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RAP’S NEW VOICE: KYRIK GAINES ON DEFINING HIS ARTISTIC IDENTITY

Enter the vibrant world of rap's rising star, Kyrik Gaines, as he shares his journey of self-discovery and reveals the process of defining his unique artistic identity, leaving an indelible mark on the music industry.

By SIR Darryl Neal

Welcome to this captivating interview with Kyrik Gaines, a rising talent who is making waves as rap’s new voice. In this Q&A interview, we embark on a journey into Kyrik’s world, delving into his path of self-discovery and artistic growth. With a unique perspective and unwavering dedication to his craft, Kyrik continues to carve out his own distinct identity within the rap scene.

SC: WHAT’S YOUR RAP NAME?

KG: “I go by my government name, Kyrik Gaines.”


SC: CAN YOU GIVE US AN ARTIST WHO INSPIRED YOU TO BE A RAPPER?

KG: “I was always into music just because of my upbringing. I was a band kid since middle school. I play the guitar, piano, and alto saxophone. Many artists have inspired me over time, but the one artist that really made me believe it was possible was Frank Ocean. When Channel Orange came out, it really resonated with me. That’s when I decided that I wanted to create my own songs as opposed to learning songs by other artists. I want my music to have an impact on other people’s lives the way that album had an impact on mine.”

SC: WHERE’S YOUR HOMETOWN?

KG: “I’m from Miami, Florida.”

SC: YOUR CURRENT RESIDENCE?

KG: “Miami, Florida.”

SC: GOAT VERSE OF ALL TIME FROM A RAPPER?

KG: “There’s so many great rap verses but this one just takes me back to my childhood. A Tribe Called Quest’s Award Tour.

You can be a black man and lose all your soul
You can be white and groove but don’t crap the roll
See my shit is universal if you got knowledge of dolo
Or delf or self, see there’s no one else
Who can drop it on the angle, acute at that
So, do that, do that, do that, that, that.”

SC: YOUR BEST OR MOST ICONIC BAR?

KG: “Kyrik Gaines’ Sandbox! “Not taking shortcuts like a low boy, won’t rush. I ain’t a kid no more I just stopped giving a f*ck.”

SC: WHO ARE YOUR TOP 5 CELEBRITY CRUSHES?

KG: “I’m very big on energy, so it’s a little difficult for me to have a crush on someone that I’ve never had an interaction with. But, if I had to choose based on how they’re perceived, I really only have two at the moment. I won’t say their names but, one is a Capricorn and the other is a Scorpio.”

SC: WHAT’S AN ALBUM YOU CAN LISTEN TO WITH NO SKIPS?

KG: “The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill.”

SC: WHAT’S AN ADVICE YOUR PARENT GAVE YOU THAT YOU LIVE BY?

KG: “My dad always told me to be a leader and to not be a trend follower.”

SC: WHAT’S YOUT FAVORITE FAMILY MEAL?

KG: “Soul food: Chicken, baked mac & cheese, collard greens, yams, cornbread, etc.”

SC: YOUR FAVORITE DESSERT?

KG: “Sweet potato pie.”

SC: YOUR FAVORITE CAR?

KG: “1984 Corvette C4.”

SC: WHO ARE YOUR FIVE FASHION ICONS? WHY ARE THEY YOUR FASHION ICONS?

KG: “Ye, A$AP Rocky, Pharrell, Virgil Abloh, Denny Balmaceda. Neither of them follow what’s trendy and each of them are innovators in their own way.”

SC: WHO’S YOUR CHILDHOOD ROLE MODEL?

KG: “Barack Obama.”

SC: YOUR ROLE MODEL AS AN ADULT?

KG: “Jay-Z.”

SC: WHO’S THE FIRST PERSON WHO BELIEVED IN YOU?

KG: “My brother was the first person to believe in me and is also one of my biggest supporters.”

SC: WHICH ACTOR WOULD YOU CHOOSE TO PLAY YOUR LIFE STORY?

KG: “Samuel L. Jackson.”

SC: HOW DID YOU START RAPPING?

KG: “I started singing and writing in high school, but I’ve been an instrumentalist since I was in the 6th grade.”

SC: DO YOU REMEMBER YOUR FIRST RAP?

KG: “I was in the sixth grade and we had to write and produce a song using Garage band, and the topic was grammar and word choice. ‘Spelling grammar precise meanings. Use word choice and different things.’ Hahaha!”

SC: IS YOUR “PEN” VERIFIED? HAVE YOU EVER HAD ANY HELP WRITING YOUR OWN RAPS?

KG: “I’ve never had help writing any of my songs. I’m not opposed to collaborating though.”

SC: HAS YOUR SEX LIFE IMPROVED SINCE YOU BECAME A RAPPER?

KG: “Not really.”

SC: YOU ARE WATCHING YOUR FAN BASE GROW, WHAT ARE THEIR PERSONALITIES LIKE?

KG: “My fans seem to be interested in some of the same things I’m interested in. It’s pretty cool to have a tribe of supportive people who you share common interests with. They also have a great sense of humor! I love interacting with them on social media.”

