Faice A Writer’s Writer and straight out of The Bronx, New York. Anytime someone in Hip-Hop is from The Bronx you need not even ask where their start in Hip-Hop comes from. The roots are deep and Hip-Hop is in The Bronx’s blood.
Not only is Hip-Hop in Faice’s blood due to his Bronx location as well as Jamaican roots but also as a writer. Faice spent much of his youthful upbringing perfecting his pen. We had extensive conversation with Faice about some of the best emcees to ever do it in reference to their penmanship.
On Faice’s new album “Buried Treasure” it’s a return to the game that is in his blood to tell his story. He speaks on how he put the pen down for awhile. Digging up previously recorded material inspired him to pick on the pen and make some trips to the booth with FIRE.
Checkout our full interview with the writer’s writer Faice
A2HH: Where is Faice from originally?
Faice: The Bronx, New York is where I was raised. I was originally born in Jamaica but I left as a baby and then grew up in The Bronx, New York.
A2HH: So you were back and forth from The Bronx and Jamaica?
Faice: Well, I’m mostly in Jamaica now. I grew up in The Bronx but now I’m mostly in Jamaica. Between Jamaica and Nassau, Bahamas actually. I’m in both places.
A2HH: You shot your music videos in both places as well?
Faice: Yeah, you see it’s mixed. Some New York footage, some Caribbean footage.
A2HH: Are you hands on are you on the production of your music videos?
Faice: I am, but I have different directors that shoot my videos. I shot one recently called “On Top Again” with a director named Jay Will. He’s pretty well known, he shot a lot of big videos out here in Jamaica. I shot the “Slow Mo” video with Syri Films which is in conjunction with Allfaces Entertainment. they have a film company together.
I shot another video with Bcyde films, the owner of Bcyde Films is actually a childhood friend of mine. I try to get different directors to get different looks. I don’t want every video to look the same. Visuals are very important.
A2HH: What’s the official first single off of your album “Buried Treasure”?
Faice: “Slow Mo”, I did a voting process with industry people and the fans. I sent some songs out to them and got their input on what song they think should be the first single. My preference is “Slow Mo”, I had many that agreed. Others wanted a song called “Money, Money”. Another song that was popular is a song called “She’s Married” I haven’t done a video for that one yet. But since I have released the album a lot of people have been contacting me about the “She’s Married” song. I knew I did well with the album because I was getting a bunch of different answers. With every great album everyone has their own favorite song that is different from the next person’s favorite.
A2HH: What’s your favorite song on the album?
Faice: My favorite song on the album is a song called “I Love U”, because that one is very personal ya know. It talks about my lady and talks about my daughter that passed away at age 13 from asthma. I speak of my daughter on the second verse and the third verse is to my mother. I was young, I used to give my Mom hell, so this is me as an adult apologizing for the behavior of the young me and letting her know that I’m trying to make her proud now. This song has the animated video, check that one out because this song is very personal.
A2HH: How would you describe your sound?
Faice: I try to be versatile. I used to write too lyrical for people to understand. All the big words, wordplay, and punchlines but I realized that you have to show the fans that you can write songs and not JUST hot bars. You gotta write songs for the people that don’t get off into the super lyrical stuff. Some rappers rely on these songs that we would refer to as freestyles. Freestyle is not off the head by the way, that’s called off the head. Freestyle is when you’re spittin rhymes that have no subject matter. You’re braggin, you’re talkin shit, you’re all over the place. That’s freestyle. But people want to hear you apply that lyrical ability to songs. People can say, “Wow, he can spit and rap about something that’s important.”
A2HH: Who’s your favorite rapper?
Faice: Kool G Rap. Kool G Rap and Eminem are like my two favorites. Eminem is undeniable. I grew up with a lot of 5 percenters and they refuse to give Em his props. If we never saw a video of Eminem and we only heard lyrics many wouldn’t dispute his greatness. This guy’s wordplay and imagination is incredible. And Black Thought is like number 6 on my list.
A2HH: Where did the album title “Buried Treasure” come from?
Faice: Well, at one point I kinda stopped doing the music thing. I had like a year, a year and a half where I wasn’t really doing music. Someone I met was listening to some of my old music and was like “Why’d you stop?” She inspired me to start writing again and getting back into it to the point where I was working on this album. So it made sense, I was like a buried treasure. I had all this stuff and I wasn’t doing anything with all this talent. It’s like she dug it back up again. That’s why on the album cover you see the treasure chest and the music floating out of it.
A2HH: How did you get your start in Hip-Hop Music?
Faice: I grew up in The Bronx. It’s no way around it when you’re in The Bronx. Everywhere you go it’s Hip-Hop. My English teacher Mrs. Young was my favorite teacher for my favorite subject. Writing was just in me, that was my thing. Writing essays and all that. The writing thing was just natural to me. You put the two things together from writing to Hip-Hop and you have an emcee. I’ve been a writer from a very young age, back in the school days I used to be there writing and writing. I take pride in writing and I’m a perfectionist. I will write a whole song, listen to it, go over it and crumble that up and throw it in the garbage in a minute and start from scratch. You know how many times I’ve done that?
A2HH: Where do you think New York Hip-Hop is currently?
Faice: Everyone seems to be following the trend of the mumble stuff and whatever is catchy. I don’t agree with it. Me personally, I think that Mumble Rap should have its own genre. Let it happen, you don’t have to hate on it. Just don’t label it Hip-Hop. But people have to remember, there were corny rappers back in the day too, it ain’t just now. But, the game was balanced. A lot of the real skilled rappers were getting recognition. Nowadays the good rappers aren’t getting the recognition. The Mumble Rappers are getting all the airplay and all the recognition. That’s where the conflict lies, if it was an even field there wouldn’t be so much hate on it.
A2HH: Who handles a lot of your production?
Faice: Most of my beats are done by Allrounda Productions out of Germany. SDee does some production and does a lot of my mixing. K-Natural is an incredible engineer he does a lot of my mixes and my music is mastered by Syantis Music.
A2HH: What is your recording process like?
Faice: It’s all over. I use the Apollo, I have my Protools on my Macbook Pro. I record basically in an open room and get my great quality. No one believes when I tell them that. There’s a song on my album called “Feel My Pain”, it’s also dedicated to my mother and my daughter who passed. I woke up at 3am and started writing to a beat that I had that was setting there. I wrote and recorded the record right there in a 3 hour span overnight. Started at 3am and finished around 6am. Straight out the bed and the song came out HOT.
A2HH: How did the collaborations and features on the album come together?
Faice: Alicia Renee, she’s part of the team with Allrounda. She’s on the “I Love U” song and the chorus came with the track and I wrote around the chorus. I loved the beat and loved the chorus and I wrote around it. Most of my choruses I write and if I feel it should be sung I sing it and send it to someone that can sing to sing it. In my mind I hear whether it’s a male or female that should be singing the chorus.
A2HH: Where do you think the changing of the definition of a freestyle being written to being off the top came from?
Faice: The internet made that change. Freestyle is no subject matter you’re just rappin. The rap battles helped to change that definition as well.
A2HH: Where did your rap name come from?
Faice: It used to be spelled P.H.A.C.E standing for Poetically Hardcore Artist Currently Excelling. I had a show with a bunch of artist in Queens and Mobb Deep was headlining. The promoter had my name on the flyer and a guy at the venue who was the manager of another artist that had that same name spelled in the way I spelled my name was asking why his artist’s name is on the flyer. I didn’t want to change the name at the time because I had already made a name for myself so I just changed the spelling to FAICE.