It should come as no surprise that the eclectic versatility of Izza Kizza's style has generated widespread comparisons to fellow rapper Missy Elliott. And while his first two mixtapes deviate from the standard hip hop fare, both Kizzaland (2008) and The Wizard of Iz (2009) are welcome "breaths of fresh air," as the music industry continues to churn out countless numbers of stale artists. Thus, Izza Kizza's charisma and witty lyrics are simply added bonuses, which conspire to make his work all the more memorable.
Upon review of The Wizard of Iz, Izza Kizza managed to squeeze some time out of his busy schedule and settle down for an interview with Clayton Perry — reflecting on Timbaland, the digital mixtape movement, and the inspiration taken from L. Frank Baum's classic novel, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.
As a child, I was a real big fan of The Wizard of Oz, especially when it was retooled by William F. Brown and Charlie Smalls—for the Broadway stage—as The Wiz. The original author, L. Frank Baum, stated that he wrote the book to give young readers a sense of possibility and imagination. How you do you relate Baum's mission to your life as a musician?
I can see why he would say that he made The Wizard of Oz that way. His spark of creativity opened a lot of doors and a lot of people's minds, even in how a lot of moviemakers shoot movies nowadays. A lot of the dopest movies are left-field. To me, the dialogue and storyline are representative of everyday life, regardless of whatever situation you're trying to accomplish. Everybody has a dream embedded inside of them, no matter where you are – small-town or big city. And we are always on a never-ending journey to find ourselves. When you think about Dorothy, she spends a great deal of time soul-searching. And after going through so much stuff, she was so happy to get back home and to her normal self. I kind of relate that with what I've been through in my experience and use that dialogue to tell my stories. If you listen to my mix tapes, it's all about how my life got flipped upside down and you find these people along the way that help you along your journey. I think my mixtape gives people a sense of what I was looking for and what I am looking to do. Some of them are personal. A lot of them are hip hop. At the end, I even have a Tin Man song that's all about feelings. So I related the dialogue from The Wiz to show how I got through life and continue to get through life.