SC: HOW’S YOUR INTERACTIONS WITH YOUR FANS, ARE THEY COOL AND SUPPORTIVE?

KG: “My fans are super supportive and fun to interact with.”

SC: WHAT IS THE HARDEST PART ABOUT BEING A RAPPER?

KG: “Staying active on social media.”

SC: WHAT IS THAT ONE THING YOU WANT CHANGE ABOUT THE BUSINESS OF MUSIC?

KG: “I wish that there wasn’t so much pressure to be an influencer on social media platforms and that artists can just be artists.”

SC: HAVE YOU EVER HEARD A SONG AND WISH YOU MADE IT OR HOP ON THE FEATURE? WHAT SONG IS THAT?

KG: “This is a tough one. There’s so many! I’ll go with SWEET/ I THOUGHT YOU WANTED TO DANCE by Tyler the Creator. I hope to work with him someday.”

SC: DO YOU THINK THIS GENERATION HAS ITS NAS AND JAY-Z, OR BEYONCE AND RIHANNA?

KG: “There’s so many great artists out right now and we’re also in a different time in music. I don’t think anyone can or should try to be the “next” anyone. We should aspire to the best version of ourselves and reach our full potential as artists. I think that’s how you stand out and enter a different league.”

SC: WHICH ARTIST BESIDES YOURSELF DO YOU SEE THAT ARE OVERLOOKED FOR BEING ICONIC IN MUSIC?

KG: “An artist that is kind of overlooked to me is Raven Lenae. I think she’s super dope and talented.”

SC: CAN YOU TELL US YOUR OWN PROCESS IN MAKING A SONG?

KG: “My songs normally start with a simple melody that randomly comes to my head while I’m doing something non-music related. It may come while I’m in the shower or folding clothes, but when it does, I have to record voice memos of every idea so that when I start producing and really writing, I can piece everything together like a puzzle.”

SC: THERE ARE SO MANY PRODUCERS THAT ARE COMING UP AND SO MANY ESTABLISHED PRODUCERS THAT ARE STILL RELEVANT. WHO ARE SOME PRODUCERS YOU WOULD LIKE TO WORK WITH?

KG: “It’s my dream to work with The Neptunes, @pharell, @chadhugo, Timbaland @timbaland, Missy Elliott @missymisdemeanorelliott, and Ludwig Göransson @ludwiggoranson.”

SC: DO YOU THINK YOU’VE GROWN AS AN ARTIST SINCE YOU’VE STARTED? IF SO, HOW?

KG: “I feel like I’ve definitely grown as an artist since I’ve started. I’m at a place where I’m more comfortable with taking risks and being free. I just want to continue challenging myself and getting better.”

SC: HOW DO YOUR PARENTS FEEL ABOUT THIS CAREER CHOICE?

KG: “At first, my parents didn’t quite see it as a real career and wanted me to pursue a “real job”, but now they’re a little more understanding.”

SC: WHAT IS A MUSIC COLLABORATION THAT HASN’T HAPPENED THAT YOU THINK SHOULD HAVE HAPPENED BY NOW?

KG: “Tyler the Creator and Childish Gambino.”

SC: WHAT ARE YOUR MUSIC GOALS AS AN ARTIST?

KG: “I would love to go on a stadium tour one day, score a movie, and a Grammy would be cool too.”

SC: WHO’S YOUR MOUNT RUSHMORE OF RAP?

KG: “Biggie, 2Pac, Eminem, and Lil Wayne.”

SC: WHAT’S THE STRANGEST THING ANYONE HAS EVER ASKED YOU TO DO?

KG: “Someone who I wasn’t even cool with randomly asked me to pee in a cup so they could use it for their urine test.”
SC: WHAT DOES THE PHRASE “I’M BLESSED” MEAN OR LOOKS LIKE TO YOU?

KG: “I’m blessed” means I’m in a good place mentally, physically, and I’m happy.”

SC: WHICH RAPPER DO YOU FEEL FRIENDLY COMPETITION FROM?

KG: “I only compete with myself.”

SC: ARE YOU HERE TO RAP OR IS YOUR GOAL TO ADVANCE “THE CULTURE”?

KG: “I really want to be innovative and create moments that advance the culture.”

SC: WHICH NEW RAPPERS ARE ON YOUR RADAR FROM YOUR AREA WE SHOULD BE PAYING ATTENTION TO?

KG: “King Hoodie (Rapper) – @kinghoodieraps

Ginga Soul (R&B Singer) – @gingasoul.”

SC: IF YOU HAD TO GIVE YOUR FANS TO REMEMBER ONE LAW TO LIVE BY, WHAT WOULD THAT LAW OF LIFE BE?

KG: “This line is from my upcoming single Ditto, and I want my listeners to live by it: They gon’ judge anyway, so let’s do what we wanna.”

As Kyrik continues to evolve and make his mark on the rap landscape, we eagerly anticipate the future of his career and the impact his voice will have on the culture. His dedication to staying true to himself and fearlessly exploring his artistic identity serves as an inspiration to aspiring artists everywhere.

Keep an ear out for Kyrik Gaines, as he undoubtedly has more to offer as he continues to define his artistic identity and leave his mark on the rap culture.

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