Funky Friday: WeSingSin

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WeSingCin – Balance

Mr.y (mist(ə)rē), better known as WeSingCin, is a 22 year-old artist without a definite home. He was last seen drifting into the shadows after hearing the whispers of the Bad Magician.

To live one’s life as honest and true to one’s self is the mission behind WeSingCin’s music. It’s a direct line into the thinking process undergone throughout his day-to-day life. Growing up in a more than religious household, the foundation that was intended to be set forth was the distinction between a righteous or a sinful lifestyle. However, those two things are subjective. In choosing to speak on his own truths and being transparent within his work, WeSingCin hopes to challenge the belief of what, precisely, “living right” entails.

If any of you still have any concerns about Mr.y and where he disappeared off to, speak softly and listen closely.

 

Interested to learn more about this artist? Check out our interview with him here.  You can also find his SoundCloud here!

Complexity and Clarity with Sadaway| Written Wednesday

While not a huge fan of labels, Sadaway would call himself an artist in the broadest sense. He creates visual art (mostly in the form of pen and ink works, but occasionally paintings and, recently, jewelry), poetry, raps, sings, and produces beats. While he wouldn’t go as far as to say ‘I do it all,’ Sadaway is definitely open to trying it all.
For his art and image as an artist and performer, Sadaway puts a lot of thought and effort into cultivating a unique aesthetic.  He has managed this through choosing specific motifs that persist across all mediums of his work. From the visual pieces released to his sound and, even, the style of his outfits, Sadaway keeps certain elements in mind.
If he were to put a name to his specific genre/aesthetic, Sadaway thinks it would be something along the lines of:  Post-Apocalyptic Alternative Vapor Rap (ridiculousness intended).
To check out what he means, follow his Instagram, SoundCloud, and art page?? (find these***). If you are interested in learning more about the creation behind his aesthetic and style, read our interview with Sadaway below!

 

How do you cultivate and maintain a following on social media?

Building an Instagram account up to 10k followers was easier than it sounds, actually.  In all honesty I could of grown the account even more effectively if I had stayed more consistent with the content I posted. But, I decided to compromise sheer numbers for individuality and creative freedom.  The account started as a meme account which, unsurprisingly (at least in my experience), grows very quickly. Humor is a great medium, as it transcends particular interests and has huge sharing/reposting/whatever potential.  The theme of my meme account was Fallout, as that game franchise has been near and dear to my heart since I was the ripe young age of 13. I started it on a whim during my first semester at college, just for fun, to see how many jokes I could think of.  Unbeknownst to me there was already an entire community of similar content creators on the platform. Connecting and collaborating with these community members gave a huge boost to my following and introduced me to some really cool people. Eventually, I decided to transform my account into a showcase for my art and music as this is what I am truly passionate about.  Making the transition was difficult as the account did stagnate to a degree and I lost my momentum. The account is still a pet project and asset of mine and I’m confident I will accumulate new followers with the same techniques. (@sadaway.jpg if y’all wanna join the wave)
Overall my advice to burgeoning content creators would be to stay consistent both in content and uploading habits.

 

What inspired the song “Fuckin’ Cat” ft NGGA? What is the meaning behind the song?

Fuckin’ Cat was my first venture into the sometimes frustrating but ALWAYS rewarding realm of beat making.  Beat making, for me, is pretty straight forward albeit time consuming (not helped by the fact I’m lazy and distractible as fuck).  It sometimes starts with a concept, it sometimes starts with nothing.  I find that having one specific sound or feel in mind is the more difficult route. It’s easy for me to pigeonhole myself into a mindset of how the beat should come out and lose my creative edge. For me, it’s often best to just sit down and start plucking keys and experimenting with drum patterns. Depending on what I’m feeling at that moment, my beat will come out accordingly.

Not only do you rap but you make your own beats. Describe your beatmaking process.
Ok, so bear with me on this one. Speaking of Instagram, y’know those sponsored ads in your feed for clothing brands you’ve never heard of before? The ones selling overpriced streetwear, ironic graphic tees, or something like that? Well, one day I happened upon one selling all-over print ski masks. More importantly, they were giving away the first 100 units free (just pay shipping). So, one was a kitten and immediately I thought, “damn, that shit’s tough. I need me one for shows.” It just so happened that when that mask arrived I was just beginning to experiment with making beats. As soon as I got it and proceeded to put it on, the idea just came to me along with the music and I got to work. I had the beat completed in time to perform it the same day. Thus, Fuckin’ Cat was born.  It’s definitely a lighthearted, sort of gag track. I’m not trying to impress anyone with it, I was just having fun.  But, at the same time, it was my first ever song completely produced and written by just me. It’s special for that reason.  There’s really no rhyme or reason to this song. It’s just a 5 minute bombardment of awful cat puns and wild ad libs (shout out to NGGA for coming thru with those).

