We interviewed Von Pea and Don Will of Tanya Morgan.
After the recent streamed release of their impeccable third studio album ‘Rubber Souls’, Sampleface catches up with Don Will and Von Pea, both halves of one of hip hop’s premier duos Tanya Morgan, to get the story on their past, present and future, in their own words. Over to you, boys…
1. Tanya Morgan has achieved success as a duo. Do you ever see yourselves reuniting with Ilyas?
Von Pea: Yeah…we have two recent songs that aren’t out yet. One is my song featuring Don and Il, and the other is a TM song with him on it. I produced one of them and Danny! produced the other; those will drop next year. Other than that we’ll still work on music randomly, but probably not an album as a trio.
Don Will: We’ve done a few songs with him here and there since the split.
2. Your first album was primarily worked on via AOL Instant Messenger. Do you think it’s fair to say that you were inspired in part by The Foreign Exchange?
VP: Phonte and Nic gave me my first shot with ‘Von Sees’ so I owe them forever, but honestly the method was more neccesity than being inspired by them. Don and I were working over the internet around 2002…actually Phonte and I were too. He emailed me a chorus back in 2002, the same night I was putting the song out (haha). That stuff probably predates FE.
DW: Honestly, no. Not for me at least. We were using the most efficient tool that would let us communicate and send files to one another and talk in real time while we created music. Around that same time we were working with Nicolay and Little Brother on things also away from Tanya Morgan so it was honestly just the means for creation in that day and age.
3. Von Pea, How much influence do you think Brickbeats had on you as a producer?
VP: Percussion. Layers. I’m usually the album producer so Brick would send me the tracked out stems of his beats to pre-mix. Theres always these cool layers way in the back that add a lot of character to the beats but you may not notice them in the son.
4. Don Will, what has been your favourite collaboration between you and Von Pea exclusively?
DW: In terms of projects, I really like the Sandwich Shop, but if we are talking about individual songs, I don’t really have a favourite.
5. You’ve been dubbed “the rappers’ rap group” by certain publications. Is that a title you accept?
VP: To me that means your peers respect you so I’m good with that!
DW: It’s cool to be considered musicians who make music that other musicians respect, but that’s, in a way, an underhanded compliment. In a way, it’s saying that we can’t communicate our ideas in a way that a person who isn’t musically inclined can enjoy them. We definitely aren’t looking to make music that pleases only our peers, because our music speaks of experiences anyone can relate to and enjoy.
6. Where did the name for this album originate?
VP: 6th Sense had the idea to name it after The Beatles’ album because he says that it was the album in which they took a turn creatively and he wanted to do that with us.
DW: It’s also, in a way, talking about the expansive nature of the sound of the record. It’s about showing growth and reaching for new things.
7. What in your opinion separates Rubber Souls from Brooklynati?
VP: I think the main difference is the music has a bigger sound. We usually go for more of a no frills beats-and-rhymes style. We’ve done music with players before like “get violated” on my solo album and Don’s “love junkie” remix but this time we went that direction for most of the album. It all still has that warm sampled feeling to it.
DW: Four years, 6th Sense and one less member. its a completely different album. The song structure, the musical direction, the tone of our voices, hell our voices have probably changed at this point. Both projects are high quality but this project is unto itself.