Neopopsicle on the Sensual Inspiration of "Take Control": "At That Time, I was Extremely Horny"
New Times: What was your childhood like?
Neopopsicle:Miserable. Because I as always trying to figure it out. What's the meaning of things? Why do I feel this way? Why am I so unhappy? Why is music the only relief I get? At a very young age too. Seven. Eight. I mean, I grew up on welfare in the hood, public housing.
Tell me about the aunt who taught you how to bleach your skin.
One day I was like, "I hate my dark knees," and she was like, "I have a remedy for that. Just get some bleach and a little bit of lemon and you just scrub your knees and they'll get lightened by time." And I think that's very detrimental to tell a child that.
It's more of an ignorance thing that some people, we either want to embrace our ethnicity but not our race. I think that's where the issue with her comes into play, where she sees herself as her ethnicity and doesn't pay attention to any kind of racial background she has.
How long did that go on for?
Our whole lives. Since we were kids. Five. Six. Seven. They started calling us "nigger kids" on the slide as a joke. They thought it was funny. And then little things, like that she would tell me do this for that.
Describe a breakup.
The last real, real relationship I ever had was about four and a half years ago and, God that was bad. Not dramatic, but the pain of feeling like you're divorcing someone because I was with this man for four years.
It felt horrible. It felt like my heart fell out of my ass. Like someone ripped my heart out because your best friend is no longer your best friend. And although it was mutual and it was respectful, I'm not slashing anybody's tires or busting anybody's windows for no reason, it was mutual but it hurt like hell.
How do you pick up the pieces to a broken heart?
You don't. You never do. It's sort of like regeneration. Your heart regenerates itself. The pieces that have been shed, they stay there, and they're there for a reason. It's kind of like footprints in the past. You see them there until your mind feels it so that you no longer see them anymore.
When did you feel great in your own skin?
Twenty-three, because my mom had put me through a lot in my life. I've been living alone and independent since I was 18. I remember that day, June 28. I packed my stuff right after I graduated high school, and I left to college and I never really looked back.
We grew up not having anything, and so being independent for that long, I really had to figure it out at some point. And when I graduated, and I was living alone in Boca, one day I sat down and was like, "You know what? I'm actually happy with myself. I'm happy with my life. I don't let don't let what others say affect me anymore." And I'm OK with that. I'm OK to keep my mother distant, to keep my mother's family distant from me, to have positive relationship with my brothers and to choose to be happy.
When you have a song like "Take Control," it doesn't seem like you shy away from your sexual nature. How does that come out?
The production itself told me to write that. I never preconceive a song. I listen to the track and I'm like, "Ok. This is what it's telling me to write." And at that time, I was extremely horny. I was going on eight months of having no sex because I'm so anal about that, man.
Anal about what?
I want to have one partner and be extremely attracted to him intellectually, emotionally, sexually and just devour him in all kinds of ways. I don't want to sleep around with a whole bunch of different people. I feel there's no way for you to really become comfortable in your own skin when you sleep around. But do to anything and everything with one person, it just creates this carnal, like that need to procreate.
Describe the line "My dark knight rides white lines shooting up the stars" in your "Red Lights."
"Red Lights" was written when I was cheated on a year and a half ago, and 3 A.M. started from there. The person I was in a relationship with is an artist as well. It's a metaphor for shooting up coke, and being high thinking that's part of the whole artist image. But that person doesn't do coke. It's just a metaphor for chasing after the dream and doing what you see other people doing to reach fame, and that's what I saw this person doing. He constantly needed attention given to him to validate himself as an artist.
Why has it taken so long to release 3 AM?
Life. Because a lot of people don't want to be honest with themselves. Being in your 20s, having two degrees and not having the best job in the world. Not having that much money. Not having daddy's credit card or mommy's pay check. Being an independent person in this world in your 20s right now where we're al fucked with student loans and Sally Mae giving it to us. I've just been living and trying to survive and trying to stay levelheaded, and when you're trying to put up a project the right way, pay to have it mixed and mastered, and to have the presentation done professionally, because if you give one ounce of shit about your craft you want to present it the right way.
Do you know when 3 AM will be released?
It should be here by the summer. If not, fuck it. There's no rush. Not to me.Follow Lee Castro on Twitter @LeeMCastro.