Category Archives: Interview

Flagrant City Spotlight: Dough Van Gogh of Dirty Logan ENT [Interview + Video]

Back in September of 2019, my brother Derrick Brown, known to most by his nickname & rap moniker name of Dough Van Gogh, released a dope 4-track EP entitled Days of Rest.

This past January he released a visual single off the project, called “Pellegrino”, shot and directed by Cut-N-Shoot.

If you are a Buffalo native, you definitely may have stopped by, or at the very least, heard about the fly ass functions and parties my Dirty Logan potnas would curate solo, or in conjunction with our Juug Talk family. From Fun with Friends to Tacos & Tequila, The Brown Water BBQ, Holiday toy drives & more you’ve been influenced by this Dirty Logan wave in some way, shape or form. There’s actually a dope event coming up for Cinco de Mayo in conjunction with Juug Tall and Hip Hop Karaoke you need to definitely check out.

Today I want to officially introduce the world to the front man of Dirty Logan Entertainment, my boy, Dough Van Gogh.

Dough Van Gogh at Aunt Rosie’s in South Buffalo

Born, Derrick Brown, in the heart of Buffalo’s East Side, hip hop artist Dough Van Gogh didn’t exactly always start out rapping. Heavily influenced by player shit, money, cars, women, clothes, jewelry, eating & living good, not to mention the everyday gutter surroundings in Buffalo, the then-producer changed his style up and the rest was history.

BuffaLowe: The year was “fill in the blank” ________ when young Dough decided to pick up a mic and rap?

Dough Van Gogh: Around the end of 2010, I decided shooting videos & producing beats weren’t really for me.

It was at this moment that he decided to switch his music focus and dedicate more time to his craft and artistry as a rapper.

Dough went on to record his first nlmixtape, OJ Simpson and released it in November 2011, the same day OJ The Juice ran for 273 yards on Thanksgiving 1976 for the Buffalo Bills. With some help from Mackenzie Harris (Kenzo) and myself, Rhonda Lowe (BuffaLowe) of Flagrant City and Thomas Agnew of Jenesis Magazine, the OJ Simpson mixtape was able to get chopped and screwed by none other than Houston, Texas Chopstars DJ Slim K in April 2012.

BuffaLowe:   For as long as I’ve known you, you’ve always been Dough to me. When you started rapping your name evolved from FernanDOUGH, to Fernandough The Poet, and then finally what it is today, Dough Van Gogh- what was the significance behind the most recent change and the new identity?

Dough Van Gogh: I chose to switch names because I wanted a fresh start. Something fresh, I felt Dough Van Gogh was me, vivid with painting portraits on tracks. The narrative of Vincent Van Gogh holds similarities to my own, he wasn’t appreciated till later on in his life, really damn near after his demise. I feel like I’m doing shit people aren’t too familiar with yet but they will & they’ll be like damn you been doing your thing for real all this time.

Dough with the Dirty Logan rag

BuffaLowe:  Tell me what Dirty Logan is in your own words for those who may not know you personally or the affiliates of DL? 

Dough Van Gogh: Dirty Logan is a family & a representation of love for where you’re from. Hometown pride. Showing we have a culture out here in Buffalo too. There’s so many elements to us.

The very first Dirty Logan hosted Fun With Friends event was at Think-A-Lot Studios in May 2015 and featured other local hip hop acts such as Billie Essco, Dr. Woo, Truey V and WZA. The Fun With Friends Bonfire kicked off the next month in June 2015, Tacos With Friends in August 2015. Then Dough performed in Pittsburgh, PA at Boom Concepts in conjunction with Jenesis Magazine for the August Agenda in late August 2015. The Fun With Friends event series now had some traction. To this day you can turn up at a dope Dirty Logan function in Buffalo. They just did a kick back mixer event with Juug Talk for Mardi Gras.

BuffaLowe:  What single, feature or project means the most to you right now and why?  Which one speaks most to where you are right now? 

Dough Van Gogh: I would say Days of Rest, definitely. I’m just talking my shit about my day to day ups & downs. Shit me & the homies going through, being genuine. Loving the shit we’re up to & striving for more.

