BIO: I’m a 21-year old college student, originally from Akron, Ohio but now residing in the capital city of Columbus. I began writing poetry in middle school as a means of coping with adolescent angst, and soon discovered that I had a passion for intricate inner-rhyme schemes that aligned well with the art of hip-hop. I’m an avid follower of international news, politics, and sports, and am also a heavy reader, and I believe that each of these interests is reflected in the lyrics I jot down and perform. Outside of music, my professional ambition is to give back as a therapist, human rights advocate, or community activist.
Who are your top 5 influences? This is a difficult question because I feel like anything can light the flame of inspiration if I’m in the right mood. Still, Bone Thugs-n-Harmony, Gang Starr, Eminem, Z-Ro, and Brother Ali are some of the hip-hop artists who have had the most profound impacts upon my style and lyricism. I have also been inspired and influenced by artists in a multitude of other genres outside of rap, however, including singers Cat Stevens, Sam Cooke, and Jah Cure. I’m a sucker for an emotional record or a track where people discuss and analyze real life issues. I could listen to songs like Scarface’s “Heaven” or Madchild’s “Painful Skies” all day long.
When are your new projects coming out? At this point in time, I have stacks and stacks of bars just waiting to be recorded. In many ways, I think of myself as a poet or songwriter first and foremost—I need to really start grinding and hitting the booth to release more work. I’m still in the early stages of self-promotion when it comes to music, but I would say you can expect numerous singles to drop this year on platforms like SoundCloud. I’m always looking for a skilled producer to collaborate with should someone be looking for an up-and-coming emcee to partner with. I’m also considering getting into the game as a writer for-hire, because I know my skills with the pen are ill.
What helped you get into music? When I was maybe twelve, I first heard Kanye West and I fell in love with the concept of rap. The beats, the rhymes, the attitude, the message—it was all life-changing for me. I found that I could relate on a deep level with the words of artists like Haystak and MGK. I started trying my hand at writing, and before long, the pen and the pad had become a source of refuge. It was just a natural progression. It gave me an outlet. It gave me a voice. And hip-hop and I have been inseparable ever since.
What is one thing you would tell your fans? Haha, right now most of my fans are in Ohio, though I’ve gotten love on social media from people in Slovenia and South Africa, which has been cool. I would tell them I want them to feel like they’re on this journey with me; that I want to put out ‘real’ music they can vibe to and find intellectually stimulating. Thank you all for the support and love. It’s what keeps me going! I write for the hope someone will find my stuff inspiring. Reach out to me on my social medias,
@SkimtheSage. I am always happy to hear from those who have found my work beneficial.
What are your biggest goals for 2018? I want to embrace discomfort. Like Andy Mineo said, I think we get too comfortable in our daily lives and that leads to complacency. In everything—whether it be music, relationships, school, or the grind at the gym—I want to feel uncomfortable every day, because otherwise I’m not growing as a person. I just put out two really honest records with “Know Better” and “Never Hinder” me on SoundCloud. That’s not a comfortable thing, to put your truth on a song; however, doing so forces you to mature and provides you with a level of perspective you otherwise wouldn’t have. I’m just on this expedition where I’m continually learning more and more to love life and love others, and I want to bring y’all along for the ride. 2018 is going to be the best year of my life, both personally and artistically, simply because I believe it will be. I’m going to get the name of Skim the Sage out there.