How do your favorite rappers write their rhymes? To find out, Complex TV has started a new series, The Process. Hosted by Hot 97's Peter Rosenberg and shot at New York City's legendary Chung King Studios, The Process features intimate conversations with established legends as well as exciting up-and-comers about how they put their rhymes together and the magic that happens when the pen hits the pad. New episodes of The Process premiere every Tuesday on Complex TV.
In the third installment of The Process with Peter Rosenberg, Ab-Soul explains how he got into rapping. Born and bred in Carson, California, the TDE MC's interest in music spurred from his parents day job. "I grew up in a record shop," says Ab. "So for a long time, music was just what my family sold to make money." Ab-Soul cites Twista's 1997 record "Emotions" as the first record he wrote to. "I still can't do what Twista does, but that was definitely my foundation of rhyming."
Ab gives some insight to his writing technique, which doesn't include a pen and pad. "I don't actually write on paper, so I just take my time and memorize it." However, he clarifies this unique process shouldn't be glorified. "That's still writing. [Jay-Z] fucked that up," claims Ab. "If you're writing on paper, and then you see a guy in the corner, it just looks like he's a mastermind."
Later in the conversation, Ab-Soul touches on his work with Black Hippy, and details the tragic passing of TDE-affiliate, Alori Joh, who he references in "The Book of Soul." "She was important to not just me," says Soul. "But our whole movement."