BuffaLowe:  How would you say your style has evolved since you first started doing music?  Flow, beat selection, method of recording? 

Dough Van Gogh: I’d say that I’m more open to telling my story & things I’m doing. Not worried about feedback & others opinions, just doing what feels & sounds right to me. My ear is sharper I know what fits & what doesn’t, wasting less time on shit thats forced. Real comfortable. On my player shit.

BuffaLowe:  Who or what influences your craft?  What motivates Dough Van Gogh?

Dough Van Gogh: I’m honestly influenced by player shit, money, cars, women, clothes, jewelry, eating & living good, the homies, my surroundings etc.

BuffaLowe:  How was 2019 creatively & musically for you? Any personal or professional accolades and accomplishments,  that you would like to mention, feel free to talk yo shit one time.  What did you release (events, performances, merch, singles, videos, EPs, albums) and what can we expect the rest of this year?

Dough Van Gogh: 2019 was real good. Eye opening. I’ve seen what being consistent & moving around can get you & the positions you can find yourself in. Dropping projects after projects I’ve seen the support step up so that’s definitely in my formula for this year just more & more, music & videos. Merchandise too, the creative eye enhanced, people feeling damn near everything, so I’m stepping up there too. The gang just out to bring a new energy & experience from Buffalo, that cool player shit. It’s around but it needs more of light shined on it. Trust it’s more niggas out on that type of time & the ladies feeling it- opposed to everyone forcing shit they aint.

BuffaLowe: Damn right Dough, damn right. Make sure you follow Dough Van Gogh on Spotify, Twitter, Instagram, Apple Music! He released the Pellegrino video single this year, the solo projects Round 2 EP, Days of Rest dropped towards the end of 2019, along with a few collaboration projects, one with Don! called Situations and a group project with Don! And Needo Stakkz entitled Player Shit Vol. 1.

BuffaLowe Baddies: Redd Roxx of 93.7 WBLK in Atlanta March 5th!!! Calling all artists!

BuffaLowe Baddie Bae Redd Roxx from 93.7 WBLK will be in Atlanta, GA on March 5th to network with Atlanta’s hottest, dopest and most talented artists!

Mark your calendars for this date which is a Thursday and follow her on social media using the following handle: @radioreddroxx on IG and Twitter!

Jacket: ShopRhondaJane.com

Contact: djlnyce@gmail.com today to be featured on a video interview with Redd Roxx, have your music sent to over 30,000 music professionals via the Secret Society DJs Network, along with social media promotion as well on Thursday, March 5th, 2020 in Atlanta, Georgia!

Flagrant City Spotlight: A Therapeutic Sit Down With So EZ about Sangria5, Therapy Hour + Therapy [Interview]

Back in July of this year, a good friend of mine, Malcolm Edwards, who goes by the rap moniker name of So EZ, released a dope album entitled Therapy.

If you’re local to Los Angeles, you may have stopped by, or at the very least, heard about a fire ass day party event called So EZ Sundays that ran from around the end of 2016 and 2018 that used to be held at the Comfort LA downtown location (food is amazing by the way)!

He got the juice (Sangria5), no seriously that’s his Sangria brand that would sponsor the parties and he’d sell bottles and cups at almost every function. A couple DJ homies and royalty from my hometown of Buffalo, New York – which is where I crossed paths with this Cleveland, OH creative cat, even stopped through and blessed the wheels or were in attendance at some point: DJ Slim Gus, DJ TJizzle, DJ Tiger, Venzella Joy & Vidie. What a time to be in Los Angeles the fun was guaranteed, the weed was always lit & the feels were cozy. We even met Teddy Ray Comedy at one of the parties it was that type of kickback turn up vibe. Cool as fuck. Dope as fuck. Historic as fuck.

Pictured: So EZ, BuffaLowe (Rhonda Jane), Chan showing some Dirty Logan & Good Ol’ Dank love at So EZ Sundays 1 Year Anniversary event in 2017 at Comfort LA.

