Recently we got the chance to speak with music editor and digital artist Gossett Brown from Tampa, FL. During this interview we talk about his career as an artist and his anime, horror, and comic book influences, Tampa’s art and music scene being the best-kept secret, creative blocks, rock and hip-hop crossovers, and what’s in store for him in 2019!
How long have you been doing digital art for?
It’s been like 4 years since I started to learn how to use Photoshop, Indesign and Illustrator.
Reflecting on your childhood and upbringing, were you always the creative type?
Yeah I always liked drawing that was the start of it all. I had this notebook and I would draw Dragon Ball Z and all kinds of different anime characters. I used to collect magazines too like XXL, Complex, Transworld and Thrasher. So I’ve like always been in tuned with projects happening in Hip Hop, skateboarding, brands, record labels etc. That would eventually lead to me editing skate videos and from there I would try random ideas. I used to curate mix tapes and shit like actually reach out to local artists collect songs. I just like trying things and practicing until I get pretty good. I just love working on projects. You can ask anyone that grew up with me, I would straight up lock myself in a room until a project is done just to show people what I created.
Is there an art medium that you like to try and get into outside of digital art?
Storyboarding for commercials, music videos, whatever. Even a indie film. I’ve done it a few times for music videos and they came out dope but I wanna work on something that can like potentially win a award or something. There’s a more too like I wanna design shoes, clothes, and I really want to illustrate a comic book. Actually, I’m working on getting a comic book/graphic novel going for 2019. A writer reached out to me and sent this great story, I designed the characters and right now I have some great people in my network helping me bring it to life. I have no idea how long it’s going to take, probably a long time but it’s all good I’m willing to grind it out until it comes to life.
You’re from Tampa, and I feel like Tampa’s art and music scene might be a best kept secret, can you confirm or deny that?
It’s definitely a secret. I live like in the Tampa Bay area but I feel like all the scenes are kinda like merged together from Tampa, St Pete, Clearwater, Tarpon etc. There’s dope bands and artists like Samurai Shotgun, Dea and Saint, Mike Mass, Testaro55a, Young 40, Dynasty the list goes on. I heard FamousKidBrick just got signed to Roc Nation so hopefully more eyes in the industry might be on the whole area. The murals in St Pete are super dope too there’s tons of talented visual artists out there as well. It’s a dope area. There’s so much talent and I would love to see all of them get more exposure. I think corny politics and these little alliances moving funny holds the more talented artists back from getting noticed to be honest. It’s like high school. It’s like you have to be friends with the cool kids in order to get put on certain blogs and win certain awards. That shit is wack as fuck to me and I rather work hard and let my work speak for itself then play along with the BS. I don’t need to be liked, I need my work to be respected.
Do you ever experience creative blocks? If so, how do you feel as though you overcome them?
I have creative blocks all the time and I also get these moments when I have so many ideas I wanna jump on and can’t think of what I should start first. That can sometimes turn into over-thinking and can cause a creative block. The way I get over them is content on Youtube. Interviews, movie trailers, music videos, podcasts, whatever. I get inspired pretty fast when I watch something I can learn from or entertained by.
I see that horror, anime, comics and hip hop seem to be a main influence in your digital art, is there anything else you would like to explore or incorporate in your art?
Yeah I just love to incorporate movies, shows and artists I grew up on. I don’t have to actually be a big fan of whatever I pay some kind of homage to in my art. If it’s a successful show or some kind of cultural icon or something like that, I might create art just to see a reaction from some of their fans. Art like that help me learn and practice different styles. There’s so much different kinds of design aesthetics so why not try some instead of sticking to one particular style you know.
Speaking of hip hop- who are your top 5 lyricists?
Of this generation I gotta go with Kendrick, J Cole, Rapsody, Meek Mill and Big Sean. All time? Like the GOATS? I gotta go with Jay Z, Common, Styles P, Method Man and Black Thought.
Do you feel as though hip hop– lacks substance these days?
Absolutely not. There’s plenty of good music. Kendrick, J Cole and more are some of the biggest artists in music period. You know what I believe? I don’t think anything has changed. There’s always gonna be some bubble gum wack rappers that are big as well as lyricists that are big. The 90’s had wack shit too. The 2000’s definitely had wack shit. Like people forget while 50, Em and Luda were at the top of the game so was Ying Yang Twins. There’s always dope and wack. Right now I’m listening to J.I.D. not Lil Scumbag or any of these Lils everyone is complaining about. You know what really hurts the culture? People complaining about what they don’t like instead of promoting what they do like. Nowadays it’s these so called Hip Hop Heads that are becoming a cancer to the culture. Think about this. Tekashi69 is huge because of all the hate he gets. I forgot what story it was but I remember a story in the first grade about a troll under a bridge and when the kids ignored him he like lost his power or something like that. Hip Hop fans can’t ignore Tekashi. So if you ask me, the artists are just fine. It’s the fans promoting the weak shit with all their hate. If you want more substance in the forefront, promote it.
In the late 90’s/early 2000’s there was a hip hop/rock crossover era like with Korn and Ice Cube, Limp Bizkit and Snoop Dogg, Linkin Park and Jay-Z just to name a few collabs. Was that something that you were into?
Nah that wasn’t really my thing. I mean I watched the videos on TRL like that Limp Biskit video with Method Man was dope but most of them I wasn’t crazy about.
You’re also a music editor for BlameEbro.com for Ebro Darden from NY’s Hot 97. How did you get into that?
I’m actually not anymore the website is gone. I was the Music Editor for Ebro’s site for like two years and it started off as my very first internship. What happened was my homie Marcus, shout out AMH records in Orlando, messaged me and showed me a screenshot of Ebro’s IG post about looking for writers to cover the Grammy’s on his site. I sent a email to Gia Peppers and Marisa Mendez who ran the site and I remember them saying they loved how passionate I am. They hired me and a year later Marisa sends me a email asking me to be the Music Editor because she trusted my taste in music. The site is gone now though. Now I’m the Music Editor for HipHopDose.com. Neala G called me and told me her friend Barion McQueen has a site and believes it would be a great home for me. Make sure ya’ll like the social media pages on IG,Twitter and FB.
What’s in store and what can we expect from you in 2019?
You can expect me to step it up with everything I do. Right now I’m in this 5 year plan I made for myself. The goal is to have a strong creative career in entertainment and August is gonna be year 5. I’m ready to do everything I need to in order reach that goal and climb this ladder.
For the latest on Gosset Brown, be sure to give him a follow on Instagram @ingossitrust and make sure to check out his portfolio video below!