and Cam Gnarly. I have to mention Curren$y. I can't forget Tory Lanez. He has a big influence on me due to his versatility.

Jay: What was the best no that you’ve ever received and why?

CA: Since I graduated from the East LA Trade Center in 2017, I've been putting in applications for Southern California Edison and so far I haven't even got an interview yet. I got a lot of certificates and qualifications in electrical theory and construction along with years of experience. I was pursuing the linework but when the music started getting traction, it made me more comfortable to rap and have something to do with the family for the weekend. I wouldn't have done music stuff regularly if they would've accepted me for a job.

Follow Champagne Aramis on all social media @AramisBaby and stream his last EP Chase A Bag below.

Written by: Jay Guevara. @justinhisprime on all social media.

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