A Conversation With Lil Dust

October 10, 2020

Wellington-based Lil Dust returns with the anthem track ‘Big Bags’. Teaming up with longtime collaborator Tommy ll, ‘Big Bags’ is a hard-hitting new release for Lil Dust.

We caught up with the artist to chat about how the single came together, his writing process and future plans.

Check out the interview below.

Tell me a bit about your recent single ‘Big Bags’? 

I say this every time I release a song but it’s my favourite song I’ve made. Haha na it came about quite unexpectedly. Me and Tommy were chilling at mine before a studio session and he pulled up this hard as beat he hadn’t yet put on his beat store. We started playing around with it and freestyling hooks, we were blazed as and nothing really solid was coming out of it. 

I eventually ended up sussing half the hook and ran out of words to rhyme with big bags. Then Tommy suggested I just keep saying “big bags big bag big bags” so I punched it in. I thought it was going to sound whack as but we listened to it back and we were hyped as we knew we had something dope. We decided then to hold off recording it at mine and smash it out at the studio later that night. My bro Hunter (Pillow T.) came with us to the studio and we ended up getting so fucked up haha. I barely remember the night tbh but after laying down my vocals, Pillow T started humming a melody in the background we were all gassed as so he jumped in the booth and smashed it. We could hear the autotune from outside of the booth and we were all geeking how hard it was sounding. 

The next day I woke up dusty and thought the whole thing was a dream, haha, but sure enough, after flicking through a few videos I’d taken there it was, it sounded just as dope as I remembered.

The track is produced by longtime collaborator Tommy II, tell me about how you guys work together?

Depends where we are. If we are at the studio or just at the crib but usually Tommy cooks up a beat sends it through to me. I punch out the recording then we link up and work on the mix together so we can bounce ideas off each other, sort out the structure and add some creative shit. 

‘Big Bags’ is a hard-hitting anthem track, were you trying to create a certain vibe with the track?

Surely the new national anthem haha. Na thanks that’s the vibe I’m going for. I’m pretty much just tryna make catchy songs these days but basically, I wanted to make a banger that’s got that g vibe to it, but with some catchy melodic elements. So, regardless of which type of rap music you are into you can appreciate it in some way.

Tell me about some of your influences? 

I take a lot of influences from the OGs and people I grew up listening to like 50 Cent, Lil Wayne, 2Pac, Biggie and Big L. I was actually an old head until like 2016 haha.

But recently tho I’ve been taking inspiration from new artists. But more in the way of how they handle their business and the way they work. I pretty much on the daily just listen to the music I’m working on or working on for other people.

Tell me more about your writing process? How do you go about writing a song, do you start with the beat first or have something written already? 

I freestyle & write. So first I pick a beat I’m vibing with and without even listening to too much of it I’ll pull it up on logic and just hit record and freestyle and see what happens. For me, this is the best way to get something that sounds natural to the ear and suss my flow. I punch in freestyle until I get stuck or if I can’t get a bar out. I’ll just write it down. I find my best music comes from just riding the vibe at the time and not forcing anything.

You’re no stranger to the scene and have been working away over the past few years, how do you feel you’ve changed as an artist through that time? 

I’ve definitely changed and grown heaps. I pretty much knew nothing about making music or all the admin I was in for when I first started. Now I’m at the point where I’m able to help and teach others. One thing I’ve found out along the way is if you stay true to yourself you can’t go wrong 

This is the first single off your upcoming EP ‘Xan Andreas’, what can we expect to hear on the project style-wise? 

It’s the second. PERC was the first but it’s going to be a full Bay Area west coast style project all produced by Tommy. It’s just something that came together naturally with our workflow. His beats and my rap style just complimenting each other so well. I also felt like doing something different to what other rappers are doing in Nz and Aus atm.

Now that COVID restrictions have eased up, do you plan on having any shows to finish the year? 

I was hoping I might get through this interview without any mention of COVID so over it haha. But Na I’m always looking for shows (if promoters are reading this hml). I was planning on going big with it and setting up an NZ tour to go along with my project with some homies and applying for the big festivals. But I don’t know I’ll see how we go. I’m not one to pass up an opportunity but I’d rather have a fresh start for me to organise something legit.

You can check out the track below.

    Leave a Reply