SHOT LIST

AP Entertainment

Los Angeles, 29 April 2013

1. SOUNDBITE (English) Talib Kweli/Recording artist, on Twitter: "There's a large part of the social networking that I do not enjoy. I don't enjoy being that open and engaging people. But I feel like if I'm going to be there, then I'm going to be there. So I don't see a point to just being there just to promote. I think people see through that. And that becomes corny. So if I'm going to be on a social network, I'm going to be in the social network. I'm going to be with the people. There's positives and negatives to that. But the positives far outweigh the negatives. As an artist you have a frail ego more than the average person. But the average person has a frail ego. So things that are negative that are said to you magnify in your brain and your heart a lot more than many, many, many, many positive blessings that I've received. So it's my job as a human being to remember that."

2. SOUNDBITE (English) Talib Kweli/Recording artist, on Twitter: "Without me engaging people, I wouldn't be here. I wouldn't be sitting here doing this interview for you. There are no outlets that are invested in making sure that my music reaches the people. There's no backers making sure -- even my partners, EMI Caroline, who I'm distributing my album through with Javotti Media, they've been very helpful but their responsibility stops at distribution. They're just responsible to get it in the stores. It's really all on me to make sure that people know about it. And the easiest, cheapest way to do it is social networking."

3. SOUNDBITE (English) Talib Kweli/Recording artist, on Twitter: "It's distracting but literally, like literally -- I'm not like 'OK I've got to rush home and get into a Twitter debate.' Like I'm literally tweeting when I'm sitting waiting for a flight. Like I'm in a car or a cab going from Associated Press to Tavis Smiley. And I'm going to send a few tweets and get in a conversation. That's why I don't want people to take it too seriously. I literally do it when I'm doing 17 other things. And it's on the side. Tweeting is very easy for me to do. Facebook and Instagram and things like that come second to Twitter for me. It's not something that I really invest time into."

4. SOUNDBITE (English) Talib Kweli/Recording artist, on Twitter: "Somebody tweeted me like, 'You make great music but I got on Twitter and learned that you're just the biggest douche ever.' So there's this character on 'Parks & Rec' that Nick Kroll does called The Douche. And he has this things where like 'I'm just a character. There's me talking and then there's The Douche talking.' So I'm like, 'That's the Douche talking.' And I tweeted at Nick Kroll. And he hit me back, and he's like 'Feel free to invoke The Douche whenever you're dealing with actual douches.' So it was like this long pop culture trail, a pop culture wormhole that I got into just by someone calling me a douche. Which was great!"

Twitter-Talib Kweli

5. Still image: Talib Kweli's Twitter page

6. Close of above

7. Still image: Talib Kweli tweets

Javotti Media/Capitol/EMI Caroline

8. Music video excerpt: "Push Thru," by Talib Kweli

RAPPER TALIB KWELI DOESN'T TAKE TWEETS TOO SERIOUSLY

Talib Kweli is a big tweeter.

The veteran New York rapper has tweeted more than 37,000 times since joining the social network -- eclipsing even some of the more prolific hip-hop Twitter users like Nicki Minaj, 50 Cent or Lil Wayne. Kweli may not have as large of a following as those three, but he says that's the point: He uses Twitter to reach the public without any major record label marketing team to promote his work.

"Without me engaging people, I wouldn't be here," he said. "There are no outlets that are invested in making sure that my music reaches the people. There's no backers making sure -- even my partners, EMI Caroline, who I'm distributing my album through with Javotti Media, they've been very helpful but their responsibility stops at distribution. They're just responsible to get it in the stores. It's really all on me to make sure that people know about it. And the easiest, cheapest way to do it is social networking."

Kweli said his engagement with fans, activists and fellow rappers on Twitter has brought plenty of ego-deflating comments -- but he tries his hardest not to focus on the negativity.

"There's a large part of the social networking that I do not enjoy. I don't enjoy being that open and engaging people. But I feel like if I'm going to be there, then I'm going to be there. So I don't see a point to just being there just to promote. I think people see through that. And that becomes corny," Kweli said. "The positives far outweigh the negatives. As an artist you have a frail ego more than the average person. But the average person has a frail ego. So things that are negative that are said to you magnify in your brain and your heart a lot more than many, many, many, many positive blessings that I've received. So it's my job as a human being to remember that."

So how does a constantly touring, active musician manage to tweet so much? The 37-year-old said he doesn't spend as much time on it as it seems.

"It's distracting but literally, like literally -- I'm not like 'OK I've got to rush home and get into a Twitter debate.' Like I'm literally tweeting when I'm sitting waiting for a flight," he said. "I don't want people to take it too seriously. I literally do it when I'm doing 17 other things. And it's on the side. Tweeting is very easy for me to do. Facebook and Instagram and things like that come second to Twitter for me. It's not something that I really invest time into."

Kweli has engaged with plenty of other entertainers on Twitter, including comedian Nick Kroll.

"Somebody tweeted me like, 'You make great music but I got on Twitter and learned that you're just the biggest douche ever.' So there's this character on 'Parks & Rec' that Nick Kroll does called The Douche," he said. "And he has this things where like 'I'm just a character. There's me talking and then there's The Douche talking.' So I'm like, 'That's the Douche talking.' And I tweeted at Nick Kroll. And he hit me back, and he's like 'Feel free to invoke The Douche whenever you're dealing with actual douches.' So it was like this long pop culture trail, a pop culture wormhole that I got into just by someone calling me a douche. Which was great!"

Kweli is promoting his latest solo album, "Prisoner of Conscious," due out 7 May.