Chan & BuffaLowe (Rhonda Jane) at So EZ Sundays 1 Year Anniversary event in 2017 at Comfort LA.

Chan of Good Ol’ Dank & Comedian Teddy Ray

Pictured: Vidie, DJ TJizzle, DJ Tiger, Venzella Joy, DJ Slim Gus, BuffaLowe, So EZ + Sangria 5

Getting back to the hot, 10-track summer release by So EZ, Therapy.

This project is very raw, eclectic, upbeat and passionate. EZ decided to take us on his personal journey as a young Black male attending therapy sessions via his music.

A few of my own personal favorite songs off the album are listed below.

BuffaLowe’s Picks off Therapy: Go Live feat. Jimmy Hustle, Pray For the Gang and All My Niggaz.

The outcome of this album was pure bravery, genius and innovation. Laying it all out there and being so relatable to so many others who can’t express these thoughts or feelings.

Fast forward to now, in November, almost 5 months later, Therapy has taken on more of a prominent role in all facets of So EZ’s life.

Read our exclusive interview below to learn more about the reception of this album, upcoming events and new merchandise with So EZ!

BuffaLowe: How do you feel about the overall reception regarding the release of your most recent project “Therapy” that came out in July!? What feedback have you gotten from listeners and fans?

EZ: The response from my album Therapy has been dope. I pay attention to the details. I don’t have the greatest streaming numbers but the overall response from this project is more than I could ask for. When you have people say things like “bro I felt like you was talking to me on that track” or “your music helped me when I was going through a tough time”, “Your project made me think about going to therapy.” What more can I want?

EZ: I used the project to let out emotions and feelings that I didn’t know how to verbalize in a conversation. If you listen to the project I’m rapping but everything is saying something. My words are speaking, the instruments are speaking. Sometimes the instruments are screaming.

I go to therapy and have an amazing Black woman as my therapist but I needed this project to free my mind of a lot of things. My ultimate goal is to help more men feel more comfortable with talking about their issues, especially Black men. We deal with so many things that we classify as normal, but it’s not.

I want people to realize that just as much as you go to the gym for your physical appearance or strength we need to do that much maintenance on our minds. I could’ve named the album anything but I thought Therapy made the most sense. My thought was maybe people will see the word “therapy” and it might make them say “maybe I should try it”.

BuffaLowe: I’ve seen you began facilitating more mental health workshops lately. What is Therapy Hour and why did you start this particular event?

So EZ’s Therapy Hour at Comfort LA Inglewood last month in October 2019

EZ: I began going to therapy in March 2018. It helped a lot – Therapy Hour is an event I created that takes place at the new Inglewood Comfort LA. It’s two hours of conversation facilitated by Krystyl Wright, L.C.S.W doing journaling and mindfulness exercises that are fun and challenging.

I wanted to create something where people could come together and realize they might not be the only people going through the shit they are going through. Therapy Hour is somewhere people can write their thoughts down.

Sometimes I feel it’s easier to do these things with a group. I want people to build the habit of taking care of their mental health. We aim to provide people with information on finding a therapist as well. Especially Black people who are looking for a Black therapist. We are still building information and resources. It’s is not, however a substitute for therapy.

BuffaLowe: When is your next follow up Therapy event?

So EZ: The next Therapy Hour event is next week, Thursday, November 14th from 7-9PM at the Comfort L.A. Inglewood location! The address is 902 N La Brea Ave Inglewood, CA 90302.

I got merch dropping before the end of the year hopefully (Laughs). It’s been a two year process trying to get it right. But we’re at the finish line. I’m a true creative I’m not dropping shit until I’m 97% satisfied because I’ll never be satisfied. Content yes but not satisfied. If that makes any sense and I’m dropping another album this coming summer.

I also have the best beverage in the world called Sangria 5. Stop drinking that weak ass dry wine the sister-in-law you don’t like make and drink Sangria 5 for the holidays! (Laughs).

BuffaLowe: You right about that EZ, You right about that (Black Dynamite tone)!

Follow @sangriafive on IG!

Sangria Five is Good Ol’ Dank Approved

Please be sure to take a moment to follow So EZ and all of his brands on Instagram!

