Flying Lotus talks ‘Grand Theft Auto V’ radio station

Alternative hip-hop producer Flying Lotus, aka FlyLo, is a versatile businessman who stirs a lot of pots.

A member of the distinguished Coltrane music family, FlyLo is a producer on the popular animated TV segment Adult Swim, a high-profile DJ, and a solo artist. His latest project, Until The Quiet Comes , was heralded by music critics for being genre bending and its accompanying Erykah Badu featured documentary premiered at the 2012 Sundance film festival.

FlyLo is a huge video game fan, too. He was recently selected to be an in-game radio host for the upcoming Grand Theft Auto V (GTA) video game which is set in a fictional version of Los Angeles called Los Santos.

In an exclusive interview, Flying Lotus sat down with theGrio to discuss his love for video games, GTA, and much more.

theGrio: We’ve spoke before about you love for video games. It must be a dream come true to be involved with Grand Theft Auto V.

Flying Lotus: Yeah it’s super crazy…I’ve never had a song in a game. At first it was like, ‘What? I got a song in a game?!’ Now I got more than a few songs in the game.

Did the GTA team give you complete freedom of the track list to be featured on your radio station?

Well I have some guidelines. They didn’t want me to do too much hip-hop or straight rap music because they have too much rap-based stuff, and they didn’t want music that was too down tempo either. They wanted me to do something that was more of a higher temp… something that was for a pirate radio station, kinda like my live shows. So I had that to go off of.

The Grand Theft Auto series is known for being sticklers for detail and authenticity. Were you surprised that they reached out to you?

I’ve known the guys over at Rockstar Games for a while on the scene here in L.A. We’ve always seen each other out at parties and stuff and they said, one day we’re gonna work on something together and this was the opportunity. They’re amazing over there. All the aspects of the game are really detailed and everyone in their separate departments is really passionate. Whether it’s the car design or the people creating the music — everyone’s super into it.

If you had to pick your dream video game project aside from GTA, what would that be?

Grand Theft Auto is a dream project on its own (laughs), I can’t think of a better game to be a part of. But my favorite games are my favorite games for a reason. There’s nothing I’d want to do to them creatively to change that. But you know what would be cool? To do something for the Bayonetta series. It would be cool to make the music for an action game.

To this day Street Fighter is probably my favorite video game franchise. They’ve recently found away to include rap and hip-hop into their gameplay soundtrack and it added to the intensity of a fighting game. Would you like to see more of that trend in future games?

You know what, you’re right because that’s what made Wu-Tang: Shaolin Style game so great. It was the music, the beats and sh*t…that would be tight.

Back to your Grand Theft Auto station, though a lot of your music is featured, you have Outkast, Clams Casino, and Tyler The Creator. What made you want to include Tyler?

For one, I think Tyler is a very special and unique person. He’s a part of the L.A. culture, and I feel he needed to be in the game and to represent. I think what he’s doing in life and career is very much Grand Theft Auto inspired. He’s the product of his environment growing up with that game. And on top of that, I know he’s a huge fan and I knew it would make his life to be a part of the game. I wanna hear Tyler’s music as I’m driving around in Los Santos. It’s funny because, getting in contact with him to do work can be really difficult. But talking to him about Grand Theft Auto, he’ll answer the phone immediately (laughs).

You can check out Kyle’s musical coverage on theGrio music page, and follow Kyle on Twitter at@HarveyWins.

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