By Dylan Deprey
When Looney Babie and Gwapo Chapo hop in the booth it is pure energy. There is no pen and no paper, just a beat and bars. Even when the two are mad at each other, they will lay it out on wax and hash it out later. The brothers have been using music as their outlet since they were kid brothers rapping over other artist’s lyrics. It was a time before the streets, before their mother passed away and before the hometown fame. The brothers have been hard at work, and they don’ t plan on stopping any time soon.
As kids, they recorded themselves on cassette tapes rapping over T.I. and Lil Wayne. They would eventually call themselves Lil Jay and Cashout Kid, and earn a neighborhood following. At the same time, the two were lost in the streets. Eventually Looney Babie would end up getting locked up. He would earn the nickname “Looney” as he fought his way out of every situation in prison.
Around the same time, Gwapo Chapo was 16. He was left to fend for himself after their mother passed away. As his name suggests, he has been crazy about the money and the streets were his stomping ground. Once Looney Babie was out, the two took to the ground running. They ditched the streets, and used the music as an outlet.
“It’s hard because we’re used to being in the streets, and that’s all we know. It’s where we come from and how we used to eat, so it’s hard, but you just got to stay focused and get greater later,” Looney Babie said.
“The streets are the streets and the music is the music. You can’t have both feet in one of them,” Gwapo Chapo said. “There are some people out there spitting other people’s lives. This is most definitely our lives and things we’ve been through.”
Back when they were first popping on YouTube and in local mixtapes, the music was really just about the fun of making it. They said it was their fans that pushed them to work harder and learn the business side of music.
“We didn’t know nothing about Tidal or SoundCloud, we were really just doing it for our hood,” Looney Babie said. “The moment we started having fans and they were showing us love, they almost forced us to take it serious.”
They eventually linked with a Black Ent. to push their music even farther than Milwaukee. Black, Black Ent. owner, said he instantly saw the duo’s star quality.
“I mean just being in the studio with them is amazing,” Black said. “To make a full song with no pen and no paper, it’s crazy.”
The two have released several albums and have had song placements like “100” and “All Racks” on local radio stations. Rappers from around the US have reached out to the duo to perform with them outside of Milwaukee, and they couldn’t be any closer to their ultimate goal.
“When we go to a different city, we’re not there to mess with the small guys,” Gwapo Chapo said. “We want to mess with the guys who are running the city.”
After creating a buzz in 2018, the duo has big plans for 2019. Along with hits from their go-to producer, Emazon, and a stash of bangers, the two have a special collaboration project with an industry established artist. They can’t announce who it is yet, but they said, “It’s gonna be lit.”
For more information follow them on all social media platforms at @looneybabie12 @real_gwapochapo3600 @blackout_ent_mke.