Interview with Rapzilla.com’s Webmaster

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Meet “DJ Zilla,” Rapzilla.com’s founder & webmaster!

The Urban Web Link’s June aka “JD”:  How are you today?

Rapzilla’s Webmaster Philip Rood:  I’m doing good… I’m getting all my brothers out of my room (laugh).  They are playing video games.

JD:  How many brothers do you have?

Rapzilla:  I have four younger brothers.

JD:   Wow, so you are the oldest?  Any sisters?

Rapzilla:  Yes I am, no sisters just bros.

JD:  We tried to catch you on your actual birthday but it didn’t seem to work out with the country time zone differences.  You are now 18-years-old!  Happy belated birthday.
Rapzilla:  Thank you.
JD:   I believe that many people reading this interview may be very surprised that the webmaster of the well-known Rapzilla website is only 18-years old!  What age were you when you started Rapzilla?

Rapzilla:  I was 15 1/2 years old, around March 2003

JD:  What grade were you in then?

Rapzilla:  9th Grade, but it wasn’t a great school year because I failed my high school year in the French school I was in (at Belgium).  The school system here is really different, half of the students fail every year! Saying this so people can understand that I’m no dummy lol, its a common thing here, but it’s not like that in the US.

JD:  Have you always lived in Belgium?

Rapzilla:  Yes, I’ve been here since I was like 2-3 months old.

JD:  Wow, so you live in Belgium and are 18-years-old!  Amazing. The Apostle Paul told Timothy not to let anyone look down on him because of his age. I give you the same admonishment!  You have done more before the age of 18 than many adults do before age 40!  Do you plan to stay in Belgium?

Rapzilla:

Rapzilla:  I don’t want to stay here, but I’ll go whereever God has planned for me to go. I will attend a university in the States.

JD:  Any specific university, or are you still looking, and what will you major in?

Rapzilla:  No specific university yet. I wanted to be a graphic designer at age 15 but now I really don’t know. I have many interests and I’ve already done a lot. I really don’t know.
JD:   We’d like to hear about some of your other interests, but first, what inspired you to start Rapzilla in March 2003?
Rapzilla: I think it’s funny how it started. At that time I would listen to many Christian rappers on mp3.com and I thought I knew all the Christian rappers out there. So I decided to start a website that would have all the rappers on there, not just news from the big labels but also from indie labels, unsigned and unknown artists. But now that I think about it I really didn’t know that much (laugh). April 2003 was when I did the first interview with Intellegentz—didn’t think it would be so big like today (laugh)—and working on the website. That summer I released “TOP 100 Christian Hip Hop sites” that grew very fast. In September 2003, Rapzilla was released to the public and at my biggest surprise “TOP 100 Christian Hip Hop sites” was nominated Hip Hop site of the Year on WTW Magazine.

Below, photos of Zilla with KJ52 and DJ Morphiziz

JD:  Very cool. So what are your current plans or goals with the site?  It already seems that Rapzilla has become an established site in the Christian Hip Hop community.  Will you continue doing the same or do you have thoughts about expanding it or doing something new or different?

Rapzilla:  Right now I’m working on getting a new website design to make it look more Hip Hop! There’s also the Rapzilla Mixtape Vol. 2 in the works. A lot of new features  I’m working on. I just released the 1st Christian Hip Hop toolbar this summer. My new goals are to get 1000x more visitors, and to be the #1 Christian Hip Hop website. I also have a lot of other projects but I need more help, because since the day it started I’ve being doing it all by myself and I really need help on a lot of stuff.

JD:  That’s a lot.  We definitely look forward to the new things that will be releasing soon!  You mentioned that you have many other interests and are into a lot of things, could you tell us a little about those interests and other things that you are into?

Rapzilla: My other interest are production, DJayin’, Graphic art, Marketing, Business management, Online store… I also love playing basketball, video games—who doesn’t?  I started doing production last year, someone blessed me with a Korg Electribe-SX not even knowing I was believing for one (beat maker)! I’ve been DJayin’ officially for 1-year now, also did some remixes that you can listen on my DJ zilla soundclick page. I also own an online store called the Rap Shop. I started it in January 2004. I also love doing graphics and making websites. Oh and I also do a radio show, but I need to work on that, it’s called Mix N’ Tape Radio Mixntape.com (currently down).  I’m sure none of you heard about it and it’s for one good reason, the French site is in french (laugh)… I have other interests for sure, but i can’t think of any others.

JD:  Can you contribute a beat that we can feature on The Urban Web Link?

Rapzilla: I haven’t finished any 100% yet. I’ve been so busy i can’t even finish my 1st beat (laugh).

JD:  Does school keep you busy too? What activities are you in at school?

Rapzilla:  Well, school used to keep me very busy but now I just started home school and I have more time to do more work. My 5 classes (11th grade) are: Marketing, Business Writing, English Lit. 3, Health and American History.

JD:  Who is your home school teacher, your mother?

Rapzilla:  I don’t have any teacher, I just follow the learning guide online and if I have any questions I send an e-mail to the teacher. It’s cool and easy. My mom would not home school me, it would be too much for her.

JD:  Very interesting. Is this a very common practice in Belgium?

Rapzilla: No, but it is for missionary kids.

JD:  Ahhh, so your parents are missionaries?

Rapzilla: Yes

JD:  Where do they do their missionary work?

Rapzilla: They started a church here in Brussels called “Eternal Word” Christian Center, it’s bilingual (English and French).

JD:  Are your parents originally from Belgium?

Rapzilla:  No, my father is from Cleveland Ohio and my mom is Swiss but grew up as a missionary in Kinshasa Congo. So I’m not Belgian, I have dual citizenship (U.S. and Swiss).

JD:  Do you aspire to do missions work as well?

Rapzilla:  Maybe if that’s what God wants me to do.

JD:   Well, Ive really enjoyed speaking with you. What’s your real name by the way? And could you please share anything else you’d like to share that wasn’t asked?

Rapzilla: My real name is Philip Rood. To everyone reading this remember that “All things are possible to him who beleives” – Mark 9:23.  Come and check out Rapzilla, sign up to the newsletter and download the free Rapzilla compilation vol.1! Peace & blessings. Thanks for this interview!

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