24 year old Amplify Dot (or ‘Dot’ to her friends) has been making waves as one of the most thrilling underground talents over the past few years, bubbling just below the surface with props from Ms Dynamite, Wretch 32, Kano, MistaJam, Tim Westwood, and Zane Lowe, but also attracting the attention of Missy Elliott. The South London resident has one of the most exciting voices in the genre, spitting confident rhymes and creating a witty narrative about the world around her. Early in 2012, Amplify Dot became the first female MC to sign a major record deal in a decade and in December she released her ‘Spare Parts’ mixtape as a gift to her fans and supporters. We caught up with Amplify Dot to discuss her music, who she’s looking forward to in 2013 and working with Chris Brown and Rihanna?
Congratulations on the success of the Spare Parts mixtape so far. What’s the reaction been like so far?
The response has been great so far! I think, when you put music out you automatically become quite vulnerable and you think “Oh, what’s the feedback going to be like?” `It’s like having a baby and you show people the baby pictures for the first time and you think “What if people think my baby isn’t cute?” It’s been great that the response has been so positive and there are so many different favorite tracks on there. So many different tracks have come out as people’s favourites. I’m just grateful that people have received it so well especially as it was solely meant to be a present for my supporters.
This isn’t your first release so one would imagine you’re already used to criticism and such?
In any walk of life, once you put yourself out there, you’re open to people’s responses. Your never going to please everyone all of the time and when you’re in the music industry, you have to have a thick skin. There’s always going to be people that don’t like stuff. There’s stuff I don’t like that people love and vice versa. All I can do is try to make the people that support me happy.
When we posted the video and the track on our site, it quickly became one of our top viewed pieces of that day. Do you think now is the time for female MC’s to come to the forefront, especially in the UK?
I think people are really ready for female MC’s and I don’t think it’s something… It’s a very new phenomenon, apart from in America where you had Lil’ Kim and Foxy Brown and such. I don’t think there’s been that same appetite in the UK for homegrown female MC’s. Now, people have really warmed to the idea of female MC’s and I’m glad I’m around in this time because I think the time is right for us. People are really feeling it.
With that being said, you could argue that Nicki Minaj was the first in the “new wave” of female MC’s to emerge in the last 3 or 4 years or so. Are you going to be the leader of the new wave in the UK?
Amongst female MC’s in the UK, there’s already so much talent and I’m happy to be a part of that new movement with the likes of Lady Leshurr, Lioness, the return of Shystie. I feel like it’s in a strong place and hopefully I’ll be one of the people that can take it a step further.
Tell us a little bit about the video for Get Down.
Get Down… The song is very… It’s quite an egocentric track. It’s very much about “give me some room, I wanna get down!” So with the video, it’s very much like “all eyes on me.” The camera never really comes off me and when it does, its just eyes. The focus is solely on me. It’s quite a self-centered video! It felt right to do something like that because it had been a while since I’d done anything. It’s like an attention seekers video!
For those that haven’t listened to the Spare Parts mixtape, would you say the rest of the music is similar or quite varied?
If you like ‘Get Down’, you will love ‘Spare Parts’. It’s a very up-tempo mixtape, but it’s a real mixed bag. I never want to do anything that can be put in a box or for people to be like “Ok, this is her sound.” Whenever you think you can expect what’s coming next, I want to defy that expectation and I think the mixtape does that from track to track, it takes you somewhere else.
You’ve become known to be rather vocal of your opinions on Twitter, especially during competitions such as the X Factor. Do you believe the right person won and who was you routing for?
I was routing for James Arthur from the start. I’m glad for him that he won but I do wonder if winning The X Factor is a curse rather than a gift. But I’m hoping he does great things regardless.
During The X Factor, you even got a retweet from Rihanna!
I got the Rihanna retweet! I got the Rhi-tweet!
When can we expect a collaboration?
When she’s ready, we can collaborate! I’d love to work with her.
What about Rihanna and Chris together? Would you work with them collectively?
We could make an awesome track! I love Rihanna and I love Chris Brown. And I hope they’re happy! They have my blessing and that’s the most important thing for them. That’s what they’ve been waiting for. You let them know I said it’s ok!
What was your favorite album of 2012?
My favorite album of 2012 was… Well, the album I’ve played the most has been Frank Ocean’s ‘Channel Orange’ but ‘Watch the Throne’… The whole Watch the Throne experience. I went to the concert and the videos… When I think of 2012, I will think of Watch the Throne. I’ll think of Jay-Z & Kanye, I’ll think of ‘N***as in Paris,’ ‘Otis,’ it really defined the year musically.
Who are you routing for 2013?
I’m really routing for Amplify Dot? Have you heard about her? She’s sick; you have to look out for her. I’m really excited for what A Dot is going to be doing. I’m really looking forward to what Maxsta does, looking forward to what Cleo Sol does, looking forward to what A*M*E does… There are a lot of acts from the UK that are on the verge of doing some really exciting things this year.
Check out Amplify Dot on Twitter!
- New Music | Amplify Dot – Spare Parts [Mixtape]
- New Video | Amplify Dot – Get Down
- New Music | Amplify Dot – Get Down
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