"I didn’t have any knowledge of digging," rapper/producer Evidence admits when reminiscing of his early vinyl collecting days. "I thought I was going to buy one record and find all the Tribe Called Quest samples. I thought it was real easy."
On the latest episode of Crate Diggers, the Dilated Peoples member describes growing up among "party people" parents who turned him on to everything from Chaka Khan to Foreigner to the Police before he discovered digging on his own.
In the episode above, Evidence shares stories about rapping on a new track by an artist he sampled to avoid getting sued and hooking up Kanye West with the sample that would almost sorta kinda become College Dropout's "Last Call." (It's a long story.)
The next year looks to be one of Evidence's most prolific periods, with Lord Steppington, the producer's collaborative album with the Alchemist under the name Step Brothers, set for release November 19 via Rhymesayers.
"We didn’t plan on making an album," admits Ev. "We just hung out and recorded and did wild sh-t and looked at the laptop one day and said, ‘Oh, there’s 20 songs.’ We bottled it up and made it interesting and that’s what you get." While not directly inspired by the Will Ferrell movie of the same name, the Step Brothers name began to take shape after Dilated Peoples' "Live on Stage" appeared in the film.
Asked to describe the sound, Evidence is typically blunt: "It’s the blackest album from two white people in the history of hip hop," he says, laughing.
Along with Dilated members Rakaa and Crate Diggers alum DJ Babu, the rapper is also working on Directors of Photography, the group's first album since 2006's 20/20. Slated for release early next year, Evidence says the group is "70% finished" with the new album.
"It’s not an album we need to do; It’s an album we want to do," explains the rapper. "So if we want to do it, it needs to be right. It’s stemming from a lot of our solo experiences and taking it back to a trio. We didn’t know what we were like solo when we were making our first album. Individually, we’re a little more recognizable this time than we were before. It’s like a rebirth; it feels like we’re making a first album."
But before all that, go inside Evidence's vinyl collection with the video above.