'She Rises', started as a commentary on what it feels like to be a child of the diaspora, particularly a British-Asian experience. Henna, took that to create, what she described as, “a love letter to my ancestors”. This took a potentially negative feeling and transformed it into a message of hope for young people.
The collaboration came through me putting up an insta story asking my followers what they’d like to hear on my new project and my cousin, Henna, jokingly said “me”. So I said, “go on then! Write me a spoken word piece!”
How does this release serve as a taste of what’s to come on your ‘3000 Realms’ project?
I think it shows the levels of new heights I’ve grown to as a producer. Being able to source from so many different areas of my life and put it into something new. Simply put, I think it shows I’m a bit better than I was before, so the new project should be exciting!
What was the process of creating this upcoming EP?
The current state of lockdown had kicked it into action, but I had been talking about creating my own tape for a while. People always say how unique my style is and while I couldn’t record with artists during the rona season, I thought I’d start making an instrumental project to keep me occupied. Then around the time Henna messaged me and we started making the spoken word track, lockdown had lifted and it was summer! So I got to work, meeting people and just seeing what I could create before the next lockdown, always keeping my project in mind. I knew at some point it would fall into place if I just kept working.
"I get excited when I hear something I’ve never heard before but it sounds familiar at the same time.
How does this project differ from your 2018 EP ‘The Agenda’?
'The Agenda' was more of a collaborative project with different people and influences, whereas '3000 Realms' is very much a piece of my life as I am. Although I have multiple artists featuring in '3000 Realms', it was fully managed and directed by my personal vision. '3000 Realms' feels more like my true debut EP.
Which are some of your favourite tracks you’ve produced for other artists and how does your process differ when producing for others and for yourself?
That’s a hard question to answer because some of my favourites are unreleased… yet!! But I got a few with Finn Foxell that i love. The track I did for his EP with Safiyyah , “Shout Me”, is a sick track. I really like the work I done for Safiyyah’s EP too. There’s a few artists that I’ve worked with that i’m really excited to release things with, like Ayeisha Raquel (probably one of the best singers/songwriters/artists/people in the U.K. right now). So look out for them!
To be completely honest, the process feels the same whether it’s for me or for them. The only difference is that if they have a particular sound/style/vibe they’re after, then I use that as a template and then do my own thing with it to make a proper collaboration. I guess it’s just how much I compromise on my own sound to help create their vision.
What draws you to an artist and makes you want to collaborate with them?
Nah I’m joking! It’s really just whether I vibe with them. It could be a song I really like of theirs, the message in their music, their style or sound they create… anything! A lot of the time, I get excited when I hear something I’ve never heard before but it sounds familiar at the same time.
"it’s gonna take a while, so just focus on you and enjoy the view."
If you had to show your range as a producer by choosing two of your tracks, which two would you choose?
If you could produce for anyone, who would it be and what kind of track would you want to create?
Kendrick Lamar - A track that bridged the gap between generations and differences in people.
"As a kid, our house was full of so many different genres! I loved Bollywood music from the all the films we watched. I loved everything from Stevie Wonder to 50 Cent."
What are your top three tips for producers starting out?
Don't Give UP!
Accept that it doesn’t happen overnight and it’s gonna take a while, so just focus on you and enjoy the view.
Be open minded - to anything and everything.
How important do you think it is to have a knowledge of instrumentation when producing?
I’d say it depends on what music you’re making, but most people make music using instruments or samples of instruments, so it's probably quite useful to understand how they work, even if it’s to break the rules once they’ve been learnt.
Who are some of your favourite upcoming artists of London’s underground scene?
Which artists first inspired you to get into music and who is inspiring you today?
As a kid, our house was full of so many different genres! I loved Bollywood music from the all the films we watched. I loved everything from Stevie Wonder to 50 Cent. My mum loved people like Norah Jones and her father, the Sitar player, Ravi Shankar, who worked with The Beatles. Luther Van Dross was played a lot as well as all the 90’s artists like Aaliyah, Usher, Destiny’s Child... so many different artists to be honest! We just grew up on music.
If you guys had to recommend five artists to your listeners, who would they be?
What’s coming up for the rest of 2020?
I have some releases planned before the years out then beginning of 2021 my project drops!
Throughout the year though I got a couple gems to release, so keep your ears to the ground.