Rock/hip-hop band 7Lions, signed to RedOne’s 2101 Records, recently released their first EP, and they’ve been busy racking up gigs all over Californ-I-A. TSJ caught up with the LA-based band’s rapper, Mika “Prophet” Guillory, to talk inspiration, poetry, and stadium rock.
The Smoking Jacket: What’s the story behind your single, “Born 2 Run”?
Prophet: It is a song that describes the perseverance through any obstacles that you may have in front you. One of those songs that is an anthem to fight the good fight no matter what that may be.
TSJ: What do you mean when you talk about “urban hip hop poetry”?
Prophet: Poetry is poetry and no matter where it comes from it speaks from the heart of where you draw your energy from. When it comes to the hip-hop aspect of 7Lions, it is rooted in our generation and how we grew up. From the cities we live in to the people and events that have touched our lives.
TSJ: Whose lyrics have been relevant to you over the years?
Prophet: Collectively, as a band, there are so many influences we draw on. I think for me personally everyone from Chris Martin, Bob Dylan to Jay Z echo in my head.
TSJ: What’s the music/lyric writing process in the band?
Prophet: Morgan Taylor Reid is our producer and we usually start out listening to music for a while with him and then get a shock wave of inspiration. The melodies most times will start with a simple piano or acoustic guitar.
TSJ: What’s the best part about being a larger group re: the collaborative process?
Prophet: The live show. Its like having an NBA team and everyone can use there individual talent to really make a moment special.
TSJ: You’ve been playing a bunch of shows around California lately. Any plans for some wider-range touring?
Prophet: Yes, we are being patient and when the right opportunity comes along to share our music with the rest of the nation, or better yet the world! We are beyond ready.
TSJ: Where do you see your music going next?
Prophet: That’s the beauty of 7Lions because we have a sound that can go so many directions its going to be an epic journey to see what unfolds. Our sound in my eyes is “stadium music” so playing arenas around the world would be a good start.