Q. You have always projected good energies and positive vibes in your music, from when you were in Heartless Crew, to even your solo material. How did you develop this style? What is the biggest influence on your music?
Thanks I’m glad you pick up on those vibes. I’m just spreading love and aiming to entertain and uplift people. If I’m feeling positive then that’s gonna translate through my music.
Q. You released your second solo mixtape early last year ‘Yagga Yo Volume 2’. What has the response been like?
The response has been good but to be honest I think more people need to hear it. The Yagga Yo tapes were more of an experimental era in my career and just a chance for me to try things out. With the new stuff I’m gonna put out I will give it a harder push and back up with some visuals too.
Q. Do you think over the past few years UK Hip Hop has put a lot more focus into lyricism (with artists like Lowkey, Logic, Mic Righteous etc) as opposed to some of the MC’s in the Garage era? How has the UK scene evolved?
I think it’s unfair to belittle what Garage did for the UK. It had a big impact on contemporary music today and helped to forge MCs into artists by giving them a platform and tying in different elements of the culture. Since the old days, MCs in the UK have definitely stepped up their game and lyrically the bar has been raised across all genres. All the guys you mention and many others have put out a constructive message and done it independently without the majors and all the glitz and glam. I rate that. That’s what we need to be on, but we still gotta keep some bubbly vibes, keep it entertaining and uplifting.
Q. When we think back to the roots of Hip Hop and its power in bringing a voice to the voiceless, it was almost like an alternate form of news. Do you feel that it still has the power to influence, educate and shape oppressed people in today’s society? Are there any issues that you feel important to address in your music?
Yes there are a lot of serious issues to be addressed but I do usually go for an uplifting vibe in my own music and avoid politics. I would like to share my opinions on these issues but just wanna do it in a way that I feel is uplifting and hopeful rather than preachy or depressing. Watch this space…
Q. Are you currently involved in any community projects outside of music?
I have done a lot of music workshops with young people over the years since the early days of the Heartless Crew. Over the past two years I’ve trained to become a teacher and now work with young people developing their musical, performance, social and functional skills. It’s a great job and allows me to share my knowledge and experience with a new generation of artists.
Q. Tell us a bit about the new sitcom ‘Ones N Twos’ that you star in? What has it been like to get involved in acting?
It’s a fun concept; the show is based on a pirate radio station called Ones N Twos FM. I play a character called DJ Niceness who is an average Joe who tries to carry on like a rude boy yardie. A bit like me really haha. I’ve always liked acting from my school and college days. I always wanted to do creative stuff whether it was art, drama or music. I guess I’ve just been focussing on music for most of my life so it’s really cool that I’m now getting opportunities to do some acting.
Q. You have an extremely loyal following, what is the most popular HLC line you get shouted at you at gigs?!
It’s gotta be the tag line “We got the vibe yo!”
Q. What have you got in store over the next few months?
Loads happening this year! I’m still doing my MC bookings and I want to to focus on my writing, record and release some new music, collaborate with like minded musicians, get more experience as an actor and continue working with young people as a teacher.
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- NEW MUSIC | YUNG R ‘THE MOVEMENT IS YUNG’ — October 17, 2019
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- EVENT | REBEL DIAZ LIVE IN LONDON ON OCTOBER 22ND 2019 — October 16, 2019