New Hampshire’s Everett Gibbons has been a patient, positive force in his local scene for years now. He organizes, manages, books, promotes, networks and hustles — all the dance moves any indie artist needs to know. During that time, he’s also honed himself into a damn fine rapper, as his recent Pomagranite Music project will attest.

That title is no typo: it’s a play on the granite state, New Hampshire, and the MA of Massachusetts. It’s also the name of the team he’s assembled for the next phase of his career. For the first installment of the Outside Influence series, I reached out to Gibbons to talk shop about work and about goals. Enjoy.

VTHH: Your life and career seems to have straddled the border between NH and MA -- is there a lot of bleed between those scenes?

Everett Gibbons: My hometown, Pelham, NH doesn’t have a highway access. It’s right on the state line and is stuck in the middle of Nashua, Hudson, Salem NH, and Dracut, Lowell, Methuen, and Lawrence MA. New Hampshire has Rap-Night, shout out IBI, DJ Myth and Shup. They have weekly shows on Sunday nights bringing in dope national, and local acts to Manchester. On the southern side of the line, I feel most MA artists gravitate towards the Boston, Cambridge and Worcester areas. There’s a lot of dope artists right now in Lowell, MA, too.  I’ve tried to be the common denominator with my music and shows, and have definitely brought more awareness to the dope artists from both scenes. 

VTHH: What advice do you have for New England artists trying to build a scene where they're at?

Everett Gibbons: Just be authentic. Know your influences. Pay artists for their time. Don’t get ripped off by venues. Understand mostly nothing is free. You have to be social. Don't expect people to care. and never listen to the h8rs, bruh. If you build it, they will come. 

VTHH: When you were getting started, who were the regional acts you looked up to? 

Everett Gibbons: Keeping it in New England; I'd say Decap, World Around Records (Hump Jones, Louis Mackey, Dr. Quandary), Guru from Gangstarr, Brady Watt, Della Kinetic & others I'm surely forgetting. Those people had a pretty crazy impact on me creatively, especially when i was just starting out. 

VTHH: As someone who's run a lot of shows and seen a lot of sets, what are the most common mistakes you see artists making with their live shows?

Everett Gibbons: Not knowing how to hold or enunciate into a performance mic properly. Rapping over full volume lyric tracks. Forgetting their flash drive so they play soundcloud off their phone. When an artist leaves after their set, instead of taking time to interact with people. I could go all day. Just when you think you’ve seen it all, another artist comes along to remind you how far you've come. 

VTHH: With most of the artists I interview, I'm basically doing original research. You've gotten a ton of press by comparison. Are you actively your own publicist or does that happen organically for you?

Everett Gibbons: I'm pretty active on Instagram, Soundcloud and other social media, but honestly I'm lucky to have the people i do behind me.  Both of my sisters, Emylee and Alyson have gotten me great press as well as my buddy Aidan. The organic side of press is pretty amazing, though. When random people reach out saying they're interested in what I’m doing, it gives me a little feeling of affirmation, which is a nice reminder of why I do what I do. I wouldn’t be anywhere without the whole Pomagranite team, so shoutout to Della, BryllCharlie Mixwelh, Joey Roxitt, Aidan, West, my family, and everybody else who fucks with us. 

VTHH: What are you working on for 2019?

Everett Gibbons: 2019 is gonna be dedicated to building with the the team, and really trying to raise the bar for ourselves. We all have solo hustles but we're trying to reach the point where we can tour and spread our music out of the direct region. You can expect The Treatment to be released on February 14th. It’s a group project that we made down in Florida. We made like 9 songs in 4 full days and trimmed the fat to 6 tracks that we all really mess with. We're trying to incorporate travel into our music, grabbing vibes from places we visit, and letting the music be influenced by the location. You can expect new music/visuals from Pomagranite practically every month in 2019. 

Justin Boland