You probably know them as the “Dougie Boys”, but trust me, they are more than just that. Cali Swag District, from Inglewood, California, has already made an impact on the music scene and they JUST released their debut album. The sad news is that they are one member short from when they first started. M-Bone, Cali Swag District’s Mante “M-Bone” Talbert, was shot to death on May 15th, 2011. And despite their tragic loss, the guys are moving forward and doing their damnedest to preserve M-Bone’s memory.
Danity Donnaly had the chance to chat with the guys from Cali Swag District about the loss of their friend, their response to M-Bone’s family and their debut album.
DANITY: Wow. What a bitter sweet year it has been for you guys and your debut album isn’t even out yet. Teach Me How To Dougie has been amazingly successful for you and we’ll get to that in a minute. But first and foremost I have to offer you my condolences on the loss of M Bone. I can’t even imagine how you guys must be feeling, especially since his death is still pretty fresh in your minds and hearts. How have you been able to move forward as a group?
CSD: It’s been really hard, and it hurts a lot. We just try to stay strong and focused, and use each other for strength to keep on going. We tell each other that we have to go hard for our brother. Bone would want us to.
DANITY: I know there have been some comments from M-Bone’s family that I have to ask you about. From what it sounds like, some members of his family are pointing fingers at C-Smoov and criticizing the way that he handled witnessing M-Bone being shot by allegedly “leaving the scene”. M-Bone’s uncle Tony Talbert said that he felt you didn’t show any remorse as you all went out to eat after hearing of his death. He was quoted as saying, “I want C-Smoov, JayAre, and Yung to think if the shoe was on the other foot, Monte’ would have done everything he could have possibly done. He would not have left that scene, trust me. He would have not have seen one of the other members get shot-or been shot and leave.” What do you have to say to that?
CSD: There is a pending investigation, and we can’t comment on what did and didn’t happen that night. What we can say is that Bone was like a brother to us, and we miss him everyday.
DANITY: Granted, he wasn’t a prime vocalist/rapper in your group, but he still had an important role in Cali Swag District. Can you fill us all in on how he completed the group? Also will you guys be looking for an alternate member or are you going to continue moving forward as a trio?
CSD: No one could ever replace Mbone. He was all energy…always “turnt up.” Every time we got on the stage he just brought that spark. He was always the life of the party.
DANITY: Your album Kickback is out NOW and I have heard that you are all paying tribute to M-Bone through the release of this album. Can you explain what you will be doing to honor him?
CSD: Coming out with the album, and moving forward as a group is how we honor him. Montae wouldn’t want anything to stop us from what we’re doing as a group, so whether it’s performing, signing autographs, or recording we will approach everything the way Montae would want us to…giving a hundred percent just like he would.
DANITY: Teach Me How to Dougie. Wow. What a badass jam! And essentially M-Bone was the one to teach us all to dougie with his swag moves! How exactly did this concept come about and what made you decide to release this as your first single? Did you have a say in what was to be your first single?
CSD: The Dougie was already a dance from down south, and after a friend of ours told us about the dance we decided to write a rap about it. TMHTD was just one of the many concepts we were working on in the studio. It became the single because it was really catchy and seemed to stick with people so we shot a video for it and the rest is history.
DANITY: Now while your “Dougie” track is defining you at this moment, how do you plan on being referred to more than just the “Dougie” boys?
CSD: We’ll let our music speak for itself. Check out our album “The Kickback,” and you will definitely see that we are more than the “dougie boys.”
DANITY: What was the favorite part of this album creation for you?
CSD: There’s nothing like being in the studio. This is when we’re most creative. Coming up with concepts, rhymes, hooks…this is always the best part.
DANITY: Who, musically, do you look up to?
CSD: Too many to name, but just to mention a few: Jay Z, 50 cent, Snoop, E40
DANITY: Is there a tour in the near future?
CSD: Right now we’re just doing a lot of performances, and interviews to promote the album. There is talk of a tour this fall, but nothing we can announce just yet.
These guys are the REAL deal, peeps! Check out their new album “Kickback” now!
For more on the Cali Swag District and to snag up their new album “Kickback” check out their official site here.
Follow them on Twitter here.
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