Photo: Hassan Abode
Where are you currently based and what is the music scene like there?
I’m currently based in Canberra and the scene is lowkey on a wave out here. It’s so diverse, with an abundance of talent. Canberra is a small place, so we all know each other & I’m glad cause I get to watch all my musical peers grow & prosper
How did you first start rapping?
I started rapping when I was 16, I remember I used to walk home from school everyday with lil wayne blaring through my earphones. At the time he was my idol, him and tupac. The way they made music resonated with me so strongly and honestly, they are who inspired me to start rapping.
What’s been happening recently?
Recently I’ve been in a dope creative space. I’m about to start shooting some visuals for songs off my EP so that’s where my mind has been focused.
You’re debut EP is out on 12 July, what influenced the sound and songwriting for this EP?
In terms of song writing, this EP was inspired by my surroundings. The whole ‘African gang’ stigma created by corporate media in 2018 really caused a dynamic changed to how the common Australian view someone that looked like me.
In terms of production, this project was influenced by the homie, AQUEmini. An artist I work closely with, sometime early 2018 he was playing me beats that he had made, the beat that I gravitated towards ended up becoming the intro to this EP which inspired the rest of the production.
How did you go about writing the music/lyrics?
Production always came first for ‘Scared Of Shadows’. My goal from the start was to create a cohesive world of music. So once I had a collection of about 10 beats that coincided, I started writing.
My writing process was premeditated for the most part, I would seat there listening to the same group of beats for weeks trying to piece together the overall story before I touch a pen & pad.
Where and when did you record/produce?
I have a little home studio, so almost all my production comes from there. And man…I recorded everywhere, from hotels rooms to studios to the homies bedroom. Anywhere I could record, best believe I’m doing so.
How did you approach the recording/production of the tracks?
Production was always done first and often long before any recording. When it came down to the recording, it was usually done in my room. I like to record alone; I get to put my self in the world I’m trying to capture & do as many takes as I can without annoying anyone.
What programs/instruments did you use?
FL studios was the heart of my whole fucking EP. Production, recording & mixing was all done through this beautiful DAW, fruity gang for life.
Was anybody else involved in the recording/production?
Yes, I worked with I.M.O.L he was behind the production for ‘Win’ & the homie AQUEmini. He produced ‘Prt 1’ & ‘Prt 2’. The homie also helped with the recording of a few tracks, shout out to AQUEmini & I.M.O.L
How has growing up in Canberra influenced you and your music?
Canberrans have a very D.I.Y like approach to everything. I think that has had biggest influence on me & my music, I was able to see that hey I can do allot of it for myself
You come from a South Sudanese background. Australian media has been shining a mixed bag of views on South Sudanese communities, often focusing on negatives such as the Apex Gang’, what is your opinion regarding Australian media’s treatment and portrayal of South Sudanese communities within Australia?
I feel like Australian media understands that bad news & fear sells. So, when the ‘Apex Gang’ narrative came along they exploited it. Not caring about the effects & stigmas that have occurred from there bullshit. I also feel like nothing has been done to fix it the issues at hand afterward, they basically told the country that this group of people are not to be trusted and are to be feared and when that narrative wasn’t selling anymore, they moved on. Leaving my community feared & isolating by the rest of Australia
What can be done to help show more of a positive perspective of Sudanese Communities to the rest of Australia and also what could be done to assist these communities and youths in particular?
I feel like Australia’s have a fit in or get out mentality that contradict the multicultural image projected on this country. I say that to say that the easy way to have a more positive perspective on the South Sudanese Community is to be multicultural, learn about the culture, the history. Let’s all embrace on another and grow as one.
How do you view the Australian music scene at the point in time?
Yoo!!! I feel like Australia is next up on a global tip. England and parts of the UK just had there wave of artist blowing up out nowhere & I feel this country Is next for rea, for real
Who are you listening to at the moment?
I love Tyler the creators new album Igor, allot of Jacob banks, Jade Smith, Genesis Owusu, Neko Pink. I’ve been really into that 60’s wave of jazz inspired soul, artist like Nancy Wilson, Etta James, Sarah Vaughan my brain is everywhere with music.
What do you like to do away from music?
I like to read, kick it with homies, play ball. I’m really into photography right now
What’s planned for the remainder of 2019?
Allot more music #julytodecmber
Any secrets that you care to share?
I’ll give you one, but don’t tell nobody… Maleezy x AQUEmini
Favourite food and place to hangout?
If you’re looking for food in Canberra, Turkish Pide, Charnwood got them Slaps!! And it’s winter right now so I don’t really be hanging out side, my favourite place when it’s cold like this is in the studio.
SCARED OF SHADOWS OUT NOW!