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Hip-Hop Headquarters Holds Court with CUSCINO - An Exclusive Interview with
Los Angeles producer/deejay CUSCINO sits down with Hip Hop Headquarters

Atlanta, GA December 3, 2015

What inspired you to get into music?
I’ve always been a music fan and audiophile, but also a creator at heart. So at a very young age I was already both figuring out how to create my own music, but also picking apart, analyzing and enjoying all the bands, artists and MCs I loved as a fan…I was probably barely 12 at this stage.

What’s the first hiphop song you ever heard? Describe the moment.
Man, I had to dig deep and really think about this one. I remember I was watching MTV in the early days (when they played music, remember that?)…so the one that sticks out to me is Public Enemy’s “Fight the Power”. I remember that, amongst several other visuals for songs that had a lasting impression on me because of how they enhanced the song and took it to another level — there was attitude, rawness and they were really saying something unlike a lot of the bullshit people are talking these days. I was ingesting so much music even then, but that track was something that set me on a course, coupled with my many other influences… Metallica’s “Enter Sandman” was another “first” one I have to give a shoutout to because it had just as much of an impact.

How did you connect with Nuutrino?
He and I met at Private Island Studios in Los Angeles — where some truly legendary albums were recorded, like Bone Thugs’ E. 1999, so this place is holy ground to me. I was in the studio there as I was producing a couple tracks for a mutual friend/MC we both knew who goes by “Neil Pico.” We were dropping the vocal tracks, and Nuutrino happened to work there (though I didn’t know that at the time). He just showed up in between takes, said wassup to Neil, and sat down next to me. While I was waiting on some mic changes, he and I got to talking. The energy coming off him was visible to me, and he came in because he heard the tracks knocking against the studio walls. It came up that he was an MC, so I asked him to play me some stuff as I typically do (always keep my ears to the streets for new, unique artists to work with) and it was 100% dope. He had a deeper vision, and had something to say, while his influences from the strongest periods in hip-hop that I grew up on was evident in his flow and approach. We had to do something together, that was clear to both of us. Eventually, I sent him some tracks, and he followed through with speed and precision, and laced the tracks like a pro…and because my production style is a little left of center, I challenged him, and he came back with flows and hooks that I absolutely loved. Fast forward to present day, and we’ve got 4 bangers in the hopper, the first one of which is “Saucy” feat. J-Doe (Conglomerate) and Troy NoKA (RocNation). And there’s more in the works as we’re putting together a proper release for him that’s dropping in a few months on my label, Fashion Sells Musiq (

How did the song come together?
Nuutrino and I were at the Alcove Recording Studios in North Hollywood getting ready to rehearse for my upcoming set at Backwoods Music Festival... [Read the full interview here]