When eight artists come together to create something beautiful you find that the creation isn’t in the music, it’s in the lyrics & relationship’s. Many musical collaborations have come together to create this so-called magic, but in the long run they find out who throws the best hook. Artist ego, and selfish way’s tend to set in. Let’s just say in this case, they are throwing their lyrics and beats like its nobodies business. The N.R.E crew are about love, they are about passion, and most of all, they make it clear that they are not above GOD. Check out what they had to say during our interview. Press play on the playlist below, listen to their music, and start reading their answers. This is a must read interview!!!
When did you start your band?
Av: I started out singing in a group when I was in my junior year of high school. I started singing as a solo artist in 2005. I’ve been singing all my life.
Loonchie: I have been an MC for a few years now and I love it.
Strata-G: AMAZING. IT’S BEEN ALL LOVE FROM DAY ONE!
Flostorm: The experience has been great. I love the family culture of the group.
Tykoon Savy: It’s been pretty dope we have a good crew.
Big Ced: Great!! There is so much diversity with this family. Yes I said family not group.
Detroit T-Mac: Our crew made it official in March 2015
Which instruments do you play?
Loonchie: I’m an MC
Strata-G: I’m an MC
Flostorm: I’m an MC
Tykoon Savy: I’m an MC
Big Ced: I’m an MC
Detroit T-Mac: I don’t play any instruments but my favorite instrument is the flute. In my eyes it represents peace!
Natural Habitz: Consists of 4 MC’s and one of the MC’s Kunstruct is also the head producer for the NRE CREW (Kunstruct plays his MPC LOL)
What famous musicians inspire you?
Av: Man…. Justin Timberlake, Babyface, Boyz II Men, Timbaland, Pharrell, Jagged Edge, Tank, Tyrese, Marvin Gaye, Anthony Hamilton, Michael Jackson, and anyone who aspires to help expand the musical realm of music in a positive way.
Loonchie: Wayne, Drake, 2 Pac, Dru hill, etc.
Strata-G: MY DAD WAS, AND STILL IS. I’M AN OLDIES ROCK&ROLL BAND. I GREW UP GOING TO SOUND CHECKS AND REHEARSALS.
Flostorm: Eminem is a huge inspiration. I would also have to go with Lupe Fiasco, Rakim, and Jimi Hendrix.
Tykoon Savy: Andre 3000, Mac Miller, Michael Jackson, ASAP Rocky, and Chris Brown.
Big Ced: Luda, Pastor Troy, Twista, K. Lamar, 3000, and Eminen. That’s the honest truth. Most people say Tupac or Big, but the first CD I ever paid for was Pastor Troy Faceoff, and then Ludacris. Luda made it fun to make music for me.
Detroit T-Mac: I would have to say J. Cole, Drake, and Mali Music. If I had to choose it would be a tie between Cole and Mali.
What are some of your best musical memories?
Av: I’ll never forget what made me get really serious in pursuing singing. I was in sixth grade. Our school has an annual talent show that they throw at the end of the school year. It’s always big. I was a shy little something back then. I had friends that wanted to do it, and they asked me to join them. It took a few days, but I agreed. I don’t know why they asked me. I didn’t even think I could sing well. They decided to sing, “If I Ever Fall In Love…” by Shai. I got one small part. It was the breakdown at the end. It had the high note. OMG. Why would they give me this? We practiced. I practiced. Moment of truth comes, and everything goes well. The high note approached and I NAILED it. The whole school ERUPTED. It was nuts. I loved it. That was my fifteen minutes of middle school fame.
Loonchie: I remember when I first performed in Texas on 6th St., during SXSW at Aces lounge. It was packed! I felt famous, and I had my shirt off just enjoying the love!
Strata-G: MY BEST MEMORY SO FAR HAS BEEN PLAYING RYTHM&BREWS IN CHATTANOOGA. IT’S A PREMIER SPOT IN THE CITY, AND IT WAS A HUGE HONOR PERFORMING THERE.
Flostorm: My favorite memory would have to be in front of a Bloomington crowd. There was a pause in my song and the crowd reacted. I kept going and it got the crowd extremely hyped. They were a great crowd all night. Another that comes to mind is when I was rapping over the dead presidents instrumental and when my piece was finished the DJ was nowhere to be found so the instrumental kept playing. Well, to fill in the time, I free-styled for 2 additional minutes. The love I received for that was awesome.
