By Christine Dunn, @VtownCommuter

Social media has transformed the contemporary music scene, allowing unknown artists to promote and distribute their music with no up-front costs. Def Bound, who recently released the mixed tape SamTrans 390, shares his thoughts on social media, rap, hip-hop and what it’s like to be legally blind.

How has social media influenced rap and hip-hop. How do you use social media to promote your work?
I started way back when My Space was trending and popular and I got a good following there but when that kind of died out, I had to lay back and not use it because the thing about social media with music is once that dies out, once a certain trend dies out, then you die out, if you only promoted yourself on that social media. Right now I’m on different forms of media, I’m on Facebook, twitter, instagram, tumblr, all these different types of media.

How has social media influenced rap?
Nowadays everyone’s rapper, you get a microphone and a laptop, you sit there at home, record whatever, and you’re a rapper, automatically. It took away the effort but it also led the way for a lot of amazing people who wouldn’t have a chance.

You shared with us that you are legally blind. What is it like to be blind and rapping and creating your music?
I’m legally blind and honestly, it’s a win for me. Because I’m legally blind, I’m not fully blind, so it doesn’t impair me that much, but it brings me a lot of attention. It’s interesting, a blind rapper, you know the two don’t correlate very much. It’s interesting to people but it doesn’t hold me back that much [in the realm of rap. ]

I have to look at the phone very closely and, especially when I’m at work or sometimes on the bus, I get complaints, people feel like I’m filming them or taking pictures of them.

Why did you choose the name Def Bound?
Honestly, my manager chose it for me. It was originally gonna be other things. I was bouncing between ideas and he gave me the idea and I kind of made it mine.
Def is a form of endearment in the hip-hop family. It’s like cool. Bound means I’m reaching for it. [So, for me it embodies that] I don’t get as much as respect, not only in music but in anything, that I feel I should have, so I’m hungry for that respect. I will obtain it someday, but I honestly don’t feel I will ever receive the respect I deserve.

Next steps?
Just putting out more projects. The SamTrans 390, that mixed tape, that’s gonna be a series. The next one is gonna be SamTrans 120, which is the line I took in Daly City when I was going to Skyline.

WARNING: Adult language. Def Bound – Courtesy of Kings from the SamTrans390 mixtape.

Follow Def Bound on Twitter @DefBound and on Instagram @DefBound.

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