As we approach the end of the year, the Quartersnacks Rap Desk‘s vote for “Rapper of the Year” is torn between 2 Chainz, Future, and Black Dave. On Monday night, Dave performed at some random lounge in the Financial District (appropriately a block away from C.I.A. Ledge…it wouldn’t be right if it wasn’t next to a skate spot), as an opening act for some members of ASAP Rocky’s crew. This performance may be the tie-breaker that puts Dave ahead of the competition. Torey Goodall claimed that “watching Black Dave perform was like that last scene in The Karate Kid where he kicks everyone’s ass.” Switch Mike equated the event to seeing your own child accomplish something great. Taji Ameen interviewed Dave and was kind enough to send it our way.
Photos and Words by Taji Ameen
So what the hell were you thinking when you decided to dress up in a suit and call yourself The Black Donald Trump?
I have a lot of ideas going on in my head that I’ve been trying to expand on. The whole reason I decided to enter the music world was to release them for people to see and have a good laugh to. I’ve been skateboarding for nine years and it has been a great way to express myself, but with music I can show a bit more of my humor and personality. Being The Black Donald Trump consists of balling out on a budget, missing cabs, going to the chicken spot, drinking 40s, and smoking blunts on your homie’s roof.
Yeah, we have seen Heath Kirchart and Jeremy Klein skate in suits in Birdhouse’s The End, but never Black Donald Trump shredding Tribeca in one. What is the story behind that baller-ass suit?
Well I called myself the Black Donald Trump because I’ve always seen myself as an entrepreneur, which just makes the suit necessary for the video. I needed a fucking wig, but I blew it, and couldn’t find one in time. His crazy hair style wouldn’t work too well while I was skating anyway.
The video kind of reminded me of Harold Hunter raps from old Zoo York videos. I was backing that.
I most definitely look up to Harold Hunter as a New York legend, as a role model in a way. Not only because he was a great skater, but he had a successful career in acting at a young age with his role in Kids, and that’s something I always wanted to be, a well-rounded person who did it all, and had a damn good time while doing it.
What else has influenced you within the skate and rap world?
Growing up in New York City has opened me to many different worlds, not only with skateboarding and music. The amount of crazy shit you see in a day will change any person: from toothless bums yelling on the train, random acts of violence, and hipsters slowing taking over every black neighborhood. The diversity of the people, and the city itself was a huge influence, I still have yet to find a comfortable spot. Here in New York there’s so much for one person to do, you eventually learn that becoming successful in any career is possible.
What do you think of the whole skater-gone-rapper thing?
I think its really funny when I see a pro skater with a rap video out and they take it seriously. Not to say any names, but some of the best skateboarders who I have looked up to as a kid have stopped doing what they do to make shitty hip-hop. I think my music is a play on all those people, and just showing the world that I do this shit for fun and to have a good time. I love hip-hop music and I only began recording in August of 2011. I’m most excited for new beginnings and trying to accomplish new things like making music, doing shows, and directing music videos. I have so many ideas and “Black Donald Trump” was just something I came up with, there’s much more to come.
So how come thugs no longer hate skateboarders?
Well in this day in age, skateboarding is becoming more and more accepted. You have rappers like Lil’ Wayne trying to skateboard. Every time I skate through the hood, everyone is yelling out kickflip and 900! I’m not mad at the hood dudes on my block asking me to try an ollie instead of trying to fuck me up for skating. Also nowadays, skateboarders are a weed dealer’s best customer.
Speaking of that…about how much loud pack was burned down in the making of the song?
Personally, I think I record my best when I’m drunk and high. I filmed my video and made it a point to be smoking and drinking in the video, because that was how I started fucking with rap in the first place. I discovered my talent during drunken freestyle battles at house parties with my homies.
Do you think people like J.Cassanova [Jereme Rogers] are also just having fun with their friends? Or is he taking it too far?
Jereme Rogers was one of the best skateboarders out there, and rapping is really not his lane. Not to say I am any better than him, but he was in a really good spot and kind of fucked it up. Although, I think his videos are fucking hilarious, and I hope he releases more.
Have you been receiving any hate from any of your sponsors for your video?
So far, everyone has been enjoying the video. The people at Supreme love it and play it everyday. The dudes at Zoo York and Vans thought it was hilarious and were backing it, and my homies have been promoting it as much as possible. Although they are two completely different worlds, I want to bring them together by showing skateboarding in my music videos and vice versa. I feel like there is so much hip-hop in today’s skateboarding that it isn’t hard to connect the two.
Is it true that the guy who filmed the whole video has a bunch of weird face tats and looks like a wolf?
He was was a huge help with filming my video, but yes he has a lot of wild things going on with his face.
What is in store for Black Donald Trump for the rest of the year?
Record more music and work on my upcoming mixtape, Black Donald Trump. I’m also filming for the upcoming Zoo York Am video that is coming out next year. I also want to put out more videos, and play some shows in NYC.
Shouts out my family at Supreme, Zoo York, Vans, Stoned Rollers (Olaa Wavee & D Stunna), mom, my girlfriend Lola who was my secretary in the video, all my homies that have been there since day one, look out for the next video that Taji and I are working on.