Check out the interview below. Questions by me and answers by Mani who is an artist from the collective Beats And Dreams.
My name is Mani and I’m an up and coming Hip-Hop/RnB artist from the Beats and Dreams crew. The group I’m in is a hip-hop group based in Toronto. I just recently put out my first official EP, The Afterthought
What made you start doing music?
I grew up with a lot of different music influencing me. My older brother got me into hip-hop, and R&B at a really young age. I remember in grade 3 my teacher heard me sing once and suggested I join the choir. I didn’t think much of it back then as a kid but ever since then I was always singing around the house. Fast forward to grade 9, I started writing songs and realized music was where my heart was.
How would you describe your sound?
That’s probably something my listeners can answer better than I can. I hate making the same type of music over and over again, so my sound is always changing.
Who is the audience you are trying to reach?
Ideally, I would love for hip-hop heads to bump my music, but really anybody who appreciates positive messages through music. If someone can relate to what I’m trying to say, even if its just for 2-3 minutes, then I’ve done my job.
What is your process in making songs?
I don’t like forcing it so I wait until I have a concrete idea, and then from there I look for a sound, either a sample or a beat, that reflects that idea. We try to get together often and work on music, so everyone stays pretty active in the creative process. King Sohrab and Sammy B try to reflect my ideas through the production whereas I work on the lyrics with Z. Ali.
Who are you musically influenced by?
A lot of different artists from different genres. Off the top of my head, it can go from Wale, J. Cole, Kanye all the way to James Blake, The Weeknd, and Ne-Yo. I didn’t do as much R&B as I would’ve liked on this EP, but hopefully down the line I can add a little to my music.
I listened to a lot of Black Star during the writing process for my EP. Based off the samples we used, you can tell I listened to a lot of new music as well (Lana Del Rey and Gotye)
Who would you love to collaborate with in the future? Pick three people and explain
There are a few local artists who I would love to work with. Some hip-hop, some R&B, all who I believe would compliment my style. To name 3 more well-known artists, first it would be Wale for sure. I feel like he’s the right mix of melody, lyrics, and reliability. A group I would love to work with would be TDE. The way they make music with different sounds, flows, and ideas all put together would be crazy to see first-hand. Finally, Toronto’s very own, Drizzy Drake. I don’t need to give much reasoning, he’s one of the best in the game and I’m sure he could teach me quite a bit about the industry and how to succeed in it.
Can you describe the process that went into making your first EP?
It starts by sharing ideas with my 2 producers, King Sohrab and Sammy B, through samples and certain sounds. Once they finish laying the track out, I would listen to it until I get a specific vibe. From there it was just about writing something that matches that sound and then we put it all together. We made so many tracks but I didn’t want a long EP, so we decided to just choose 7 that worked well together and reflected the different styles I have.
Thematically, the artwork represents my background. I’m Egyptian so the cover is a collection of Egyptian symbols that reflect different ideas and concepts that I believe in.
What is your overall message you are trying to send to your listeners?
I really just wanted to make music for the people who want to listen to music for more than just the beat. I’d love for my music to help people become more conscious, whether that’s personally or politically, as long as it helps spread a positive message.
What can we be looking forward to in the last part of 2014?
I’m hoping to start doing tracks with more local artists very soon. I’m looking to release 1 or 2 singles before the end of the year. As for our group, Sammy B wants to put out his own mixtape in the next month or so and I’ll definitely be on a couple tracks for that so be on the lookout.
What do you have planned for 2015?
I just want Beats And Dreams to expand significantly. We’re working on clothing, different shows, a bigger online presence, and next year I’ll be putting out another body of work. The best way to keep up with all our updates is through our site (www.beatsanddreams.com
) and we’ll do our best to make 2015 even better than this year.
Check out Beats & Dreams Below
Twitter and Instagram : @teeohmani (Personal)
Twitter and Instagram : @beatsanddreams (Group)
Listen To His First EP Below
MY MOTTO IS: IF YOU WANNA WIN THE LOTTERY, YOU HAVE TO MAKE THE MONEY TO BUY A TICKET!
From The 6ix,With Love
Thank You For Reading
Sincerely, Kid From The 6ix
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