@iamsoez

@soezsundays

@sangriafive

@comfort_la

Flagrant City Spotlight: A Conversation with Don! [Interview]

Photo by: Adrian Javon

 

Lowe: First off, I appreciate you taking the time to do this interview with me!  Your visual single “Ok Love” feat. Jon P is beautiful. The vibe is pure and the storyline seems so familiar.  Is it attached to an upcoming project of yours? I’ve only heard you by way of Dirty Logan artist, Dough (Dough Van Gogh). Also, what was the message you were trying to convey in this video?

Don!: It’s truly a blessing to be recognized for my art. I definitely appreciate you for taking the time out to check me out and allow me to promote myself via your platform. Thank you.

“Ok Love” was partly inspired by a friend Kay Hudgins. She embodies characteristics of a women chasing her dreams. I created the song to help motivate women of all walks of life to keep striving and keep going. Continue your pursuit no matter what. I have many friends who can relate too making big moves with little knowledge of what’s to come next. I wanted to be that “keep going” voice in my own way you know. I linked up with Joe P. (Guitarist) who provided the strings and KZA K’ Lee (Producer) who engineered the vision. Together we created a vibe.

The video was inspired by the show “You”. Less stalkerish more admiration. It gives that feel that I see you winning just being awesome and I desire to be close to that type of energy and vibe. It was filmed in Dumbo, Brooklyn. The creative direction of Kay Hudgins and Directed by Mal_2da brought the video to life.

It will be featured on an upcoming  collaboration project featuring myself and Joe P. Produced by KZA!

Watch the video below:

Lowe: If people don’t already know you from singing fly hooks for Dirty Logan’s frontman, Dough Van Gogh, how would you describe yourself and your music style?

Don! & Dough Van Gogh in Washington DC at Rosebar DC for Broccoli Fest

Don!: That’s my Dawg (Dough)! Situations EP featuring myself & Dough and Player Made Vol. 1 featuring myself, Needo Stakkz & Dough is also out now. Check that out!

Situations EP – Dough Van Gogh & Don! Orig. release March 2019

Player Made Vol. 1 – Dough Van Gogh, Don!, Needo Stakkz Orig. release July 2018

Don!: As far as my music I would describe myself as a vibe dealer. By that I mean I create soley off of my vibe in any particular situation. I express myself through melodies. I have a chill cool feel too my music with a background in rap and poetry so it’s easier too construct verses and hooks with clever word play. A lot of times I freestyle it just feels right you know, it’s like the words just come to me and I can’t hear it any other way.

Lowe: When did you first get started singing or when did you actually start taking it serious?

Don!: I’ve been making music here and there for some time now. Dating back to middle school/high school. From a myspace hit (locally), to random songs created in dorm room closets, traphouse studios,  or via bandlab on my phone, I’ve always been into music. I would say a rack of people including My mom, sister, Big Homie Ty, Black, Dough, Kenzo, Needo, Fitts, J Dub, Joe P., anybody I ever had a freestyle session with and Big Ups to KZA, all pushed me to really just stop playing and get more aggressive with the moves.

After hitting the studio to record Player Made Vol 1., I knew the time was now. So I locked in and really worked to define my sound and now I feel I’m at the point where I can just create and push.

Photo by: Adrian Javon

Lowe: I feel that. Who inspired/inspires your art?

Don!: People, society, vibes, moods, anything really. I love just people watching. Everyone has a story. The awesome part of creating is you creative based off of perception. I’m not biased or one sided so when I create I look at all perspectives involved in what I find interesting. For example if I write about flowers I have to talk about the soil, the sun, the weeds everything that makes the flower whole. Paint a picture. Like Dough said ” I spit an image to the bald head” creating a vivid detail of a vibe.

Lowe: What’s next on the agenda for Don!?

Don!: What’s next for me, a lot to say the least. Collaboration projects, shows outta town, more interviews, more artistic energy. I have a lot planned. Right now I’m focused on solidifying myself as a brand. Finishing up “Vibe Dealer” my debut solo EP which drops later this year, hopefully sometime in September.

