After years of building his name in the local, underground Houston, TX market, Stoppa decided to expand his brand into other regions, specifically to Los Angeles, CA, home of the world’s entertainment epicenter. A place where you either make it or you break it; you either pop or you flop, and currently there is no stopping Stoppa.
Endorsed by some of hip-hop’s rising talent, such as Dom Kennedy, King Los, and Curren$y, Stoppa also reaches audiences associated with the likes of Major Lazer, Diplo and GTA; artists that he’s worked with. From touring the nation to making plans for global dominance, Stoppa intends to put the world on notice with his highly anticipated project entitled Weed, Water, and WIFI, out this summer 2017.
Music Connection: What motivated you to make the move from Houston to Los Angeles? And what was the end result of your experience?
Stoppa: I came to L.A. to expand my music; to really see the world. I came here to risk it all. Plus I used to fly back and forth from Houston to L.A. because I was working with an EDM producer-duo named GTA. We had some things going on. But really L.A.’s the place to be. It's the entertainment capital of the world.
MC: How does the scene from Houston differ from the scene in Los Angeles?
Stoppa: It’s night and day. There’s also a cultural difference. In Houston, I learned a lot about the independent grind when marketing my music. L.A. is more of a bigger market. There’s more opportunity out here to really break through.
MC: What’s working for you in hip-hop?
Stoppa: Me being unique. I have a message to tell. I’m giving people my own, one-of-a-kind story.
MC: What’s not working for you?
Stoppa: So far things are going well for me. I can’t really say.
MC: What unique proposition do you bring to the rap game?
Stoppa: I just feel that I got something special to give. Listen to my music and you’ll see.
MC: Who are some of the artists/talent who have contributed to help shape your sound?
Stoppa: Everybody from Pharrell to Stevie Wonder, Daft Punk, Kanye West, to Kendrick Lamar. Man, there’s so many.
MC: Tell us more about your partnership with Danceon?
Stoppa: Yeah, so I linked up with them, played some records for them and they liked it. They saw how my music fits well into their dancing agenda. Dancing is very complex, but I’m glad to be involved with the dance community.
MC: How did you get the name Stoppa?
Stoppa: I got the name Stoppa when I was in High School; it really began during a freestyle battle. I was very quiet back then and not that many people knew that I was a rapper. During lunch time I got called out by a fellow rapper to participate in a freestyle battle; plus this was my first one, so I was extremely nervous. But I knew I had to do it to prove my skills in front of others.
He went first and spit a couple of bars; that got the crowd pretty hyped. I spit a couple bars after that, then the crowd went even crazier. As a matter of fact, I got suspended for three days due to all of the commotion and distraction that we were creating. Then three days later when I came back to school everybody was calling me Shostoppa. It felt good to gain that level of respect, from that day forward, people knew who I was. Over time, I ended up dropping the "Sho" and ran with the "Stoppa."
MC: What made you get into hip-hop?
Stoppa: I’ve always really had a love for hip-hop music, but there was a local, now worldwide Houston rapper at the time named Chamillionaire, who I looked up to. Chamillionaire is a Grammy Award winning artist with a number of albums and mixtape releases in his catalog. Besides investing in his own music and record label, Chamillionaire has different business ventures in auto, a modeling agency and a tour bus company. He's been someone I looked up to, being that we're both from the same place. I eventually started using his flow pattern to help shape the way I wrote my lyrics.
MC: What/who inspires you to write music?
Stoppa: I'm inspired by life. I take situations and turn them into stories. Artists like Pharrell Williams, Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson, Kendrick Lamar, Anderson .Paak; the list goes on...
MC: Where do you see yourself going in the next five years?
Stoppa: In five years I see myself doing world tours and creating music with visuals that will shift the hip-hop culture; ultimately to impact the world. I also see myself giving back to my community. I see myself building a youth center and creating opportunities for the next generation.
MC: Name three to five albums you have in your car right now.
Stoppa: Kendrick Lamar - Damn. Drake - Discography. Pharrell Williams - Girl. Stevie Wonder - Hotter Than July. Stoppa - Weed Water Wifi.
MC: Who are your top five MCs of all time?
Stoppa: Kendrick Lamar, Nas, Jay Z, Kanye West, Cassidy.
MC: How do you prepare when writing lyrics?
Stoppa: I submerge myself in whatever beat I’m working on, then I just start fishing out the words and the feeling. I know it sounds stupid, but it works for me. (laughs)
MC: What influence do pineapples have on your lifestyle and in your music?
Stoppa: My mom had stage 4 cancer a while back, so I decided to go on a journey with her to stay healthy and, hopefully, cancer free. She changed her diet, but she also went through chemotherapy. We ate pineapples. I’m her only child, so we juiced a lot and got fit together. We became vegan and also read some of Dr. Sebi’s material on staying fit because it’s really a lifestyle. Now she’s cancer-free. That’s a huge blessing.
Photo provided by Supreme Republic Entertainment
Contact Brittney Boston, [email protected]