Mars Ill is an Atlanta-based super duo of Manchild on the
mic and Dust taking care of production and the ones and twos and are also
part of the crew Deep Space 5. Mars Ill made a name for themselves with the
classic independent debut Raw Material in 2001, and then satisfied the
public with the EP follow up, Blue Collar Sessions in 2002, and Gotee
Recordsí Backbreaknomics in 2003. Mars Ill is now returning with the most
anticipated album of the year, ProPain on Gotee Records set to be in stores
How did the group Mars Ill come to be?
Dust and I met at a hip-hop conference in '98. By January of '99 I was
touring with his group, deadpoetsociety. by the end of that year, Dust had
moved to Atlanta to be in my city and we had formed Mars ILL. Recorded "Raw
Material" in the first couple of months in 2000 and the rest is what it is.
What is the logic behind the name Mars
Mars Ill comes from Acts in the Bible. Acts 17, I believe. Really great
story about philosophy, loving your fellow man and how to share what's on
your mind and your heart.
What was the first song Mars Ill recorded?
It was called "Another". It features Rahlo from BlackSoil Project. Right
after Deadpooetsociety switched to Mars ILL, Rahlo was a part of the crew.
When Dust moved from Indianapolis to ATL, Rahlo decided to stay in Naptown
and do his own thing.
Who is Mars Ill's biggest musical
Wow, so many influences. Spans from Run DMC to Public Enemy to Wu Tang Clan
to Company Flow to Led Zep to Miles Davis to Jimmy Hendrix to Boot Camp
Click to whoever has contributed something innovative and special to music
at any time.
Outkast for me. My sound has little comparison to them but what influences
me is the group's desire to constantly change who they are musically and
always take chances.
How did you hook up with Gotee?
Well, it was pretty well documented that we weren't trying to sign a long
term deal and had sort of a reputation for doing these short 1 album deals
or licensing deals or whatever. Basically, Gotee had been watching us and
the same goes for us to them. When they approached us, we all preceded the
relationship very slowly until we all knew signing with them was the right
thing to do.
What are listeners going to hear on
They're going to hear a rap album from two guys living in Atlanta, GA. And
the new fresh, out of the box, complete sound of hip-hop. I don't know,
man. We poured it all out again and this is what we came up with. Itís
different from our other records with some of the same elements sprinkled
all around. Iím confident that our people will love it and we'll hopefully
gain a new crop of listeners as well.
Classic hip-hop with a dash of new sound.
What gives you inspiration for your songs?
God, my family, my children, life moving all around me, my crew, other
artists, the poor, the rich, the good bad and ugly.
I like to listen to old music, old records. Creative freedom inspires me,
just being able to do stuff for self expression.
How did Manchild hook up with MF Doom for
the upcoming Victor Vaughn Part 2 album?
It was through IZ Real at Insomniac Magazine. Good looking out, by the
way. It's a project he's overseeing. I met doom through him at a show
about 3 years ago, I think. IZ put it all down, so Iím thankful to be a
part of it.
What is the program you offer called
Mars ILL will ghostwrite and produce your record and record and coach you
through it in our Atlanta studio for $10,000. Weíll also be quiet and not
tell anyone we did so.
Just a way for us to earn a little extra money by producing and writing for
How did all the artists of Deep Space 5
I sort of assembled who I felt was like-minded to me in faith, art and life,
and we have 12 guys. Of course, Iíve met more people outside the crew that
fit the profile, but Iím not starting the Zulu nation here, it's a crew,
plain and simple.
How did MTV come to use Mars Ill's beats
for various shows and how did that DS5 poster show up on the guy's fridge in
"A Guy Thing"?
Labels (Uprok, Gotee, etc) have publishing departments working on getting
all that stuff for their label's music As far as the sticker, I really don't
know. Terrible movie, by the way.
There's a girl at Gotee that works all of Gotee's music to be licensed for
that kind of stuff, and I guess they liked our beats. I have no idea how the
poster ended up in that movie.
What can we expect from Mars Ill in the
Changing the whole world one soul at a time.
For more information on Mars Ill check out