For years, Xzibit transformed whips for lucky fans across the nation. However, this time, he is honoring one die-hard football fan with the ultimate fan cave and even tapped artificial intelligence to do so.
The musician, who served as the face of MTV’s “Pimp My Ride,” is a fan of the way technology has evolved, allowing entertainers to have a personal experience with fans across the globe.
The Evolution Of Tech
“There’s a lot of advantages that artists have today that we didn’t have coming up,” said Xzibit to AfroTech. “When we first started there was a middleman, in my opinion, between the fans and the artists. And that was dictated by multiple factors. Whether you go to two million to five million to ten million people was dependent upon the machine you had behind you. With technology, there is no middleman, you can go directly to your fans.”
But... There's Still Room For Improvement
As an artist whose been independent for quite some time, Xzibit is on board with the new way consumers are able to access music. Yet, he notes that while it can be very beneficial for other artists who take the unconventional route, there are still some things that need to be sorted out to make it a more seamless, creator-friendly process.
“The streaming aspect … I’m on the fence about that. For an artist to work hard and spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on an album and then, you know, get half a penny for each stream, it seems kind of lopsided. I think that needs to be worked out a little more,” he told AfroTech.
Still, Xzibit is grateful for all of the opportunities he’s been exposed to through his love of the craft.
Where It All Started
“I appreciate the accolades that ‘Pimp My Ride’ brought to my career and then in turn, what it did for people like yourself that really enjoyed the show,” Xzibit also told AfroTech.
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“The basis of [the show] was wish fulfillment. I’ve stayed away and veered away from that even though, since the show’s end, everyone comes around each year trying to reprise that show,” he explained. “You may have noticed that I kind of stayed away from it because I felt like we put something out there and kind of started the whole genre of makeover shows and series of that caliber. “
Back To The Basics
Now, Xzibit is going back to the basics for Lewis Lazarus, a beloved Los Angeles Rams fan who has supported his team for eight decades.
According to a blog post, Amazon tapped the rapper “to trick out” Lazarus’ fan cave, which is conveniently located in his apartment.
“Lewis is what sealed the deal for me because he’s a 92-year-old gentleman that doesn’t have much family or any family whatsoever. He views the Rams as his family now and he’s not able to get to the stadium as much as he’d like to,” Xzibit explained.
He also added: “This was a perfect opportunity to do something that I felt was the basis of what made ‘Pimp My Ride Work,’ and that’s doing something for someone who can’t do it for themselves.”
"Alexa, Trick Out My Fan Cave"
Although Lewis reaped the benefits of a completely, decked-out fan cave, the 47-year-old rapper reveals that he was blown away when learning all of the features that come equipped with Amazon’s Alexa, a device he has used for years simply to set timers and play music.
“So, I gotta say something, Alexas is not a ‘she,'” said Xzibit before diving into all of the features he learned about the platform. “It has no gender, that’s something I learned immediately while getting briefed about the project.”
“I [also] didn’t know that Alexa was programmable — that you can ask specific questions like, ‘Who’s the number one Rams fan?’ and it’ll actually say, ‘Lewis Lazarus,'” he recalled. “You can also program it to provide you with the full game day experience — to find facts and all that stuff. I mean I have one at home, but I used to just play music and use it as a timer. I’ve learned a lot more about Alexa since taking on this project.”
More From Xzibit
Before releasing his next album, “King Maker,” Xzibit is returning to his roots and enlisting the aforementioned machine to give his day ones the musical experience he says that they deserve.
“Before I release [the album], I am going to knock on a couple of doors, take a couple of meetings, because I believe that my fan base deserves that kind of machine behind it,” he shared. “I feel really confident about this music. So, there will be a new album coming out called ‘Kingmaker.’ So, keep your eyes open.”
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