When I first heard "Ruff Endz," single "Someone to Love You," I wore it out! As well as myself, I remember my son humming that song so loudly that I thought he was going to sing the lyrics right off the music! This talented, dynamic duo intrigued me because not only were both of them amazing singers, but one played the piano. I'm Speaking of the music video. I thought, wow, The talent the two men have is cosmic! For me, interviewing them was a dream come true. My experience interviewing "Ruff Endz" was like none other.
My admiration for them included their honesty, transparency, cohesiveness, and unbreakable brotherhood bond. While they are very different, they share the same passion for music and love and respect for each other. I love the love that they have for one another as brothers. I believe this is the secret to their years of musical success. They look out for one another, and I love it.
Their respect for one another and willingness to speak freely made this interview a breeze. Simultaneously, they knew so much about one another that they could complete each other's sentences. I don't have any biological brothers, but if I did, brothers like these would be my choice. They both have extraordinary talent and are a lot of fun. It was an honor to interview them about their life and musical journey. This interview is filled with laughter, unforgettable memories, and emotional moments. Here's what we discussed in our conversation.
Gina Sedman: Hi guys! Thank you for your time! I appreciate it, and it is a true honor.
Ruff Endz: Thanks for having us
Gina Sedman: You're welcome. Before we get started, I need to know who's who first.
Dante: Alright, this is Dante "Chi" Jordan
Gina Sedman: OK.
David: And I'm David.
Gina Sedman: The two of you are speaking, so I'll need to remember your tones to know who's talking. (laughter)
David: I got a lighter voice, and Dante has the heavier tone.
Gina Sedman: Got it!
David: If you want a deeper tone, you have to catch meat around 8:00 a.m. because my tone gets lighter once the day starts.
Gina Sedman: I hear you; I sound like Barry White when I wake up in the morning, so I get it! (laughs)
David: That's when you do all the special talking parts for the song. (laughs)
Gina Sedman: Awesome! OK, let's jump in.
Ruff Endz: Ok
Gina Sedman: What were your upbringings like, and how did they differ?
Dante: Ok, I’ll start. This is Dante, Chi or Dante Jordan, or Dante Chi. I’ve got about 4 or 5 names. (laughs)
Gina Sedman: Ok (laughs)
Dante: My name is Dante, and we both grew up in the same neighborhood. How we differed is that David’s immediate family were pastors and evangelist. I’ve always known Davids's father to be a true man of God. He was on another level with it. David’s father came from Guyana David was born here in America. Because of that, David and I had the chance to bond as kids. As far as my family. They were into music. Although there's a few musicians and singers in our family, we’re more on the street side.
Gina Sedman: It sounds like we've got saints and sinners here.
David: I didn’t want to say it! (laughs) Help him, Jesus, help him, Lord! (laughs)
Gina Sedman: I'm not one to judge I've been on both sides of the coin. (laughs)
Dante: Yeah, I was out on those streets. Hey, it was right there. It was easy for me. In my city, selling packs was easier than finding a job. In those days, getting a work license as a teenager was difficult. In contrast, I could go up to the corner and say, "Hey, let me get a pack," and I'd make 30 bucks off each one. That's why you'd be out on the corner hustling. That's how easy I was. Back then, that's how it was. David and I had different backgrounds, but we both loved music. Basically, music was my saving grace growing up in a city where these kinds of activities were common.
Gina Sedman: Where did you and David meet?
Dante: We met in high school.
Gina Sedman: Yes, your upbringing differs.
Dante: Yes, very different. I'm from the rough side of town, the streets.
Where I grew up in LA, we call it the hood! (laughs)
Gina Sedman: David what about you? Tell me about your youngin’ years.
David: We were around 5 or 6 when Dante and I first met. We were kids. In fact, Dante has a picture of myself and a guy I used to play with, I believe in Kirby Lane. In Kirby Lane, they used to have Monkey bars and all that Kind of stuff. But I just remember his face from playing with this Kid. Do you know how you just remember certain faces?
Gina Sedman: Yes.
David: Well, I remembered his face, and he confirmed it when I met him later. He said, “yeah, I remember we used to hang out.” At that moment, it became clear that this was the kid I used to play with.
We grew up in Baltimore, and for someone who grows up in the hood of Baltimore, it's incredibly hard not to be influenced by the environment. Having grown up in such an environment, I can tell you it's pull into the dark side is highly alluring. Not only was there gun violence, but the drug scene was so bad that I remember seeing dope lines for people trying to get drugs at 2:00 AM. Honestly, the lines were about three blocks long, no exaggeration.
