How did you start rapping?
I started rapping when i was 12 after my cousin introduced me Snoop Doogy Dogg’s “Doggystyle” album around 1994. Before that album i was oblivious to hip hop’s existence and was a huge fan of Michael Jackson. I started doing my homework and finding out more about hip hop through Wu-Tang, Mobb Deep, Nas and right about that time I discovered my biggest influence, Tupac Shakur. From there onwards I really took to rapping.
Where are you from?
I was born in Johannesburg, South Africa and grew up in a small town called Umtata. I later moved back to Johannesburg to pursue my hip hop dream.
Growing up who did you listen to?
I listened to a lot of Tupac. At some point I only listened to West Coast music because of my loyalty to Tupac. A close friend of mine whose parents moved to the USA when we were little kids eventually moved back to South Africa during my teens and preached about this dude called Jay-Z. Eventually I gave in and started listening to Jay-Z. From there onwards I really fell in love with Nas, Mobb Deep, Common and a lot of the golden era like Mos Def, Talib Kweli and Slum Village. Right about that time we got BET in South Africa, then the floodgates opened up to the South. Outkast, Cashmoney, Young Jeezy and the list goes on. I am a product of New York hip hop though, Jay, Nas, Camron, 50 Cent, Jim Jones…they really moulded me to the artist i am today.
What inspired your music?
My life. South Africa. Personal experiences. The loss of both my parents and finding my feet on my own. Love. Pain. The quest for knowledge and music itself inspires my music.
What is the hip hop scene like in South Africa?
Its a relatively new industry but has moved in leaps and bounds in the last couple of years. It used to be the most overlooked genre in South Africa but is now the biggest genre of music. Rappers and producers are starting to make loads of money and starting to travel outside of Africa. The sky is the limit now. The people in the streets are behind hip hop all the way.
What are the challenges for hip-hop artist in South Africa?
Most of all it is funding. We got the talent but labels aren’t as forward thinking. The industry is still largely controlled by old heads. So we start our own labels and thats why i founded CLMG ie. Creative Level Music Group in 2016. Now we ready to take off.
Favorite pair of kicks in your closet?
My retro cement 4 Jordans.
Whats cars do you drive?
I copped a BMW 3 series then crashed it. I then went for a Mercedes Benz C Class, now I’m pushing an Audi A4. I only do German cars.
What is the biggest city you’ve been to?
What is your most favorite city to visit?
Cape Town, South Africa. The most beautiful city in the world.
What city do you have on your list to go to before you die?
Harlem, New York
Tell us the motivation behind your next release?
My next release is titled “Self Medicated”. It’s motivated by my personal journey through suffering and pain and how I use music, drugs, alcohol, material things, spirituality and love as a coping mechanism with life’s ills.
How can we follow you online?
My handle is @bighomeycash and you may check out all my music, videos and news on www.clmg.world
© Alwayz Therro