De La Soul returned with their ninth studio album and the Anonymous Nobody...on Friday, marking their first release in nearly 12 years.
The project was funded by a Kickstarter campaign that was launched in March of last year. While the Kickstarter aimed to raise $110,000, the final amount was $600,829, which showed the power of their loyal fans. The album features Jill Scott, Snoop Dogg, Roc Marciano, Usher, Little Dragon, 2 Chainz, and more.
Complex News caught up with Posdnuos and Dave to talk about why they chose a crowdfunded route for their album. During the process of recording, they felt the music was coming out so “magical” that they didn’t want a record label to taint it with suggestions of hooks or rearrange it in some other way. They instead looked into different options to put out their material in its truest form.
“We started looking into it and asking around. A few of the musicians who worked on the album, they had friends who had successful Kickstarter campaigns. Bounce off ideas, listened to what they had to say,” Posdnuos said. “In our investigation, we realized that even there were fans of ours that were familiar with the platform. So it helped us to feel like, 'Well, this is the right thing to do.'”
Dave also broke down the features on the album, and how the group went about gathering collaborators for certain records. “The music that we had sold itself,” he says, adding that they decided to shoot high when it came to getting more prominent names. Dave did reveal one of those musicians was Willie Nelson, who he initially reached out to but couldn’t line anything up in time.
“We have a song called 'Unfold' which is a country Western tune and we wanted Willie Nelson on that really bad,” Dave says. “We pursued him over and over again after we got the first, second, third, fourth and fifth no. He was unavailable to do it, but we allowed songs to tell us who should be on it—the vibe, the feeling, the mood of each song kind of spoke to us.”
Check out the entire interview above and stream their new album below. It's also available on iTunes.
You can also check out their accompanying documentary.