Interview with Mega Ran
Interview by: Zelda|
I recently got the opportunity to see Mega Ran perform at the Ruby Room in San Diego, California.
It was a nerdcore themed night, with a cosplay contest, an old NES and N64 set up for free play, and a variety of different geek bands (Blood Dancer, Kirby's Dream Band, Mega Ran, and Castlevania - you'll hear more about them from me in future interviews). Going up against all the metal and indie rock nerdcore bands, Mega Ran definitely stood out - One man rapping over 8 bit music. I'll admit, rap isn't even normally my scene, but Mega Ran (AKA Random) had great energy, clearly was passionate about what he was doing, and was an obvious true fanboy. It's always great to see people making a living doing what they love, so watching his performance definitely was uplifting. After his set, he performed a song with my buddies in Kirby's Dream Band, which was also fantastic :) I asked Random if he'd be interested in doing an interview with me, and of course he was very gracious - Here's what he had to say.
Q: So, first of all, explain who you are and what you do for anyone who isn't familiar with your work.
A: I am Random, also known as Mega Ran, former teacher, current MC and inspiration.
Q: Your music is actually officially licensed by Capcom – How did that come about?
A: Very crazy story. I was approached by Capcom after making an album called “Mega Ran” that sampled Mega Man music and storylines, then turned them into new creations. I didn’t realize what I was doing was considered “fanart,” and Capcom offered me a licensing agreement, because they liked it and thought others should hear it. I was very pleased to have that happen—sure beats being sued.
Q: It seems to me that there are less people of color in the nerdcore genre – Even when I saw you perform recently, it was with a bunch of nerdcore metal and indie bands. How do you find the general reaction is to being a rapper in the video game music world?
How are you seen within the rap world?
A: A friend told me I’m like the Eminem of nerdcore….ha. I don’t see many people of color doing what I do, but I like the fact that people don’t know what to do with me, where to place me, how to categorize what I do… it gets me into some very interesting places, like onstage with Video Game rock bands like Kirby’s Dream Band and others. I play shows with chiptune artists, rappers, poets…and always manage to get the same amount of fair and equal treatment. They respect what I do, because it’s authentic, it’s different, and most of all, it’s good.
Q: Your albums have featured songs from Mega Man and Final Fantasy – What can we expect to hear next from you? Will there ever be a Street Fighter album?
A: I don’t know. My last release was based on Ghouls N Ghosts, so after that, anything could happen. I really don’t plan my moves, they just happen.
Q: You've performed at all sorts of events and gotten to work with some incredibly talented people – Are there any experiences in particular that stand out to you?
A: going to Comic Con, PAX and huge events like that, and let alone performing there, is a dream. I never thought I’d be able to do these types of things.
Q: Not only that, your music has been featured in several video games and TV shows. Where do you see you taking this in the future? What would be your ultimate dream?
A: Eventually I’d like to be teaching a class on what I do.. hip hop and video games. If not, then I’d love to be touring the world, rapping on stages and showing the world what can happen when you dream.
Q: You were a teacher before you became a musician full-time. How do your old students feel about your new career?
A: My students are supportive. I’ve talked to them since leaving and many of them say that they follow my exploits online, and though they’ll never say it, I believe that making that move could teach them the best lesson of all, one of being true to one’s self and never settling for less.
Q: What events can we see you perform at?
A: Nerdapalooza, Comic Cons all over the country, my various tours, coming up is a SW US run where we’ll hit Albuquerque, Austin, Dallas and Houston.
Q: Where can people follow your work?
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January 12 2013