Xavier Louis Reed, Douglas Profenius, and Jared D. Jackson formed Split Second while students at Taft. They have since procured an enthusiastic following, and their image as preppy hip-hoppers resonates with a wide group of fans. We were lucky enough to interview all three members of the Sperry gang, two of which are #inthecac.
The ‘Cac: You guys came to Taft from very different places geographically, how have you managed to form a cohesive sound while still maintaining the individual flavor you each bring to the studio?
SpS: That individual flavor is the key. We’re all inspired by different people and are into different artists or genres at different times. When we come together those differences are what makes the music so unique. Every song is a collaboration.
The ‘Cac: What does the marriage of prep and hip hop mean to you—is it a surprising partnership of tastes or has it always been inevitable?
SpS: It is what we are. Its something that is new to hip hop. I don’t mean the fashion or brand names associated with “prep” so much as the lifestyle of us 3 in general. Through Split Second we’re adding to the rap worlds diversity and shedding light on a world that has not been ventured into.
The ‘Cac: If one artist was going to call you up right now and ask you for a collab, whose voice would you want to hear on the other side of the phone?
SpS: The Weeknd. House of Balloons is a most played in all of our libraries.
The ‘Cac: Where will each of you be in school next year? Will you still be able to have time together in the studio?
SpS: Dougie is going to Cornell, Jaxx will be a sophomore at Trinity College, and X is deferring from Amherst College for a year to play junior hockey in Boston. We were all just in the Hamptons together a couple weeks ago and we spent a lot of time in the studio. Since we won’t be able to get together much this coming fall and winter we have prepared a good amount of new material to release over that time.
The ‘Cac: If you were a Quentin Tarantino film, which one would you be and why?
SpS: Pulp Fiction. Its a classic. Everything about it. Doug and X had 2 Pulp Fiction posters facing eachother in their dorm room this past year
The ‘Cac:“Blood Diamond” is one of your biggest hits, but the title has a serious political connotation, are there intended messages in your music or do you leave it up to the listener to interpret?
SpS: It’s different with every song. In some there are definitely intended messages that we want the listeners to leave with and in others, like “Blood Diamond” for example, we leave it up for interpretation.
The ‘Cac: If you started a clothing line but you only sold one item of clothing (i.e. shoes, sunglasses) what item would it be?
Jaxx – Boy Shorts
Xcel – Mid Calf socks
Dougie P – Pleather Jackets