My new single “Melanin Wonder” is from the upcoming album an drops this month. It’s an, acoustic based collaboration album with Joe P.

Upcoming album Melanin Wonders featuring Joe P.

Just heavy promo real heavy. Like after the club handing out flyers heavy. The biggest thing is to connect with the people on a personal level. Face to face interactions. Social media is a beautiful thing but I want to take it back to that street team type promo.

Lowe: I always say word of mouth promotion is a valuable, yet lost form of hustle. You’re definitely on the right track taking it back to the essence.

Don!: Thank you for the love you’ve shown thus far. It means a lot to me. I will continue to keep the vibes going. Special shout out to all of those who believe in me. Aye Mom we on blogs now, we getting bigger! As always “You know how it go, keep it moving like jeep wranglers in the snow you dig me!”

We dig it Don. We dig it.

Be sure to keep up with Don on Instagram by following him at @taylorport_papi!

BuffaLowe Says: FC Exclusive with ‪Deja Lawson, ‬Owner of Brahma Body Butter [INTERVIEW]

Combing social media on a regular day at the beginning of this month of May, a post on Twitter caught my eye. It was someone sharing a post about some good looking body butter, so I floated around to locate the source of the original tweet and I soon found out, it was Deja’s Brahma Body Butter who happens to hail from my hometown of Buffalo, New York.

I’m huge on natural and holistic health and wellness so I was very curious to learn a bit more about Brahma Body Butter and Deja’s path to start this type of business.

Read our exchange below:

BuffaLowe: First of all thank you for taking time out to chat with Flagrant City.  Please introduce yourself to our readers and followers and let the people know who you are and what it is that you do!

Deja: Hello and thank you for giving me this opportunity to chat with you about my amazing Brahma Body Butter! My name is Deja Lawson, I am 24 years old and I currently live in Buffalo, NY.

I am a full time abstract artist, certified holistic crystal and aura healer, cat mom and body butter maker!

When did you realize you had a passion for a holistic lifestyle and how has that journey to good health been for you?

My love for holistic healing came from wanting to create a better lifestyle not only for myself but for my family and those around me. My mother and aunts have always been into holistic healing, creating creams, flu shots and cleanses all from plants and spices so naturally I was taught to heal others which caused me to be inspired.

Holistic therapy and healing has been around for many years, not only in my family but around the world, and with new products coming out that smell good but were chemical based, I feared holistic healing would disappear or just be another trend, so its something I wanted to bring back for good.

For whom did you create this product and why?

I created my fabulous body butter due to my sibling’s skin reacting badly to chemical based lotions and moisturizers that he had been using, which caused severe eczema.

Why is your product so special, and what ingredients do you use that set you apart in this field?

Instead of opting for another chemical based topical cream to seek relief for my brothers inflamed skin, I decided to reach into my bag of old tricks and knowledge and create a moisturizer that would be safe, chemical free, organic, GMO free and all natural.

My Brahma Body Butter is extremely special, using fair trade Shea Butter that not only gives back to our skin, but gives back to those in Ghana that harvest this beautiful moisturizer, fair trade Cocoa Butter, Hemp Oil, Rosehip oil, Jojoba Oil and mixed essential oils creating a cruelty and paraben free product.

This moisturizer is quite different from other body butters because each jar is blessed with certified crystal therapy, using my personal cleansed crystals placed on the lid of each finished jar, burning sage and palo santo, letting the smoke pass through with pure intentions of love, beauty, healing and relief from all skin issues.

What piece of advice would you offer to other young people pursuing their dream to own their own business?

A piece of advice I’d give to young entrepreneurs creating their own business is to never give up. Ever. If you have an idea and you believe in it then put your whole heart into it, even if people tell you your idea won’t work or you should give up (like I had many people tell me!), keep going.

When your intention is clear and your energy is real, you can create anything you put your mind to. What you think is truly what you manifest, it all starts in the mind…

What’s next in store for yourself and your brand?