 

You have very fast-paced, multi-syllabic verses. How do you learn to balance complexity and clarity?

I personally feel that’s it’s one thing to rap and have a catchy hook, but it’s a game changer to have lyrics that flow seamlessly or, even, poetically on a track. That’s why I have such a tremendous amount of respect for artists like Earl Sweatshirt and MF Doom, I think they really own this style of music. I try to emulate this style too in my own work. But, my approach has evolved as I have grown as an artist. When I first started writing and performing, I would often cram as much wordplay into a verse as possible. Usually this would lead me to being forced to rap really fast which, in turn, lead to me choking or running out of breath. On top of this, most listeners couldn’t appreciate everything I was saying. So, over time, I slowed my pace and started writing in spaces to breathe.  Now, writing a line is kind of like a game, the objective being to see how many rhymes and how much wordplay I can fit into the shortest amount of words. My takeaway here is that if you want to flaunt how clever you are on a track, emphasis comes first. Speed is a bonus.

In what ways do you combine your different art forms and present them to your audience?

As was stated earlier, I try my best to capture a similar aesthetic across all mediums of my art.  This means that most, if not all, of the visuals I put out should be almost interchangeable with most, if not all, of my music.  And, of course, you have to dress the part too. I aim for bright neon colors and gradients that compliment each other and contrast this with drab, piecemeal designs and textures like rust, corrugated metal, and  torn fabric for my outfits.  My visual art shares many of the same elements along with computer generated graphics and scenes from popular post-apocalyptic games and movies (mostly Fallout if you hadn’t already guessed).  For my music, I use a lot of synths and electric instrumentation to create elaborate, serene soundscapes then contrast this with rough, heavy percussion and sound effects.  My goal is to establish a recognizable and unique aesthetic that permeates all fields of my work.
In what ways does your music style allow you to discuss different topics while maintaining a consistent theme?
I think that my style of music should not have a significant impact on what I communicate through it, on my own beliefs, or values.  While the instrumental aspect of my music may be fairly homogeneous, thematically, my lyrics and messages could ultimately be anything. That’s the beauty of poetry and hip-hop to me.  People expect rappers and poets to give them something raw and real, something they can relate to.  Rapping allows an artist to speak their mind as frankly as possible. It’s really just rhythmic talking. Whether that talking comes in the form of a story or a conversation is at the artist’s discretion. For instance, in my own music I’ve discussed everything from childhood nostalgia to regret, from love lost to being that fuckin’ cat.

 

As a visual artist how do you ensure you are being properly compensated and credited for your work?

This is a tricky one. In short, I don’t.  Unfortunately, being a novice independent artist and putting your personal creations out into the world always poses the risk of having your ideas be stolen, especially in the internet age.  I used to get fired up when seeing someone post a meme I had spent time imagining and editing without so much as a mention of my name. After that, I began to watermark my work. But, even then, anyone could crop a watermark out of a photo, edit it out with a program like photoshop, or even reproduce the same idea on their own.  Now, I take these situations in stride as they’re really just a fact of life for artists like me. The dream is that once you become established, your work will be able to stand out from the rest and immediately be recognized as your’s, with or without your name attached.  For compensation, it’s pretty much the same, you win some you lose some. I think the visibility that the art I make for others provides me is more valuable than the $20+ I ask for small pieces anyway.

 

In what ways do you network and collaborate with other artists?

I network with any opportunity I get to. You never know who’s a creator, who’s a connoisseur, or who has connections.  It’s not like we all have sticky notes on our backs that show who’ll fuck with the vision and who won’t.  So to that end, I just engage people about their interests and go from there. I really love a good conversation and, for the most part, I’m an open book. If someone asks, I’m more than willing to share what I’m about. In my opinion I think that’s the most natural way to go about it, just get out there, drop the phone and talk to another human being face-to-face dammit. I really can’t stand the guys sliding into every dm or comment section they can with the shameless self promotion. I guess I give them props for their tenacity but I find it really obnoxious and a sure fire way to have me never check out your stuff.  For me, it’s as simple as if you appreciate what I’m doing and the feeling is mutual then let’s swap contact info and make something radical.

 

Over the span of your career, you have changed your stage name multiple times. Tell us about the process of deciding the right name for you. How do you know when it’s time to change it? How do you ensure that your audience remains familiar with who you are despite your name change?