Tykoon Savy: The first time I free-styled with the older kids. I came to find out that I was better than them. Ultimately, I was in the 1st grade when I first discovered my love for music.
Big Ced: I Never feared a crowd. I guess I would say free styling with Strukt, and throwing jokes with Dutchman would be my best.
Detroit T-Mac: When my cousin Keith and I get around each other it’s like survival of the fittest. We just can’t stop free-styling lol. We find ourselves doing it over instrumentals, acapella, even over songs that’s playing on the radio….it’s crazy.
What public events do you have coming up?
Av: I got my single called, “Simple Girl,” coming up. Preparing for the anticipated release of my first solo EP., “It begins…The Prequel.” I’m preparing for the video shoot of, “Simple Girl.” I’m gearing up for my journey to begin.
Loonchie: I’m releasing my first EP later This Year called, “Tinted Eyez.”
Strata-G: I’M CURRENTLY WORKING ON A MIX-TAPE THAT WILL LEAD INTO A FULL LENGTH ALBUM. I’M PLANNING A SERIES OF WINTER SHOWS TO PROMOTE IT AND TO ALSO HELP EXPOSE SOME NEW ARTISTS ON 2DK ENT./NRE.
Flostorm: I’m currently stagnant on upcoming releases although I have been writing a lot.
Tykoon Savy: I’m working on a mix-tape that will drop this summer. And right now I perform at small places around Chattanooga.
Big Ced: Currently working on the 80s baby mix-tape.
Detroit T-Mac: I’m still getting everything situated as we speak so I can put out my MIX-TAPE really soon! Other than that I’ll keep you guys posted and in the meantime you can go check me out on YouTube. I recently put out tracks called “A boy to a man”(Reggie’s Interlude) & “Cynical Remix” With my brother Mike Jet.
What would you say to artist’s just starting out?
Av: Just have confidence in yourself and in what you can do. If you want it, go get it. Don’t let fear keep you from what you want! “Fear is a major motivator for stupidity!” Don’t be stupid. Have fun! Go get it! And definitely keep positive people around you who care about you, and genuinely have your best interests at heart. NEVER GIVE UP!
Loonchie: I would tell them everybody gets nervous and if you believe, then they’ll believe in you.
Strata-G: NERVOUS IS GOOD. IT MEANS YOU CARE!
Flostorm: To upcoming artist I would say just do your thing. Show the passion you have when you are alone in your room and vibing. Understand not everyone will be a fan.
Tykoon Savy: If you love the craft then just be you. Some will like it and some won’t, but as long as you work your craft and practice you will get better.
Big Ced: Fear nothing but God, and if they don’t like you then you got something to work on.
How do you balance your music with your family and friends?
Av: It’s hard sometimes, but what I try to do is incorporate my friends and family into my music career. My team IS my family and friends. So, when you combine the two, you always have the best of ALL worlds with you!
Loonchie: It’s a lil rough right now but nothing good come easy right? Lol – I’ll manage.
Strata-G: IT’S VERY HARD SOMETIMES. I WORK FULL TIME, AND COACH SELECT SOFTBALL, SO I’M IN CONSTANT MOTION.
Flostorm: My family is supportive so family time can be music time. I’ve found a way to incorporate it in the same frame.
Tykoon Savy: All of my friends do music and my family supports me to the fullest.
Big Ced: Real hip hop is about real life; your life, your thoughts, and outlooks on life. I was taught bad association spoils useful habits.
Detroit T-Mac: Don’t be focused on being better than the next person. Focus on being better than who you were yesterday.
Should we be expecting anything new to be released?
Av: Yes, I’m getting ready to release my first single, “Simple Girl”. Off of my debut EP… The Prequel: Chapter 1.
Loonchie: Yes, just wait on it. Lol – Slated to release later this year from me and N.R.E.
Strata-G: I’VE BEEN WORKING ON A COUPLE DIFFERENT THINGS WITH KUNSTRUCT. THE BEATS ARE INCREDIBLE. EVERY NEW THING I DO IS NEW AND DIFFERENT. YOU’LL HAVE TO WAIT AND SEE FOR YOURSELF.