What’s next for me, is to keep spreading knowledge and education about living a more natural lifestyle, starting with what we put onto our skin, setting up my products in educational workshops and demos, smoke shops, botanical and black owned businesses.

I can’t wait to create new products through the Brahma Body Butter line, including CBD oil infused butters and much much more!

You’re a girl after my own heart looking to incorporate CBD oil into your butters soon. I’m not sure if you know but I have two cannabis lifestyle brands, Rhonda Jane & The Dope Mom Lifestyle Collective that advocates for the benefits of this plant. Hopefully we can work together and support each other in these endeavors. It was so great speaking with you Deja and learning more about you and your budding business, Brahma Body Butter!

Thank you again, àṣẹ !!!

Right now you can order Brahma Body Butter through Deja’s online Etsy shop here: brahmabodybutter, through her personal Instagram @dejas.photos or her business Instagram @brahmabodybutter!

#womenwithgoals June 2018 Success Feature – Rhonda J. Lowe of BuffaLowe PR, Flagrant City + Rhonda Jane [Interview]

Screenshot-2018-6-20 June 2018

Thank you to Women With Goals for selecting and interviewing me for their June 2018 Success Feature.  Sometimes it’s hard not being recognized for you efforts and strides in your career field, mines being journalism, entertainment media and PR.  It was extremely refreshing to be highlighted and acknowledged, in addition to being able to share my experiences with others.

To view the full interview, please take a moment to visit the #WWG website here: https://women-with-goals.org/sf/rlowe/

-BuffaLowe

Issa Interview: The Othrz

Last month I had the pleasure of interviewing the musical duo Reginald (Sir Michael Prince) and Stephon (K- Swift) that are known as The Othrz about their recently released self-titled EP. We talked about their creative processes, inspirations and motivations. Enjoy their insights!

Here’s a quick key so y’all can follow:

Q: Question

K: K-Swift

R: Reggie

 

Q: How did you to meet and begin working together ?

K: We met when we were both 15 years old, have known each other for over ten years and have been working together three years.

R: We wanted to work with more people and were planning on collaborating with other artist but it didn’t work out- that’s how we came up with the name ‘The Othrz’.

Q: what is your creative process?

K: (Our) Creative process to make music is to make people feel good. I pick sounds that sound new and just living in that moment of creating what comes to us.

R: It all depends for me and the feel. I listened to the beat for ‘Don’t let me fall” for four months before writing the lyrics and freestyled “Ride”

K: yea, depends on the vibe.. Quick back story on “Can We” the first song on the Ep:

I went on a date to the Albright Art museum, myself and my date were walking around not feeling anything we were seeing. Then we stopped and looked at this picture I called it “love and cautious” just from feel of its wild colors. When I got home I began working on the beat inspired from it from 8pm to 2am and from 2 am on I wrote the lyrics then called Reggie. It turns out the name of the piece was conversions, which means a place where two places meet and that’s what this was: The correlation of art and music. The beauty of creating something out of no where and having someone years later relate to it. When you creative inspiration in you it comes out randomly.

R: For me it’s speaking your truth. In my life I put people ahead of me but now I need to look out for me. Because if you are not cool with yourself, if you are not right within you not going to be able to relate or be with anyone.“In my arms” was inspired by that beginning phase of a relationship, just when it starts up and being true in that.

Q: What keeps you motivated and going musically ?

K: My passion for music. I like so many different artist of all genres, languages – if it feels good and sounds good. It doesn’t matter to me if people like it, but how I felt making it keeps me going that feeling I have making it and I’m open with doing it. Don’t put yourself in a box. Timberland and Pharrell inspire me, watching them and how they’ve changed, its fun.

R: growing up around the way you see everyone doing the same thing. I didn’t want to grow up and be average. I was surrounded by artists – my brothers, uncles, they all were in it. I looked up to Usher, Michael Jackson, Miguel, I knew and saw that words had such an impact. I cant move or function without music. I just kept pushing, moving and hanging around the right people, like minded individuals.

Q: Any last remarks ..?

K: If Anyone is ready or looking for work, we’re here!

If you haven’t check out there latest EP, check it out Here !