State In The Real – Penn State Music Scene

Interview with Chewi and his producer Oren

State In The Real exclusive, we caught up with Penn State students Chewi Imoke and Oren Spiegel to talk about their new project together, along with the interview we were the first to get a copy of Chewi’s new mixtape. And he has allowed us to release one of the songs from the mixtape. Here is the interview with the video.

Q and A with Chewi

SITR: Can you tell us about this second mixtape? What is it called, how many tracks are on it and when does it drop?

So the title of the mixtape is Chew On It Vol. 2: Rapper’s Digest… I felt it was important to keep the theme going so that people would recognize we’re taking the next step, you know, like this isn’t our first venture and we’re building on the past.  That way, if you like the new stuff, you can check out the old too not only see where we’re coming from, but to recognize our progression since which I’m superbly pleased with.  There are 13 tracks 9 songs, 3 poems, and an interlude.

The tracks are as follows

1. The Digest

2. How Far

3. Jungle

4. Party Hard

5. The Corporate Caldera

6. Bring Joy

7. Steez On ‘Em

8. Blow Up

9. Still Stand Alone

10. King of the Stage

11. Anticipation

12. The Journey

13. The Last Time

And this mixtape started right when the last one ended which was this past April so about 6-7 months put into this one, but granted over the summer things didn’t pick up recording wise! Until July when we were both in State College for summer session

Chew On It Vol. 2: Rapper’s Digest will be available Thanksgiving Day on so put the thanksgiving football on mute, cause who wants to here Chris Collinsworth anyway? And jam to Rapper’s Digest as you…digest, it’s only right.

UPDATE 11/24/11

SITR: What can people expect from this second mixtape?

What people can expect, bottom line is growth.  We’ve experimented and expanded with what we have to offer, tried new things, developed more rapport with one another, developed a fuller and more professional sound, further grasped the concept of a mixtape/album and made it mesh more soundly.  Also you can expect high energy with a beautiful blend of powerful, heartfelt lyrics on top of up-tempo, studio album quality beats to shake that ass too.


SITR: How would you say this second mixtape measures up to the first one?

Blows it out of the water, seriously, we took leaps and bounds from one mixtape to the other in so many respects.  For instance the last one, my first mixtape, there are a few tracks where I sound rather monotone and not fully into what I was doing, but that’s just because I didn’t recognize the significance of emphasizing my inflection and projecting passion in every word.  Likewise Oren has stepped up his game just as much as I have by changing how he mixes tracks making them much louder and all encompassing of the spectrum that he has to fill.  In addition, it’s all about building a legitimate fan base with this one.  With Chew On it was about establishing an identity.   Now that’s clear, if you know me, you know I rap and if you listen from one mixtape to the other you can see that we’re building on the themes from the previous so now you can grow with us because it’s all about progress as you will find out when you listen to the tape.


SITR: We know that you had Oren produce this mixtape too, tell us a bit about what went into the process of making this second one.

We followed the same formula that we did for Chew On It.  I come up with a chorus, Oren comes up with the backbone of the track, I write my verses and he gets to mixing and mastering.  Or when he comes up with the chorus I’ll write my verses taking the utmost care to stay on topic with some of the references I implement and after we record it Spiegzy (Oren) does his thing from there.


SITR: We understand that you shot a video for the song Party hard, when will it be dropping? Can you tell us about that?

Yep, the music video will be dropping a week after the mixtape is available so that first Thursday we’re back at school, it was directed by Bello Galadanchi and produced by Rolanzo White, both Penn Staters and masters of their craft.  What it is our party anthem, straight up, this one’s by Penn State and for Penn State.  Yes it can be considered untimely given everything that has been going on, but I understand as I’m sure everyone else does that the Sandusky ordeal is going to be with us for a while so in my mind, down the road when the proverbial dust has settled is simply not at option as it’ll be at least! Several months if not years.  No disrespect is meant to the victims, their families, or our fine institution but we have to keep living, we have to keep making the moves that we need to make to progress, there’s that word is again, trust me, it’ll keep coming up, so we can get to where we want to be.  Stagnation is not and option, and this is just for fun, so don’t take it seriously/personally.  Just keep partying like you do every weekend and we’ll provide the jams and visuals that get you revved up for a night of letting loose.

UPDATE 12/1/11

Chewi’s new video, “Party Hard” has dropped.


SITR: What other things have you or will you be working on once this mixtape drops?

Honestly when this is publicly available it’s on to the next.  I save a slew of unused punch lines and already have another beat from Oren that I’m amped about so you can prob. expect another track or two before years end.  But we’re not going all the way in on the next mixtape just yet.  We’ll just be getting our feet wet.  Most of our time after this mixtape is dropped is going to go towards promoting it, you can bet that right after my thanksgiving meal settles…and I enjoy the Harbowl a.k.a. my Ravens taking on the 49ers at M&T Bank Stadium, I’m burning cd after cd, contacting friend after friend, from this school that school any school to check the mixtape out and get us out to where they are for shows because right now it’s all about exposure.  I know we’ve got a product that people can latch on to and acknowledge that we’re a legitimate force to be reckoned with.  It’s just a matter of them hearing it again, and again, and again until we drive the message home.

Q and A with Oren

SITR: Tell us how you go about making the beats or songs with Chewi? And tell us a little bit about the process you guys go through.

Firstly I wouldn’t consider what I send Chewi beats. These are tracks or songs- the difference lies in the attention to detail and the common theme all of the instruments give in to produce a common feel. This makes it a song.

How do we do it? Well Chewi probably told how nice and swift the process is- but it isn’t. Unless the track was a personal project that I instigated and asked Chewi to do- like the song Blow Up for say; I would have to sit down alone and listen to Chewi’s recorded lines on my phone- by my keyboard or guitar- until I come with a melody. That tells the story, and transfer the same feel Chewi had in mine. This is tougher than one would think. But the reward is engraved in the final product.


SITR: What is different or similar about this second mixtape compared to the first one? What can people expect from the second mixtape?

As for the new mixtape- expect a more routed story line that is singled out by a more common flow to all songs. As opposed to the fist mixtape which was truly a complete mix of different vibes. This mixtape is mixed and mastered to perfection unlike the first- and Chewi has taken a harsher stance on reality and left some of his “marijuana” lines aside. He is truly forgoing the stoner kid outlook- to become the “well aware- and care” rapper. Who gives the facts to the public on current issues- including at rare occasions- weed.

No one should a hard time connecting to the catchy hooks- Chewi or I came up with. And with a little bit of luck- I expect the mixtape to pass through more than 5000 hands this time.!/chewtunes/followers



Interview by Erik Morales