Hip-Hop in Harrisburg Pt. 5: C Bizzle
It’s time for another installment of Hip-Hop in Harrisburg, and this time we spotlight a local favorite and fan recommendation, C Bizzle.
Early on in this project, a friend posted a video by C Bizzle featuring MoneyManMeech to my Facebook wall. I was at work when the notification came across and I checked it out right away (during my next break, of course).
I was thrown back by what I saw — a huge, loud voice from C Bizzle featuring visuals from all over our city of Harrisburg. The opening scene features a massive piano intro, the camera approaching our capital from across the bridge while C Bizzle opens up his first verse of lyrical assault. I was immediately a fan and knew I needed to get in contact with him as a part of Hip-Hop in Harrisburg.
Check out the video for yourself and make sure you turn it up because this beat slaps!
MJ: What do you think of the sound that is coming out of Harrisburg?
CB: This city has never been this active lyrically, we’re two hours away from Philly, and we sound nothing like Philly rappers. I’ve heard people compare our sound to Atlanta too, but Harrisburg has its own sound and it just needs to be broadcast on a bigger stage. I remember back in 2010, one of my first shows, there was only a couple people that had videos out. As the years go by, more and more artists are putting videos out, being in tune with the scene and the music.
You’ve been doing this for awhile, you’ve seen this scene really start to grow. How has it grown for you?
For the longest time nobody wanted anything to do with artists, but when I put out my second CD, I rode around and sold 300 copies in a few days. It’s crazy because I’ll be walking down the street and hear people riding by listening to my music, people that I don’t know come up to me and are fans. I just started kind of playing around and now a few years down the line, it’s real crazy to see fans react to my videos and music. People are actually listening now and that motivates other artists in the area, especially a lot of the younger artists that are just starting out.
It’s been a common theme with everyone I’ve interviewed so far, is hip-hop about to break through in Harrisburg on a national or global scale?
We’ve never had that big artist from Harrisburg, we’ve had athletes but never any rappers from Harrisburg really blow up. So we all recognize that as long as we stick together, it’s going to happen. When I was down in Atlanta that is the one thing I noticed about their scene, they all stick together and that is what we have to do here in Harrisburg. There is a lot of dope talent in Harrisburg and as soon as someone that is genuine and has a good heart makes it in, it’s going to bounce through the rest of the city. I do everything I can to put Harrisburg on, I even put Middlesworth chips in my video!
How do you feel about hip-hop today, in its current state?
You can’t be one-dimensional, so I always make sure I change it up. That is not the way music is nowadays. They want to hear you rap, they want to hear you sing, they want to hear you do catchy things so you have to be more than just one-sided. You have to build it up song by song. I really don’t release too many visuals before I put my project out. I let the city tell me what tracks they like. You can hear them singing it, rapping along with it at shows, and they will tell you what the next single or the next visual needs to be.
I want to talk about “From the Hill to the U” because that video means a lot more to Harrisburg than one may first see on the surface. Tell me about how it came about.
People from different areas of the city are listening to my music. People from The Hill to Uptown are listening to this, and when you listen to the track it’s two areas of the city coming together. I feel it was a good look because there are things going on between the two areas or whatever, but when Meech reached out to me and we put this track together, it showed unity. Unity from both sides of the city in the video, rappers from both sides, it was just a good look for Harrisburg.
When you watch videos from C Bizzle, and plenty of other local artists that I’ve spoken to or have on deck to speak to, you can see they all love the city and want to see Harrisburg succeed. Not just in hip-hop but in all aspects, from education to economic success.
There are no famous rap artists from this area for kids to look up to and, guys like C Bizzle know this and want nothing more than to be able to give back to their city, to be a role model, to help guide the Harrisburg youth in the right direction.