Flostorm: I’ve been working on a mix-tape called, “floetikally khallenged.” I just have to get it in gear, and get inspired again.
Tykoon Savy: Yes my mix-tape The Rehearsal will drop right around, “SOON!”
Big Ced: End of summer.
Detroit T-Mac: You can expect an epic from me after the summer called, “Wounded City.” It’s going to be heat for the winter time most definitely.
Where can we follow your career at?
Flostorm: My career can be followed on reverbnation. That’s where the bulk of my music is. http://www.reverbnation.com/flostorm I’m also on numerous musical outlets like iTunes and google play and Amazon.
Tykoon Savy: Instagram http://instagram.com/therealtykoon/
Big Ced: NRE they will keep u up to date.
Detroit T-Mac: You can add me Facebook http://www.facebook.com/reggie.t.brown.3?fref=ts, on Twitter@EASTSIDE_T-MAC1 and soundly @Detroit T-mac.
Who’s your biggest support?
Av: Of course. My family and friends are my biggest supporters. My (hometown) comes in second.
Loonchie: I would say me and my G.F. She paid for my 1st video. It was a birthday present pretty cool huh?
Strata-G: MY FAMILY KEEPS ME GOING. I HAVE A WIFE AND TWO DAUGHTERS THAT I MAKE EVERY SINGLE MOVE FOR!
Flostorm: My biggest support is my wife. She has been my rock through all times good and bad. Without her I wouldn’t be able to do this.
Tykoon Savy: My family. I would say they’ve always had my back as well as my close friends.
Big Ced: Friends, family, and people who hate, cause I’m better than them lol. I can’t forget to mention my friend since 4th grade, “Producer Mike Reno.”
Detroit T-Mac: My biggest supporters would have to be my sister’s. They still listen to the first CD I ever made.
What’s your favorite song to preform and why?
Av: I love to perform, “Let’s Go” by Natural Habitz featuring me (AV). It’s what started it all and so high energy.
Loonchie: My song titled, “SOMoE,” because it has a message that can still rock the clubs. My homie Kunstruct tell me all the time, “man this is my FAM.”
Strata-G: MY FAVORITE SONG TO PERFORM IS, “GET IT IN”. I USE IT EARLY IN OUR SET TO BUILD MOMENTUM. AND WITH THE RIGHT HYPE MAN, THE HOOK IS SUPER STRONG LIVE.
Flostorm: My favorite song to perform would have to be, “When the Mic Is On.”
Tykoon Savy: My favorite song to perform is anything because I love to dance as well. I like to have fun on the stage.
Big Ced: All of them.
Detroit T-Mac: My favorite song to perform is anything new I record… especially when it’s a new crowd that’s new to my music.
How does it feel to be doing a crew mix-tape, and an upcoming official crew album?
Av: It feels amazing. I love EVERY minute of it. We have an amazing connection and create magic EVERY time we record and perform. So, it’s going to be magical.
Loonchie: It feels great!
Strata-G: Incredible! Can’t wait to get it completed and out!
Tykoon Savy: Incredible!!!
Big Ced: It feels incredible!
Detroit T-mac: It feels great and hopefully it will turn heads and attract more fans.
Are the fans excited to hear it?
Av: Of course. If not, then they’ll regret it when they hear it! N.R.E forever!
Loonchie: Yee! It Bangz in the club man for real you should check it out in sound cloud, “Loonchie Bey” (Somoe prod by Chase Scruggs).
Strata-G: I HONESTLY DONT KNOW. I HOPE AT LEAST A FEW ARE!
Flostorm: Fans love this track, “Especially since it’s been on ESPN radio.” It’s just really chill and mellow and you can just rock to it.
Tykoon Savy: I hope so. It’s going to be something new for me, so I know they will like it.
Big Ced: They mad at the wait but I love all my peeps who support me. The wait will soon be over.
Detroit T-Mac: The fans are really excited because they know we put our heart, soul, blood, sweat, and tears into every moment we get in the studio.
About Johnny Naylor:
Johnny Naylor is the founder and owner of 1st Shot Music and a feature writer for Jammerzine. His work can also be found on 1st Shot Music and Naylor’s Notes. You can also get his latest updates on his facebook page.