[INTERVIEW] “On The Table” w/ Darrio Lamont by @DJLayneLuv
When it comes to artistry, one can only hope for the evolution to mastery and excellence. So when it comes to life, people go through different phases, but it all becomes necessary for growth. Through the past four years, I’ve witnessed Darrio Lamont from Cleveland Ohio go from a major #TurnUp king to a mogul minded business man. However, that level of maturity doesn’t come without a price. There are sacrifices that have to be made to reach a certain level of success and Darrio has paid his dues.
This upcoming week, Sunday May 21st, Darrio will be providing his loyal fan base an intimate private party entitled Ultra Experience brought to you by The Magna Media Group. The setup reminds me of the movie Death of a Dynasty. The location is not disclosed to the public and the only way you can get in is by special invite and RSVP. Yeah… some real Eyes Wide Shut type shit.
Darrio belongs to a part of a super group conglomerate of smart guys and gals that have adapted to the new age of marketing music. The Magna Media Group is not waiting for a label or distribution company to cut-the-check. They survive off of the relationships they build and the consistency in the quality of their art.
It was an honor and privilege to be given and invite as a tastemaker and a respected writer in the Ohio Hip Hop community. Days later I received a DM from the artist himself letting me know my presence would be greatly appreciated and if I had a chance to listen to some of the exclusives sent my way. It only made sense to have Mr. King Fresh aka Darrio Lamont as my special guest this week.
Ladies and Gentleman….Darrio Lamont
OTT: So when I met you a few years back you went by the name of King Fresh but lately all I see is the promotion of Darrio Lamont? How did the name switch come about?
DL: Well short and simple, Darrio is the name my mama gave me…..I mean she also named me Fresh too but even that term “fresh” comes with stipulations. People that have taken on the name Fresh may not necessarily be living up to what that name entails especially in the Hip Hop community. So to be true to myself, I wanted to be more transparent in my music so why not go with a name that associates me to the people that know me best. I chose Darrio Lamont.
OTT: ….I’m glad you mentioned that because the song with Super Nat “Mean Much” is much different than “Downfall” what brought about the evolution from “Turn Up” to substance? Did your name change have anything to do with that?
DL: ….well if you think about music in general, it’s just a moment in time Layne, and who are you to tell me I can’t grow? Not you personally but you know what I mean. We tend to box people in when it comes to this music based on what pop culture thinks or corporate America dictates. So that’s who I was then, and people tend to label that, and there’s nothing wrong with that, but understand I’m giving you a snapshot of my life as it unfolds. Use that to see what it took to get me from that to this. I just want people to appreciate my entire body of work and we’ll just keep adding parts and pieces as we go.
When I was in the Luxury League, I was promoting a lot. I was always in the club, and I had an all female promotion team. Shout out to my homegirl Louise. (Ladies Of Luxury) It was something we put together and we was getting money from those particular ventures. So naturally that lifestyle influenced the music and what we were about at the time. Magna is an elevation of that lifestyle.
By being Darrio Lamont, I can be more personal. And if the lack of authenticity is anywhere in the art, I’ll scrap it or I just won’t do it. I’ve been doing this for too long man. I’m trying to supply a need, so at a certain time, my listener does not need to hear about a beef I have with someone and I have to be in tune with that. At the same time I don’t need to make a Black Lives Matter song just because it’s the popular thing to do. If it doesn’t come natural I don’t do it.
OTT: For those that follow you on social media we’re seeing you in photos with Maybach’s, Phantom’s (Bentley Coup) and some really nice luxury vehicles…now I know what it’s about, but please explain for my audience the meaning of these photos.
DL: Haha yes we definitely live in an age of “Fake it Til You Make It” but my photos are for motivational purposes. No I do not own those vehicles but the people in my crew do. Everyday it’s motivation of something I can attain because I can see it, I can touch it, so it’s real to me. I’m not showing you what I think I saw. Yes that’s me in front of Phantom. Those vehicles are made of the same stuff everyday cars are made of….but those cars are symbols of levels…..
OTT: Whoa!!!! Nuff said….What is Magna Media?
DL: Magna Media is a management company. We’re not a record label and that’s what a lot of people don’t understand. This is why our organization doesn’t have a “sound” but we do have a creed and work ethic we live by. Each client has a different set of needs and we cater to those needs. We build our brand by the relationships we maintain and water. We survive off those relationships. That’s why we can excel and be on the cover of Columbus Alive back to back.
Without giving away too much, this is just who I am. When it comes to building a relationship, I can do five things for you such as help with the marketing, make sure the artwork for your flyers is dope, get you hooked up with radio connections, book 2 or 3 shows for you and still blast you on social media. So even if I ask you to do one thing for me…it’s a no brainer at that point because I have put in the work. That’s the Magna Media Brand. WE KNOW HOW TO WORK.
OTT: Damn! So quickly before you go, tell us about the Ultra Experience on May 21st.
DL: So for the people that follow me might know that in the beginning of my career, I did a lot of shows to promote my music. After a while I took a step back just to brand myself as an independent artist and let the fans grow with me as it related to the body of work I was releasing. Ultra Experience is just saying I’ve given my listeners all kinds of Hip Hop through the years from Backpack rap, to Trap, to 90’s recreations, I given conscientiousness. I’ve given all of this that has now lead to the Ultra Experience of Darrio Lamont.
This will not be your normal “Come hear me rap” scenario. I for a change will be catering to my listeners. You are the VIP. It will be at a private undisclosed location which means you have to RSVP if you get an invite. There will be staff on hand that will give you the royal treatment such as unlimited wine and an exclusive area just for you. It is a show of appreciation which is why there is a “preferred guest” list.
So many entertainers want their audience to do everything for them, without giving them an experience to remember. We are going to provide that need.
OTT: Well I’m happy that DJ Layne Luv and Uptown Media are invited guest. Thank you for your time Darrio and I wish you much success.