So Solid Crew

In an exclusive interview with Manchester music site Designer Magazine, So Solid Crew's MC Megaman speaks of the recent events at the London Astoria. On Wednesday 31st October at a birthday party for MC Romeo it has been reported that 2 men were shot inside the venue. Previous to the Astoria event Neutrino was involved in a shooting incident and Scat D has recently been fined with breaking a 16 year old girls jaw.

We caught up with Mega to find out what really happened that night and to get the low-down on the controversial Garage act spanning over 20 members (including Oxide and Neutrino). Over the past six months the guys have scored a number 1 hit with "21 Seconds" amid a blaze of publicity

Q: You kick off the tour next month. Would you say So Solid are trying to break out the shackles of just being a UK Garage act?
A: We just want people to understand our lifestyle and that whatever were doing in our music is directly us. Were looking to promote that all over the UK and before we step anywhere else in this world we want the UK to appreciate us for what we do. This tour is like a test run - we want to see is the UK is really ready for So Solid!!!

So Solid has been done from the ghetto and it hasn't been manufactured - it will be controlled by us and dealt with by us until the end is the end!!! Everyone from mums and dads to little kids who are too young to get into raves - we want to take it to everyone because there hasn't been music like this come out of the UK for ages so we want it to make an impact.

Q: The debut album "They Don't Know" hits the shops on November 19th. Its been a closely guarded release so what can the public expect from it?
A: You're going to hear every man express their views. The things that we've been trying to express and present to the public have been locked away for time and until we actually got signed to a record label which gave us the freedom to exploit what we could say on tracks. We can burn all are energy and burn all our anger out in our lyrics.

This is all I wanted to and express my feelings to everyone and make people understand how I think. People have got to understand that what I do is for everyone and that's what So Solid Crew is about.

Q: Every interview or review I read compares you to the Wu Tang - is it justified or not?
A: That's the media, man!!! We haven't got anything against Wu Tang and I really appreciated their music back in the day but we've just got to get on with our crew and do as we see fit.

Q: How is it with over 20 members? There must be some major clashes with people ego's.
A: The core of So Solid, we deal with everything that we need to deal with. Everyone understands that there is alot of effort that they need to put in to get something out. You can't just be a So Solid member and expect to be out there - you've got to put in as much effort as we put into you.

You've really got to understand each other personally to know how to take them. That what its about...understanding each other personally, socially, their life...when they're not performing we study them 100% so we get the feel of what they need and what they want.

Q: The London garage scene has got a bad reputation. Is it really that bad?
A: Its got a bad reputation because there is too much back stabbing and no-one is together. In Garage no-one is together...everyone's separate!!! We just built up our situation so we can control our future - if people in the garage industry swept us up from day one, which I'm happy they didn't, then they can get rid of us as quickly as they bought us out there.

Q: And through all that one thing you've managed to do is build up the business side of things?
A: We've got our merchandise company, production company, publishing company, distribution company, record labels, our DJ agency. All the elements that we need to progress and got through in life - that's what we have under So Solid Ltd. Its a big foundation and we want to make our parents and kids to feed of this.

So Solid is a bigger family than you could ever imagine. Everything that we do is within the organization. Whether we go shopping, whether we go out to eat or whether we go raving...its all So Solid!!! There's no one else out there and maybe a lot of people might get offended by it, but this is business and if were going to get together and do something constructive we've really got to block out all the negativity and all the people who just want a piece of the cake on the way.

Everyone's got to be on the same wavelength, everyone has got to think the same and everyone's got to move the same to actually be successful within our business.

Q: We've all heard varying reports on the events that happened at The Astoria a couple of days ago (31st October). What's your version of events?
A: "So Solid Crew run for cover" and all that stuff. I don't really study all that stuff because the media can switch things around as they see fit. But directly how it went down was we were off stage before any fires or anything happened in the club. So if anything did happen inside the club it was mostly after we were upstage in our changing rooms.

Q: Things like that must shake you up though. It was supposed to be a birthday party and it ended up with two people getting shot.
A: Not at all bro. You know where were from and you know directly our backgrounds. This is what we were brought up around daily, we lived around it for years and were still in it...and we need to get out of it. The media can say what they want but everyone at the night knows how it is - its just the UK trying to take down another UK act again!!!

Whatever goes down were just going to tell the public that they need to behave themselves. Its not about violence...whatever were promoting or saying is what we've done to get to where we are and that's why we've done it. If you listen to the album were going to let people know its about music and building your own crew and cutting out all the negativity.

Q: Do you believe the media misrepresentation is about trying to maintain a black stereotype?
A: Anyone can stereotype anyone. But directly its not about a black, white or asian. Its about the life you were brought up around, how you view your situation and how you're going to view life.

When were out there performing we want to be as real as we are to the public...not portraying a bad boy image. Of course there are bad guys in So Solid, of course there are good guys in So Solid. There's people people who have been through stuff...and there's also people who have never seen that stuff in their life in the crew.

When we put ourselves out as individuals that is what we are portraying - we are portraying ourselves and how we think. Its just about being true to yourself!!!

Q: You'd had a number 1 single, the crew was about looking out for each other and then the incident with Scat D broke out all over the press. As a "family" or a "crew" what kind of pressure or stress did this put on the group moral?
A: It was no stress. Everyone in the crew has got to understand that they are responsible for their own actions. Its all a learning process that you've got to understand that when you step into that type of land (I.e. the media) you've got to restrain from doing certain things no matter how angry you get over a situation.

He was lucky to get away with a fine because he could have easily fucked his career like that. So Solid and our management company have sent their apologies to the girls family so hopefully we can look over that and move on with life. There's a lot of bad things that happen to people in the music industry that has been exploited by the media and the newspapers...and just depending on who you are people look over it.

You get a street act from the streets - a couple of black guys up there and its like nah look..typical. Its not about that, man!!! Everyone does it. You've got 35 year olds sleeping with 18 years olds in the music industry but because they're so big you don't see that in the media. You get Darren Weir (Scat D) up there, going to a hotel with a 16 year old and people look at it as kind of weird.

Q: And I guess the last word goes out to you?
A: You ain't gonna really understand So Solid unless you really speak to us on a one to one basis and check out the realism of what's really going on. A lot of artists are breaking through and remember to check out the individual albums next year.

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