Que Billah is an up and coming Chicago Hip Hop artist, with deep Hip Hop roots, and has rocked stages before large crowds with some heavies in the Hip Hop game. Billah has opened for Chicago’s own Twista, Talib Kweli, Slum Village, KRS One, and has toured with Ludacris. Que is known for his conscious spit, and high energy performances, keeping the crowd movin. 4 Chi City Radio got a chance to have a sit down with Billah. Get to know Billah, below…
B Roc – You’re the headlining act of a Lallopalooza festival’s after show tonight, what are your thoughts on the festival and the show?
Que Billah – My first thought is “My, my what a large sea of white people” LOL! I don’t know if it’s just a reflection of people of color being a minority, but when you go to concerts, it’s mostly white people. Even rap concerts… no matter who it is, from Drake to the most ratchet of the ratchet, let’s say Gucci Mane… It’s mostly white people in the crowd. This saddens me, not that it’s bad that white dominate concerts, it’s sad that more people of color don’t enjoy live music. Or should I say don’t know that they enjoy live music. Or maybe its that they can’t afford Lolla and there is only one or two acts they want to see so they don’t want to pay that much for the festival. At the end of the day, I’d like to change that ratio. I’d like to see more people of color in the crowd. I’m thankful for the white people that are open minded and love Hip-Hop. I would change that for the world. In no way am I saying I want less white people in the crowd, so don’t get it confused. White people are way more intense about live music than black people in general and I love when people get into the music it makes my job that much more worth it. So I love that, keep rocking with us, I just want yall to stop saying the “N” word, lol. Even though that’s the lyrics in the song… It’s just something scary about a sea of white people saying the “N” word and I’m the only “N” on stage lol.
B Roc – A lot of your content is conscious, but you have a fun, comedic side that your show in your music. Similar to artists such as Busta Rhymes, Eminem and Redman. What made you choose this approach?
Que Billah – What made me choose this approach… well you said it! Redman and Busta Ryhmes made me choose this approach! That’s what I grew up listening to. My older brother is a DJ, so he put me on all that 90s Hip-Hop. Even though we listened to everything from Master P to Mos Def, Redman and Busta were artist I gravitated to most. Mainly because Im not a thug or a “Street Nigga” I grew up amongst that “Street Shit” and wanted no parts of it. So once I picked up the mic, I just wanted to emulate my idols and have fun with music and be a showmen. But now I’m into making “Drill Music” All I talk about on my new project is killing.
The difference is I’m talking about stoping the killing and telling you why I think the killing is happening. I’m talking about the effect killing has on the families and communities left behind. I’m talking bout murder, black on black crime, cops murdering innocent people and lone gun men opening fire on innocent people. The people want “Drill” so I’m giving them “Drill.”
B Roc – You have done collaborations with artists in the past, such as Chicago’s own, The Cool Kids, and Hip Hop pioneer, Bronx native KRS ONE. What artists would you be interested in collaborating with presently?
Que Billah – There are a lot of people I’d love to collaborate with, mostly Chicago artist. I’ve been mainly listening to Chicago music for the past few years, but a few people I’d really love to do a song with are:
Macie Stewart formerly of Kids These Days. I love her voice and approach to singing. Eryn Allen Kane who is an amazing pure talented vocalist and seems to have winning personality and amazing songs. I’m a low-key super fan of hers… I may even freeze up when we finally meet, lol.
My favorite rapper right now is Saba. I’d love to do a song with him and we probably will soon. Im a big fan of Mick Jenkins work, Martin $ky, and Hurt Everybody. It’s been a dream of mine to do a song with Amerie. I’ve got a dope idea I’ve been sitting on, that I’d only want to do with her. It involves taking a gutter as 90’s song, and making it an R&B song. If and when I do this song with her its gone be “LIT”. And i’d love to do a song with Lupe Fiasco & M.I.A.
B Roc- Tell us about any upcoming ventures or any ventures outside of music.
Que Billah – Well Im about to drop a project called Escape From Chiraq, which is the best music I’ve ever made. Outside of making music, I rap in the dopest Wedding Band in America, The Gold Coast All Stars. We do weddings and corporate events. That’s like my main job its growing into a very successful business this year alone we have 75 gigs.
Im also working on starting two business to establish solid revenue streams to build for the future and provide for my family immediate and extended. Im starting a pie business. Yes I bake pies. I specialize in purple sweet potato pies made from a purple sweet potato. Im also starting at-shirt line that may be dropping in the fall.
B Roc – What do you want people to know about you as an artist?
Que Billah – What I want people to know about me as an artist is that I’m just that…. an artist! I’m not a rapper, I’m an Emcee! I’m an entertainer and I say whats on my heart and my mind. I don’t write, I don’t plan most of my songs. I just get in the booth and say how I feel. Im just doing what I feel and I hope that the people will follow.