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Mr. Supreme
King of Clubs
I think we were digging at a time, although it seemed like a late start to me, the rest of the world wasn't doing it like they are now and there was no internet or eBay, so we would find stuff that isn't turnin..
Mr. Supreme: King of Clubs         by DJ Verb
From Pornstar Conventions to B-Boy Battles, turning it out regardless...

Sharpshooters were born back in 1993 on the streets of Seattle, Washington when DJ Sureshot and Mr. Supreme met simply through their reputations of having insane record collections. Two producers with a vast knowledge of Funk, Breaks & Beats, Hip-hop and Reggae soon joined forces to create a unique sound all their own, a combination of the Hip-hop and Jazz worlds which fused dusty breaks with live horns, guitar, and bass.

This sound culminated on their debut release Choked Up and in 2003 they returned to the lab for the underrated Twice as Nice LP before going their separate ways. Recently Ground Lift got a chance to catch up with 'Preme and 'Shot and what follows is Part 2 in our Sharpshooters interview series.

Next up is Mr. Supreme who recently released a limited 12inch of Disco edits that he personally spins during his sets. DJ Verb raps with the god keeping your chick in check, copping sealed multiples of Mulatu for $10, and the state of Seattle Hip-Hop.

You and Sureshot both have heavy reps on the digging side. How long have you been in the crate game?

I started buying breaks in the mid 80s, but didn't get serious until the mid 90s.

What got you into it?

I was a B-boy and I would buy records to dance to like "Apache," Jimmy Castor, Baby Huey, etc…

Do you remember your first record?

My very first record I ever bought was Kiss' The Originals three-album set back when I was a very little kid. I believe that was my first allowance as well. I saved up for a whole month to buy that record. However, my very first breaks were Jimmy Castor Bunch and Bob James' "Mardi Gras."

How'd you meet Sureshot?

I heard he was a DJ around town with a good reggae collection and I saw him one day in a shoe store, so I went in, introduced myself, and asked him if he had a record I had been looking for.

It seemed like you two are big Hip-Hop heads. What led you to go in the instrumental, jazz-influenced direction with Choked Up?

I am a Hip-Hop head, true school to the heart, all day everyday. When we hooked up, that pretty much was Hip-Hop at that time period. Everyone was sampling jazz records. From Tribe Called Quest to Gang Starr and so on. Choked Up was mostly instrumental because we weren't impressed with any of the local rappers around town, and the really good ones were hard to work with, they wouldn't show up to the studio etc...

Did you and 'Shot have specific roles or specialties in the group, or did you both produce?

Well, I did all the actual programming on the drum machines and all the scratches and turntable stuff. He would bring me loops though and have ideas as to what we should use or try together.

How would you say the Hip-Hop culture in Seattle differs from other cities?

It seems to me we have an identity crisis. Cats don't want to be themselves and just make good music, they try to be like Down South or whatever is popular. It's really segregated and clique-ish here. In all honesty these kids are a bit behind the rest of the nation and really need to step their game up.

When you guys put out Twice as Nice, it had been a minute since your last album. Did you approach that album differently than your previous releases?

Not really, but as the years passed the music that we listened to had changed or was previously sampled. I started to get bored with a lot of underground Hip-Hop and was opening up to Disco and faster-paced stuff. Let's be brutally honest here, and remember that this statement is coming from a true school 110% B-Boy / real Hip-Hop head, most of the Rap/Hip-Hop music today is boring and pretty much sucks.

What do you admire most about Sureshot?

His crazy, outstanding, eclectic taste in fly things ranging from sneakers, to sunglasses, to cars, to music. He is an individual for sure, and although we are personally 180 degree opposites, we have a lot of the same admiration for the things I just mentioned.

What do you like the least about him?

That when he moved away and the last day he was here, I went to see his last DJ gig in town and to talk to him. He really never told me why we had stopped talking until when we got back from an L.A. DJ gig where we spun together.

You've unearthed some pretty heavy finds over the years. Which one are you most proud of?

Hmm... It's hard to say. I think we were digging at a time, although it seemed like a late start to me, the rest of the world wasn't doing it like they are now and there was no internet or eBay, so we would find stuff that isn't turning up these days. I mean both of us had multiple sealed copies of the Mulatu of Ethiopia record and stuff like that. I think we paid like $10 or $15 bucks each for them. I know I have discovered some breaks as well, like the Poli Chavez.

Musically, I hear you're something of a jack of all trades. Is there a genre that you feel you personally have on lock, more so than other collectors and DJ's?

Not especially, but yes, I guess you could say that I am a jack of all trades. What sucks about this game is people want to pigeonhole you to be that "Mash Up" DJ or "House" DJ etc... What about being labeled a dope true school DJ? It almost hurts you to be well-rounded and across the board. I rock parties and that's my job. So whether it's the Porn Convention in Las Vegas, or a B-Boy competition, or a pool party in Miami, I'm gonna get down and turn it out.

So obviously you're heavy on the DJ tip now. Do you get in the lab much anymore?

I closed my studio down, and I don't even have anything set up at home to produce any longer. I still do stuff though, I work out of friends places like Bean One or 4Colorzacks for now.

What are your favorite pieces of equipment up in the lab?

The classic SP-1200/Akai S-950 set up. My 808 and 909 drum machines, the Q-Tron box and my space echo. The real deal classic shit man, I'm old school!

The real heads know that 'Preme is a motherfuckin' P.I.M.P. Do you have any tips for young players trying to up their game?

Hmm... and how do they know that?! Well in all honesty, just be a real person. Tell a chick if you got another one and don't hide anything. If she knows you're fly like you are, she is gonna fuck with you by your rules. That's just what it is. Chicks need to be checked, they need it in their life. They will actually do foul shit just to see how much they can get away with, and they will go as far as you let them. If you give an inch they will take a mile and you can't let that happen. So the minute she does something foul you gotta put her in her place. I mean don't pimp smack her, just give her a stern talking to and let her know you're serious as a heart attack. This must be done immediately, early on the relationship, to set the example. Don't sweat a chick too much either, let her know you're interested and that's that. She will end up coming around. The more you're not available the more she will want you.

Are the Sharpshooters planning to ever get back together again?

I highly doubt that, but maybe for a DJ gig or two.

What do you have coming up in the future?

I have a brand new 12" out right now called "Love Saves the Day" and it's some personal disco edits I did that I play out in my DJ sets. A very limited release. Then there's some stuff I did for Light in the Attic label, and who knows when or if that will ever be released.

 

For more info about Mr. Supreme including upcoming show dates, check him out on myspace here.

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