Get To Know Grieves! (@Grievesmusic)

We are very excited to intro­duce to you the Seattle-based rap­per, Grieves, who emerged in 2007 and now has made four well known, loved and listened to albums. His fourth stu­dio album, Winter and the Wolves, will be released on March 25th and fea­tures a strong instru­ment­al med­ley which forms a lovely back­drop to his singing and rap­ping.

Grieves is such a unique artist because of his eclect­ic style of music. His artic­u­late and thought pro­vok­ing lyr­i­cism is enlivened with his dynam­ic music and per­form­ance style. He can sim­ul­tan­eously make people want to sit down and absorb all the words and get a whole crowd mov­ing to the beat. Grieve’s music is the per­fect soundtrack for a heart­break or a night of jam­ming alike. He has inspired us with his music and I hope he will inspire you as well.


Q. Can you tell us about your stage name ‘Grieves’, how did it come about?

There really isn’t a mean­ing behind it. I was young and sign­ing up for battles. I went to put my name down and the lady was like “you can­’t just use your real name”.. Still to this day I’m not sure I agree with that idea, but I was young and wanted to rap. I walked around the blocks a couple times and came back with the name that you now all know. 98-D’Grieves!

Q. How did you get into mak­ing hip hop music?

I was all about the multi track­ing aspect of it all. I was a one man band and I loved it!
I star­ted rap­ping when I heard 36 cham­bers and at some point I real­ized that I needed to shit or get off the pot with all that.
I ended up focus­ing on writ­ing instead of just drunk free styl­ing at parties.

The pro­duc­tion side of things came later for me. I took the time to focus on the writ­ing then I star­ted hon­ing in on my pro­duc­tion style.

Q. How would you describe your music, in par­tic­u­lar your latest album ‘Winter & The Wolves’?

I’ve nev­er been the type of per­son to run away from a feel­ing. I really let that shine through in my music. If I’m feel­ing some­thing I put it all out on the paper or the key­board.

This new­est record is no dif­fer­ent in that aspect but I did approach it dif­fer­ently. My life was a hec­tic mess when I sat down to make this record and I wanted to show that without hav­ing the music sound “hec­tic”.


Q. What advice would you give to people want­ing to devel­op their lyr­i­cism and per­formance?

Truth is everything. Wheth­er you’re in the stu­dio, on the stage, rap­ping at a bus stop, or makin You­Tube videos.. Truth is king.

Too many people try to emu­late what they see being “cool” and for­get to focus on what works for them. Of course people are gonna be influ­enced by oth­ers, but I wanna see what you have to offer as an artist and as a human. I could care less about how much you can make your­self sound like you grew up in the Bronx and drop lines that don’t match up with the life you live.

Q. Do you have a writ­ing pro­cess?

I let the music influ­ence everything. Some­times I have a concept ready. But most of the time I let whatever­’s gonna come out, come out

Q. Who have you col­lab­or­ated with, and how was it to do a col­lab with Mr Lif?

Work­ing with Lif was extremely influ­en­tial for me. I was at an early point in my career and showed me that my music has no lim­its. He inspired me to get more out of everything. I love that man.

Q. I thought your lyr­i­cism was very much like a lot of spoken word poetry, would you call your lyr­i­cism — poetry?

I mean, I guess all rap­ping is poetry but I would­n’t con­sider myself a poet. I am a lyr­i­cist but I would wanna piss any poets off my rep­ping their craft. I’m a dude with a head full of words and a heart full of sound.


Q. Do you know about UK hip hop cul­ture and how would you describe the scene where you live?

I don’t know much about UK hip hop. But I’m always open to it.

The scene where I live is great. Seattle has a very healthy art and music scene. It’s nice to be sur­roun­ded by so many tal­en­ted people all work­ing togeth­er.

Q. What is import­ant do you think when edu­cat­ing young people with hip hop and the arts? (in work­shops etc.)

I’ve actu­ally nev­er done a work­shop with music. I would encour­age kids (or any­one one at that mat­ter) to be them­selves and to nev­er run away from their ideas. It does­n’t have to be “Hip Hop” to be good and ori­gin­al. Our style of music is such a mash up of oth­ers it would be a shame to waste a good idea for the sake of being “nor­mal”.

Q. Can you tell us a bit about grow­ing up where you did in Amer­ica? Did you notice a hip hop cul­ture and com­munity there, from a young age?

Where I grew up, there was­n’t really much of a Hip Hop culture/scene. I had to leave to find that.

Some­thing about being in a new place with noth­ing but a dream really helped me find what I needed. I quickly found my way into Seattle’s scene and dug in with both hands. I don’t think I could have done that if I nev­er left home.

Q. What are you upto now and in the future? What can we look for­ward to?

I’m gear­ing up to show the world my new record. It’s gonna be a busy year for me but I’m excited for the work. Whenev­er that clears up, I’ll be back in the stu­dio work­ing.

Q. What are you listen­ing to nowadays? What tracks do we need to check out?

Lately I’ve been listen­ing to a lot of May­er Hawthorne, Mak­tub and D’an­gelo. Been in a sexy mood. It’s been help­ing me a lot with my melody writ­ing as well.

Lana Bell

Lana Bell 

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Lana Bell

Lana Bell

Author / Poetry Edit­or at I Am Hip-Hop
Lana Bell, is an eight­een year old Lon­don­er who is based in Bris­tol. She is an emer­ging Spoken Word Artist, and the Poetry Edit­or for I Am Hip-Hop Magazine. She has been writ­ing for a dec­ade; though she has only been per­form­ing on from the age of fif­teen. She got into Hip-Hop music at four­teen, and she found a massive interest in Old Skl Sounds and the out­let that Hip-Hop music offered her.

About Lana Bell

Lana Bell
Lana Bell, is an eighteen year old Londoner who is based in Bristol. She is an emerging Spoken Word Artist, and the Poetry Editor for I Am Hip-Hop Magazine. She has been writing for a decade; though she has only been performing on from the age of fifteen. She got into Hip-Hop music at fourteen, and she found a massive interest in Old Skl Sounds and the outlet that Hip-Hop music offered her.

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