Hahaha, damn. I knew this one was coming. I can make it short for this one.  Basically, being a successful artist or visionary means not giving a single fuck about what anyone thinks of you,your talent, and making your own way.  In that respect, I do what I want because I want to.  If I’m not feeling a name, a look, an idea, or whatever it might be, I switch it up.  Typically there’s been a good reason in the past. I change, my art changes, and I need a fresh start to seize upon the new energy and direction. Other times, I just realize the old name is lame and that’s that. I see it as no harm no foul since I don’t exactly have legions of adoring fans to catch off guard. And for the fans who might be confused? They either get with the program or move on, I won’t lose any sleep either way.  As for the name itself, it’s whatever the coolest thing to pop into my head is.

An Enigma in Entertainment: Interview With WeSingCin

Interviewed by SlayDaKing

DSC06121 (1)

Photo taken by Marques Ruiz

Mr.y (mist(ə)rē), better known as WeSingCin, is a 22 year-old artist without a definite home. He was last seen drifting into the shadows after hearing the whispers of the Bad Magician.

To live one’s life as honest and true to one’s self is the mission behind WeSingCin’s music. It’s a direct line into the thinking process undergone throughout his day-to-day life. Growing up in a more than religious household, the foundation that was intended to be set forth was the distinction between a righteous or a sinful lifestyle. However, those two things are subjective. In choosing to speak on his own truths and being transparent within his work, WeSingCin hopes to challenge the belief of what, precisely, “living right” entails.

If any of you still have any concerns about Mr.y and where he disappeared off to, speak softly and listen closely.

soundcloud.com/wesingcin


What is your identity as an artist and how do you maintain it on social media platforms? Describe your creative process.

Id say my identity as an artist is that of a seeker who can’t let everyone in. This explains my social presence. I like to be unseen, at least, until I want you to see me. It’s very characteristic of myself, really. I don’t feel the need to document everything and upload daily updates because it takes away from the work. I know I should probably be trying to build more connections through social media but that’s just me again thinking my work will speak for itself when it all comes together in the end. But, we’re still in the process of working on this new project so I’m more focused on that at the moment.


Tell us how your style has grown over time.

I think my style has undergone a number of changes in the last 7-8 years. I remember when i first started rapping and recording I was sounding like some of my favorite artist at the time. J Cole had just released Friday Night Lights and I was really into Curren$y, Lupe Fiasco, Kanye, and Kid Cudi. So, of course, I wanted to make music that was on par with what they were doing. I was writing like real raps back then. And then, someone asked me “what’s the message you’re trying to convey”. At the time, I didn’t know. Being one of the best rappers wasn’t even on my mind either. I was just doing it cause I was having fun. From there you can kind of see that I went deep down that introspective rabbit hole trying to place as much meaning into my words.

As far as beat selection, I listen to a wide array of music from different genres so I think I pull sounds from that. I wanted to do something different and Kid Cudi is a huge influence in terms of being different. Seeing him collaborate with producers like Nosaj Thing and Ratatat put me on a different path where it wasn’t conventional Hip-Hop beats. Instead, TripHop, Chillwave, anything Downtempo and Lofi became what I found myself drawn too. So, overtime, the accumulation of these musical tastes helped blend together this sound.

How do you go about choosing who to collab with on a track?

In terms of choosing artists to collaborate with on my own content, I don’t often seek out features. I have this set idea in mind already, this image and moment I’m trying to recreate and it’s hard finding an artist to complement these ideas well. Not to sound as if I’m looking down on my contemporaries [Chuckles].  But, when I do get asked to feature on another’s work, I’m very open to that and connecting with other artist in that sense.

Your music has a heavy focus on lyricism. How important are the words you use in conveying complex imagery?

The words are the most important thing in my work. I’d want people to focus on that. Before writing, I had always been a visual person, seeing things in snapshots. I had to find a way to translate those images into something that might be understood differently. Each word is being used to describe the moment on a number of levels based off the senses. So, they are very important in properly capturing a moment.

Describe your aesthetic. How much does that factor into your artistic expression?

I’m unsure how I’d describe my aesthetic and it’s a factor into my music. I just try write what I feel. With visual representations of my music, I feel as though it’s bright on a surface level but the underlying feelings are darker when the music gets dissected.

As an artist, do you ever find yourself deciding whether a venue has the right vibe and platform for your art? How do you navigate this decision making?

In the past I think i just wanted to get my music heard. I’d be looking to perform anywhere any chance I got. But, gradually, I’ve sort of been taking a step back to be more calculated in terms of performances because the quality of music wasn’t at the level in which I wanted it. Being able to give the audience an experience rather than a show is what I’d want to be able to do. So understanding that aspect and how I can present myself as this artist within my performance is something that occupies my mind.

In a lot of your songs you are very emotionally vulnerable. How do you take care of yourself throughout the writing process and after?

