Q. What made you get into Hip Hop?
I think i stumbled into hip hop before I knew all of the separate components were even one. John Craven’s Newsround showed me hip hop break-dancing one afternoon, and I was hooked from there. I heard some pirate radio hip hop shows playing electro from early and was an avid Mike Alan listener, back before Westwood had reared his head, in my eyes. Then one of my peeps used to rap some lyrics to us like they were his, but then I found the song and rapped it back to him like ‘Huh! HOW DO YOU LIKE ME NOW?!’
Q. You have been in the underground Hip Hop scene for a long time, and received a lot of praise from people in the industry. How long did it take you to really get noticed?
I don’t consider myself as being on the scene for a long time. If you’re born to express yourself, it’s part of my journey. I don’t even know if i have got properly noticed yet, but its not keeping me up at night! I live for the art-form, I live with the art-form and I live beside it, however long it takes!
Q. How would you define your style of music? Has your style evolved over time?
Most people would say I’ve evolved over the years, it’s kind of evident in the records and the sound of my voice.… it’s evident in the music i make. I would leave that up to you to comment on. Making music to me is like breathing and problem solving — you never stop!
Q. Where do you get your lyrical inspiration from?
Lyrically, I try to be different. My style is a simple matter of distilling my influences from my actual output — I’m not here to copy folks, I’m here to be inspired, so my style is about finding things that I think the real me would like to be said and regurgitating them into a rap form. I don’t like to be so obvious, that’s probably the poetry side of me. I try and write things people have to come back and listen to again and again, and maybe pick something up they didn’t catch at first.
Q. You have worked along quite a few artists in the, do you have any memories in particular from these experiences that you can share with us?
I work with so many people, on different levels, I consider the musicians I work with to be as equally important as the guests, so everyone is different. I like to work, and hopefully eat, with peeps whilst making music, I think it’s important.
Q. How important is it for you to experiment with your music. Is there anything you would not do when it comes to your music?
I am very principled as far as music, if I like something, I will do it, if i don’t, I won’t. I don’t like to bandwagon jump on genres, just ‘cos they’re hot — not my thing. I do what I believe in; experimentation I always experiment, but I don’t believe experimentation is about doing things you’re not interested in.
Q. With Hip Hop being a platform to share knowledge, how do you educate yourself on world truths? Do you have any books or films or people that inspire you?
Constantly looking for new documentaries and books, but everything I learn doesn’t necessarily go into my songs. I like for things to happen naturally. YouTube is my haven, I love looking for bits of film and info on there, and then looking elsewhere, YouTube is my favourite TV Channel! Hip hop is a platform to share anything… not just knowledge or info, it could be tastes in music, windows into how others live, and think, I enjoy all the possibilities!
Q. What other projects are you involved in outside music?
I am involved in the Hip Hop Shakespeare Company with Akala, I run an event called NoLongTing which is a party/art sharing event and I also run a group on Facebook called The Beat Inn, which is for producers to interact, be inspired and possibly work on the same sample as a friendly challenge — to challenge themselves more than others. My main project is living life and making this new album…I’m fighting with a title for it right now.
Q. What are you currently working on?
Letting people know about my new EP, Kick Snare And An Idea. Part one came out in April and Part two is ready to drop on 10th June.
Connect and Get Interactive with TY:
www.tymusicstore.co.uk for merchandise