Started in Year
016 saw the first glimmers of light from the Western Sydney suburbs artist KWAME. A 20 year old student of hip hop who was just finding his legs, when a chance meeting with the legendary A$AP Ferg confirmed the path he now treads.His stellar debut EP ‘Lesson Learned’ and lead single ‘Friends’ was the last time we heard from the stalwart in March of 2017 before he was dubbed the 45th most played artist on Triple J’s Unearthed. This was the bookend moment to a massive 2017 which also saw Kwame sign to Vita Artists alongside Peking Duk, Nyxen and Tigerilla as well as dominating the live circuit supporting cultural heavyweights Migos, 6lack, Bliss N Eso, Wiley and more.Fast forward to February 2018, Kwame wastes no time in bringing us his new certified summer anthem ‘WOW’ to help us ride out the final warmer months. ‘WOW’ is the lead single for his upcoming Sophomore EP ‘Endless Conversations’’ which will be out independently March 23rd.
By that, I mean there’s been this ongoing argument on Australian hip-hop. And no disrespect to like the 360s and the Kersers or Illys and that kind of era. But, a lot of the music that’s coming out now is making international waves and it’s just being seen on a bigger scale, and like, a global scale even. And a lot of people doubt the state of Australian hip-hop and it sucks because I just think the quality that is coming out, in my opinion, is better than what was there before.
If we think about it, going onto the artists before us, I mean, who did they really look to when they were making music? For us, growing up, like my generation, we looked overseas, and obviously overseas has that international appeal and market, so the people that are making music in my generation now are making it from that perspective. It’s not just that typical sound that can only fit in here. It’s more just like creating anthems for people across the world to listen to.
And, I felt like Endless Conversations was something that I think has never been seen before in this country and I wanted people who ever doubted it to be like, nah, look at this body of work and tell me if you can doubt the state of hip-hop in Australia, because you can’t. This is just some kid in a bedroom that made a project and put it out there on its own. I want to restore the faith of the naysayers when it comes to Australian hip-hop and I wanted that to be the standard of our country.
Triple J Unearthed‘s 2018 Artist Of The Year, Kwame is proof that dreams come true. First gaining attention three years ago for jumping out of a crowd and on stage at an A$AP Ferg show, Kwame freestyled impeccably, impressing everyone in attendance and online. Since then, the Ghanian rapper released his debut EP, Lesson Learned to critical acclaim. An ode to his own journey, both literally; detailing his move from New Zealand to Australia, and spiritually; through maudlin lyrics and sentimental musings, Lesson Learned is an intricate reflection of the 20-year-old’s creative mind. Like a lot of hopeful rappers, Kwame’s musical dreams were sparked by Kanye West’s Power. “I was just amazed at the sonics, the lyrics and the energy of that track,” he told triple j. “I was like woah, I need to be doing this, this is what I wanna do”. And if anyone is willing to do what it takes to get there, it’s Kwame.
Sydney NSW, Australia