I don’t think I do. I’ve got to learn to separate the writing process from actual life because I feel as though I’m never not in the writing process. I could be headed somewhere but in my mind are images and words swimming around, trying to piece themselves together. I have to always be open to these thoughts. I’m an over thinker so there’s no real way to turn it off. But being that I’m always in this state of thought, you become used to it -almost numb where these emotions don’t feel as real and you don’t seem as connected to them but can still recognize them.

What was the inspiration behind the single “Shadow Walker”? Tell us about the meaning behind the song.

When I first heard the beat, I instantly got this lurking feeling. But, the shadow’s a place of dissociation; where you can find peace. The shadow’s also where your darkest self gets revealed to you as a whisper. It’s that space of vulnerability.

Listen to Shadow Walker and more on WeSingCin’s Soundcloud

https://soundcloud.com/wesingcin/shadow-walker-prod-qase

 

Connecting with Community: Interview With Rapper Internal Rhyme

Interviewed by Steven Ikegwu

Jeremy Goldsmith, better known as Internal Rhyme (IR), is a 23-year-old creative from Philadelphia, PA. A rapper for 12 years, Internal is best known for his charming wittiness, confident delivery, and, of course, incomparable rhyme schemes. His strong vocabulary and complex subject matter are no coincidence because they stem directly from his years of formal education and community involvement. IR is a scholar and a mensch, to say the least.

Some of the biggest influencers of IR’s music include Elzhi, Nas, Eminem, Tupac, and Big L. Originally categorized as a “boom bap” rapper, Internal has managed to develop his sound to include modern day melodies & futuristic beats while still maintaining his notable lyricism. He’s performed hundreds of times during his 12 year hip-hop career and is often remembered for his vibrant stage presence. Internal has no plans to stop rhyming. He looks forward to recording music until the day he dies.

Interested to know more about this artist? Learn more about Internal Rhyme through some questions we asked him below.

How have your connections in Philly helped you progress?

I’m lucky to be really well connected throughout Philly. For one, I have a relationship with a few different studios around the city, which allows me to pick and choose what sound I’m aiming for. I’ve also been able to develop familiarity with most of the venues in the area, since I’ve pretty much played at them all at this point, minus a select few. I like establishing direct relationships with venue management because it opens the door for me to control future events I perform at. Aside from these few examples, I also link with fellow rappers, singers, photographers, graphic artists, and videographers all the time. Philly has so many geniuses, and I believe in pushing good work forward.

 

 Describe how you network and the best ways for doing so

In my opinion, the best way to network is by being present – whether that means at music events, on social media, in photos, or ideally, all of the above. I’ve learned that people recognize you a lot quicker than you think they do, and a lot quicker than they’ll usually admit. But showing up is only the first part – you also have to interact with people. Make an effort to talk to other creative individuals, either on the internet or at actually events. Tell them with pride who you are and what you do, and ask about what they do (and actually listen!)

 

How do you incorporate other types of art into your work?

I certainly consider myself a jack of all trades. Over the past five months, I’ve been honing in on some newly-learned skills, including photography, motion graphics, and fashion design. It’s all about branding yourself these days. The more you can do, the more valuable you are.

 

How does networking in your own community compare to networking outside of it?

Honestly, I just love the community in Philly. A lot of people talk down on the vibe in our city and say that it’s completely unsupportive. While I’ve definitely come across my fair share of hating ass mf’s within a 10 mile radius, I just think the talent in this city is unmatchable. Also, there are some really, really good people, like good hearted people in this area. And sometimes you have to go to smaller events to find them… they’re often hidden at open mics, poetry slams, acoustic music nights… but they exists, and those folks are powerful.

 

How do you continue your music career after college?

At first, it’s a hard adjustment, I can’t lie. Being in college, especially at Rutgers, was so beneficial to my music. By my senior year, I was performing 3-4 times per week, every week. I was the vice president of Verbal Mayhem, which was, to this day, the greatest outlet I’ve ever had. I was constantly surrounded by intelligence and passion. But it’s all about learning how to move in the environment you’re in. When I went to Rutgers, my target audience was generally folks that attended UNICEF fundraisers or weekly poetry open mics. And while I still participate in those sorts of events, they’re less common now. Now it’s more like going to popular parties in the city or scouting out whatever hip-hop shows are going on on a random Friday night.

 

How do you balance your work, school, and community involvement?

I really have like five thousand lives, it’s crazy. I mean, there’s Internal Rhyme, there’s a student, there’s a social worker, there’s a son, a boyfriend, a photographer, a tutor, a teacher… I do a lot. I’ve always liked to keep busy. And believe me, it’s very tough and I let people down a lot. I’m trying to get better at managing my time, but I commit to so many things. I really like to jump on opportunities when they’re presented to me because I recognize that they’re a blessing. But I get caught up a lot and I’m trying to learn how to solve those issues more. I think I have to get this whole daily planner thing down finally…

Check out Internal Rhyme’s music here