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From Africa to Canada: Words with Arami The Corrector [Interview]

Vancouver, BCArami The Corrector is on his grind in a different way. The MC formally know as YogE is taking the B.L.O.C.K.S.T.A.R.S movement all the way to East Africa and back, spending time in some of the more humble yet poverty stricken areas and making his presence know through his music. His movement his conscience and his team spreads from Canada to U.S.A to the depths of Africa where he hopes to tour again in the near future. In the interview below we get Arami talking about his experience in one of Kenya’s largest slums, the reason behind his name change and what he’s got on deck next – check it after the jump.

HipHopCanada: You spent some time in Kenya and filmed your video “Signs” in one of Africa’s largest slums Kibera, Nairobi where close to 1 million people live. Did you interact with the community and if so how was your music received ?

Arami: Well, first off none of my experiences in Kibera would have happen if it wasn’t for my cousin out in Nairobi that introduced me to the homie OctoPizzo – a very talented we respected man that took me on a tour through the slums and brought me in like family. Definitely got to talking to the people there about what they were selling or random other places to see within Nairobi. Kids were playing soccer at the school yard, people were selling hand made wooden sculptures and the food – oh damn the food! The best fried fish, chips and pilau I’ve probably ever had. I wont forget it because my nose smelled it from around the corner and just floated towards. While we were shooting the video I had enough people let me know they were feeling the music.

HipHopCanada: How did that experience change you as an artist ?

Arami: I can’t say that it changed me as an artist really. Eritrea is were I’m from. I can say that it was one of those “you had to be there to believe it” situations. The smiles that rose on all faces I saw, it wasn’t what I expected but had me on another level of energy. You ain’t seen hustle and happiness until you been to East Africa.

HipHopCanada: What personal goals would you like to accomplish in the next 5 years?

Arami: To tour East Africa.

HipHopCanada: You’ve been known as YogE for sometime but recently switched to your given name Arami. Why change now?

Arami: Everybody has their alter ego. I’ve wanted to be an artist ever since I was I kid and I realized I had to come up with a name people would recognize but that had meaning too. After the first mixtape little things in my life started changing, like things I wasn’t to happy about – not evil so to speak but pretty negative. Knowing my culture and where I came from and knowing I still have a lot to learn and way more to see, I knew I didn’t have to rap about the regular ish you hear everyday. I’ve been back home to East Africa four times about to go on the fifth. Losing both my grandparents last year was a big influence to the change up my name. Sayin R.I.P to that brotha YogE, and taking the name my grandpa gave me -“Arami” in my language means “teacher” or “the one to corrector”. So it was pretty easy when I decided I was going with The Corrector. A lot of what’s going on in the world today needs correcting, I’m just trying to let ’em know with my music.

HipHopCanada: Who are some of the artist you work closely with and who would you still like to collab with?

Arami: Heatwave and Fizal Stars…easy as that. It’s a B.L.O.C.K.S.T.A.R movement (Black Leaders Overcoming Criticism with the Knowledge to Succeed Through All Restrictions) – Get with the program! I don’t know who I’d like to collab with, I just like making music.

HipHopCanada: Any upcoming projects you would like to talk about?

Arami: I got my mixtape YogE Vs Arami 2: R.I.P. droppin’ real soon. Also have my first EP coming out for the fall. Don’t sleep on us B.L.O.C.K.S.T.A.R.S, let me tell everybody that right now. Heatwave got new projects, Fizal Stars got new projects, my S.T.A.R. brothers out in L.A. Status and B!zness got new projects – the music is no joke!

Interview conducted by KassKills for HipHopCanada.

Photographs taken from Arami The Corrector – “Signs”.

Twitter: @AramiMusic

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Kassandra has her hands in several cookie jars. Born in Ontario but raised on the West coast, she is currently located in the wonderfully diverse East side of Vancouver. With a passion for all things creative KassKills is a hair stylist by day and HipHopCanada's West Coast Regional Editor by night. Music and public relations are her true passions and although she didn't inherit the talent of her musician father she makes her mark on the industry through other avenues. By night you can catch KassKills at almost every Vancity hip-hop show, shaking hands and snapping photos while covering and supporting the local music scene. On top of that she works closely with one of the cities most reputable concert promotors, Timbre Concerts. Kass is a hustler by nature and works hard to play a key role Vancity's hip-hop scene. Over the years she has seen, photographed and interviewed many of hip-hop's top artists such as T.I, Raekwon, Sheek Louch, Noreaga, Black Milk, Waka Flocka, Ab-Soul & Dizaster.

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