HHW: Dreamville’s roster has some talent. How does it feel that you’ll be the first the world will hear?
Bas: Man, it’s amazing. It’s really vindicating for all the work we’ve put in. Being a new artist, there’s a lot of patience involved. You really have to be patient and trust the system, trust the things, trust the people around you. There were a couple situations that came up early last year, like before Cole put out Born Sinner. It wasn’t necessarily a Dreamville situation, but there were labels that wanted to do a bi-situation, you know what I mean? So just like how they [Dreamville] had faith in me all that time, it was only right that I put that faith back in the team and we just rode it out and waited ‘til we could do a Dreamville situation. Once Cole put out Born Sinner, it was a lot more heads turning. He was a certified hit-maker as an artist and a producer, so that helped us out a lot, his name carried a lot of weight.
I didn’t want to go into any situation where I was kinda forced on it, as the guy that came along, but Joie [Manda], and everyone else I was meeting at Interscope, were genuinely excited. Everyone who had heard the music, was genuinely excited to have me and that meant a lot to me. Because I’d rather stay independent than be looked at like the tag along, like just the homie. And Cole tells me all the time that he has friends who’ve been rapping way longer than me, that have been rapping way longer than me, but he just really believed in what I was doing. He wanted to really put it out. I’m grateful and really excited.
HHW: A little known fact is that you moved from Queens after living in Paris and Qutar for your first eight years. How did that foreign experience shape your music?
Bas: My brother, who’s a DJ Moma, he’s my senior of like 10 years. So he lived in Paris ‘til we were 18. We actually moved here because when it was time for him to go to college, my pops really wanted us to come to the state cause he just saw better opportunities in the future as far as schools and employment and the things that could be achieved here. So my brother’s sound is very Eurocentric. He’s put me onto all the weird shit that I listen to. Like the music that I used to get teased for listening to in high school, by my homies. It’s amazing , because now it’s the most influential part of my sound. There’s a certain progressive vibe that I incorporate into the music and that just comes from my brother DJ [name]. Ever since we were young, he would like just call me into his room and be like ‘check out this new CD I got’ ‘or check out this new record I got.’ So yea, he’s always been probably like number one as far as musical influences. So it’s only natural when he asked me to start deejaying. He knew too, because he knew my ear from just knowing me as a brother and always had a lot of faith that I would be a good DJ. When it came time to make music, even on my first mixtape, the intro is a track from this UK band called [name] . I just took an instrumental track off their album and rapped over it. That was all stuff my brother used to put me unto. So I definitely appreciate that, because it’s helped me paint my own sonic landscape.