Episode # 186

What Does It Take to Create a Successful Hip Hop Brand?

Today I’m wicked happy to welcome hip-hop star, lyricist, comic scribe and good friend Esoteric to The Alden Report podcast. As a Boston based underground hip-hop artist, Esoteric is half of the hip hop duo 7L & Esoteric, a third of Czarface and is a member of underground hip-hop collectives Army of the Pharaohs and Demigodz. Along with 7L and Wu-Tang Clan member Inspectah Deck, Esoteric formed the hip hop supergroup Czarface in 2013 when they released their acclaimed debut studio album, Czarface. This album was followed by Every Hero Needs a Villain in 2015 and A Fistful of Peril in 2016, both of which were also praised by critics. In 2018, Czarface released a collaborative album with MF DOOM titled Czarface vs Metalface and their newest album Czarmagedon just recently dropped this year. 

We take an inside look into what it takes to make it in the world of hip hop over the last 20 years and we take a deep dive into Esoteric’s approach to creating, merchandising and promoting the Czarface brand as well as his collaborations with some of the biggest names in hip hop and street art. The inspiring, endearing and somewhat surprising backstory of the creation of the Czarface brand is itself worth the listen. Lastly, we learn the fascinating story of how Esoteric got verified and received a blue checkmark on Instagram with the help of none other than the one and only Gary Vaynerchuk.

Thank you very much to Esoteric for joining us this week on The Alden Report. 

For more information on Esoteric and Czarface, you can visit: and follow him on Instagram at: @czarface_eso