Talking Kendrick, gangbangs and run-ins with the cops with LA's bucket hat-worshipping rapper
As part of our States of Independence summer takeover, 50 American indie icons have volunteered to take the Dazed Pop Quiz; a quick-fire Q&A about what they love and loathe about life in the USA. Check back here every day for more from the series.
Schoolboy Q is hoarse and dehydrated in his London hotel room – reaching for his aloe drink and complaining about lack of wake-up blunt – but he sharpens up quickly enough to answer our tough-cookie questions about the USA. Raised in Southside Los Angeles, the TDE signee graduated from Kendrick hype man with 2011's debut Setbacks and this year's stellar Oxymoron. Read on for why LA is overrated, and touring is his favourite kind of road trip.
Which living American do you most admire and why?
Schoolboy Q: Me. And Colby Bryant.
Which living American do you most despise and why?
Schoolboy Q: No one, it's not good to hate.
Whose face should be on the $100 bill?
Schoolboy Q: A map of America. In God we trust? No motto, fuck religion.
What is your favorite quote about America?
Schoolboy Q: The best place to be, the worst place to be.
Who gave you your first break? Do you still talk?
Schoolboy Q: TDE. Kendrick took me out and had me as his hype man, but kendrick didn't sign me, he's just on the label. But you know, when you're a hype man, you just say your name over and over, and even if people don't remember you, when you come out people could be like "I know that name", it gets stuck in your head.
When and where are you happiest?
Schoolboy Q: The day that my daughter was born in April 2010. I wasn't there, I was playing a show in Boston.
What high school clique were you in? Do you stay in touch?
Schoolboy Q: I wasn't in a clique. I was in a gangbang, the Hooplas. But I don't like talking about that time, people are always asking me.
What food reminds you of home?
Schoolboy Q: I dunno – everything? It's my home. That's kind of a stupid question.
What's the best road trip you've ever been on?
Schoolboy Q: Touring in a bus around Europe. Does that count?
What would make you leave America forever?
Schoolboy Q: Nothing – it's where my family is. But if I had to move somewhere, I'd move to London. At least the food is alright here.
What noise reminds you of the States?
Schoolboy Q: Interviews.
What is your favorite American building?
Schoolboy Q: The staples centre, I watched it get built and I played there. Was it amazing? It was cool, yeah.
Ultimate American film?
Schoolboy Q: No films have summed up LA. Boys in the Hood? It's fiction.
Ultimate American album?
Schoolboy Q: My album – Kendrick, YG.
Most overrated US tourist attraction?
Schoolboy Q: LA. You can drive around it for an hour and you're still in the same city. You need to know where you’re going (if you’re a tourist).
Most underrated US tourist attraction?
Schoolboy Q: Nowhere. Anywhere special? No.
Favorite slang phrase?
Schoolboy Q: ‘Wassup’. But British people are all like "what's up" – they say every syllable.
What is your ultimate American guilty pleasure?
Schoolboy Q: Guns.
What law would you change or invent?
Schoolboy Q: I'd ban guns.
Where in the States would you ride out the apocalypse?
Schoolboy Q: I don't like thinking about shit like that – I've got a daughter. If we're all going to die then were all going to die.
When was your last run-in with the cops? What happened?
Schoolboy Q: The border police, man. They look and me, like, ‘who's this guy?’ because of my face. I'm just like "arrest me or let me go"
If you could change one thing about the US, what would it be?
Schoolboy Q: Being able to buy weed in a chemist.
Which fictional American do you most identify with?
Schoolboy Q: Fictional hero? What's that? From movies, books? Nah
If you lost it all tomorrow, what would you do the day after?
Schoolboy Q: I'd be dead! Man, it's not good to think like that.
What will America look like in 2050?
Schoolboy Q: The same.
Does the American Dream still exist?
Schoolboy Q: Yeah, I'm loving it.