Exclusive Interview: Knytro Talks Jamaica, Family And Raekwon

By | August 24, 2015 at 4:15 pm | No comments | Featured Post, Interviews, MUSIC | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

knytro2

Jamaican roots, British born and Orlando bred, rapper Knytro’s diversity doesn’t end there – a combination of classic hip-hop, electro-soul and reggae influences make up his unique sound and believe me when I say he’s going to be big! Signed to Chase & Status’ label MTA Records, Knytro has some impressive collabs under his belt and has toured with the likes of The Game, Snoop Dogg and Denzel Curry. Now living back in London, I had the chance to catch up with Knytro and get some much-needed answers.

Luci Wilden: What was it like growing up around music in the U.S? What was your first memory of music?
Knytro: My first memory of music was hip hop, the first thing I experienced I think was LL Cool J, his name was said a lot because we lived a couple blocks down from him, this was when I wasn’t even 3 yrs old, I always remember my Mum saying we live a couple blocks from LL Cool J.

And you remember that?
Yeah I remember, that’s one thing I remember, my mum used to always say that. That was just before we flew back to the UK to get my Visa and then we moved to Orlando, Florida.

Is there anything in particular that motivates or inspires your music?
One thing in particular is my Dad, he was trying to do this music thing too and he was doing pretty well. Seeing that he didn’t get as far as he could get because of, well not necessarily because of us kids but in a sense that he wanted to be a Dad, so he came home and he stopped going on tour. And whether it was being lazy or whatever, it doesn’t matter, it’s the fact that I want to finish what he started.

knytro4

You’ve collaborated with both American and UK artists, to name a few Raekwon, Chase & Status and Sway –who’s been the most fun to work with out of everyone?
Out of everyone where the music has been released, I’d say Raekwon was the most fun. I didn’t even get to meet him at first, it was only afterwards I met him. In that way it was more of an adventure, first hearing him only through his bars and then seeing him in person and then him giving you the respect like ‘Yo man you’re sick’.

I’ve noticed you’ve spent some time in Jamaica recently, what can you tell us about any collabs coming up with artists over there?
I’ll give you two…because there is many I worked with, like 4,5,6,7… Two of the people I worked with out there were Assassin and Busy Signal.

And when are those tracks going to come out?
Towards the end of the year, depending on how fast they’re finished, they might come out next year.

I love that you referenced ‘Murderer’ by Buju Banton in your track ‘My Motive’. Has reggae been a big influence in your music?
Definitely, one of the biggest. It’s like the music you hear around your family all the time so it’s a pretty big thing for me. My parents are Jamaican, my grandparents are Jamaican, my Dad was the only one who was born in London but his parents were Jamaican.

knytro1

What has been your favourite moment in the music industry so far?
Going to Jamaica! Definitely going to Jamaica on a music level and the U.S too it’s been great working in both places.

Was there a moment in particular though when you were like ‘this is my moment’?
Yes, it was in Jamaica when I was in the back yard of…somebody’s place… whose name I can’t mention for now. It was the fact that he could have been doing anything that day but he was there to do something with us and listen to what we had to say, and if I hadn’t been doing what I’ve been doing my whole life, that moment would never have happened.

Lastly, what is next for Knytro? What have you got coming up for us to look forward to?
Music videos, music videos, music videos and more music! I’ve been stocking up music, I haven’t released anything all year, just been watching everybody and taking notes. I think I’ve got all the collabs I need, all the music I need to put something together now.

Follow Knytro on Twitter for more info on his upcoming releases.

- Words and photography by Luci Wilden

© 2011 ILLSOCIETY Media Group LLC. All rights reserved.