Meet THAT DUDE DAX, a Houston Hip Hop Phenom Who Freestyles While Driving American Songwriter

americansongwriter March 12, 2021 hip hop 33
Meet THAT DUDE DAX, a Houston Hip Hop Phenom Who Freestyles While Driving  American Songwriter

2020 was a good year for THAT DUDE DAX, a.k.a. rising hip hop artist and freestyle phenom Drew Axelrod. The Houston musician dropped a steady flow of

Meet THAT DUDE DAX, a Houston Hip Hop Phenom Who Freestyles While Driving Meet THAT DUDE DAX, a Houston Hip Hop Phenom Who Freestyles While Driving by Matt Wallock March 12, 2021, 7:50 am 2020 was a good year for THAT DUDE DAX a.k.a. rising hip hop artist and freestyle phenom Drew Axelrod. The Houston musician dropped a steady flow of singles last year, but none of them took off quite like his debut track Gone,a laid-back party anthem that finds Axelrod finishing this drink in my cup and tripping as I exit the club as he heads home with a girl he just met. THAT DUDE DAX is sharing a new music video for Gone. Featured below, its his first official music video to date. The vision for this video was really put together by Live2and their team, Axelrod tells American Songwriter over email. It tells the story of hook ups on drunk nights and how that cycle plays out, time and time again. Its like hooking up for the hell of it even though theres no real connection with the person youre going home with at the end of the night. Its really a cool twist of the song This was my first music video experience and it was definitely eye-opening, he continues. You dont really understand how much work goes into it all until youre a part of one. It took 10-12 hours to film the video for a song that is under three minutes long. So many people worked hard to make it happen and Im grateful for the Live2 team and everyone else who had a hand in this project. Ive never really been one to like having cameras on me, which is something Im having to get over. Im self-conscious in a lot of ways and just being on camera makes me uncomfortable. It was a great experience though. Axelrod started writing Gone behind the wheel. I wrote this song because it gave me a chance to look back on the fun times Ive had these past several years, he recalls. I was driving around listening to instrumentals and freestyling and was thinking about all the fun times I had in college. My college experiences were really the influence for this song. It was just a fun way to reflect on everything and to tell my story. The Montgomery, Texas native initially recorded the song in his room, then brought it to Houstons Barron Studios for a more professional sound, he says. I actually lost my voice the day before my scheduled studio time and almost cancelled because of how bad it was. For Axelrod, the song brings him right back to blurry nights out. I went to school at Texas A&M University, so Northgate (the bar district) is where I spent most of my time when it came to nightlife, but I also took several trips to 6th Street in Austin, Texas, and now I currently live in downtown Houston, he shares. The title Gone, he adds, has a double meaninggone as in drunk or faded and also gone as in Im leaving the bar with a girl. I really just wanted to make something people could relate and vibe to I wanted it to be fun, authentic, and something that told listeners more about where I come from. Axelrod is especially proud of the songs lyrics. I really like the wordplay I used in the verses, he says. Thats what makes writing songs fun to me. I feel like thats where I can really be creative with it. Some examples: Walk through this bitch and its feeling like Haiti in 2010 back when that shit was shaking. This compared the feeling of being drunk to the devastating earthquakes in Haiti. I wasnt trying to make light of a disaster like that, but I felt like it was such a descriptive comparison that people would be able to visualize what it was like for me in the clubs. Got a sack of the green like its Watt on the play versus Philly on 3rd down. This one flew over most peoples heads I think, but its probably my favorite use of wordplay in the song. In this line Im using JJ Watt (Houston Texans Defensive player) getting a sack against the Philadelphia Eagles (whose colors are green) to describe weed at the house once we got home from the bars. Gone came together the same way that most THAT DUDE DAX tracks come together. I come up with most of my songs when Im by myself driving, says Axelrod. I spend a lot of time behind the wheel for work, so Ill throw on an instrumental and freestyle about whatever is on my mind at the time. I keep notes in my phone and will add to it whenever I come up with a catchy hook or bars that I dont want to forget. Once I have a pretty good idea of the song, Ill work on it and clean it up at my house before taking it to the studio. The Houston artist is just as likely to cite country musicians and hip hop artists as influences. I listen to so many genres and have really come to appreciate the different styles and sounds out there, he explains. I actually listen to a lot of country music and really enjoy attending country concertsKoe Wetzel, Parker McCollum, Riley Green, Luke Combs, Colter Wall, and Tyler Childers are who I have been listening to in the country scene lately. In terms of his rap influences, Axelrod draws inspiration from Eminem, Mac Mil

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