An interview with Manchester based rapper KinKai to discuss the Manchester scene, his partnership with Glue70 and his latest release.
How’s the last year been treating you? Has locked down helped or hindered your creativity?
It has been different I guess. To me it feels like we’ve been on the longest rollercoaster and it has yet to stop. I’ve had moments where I’ve felt creatively inadequate at times and yet it’s there have been great moments in the past few months.
Your brilliant 2020 album “A Pennies worth”, continues to straddle a world between UK Hip-Hop, RnB and electronica, what were you listening to for inspiration when writing this album?
So everyone who worked on the project were introducing my to new stuff. That’s really what kept me inspired. We played a lot of Matt Martian, a lot of Saba, and MF Doom from what I remember. There’s definitely some Indie Arie in there too.
You’ve since released the single “Better” with long time collaborator Glue70, it seems your sound is now uniquely intertwined with his, how did you guys meet and start collaborating?
So we met 2015 not longer after I released my first EP. A mutual friend invited me to a glue’s studio. I’d never heard of him before then but I was infatuated with his meticulousness and ear for production. We spoke on our influences a few times but didn’t work on anything for a good few months. I repeatedly invited myself to the studio until we finally did.
Manchester’s has had an old but underappreciated Hip-Hop scene, which local artists did you enjoy growing up?
I think the UK has an under-appreciated hip-hop scene if I’m honest. I didn’t really know much or grow up on much UK Hip-hop but I’d listened to Manchester grime quite often back then.
Ever considered leaving the city?
I did. I used to live in Acton (W3) years ago. If you were to ask me to consider it now, I’d say yes. I love Manny but the world is the world, if you get me!
How do you get into a creative headspace when your writing?
It depends on how I’m feeling. But usually loud music, good people and energy around me and it comes easy.
I know you have Sierra Leonean heritage, do you listen to any West African Music?
African music in general but of course I listened to Salone music. Check out Bunny Mack – ‘let me love you’ of you need a starting point.
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