The song "Watermelon," by Oakland rapper D.Willz, is striking a claim for 2011's most off-kilter rap video. Instead of plumping for the usual format of having an artist posture, gesticulate, and rap to the camera, the flick features three farmers on an organic watermelon farm rapping the verses to the salacious song. (D.Willz himself steals a nonrapping cameo toward the end, attempting to sell off the watermelons.) Ahead of his show at Club Recess this Friday, here's D.Willz explaining what you do when you find yourself with a truck full of leftover watermelons, detailing his plans for the hood pop concept, and looking back on the time he got booed offstage at the Apollo as a kid rapper.
Who had the idea for the "Watermelon" video?
It was the production company who directed the video. They came up with the concept, they had the plans drawn up, and they explained why they wanted to do the video. I thought it was a dope opportunity. Its success has been a mixture of feelings, as it was one of those videos that we created that I knew was definitely different and would raise a lot of eyebrows. It was exciting to see that happen, but at the same time I expected great things to come from it.
Have you had people assume that you're actually one of the farmers in the video?
It's funny, because only just recently fans are starting to realize I was in the video throughout it all, but in the background! Then it's like, "Who's that back there?" They started noticing that I was in the video, but just not the main focus until the end.
You're attempting to sell the watermelons at the end, right?
Yeah, it's funny. At the end of the video when I'm selling them at the side of the road, real people pulled up wanting to buy the watermelons! We gave a lot away, some got destroyed, we used some for the video, but I went home with a truckfull of watermelon -- I was happy!
So where did you find the three farmers who rap the lyrics in the video?
They were actually actors. We held auditions, we got a chance to meet the guys before the audition, and we chose the best three. They were real cool guys. They had about a month to learn the lyrics and it just went from there.
Are any of them rappers in real life?
No, no, I don't think they can rap in real life. None of them were actual rappers but they did a good job in the video! I think they all worked very well together; they all brought a different charisma to the video and brought their own swag.
The hook to the song goes, "Got it juicy like a watermelon." What's that referring to?
When I wrote the song I wanted to make something that was metaphoric to sex, basically. I wanted something you hear and it sounds sweet and innocent but when you listen closely it's dirty and wet. When I made it I was trying to think of what is juicy. ... That's when it hit me: Juicy like a watermelon!
Does the watermelon refer to a girl's breasts or behind?
It's the juiciness of all her goods, basically!
You also have a line where you offer to give her your "peanut butter"...
That's me giving her my goodies, to go with the watermelon which is her gift.
If money were no barrier, which three rappers would you most like to have on a remix to "Watermelon"?
Wiz Khalifa, YG, and I'd get Rick Ross. Anyone that's hot, basically.