Gina Sedman: Wow! That’s insane!
David: Yeah. It was like a welfare line. You'd think they were giving away free food, but instead, they were purchasing drugs. There was a massive drug epidemic in Baltimore.
Regarding my family upbringing, my family is from the Islands, and I'm the youngest of 10 brothers and sisters. I was raised in a God-fearing home. My brothers and sisters went out there and did their own thing. You know what they say about preachers' kids; we're the worst.
Gina Sedman: Yeah, I’ve heard that. I myself am a preacher's kid, so I know. (laughs)
David: But I believe it was all a part of a divine plan that our paths crossed.
Gina Sedman: Yes.
David: Similarly, music was a lifeline for both Dante and me. It checked me and pulled him.
Gina Sedman: That's great; let's talk about some fun things now that we've all purged. So, let's keep this car neutral and discuss the fun things you did as a child. Children seem to be obsessed with cereal for some reason. The busy parent will often place a bowl of cereal before the child on the way to work. For a working parent with a full-time job, that's the easiest thing to do. In our adult years, most of us remember this as a part of our childhood with such fondness. I want to ask you, David, what was your favorite cereal as a child?
David: peanut butter, captain crunch!
Gina Sedman: Dante, what about you?
Dante: Oh, that's crazy that you just said that. I was just talking about cereal this morning. I don't want to go too far, but I have to tell you what I was talking about.
Gina Sedman: Ok (laughs)
Dante: It's quick, but I need to say this.
Gina Sedman: Ok (laughs)
Dante: Earlier today, we discussed why we like chocolate milk and how that whole thing started. My theory is that it came from “Cocoa Pebbles.” For example, the milk in the bowl turns into chocolate milk after eating the cereal. When I was in school, they gave me regular milk. My first thought was, uh, but chocolate milk! Then strawberry milk came out, and it was like a brand-new invention! It was incredible! I, on the other hand, was a captain crunch guy. The captain and I were on the boat.
Gina Sedman: Ok! (laughs)
Dante: I loved every flavor they put out. Crunch Berries and peanut butter. And when they came out with all Crunch Berries, and there wasn't any regular captain crunch cereal in the box, that was like a new gift!
Gina Sedman: (Laughs) I hear you! "Captain Crunch" is so good! I used to be able to eat that stuff when I was younger, but not now.
Dante: I was jumping around like; they have the one with mostly strawberries!
Gina Sedman: (Laughs)
Dante: It was like I was a cereal monster eating cereal at night.
Gina Sedman: (laughs)
Dante: I promised myself that cereal would be one thing I would enjoy when I became an adult. Nobody's going to stop me. I'm going to go ahead and get the biggest bowl I can find and fill it with as much cereal as I want! (laughs) Now I can eat an entire box of fruity pebbles, and nobody can stop me! (laughs)
Gina Sedman: (Laughs) That’s what's up! Awesome! That's hilarious! Growing up, we didn't have much money, so my mom bought a big box of Corn Flakes or Cheerios, and we mixed powdered milk with water to put on our cereal. My taste for corn flakes grew with time, but I hated the powdered milk! It was super gross! She would buy a gallon of milk and mix it with powdered milk when it began to run out. It is still in my memory what that tasted like; it's disgusting! It was Dunkin' Donuts cereal that changed the game. She bought it a couple of times, but not regularly. During my childhood, I promised myself that when I grew up, I would eat whatever cereal I wanted. Since we've grown, nobody can tell us what to do. (laughs)
Ruff Endz: That’s right.
Gina Sedman: OK, David, what was your favorite childhood toy?
David: My favorite childhood toy? Wow, that's a good question.
Gina Sedman: I guarantee you have never had an interview like this before. (laughs)
David: Yeah, that’s true. In fact, I was just going to say that at the end of my interview because this is interesting, but in a good way.
Gina Sedman: (Laughs)
David: OK, my favorite childhood toy, wow. That’s a tough one.
Dante: You want me to go first?
Gina Sedman: OK Dante, tell me, what is your favorite childhood toy?
Dante: I was rough on toys; let me just stop there. I was the little guy with an Adam's apple and big hands.
Gina Sedman: Ok.
Dante: I looked like I had a bone sticking out of my throat. They used to talk all kinds of crazy things about me, but I was the type of person who didn't care. I never was one to invest too much in what people said about me because I'll always be me, live my life, and enjoy it.
Now, there was this race car set that I really wanted, so I got it for Christmas. The first day I got it, I tore it up. Then I remember having these Sesame Street drums. It's crazy how I remember this stuff, but I remember it. I beat the drums so hard that I tore them up within the first two days.