In an exclusive interview with Kavali King a Ugandan multi-talented rapper and producer, we decided to interact with him and find out about his music journey and what plans he has.
Question: Kindly introduce yourself, who is Kavali?
Answer: Kavali king is a rap artist and producer affiliated with zagang, born and bred in Uganda With the zeal to take East African music to a new level.
Question: How did you come up with your stage name?
Answer: Kavali, I got that in high school, my previous name was luxizzle and yes many couldn’t pronounce that right so I wanted to change it to something that could roll off the tongue as I was thinking about it.
I had a flashback of my Uncle (R.I.P) who owned a Roberto Cavalli watch that I liked so
much it was actually the first label I understood growing up. I used to pester him so much
about it till he eventually gave it to me but every time he saw me Cavali was what he
called me, It caught on and I went with it.
Question: Give us a background on your music career journey?
Answer: I’ve liked music from a young age, I’ve been on stages from Form one if it had anything to do with music, I was there. started writing my own rhymes a year after that, rap battles, freestyles, all of that. by the time I finished high school, I knew this is what I wanted to do. I recorded my first song called cant you see in my vacation and it actually did more than I anticipated, strangers, established artists, new friends, and old ones were all amazed by it and really felt it the I way put it down and that was evidence for me that yeah that’s what am supposed to do. I moved studio to studio making more tracks, collaborations and all to get better. Then I decided to learn production so that I can put down my vision the way I wanted it, I released my first mixtape called social introvert with 16 tracks in November 2018, it did great for a man this side with no label and all to catch up to 1000 downloads in 3 months, I’ve been moving forward ever since never looked back.
Question: Describe your sound?
Answer: My sound is mainly contemporary cause I like making music you can listen to anytime anywhere, influenced by many styles in rap from the hard boom-bap to emo-rap as long as I express myself the way I want to and use my voice as an instrument.
Question: What was the inspiration behind Kavali?
Answer: I am inspired by real-life, experiences, emotions and everything real all my music is based on something that I witnessed or was a part of. I wouldn’t put out a record if it didn’t represent me or was orchestrated based on fabrications.
Question: How do you market yourself?
Answer: I market my music before myself, I am not really a social media fanatic, id prefer my music to be more known than me, so to know me as a person one has to know my music. I put the music on several platforms big or small, national or international so that anyone can get.
Question: The industry is full of cut-throat competition. What is unique about you that sets you apart from the rest?
Answer: Competition to me is a good thing keeps everyone on their toes releasing quality work, but I personally never compare myself to anyone, ever since I stepped in the game I
wanted to make sure I was on my own lane when it came to lyrics, vocals, and delivery
and even beats. that’s why I started production to have my own spot that nobody can
come for but still be able to come for anybody else’s spot.
Question: What challenges have you encountered as an artist in the music industry? How have you been able to overcome those challenges?
Answer: The music industry is like an obstacle course you have to keep moving or fall out. the biggest wall to me this side is the general bias from the people in and out of the music
business who perceive urban and rap music as outlandish because of the beats and the
language yet ironically they consume more of the “outlandish” music more than any other music so the hypocrisy is annoying but that doesn’t stop me I move with those that
move. West and South Africa are fluid musically and that’s why East Africa can’t lift a
candle since we haven’t established Urban Music in the region.
Question: In your opinion who is the most influential and successful artiste in your genre today and why?
Answer: I have a list, I have no number ones cause everyone was on their own lane like Kendrick Lamar and Xxxtentacione(R.I.P), and I could go on to me all these people are influential cause of the art. They create something that is genuine and raw which I respect and is in line with what I do.
Question: Do you make your own beats and write your own lyrics? If you don’t do any of this by yourself, how do you get this done?
Answer: Yea I create everything, the entire song, lyrics, and production.
Question: If you could choose to work with some of today’s established artiste or producers to move your game to the top, with whom would you work with?
Answer: I would work with Burna Boy, He has been a vibe from the beginning and fuses urban with the afro ting and makes it work.
Question: Which latest songs, videos, or mixtape releases are currently available to your fans and where can they be heard or downloaded?
Answer: I just released an Ep called Drunk Intelligence available on major platforms like Tidal, Spotify, iTunes, youtube and many more.
Question: Are you under a record label or an independent artist?
Answer: Am an independent artist
Question: Is going platinum or winning a Grammy important to you, and if you were forced to make only one choice, which of the two would you choose and why?
Answer: I feel like that’s a lot of pressure to put on oneself cause it deters the process of making music cause when you start making music because of numbers and end goals like awards you start creating bare tracks on what you think would get you there not what you want to do. but I would prefer going platinum to a Grammy cause going platinum is not based on a committee that chooses but rather facts that people are really down with your music.
Question: Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years?
Answer: 5 years am looking to be alive and keep making more timeless music
Question: What in your opinion is the biggest barrier an artist like yourself, has to face and overcome to gain any commercial success?
Answer: The biggest barrier is maybe the pressure to conform to the commercial music playbook of branding yourself, making songs in a particular way or doing something that’s just not in line with what you really want.
Question: Any advice to aspiring young artists?
Answer: Don’t Conform for anyone, be dedicated, create music you can enjoy on your own the rest of the world will dance to your tune.
Question: In closing, tell us something about any projects and ideas you have in store or are already working on?
Answer: Working with new artists and producers on a completely new afro-centric vibe,
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