Crew Profile: The Come Up Gang – Akay Audemar [Interview]
Edmonton, AB – The guys in the Come Up Gang are getting ready to launch themselves across the nation. The Edmonton-based crew of Lion (aka: L. Luciano), Raw Malone, Akay Audemar, Ben E Brix, and Shaw Langley, are gearing up for the launch of several forthcoming projects and albums.
HipHopCanada recently caught up with CUG rapper, Akay Audemar. Audemar pulls double-duty as an MC and a promoter. He told us about his Jamaican and Sierra Leone roots and his inspirations, as well as how he used to rap with his sister in his underaged days. Check it all out after the jump
“I define myself as more than an artist. I am a rapper, an MC, an entertainer and a promoter.” – Akay Audemar
Akay Audemar: Q&A
HipHopCanada: How do you define yourself as an artist, and what specifically is your craft?
Akay Audemar: I define myself as more than an artist. I am a rapper, an MC, an entertainer and a promoter. Music is my passion and emotion. So however I’m feeling or whatever happens personally, that’s what I write about.
HipHopCanada: How did you get involved in hip-hop?
Akay Audemar: Hip-hop and rap is something that I’ve always enjoyed. I practiced with my sister, and have been rapping ever since. We started by looking up instrumentals and writing our own lyrics, then releasing the tracks right after recording. When I started, I was underage. So I wasn’t even allowed in clubs. But now I’ve released a mixtape, E-Town Residents, and four music videos and singles.
HipHopCanada: What are some of your early memories about music, performing and writing? How did you start becoming who you now are?
Akay Audemar: I’m still making memories. Rapping is still new to me and I’m shocked at how much I’ve already done.
HipHopCanada: What do you feel most inspired by?
Akay Audemar: Life is an inspiration in itself. Almost every life story can be turned into music. “Blue Sky Freestyle” is one of the earliest singles and I put the effort into being real on it: talking about the struggle to make the best out of a situation that you’re raised in.
HipHopCanada: Tell me about your crew, and what your role in it is.
Akay Audemar: My team [is] a group [of] talented people that know what up. I spread the CUG philosophy. We all do our own different things. We all have to make money and live our own lives. We treat each other how we want to be treated. We take it seriously, we all put in a certain amount. Nobody judges each other. We’re both family and business. In the studio there’s an element of closeness, but in team meetings it feels more like a business.
HipHopCanada: How do you represent for your city and how has your city/region shaped who you are?
Akay Audemar: I don’t really represent anything but how I am and who my team is. I mean, my city raised me and I love it. But sometimes the ones closest to you hate to see you pressure your dreams. I’m still trying to figure it out. I don’t think I’ve even found my voice yet.
HipHopCanada: What is your greatest success so far as an artist?
Akay Audemar: As much as I’ve done, I want to do more. I’ve opened for Tre Nyce, Killah Priest , Havoc from Mobb Deep and toured with Moka Only.
HipHopCanada: If you had some sum up your musical/lyrical style in one sentence, what would you say?
Akay Audemar: Three words: raw real rap.
HipHopCanada: What are your goals for your life as an artist, and what are the steps you plan to take to achieve those goals?
Akay Audemar: I don’t want fame, I just want to be well-off from music. Just to keep investing into myself and keep doing what I do and hopefully it pays off.
HipHopCanada: What are you most excited about right now, and how can others get involved in it?
Akay Audemar: I’m always excited and always looking forward to putting in work with my team. We got merchandise clothing, [and] snapbacks coming in. If you got that Twitter or Facebook: @AkayAudemar. I’m also on Instagram: @akay_ohmy. And you can follow the whole team on Twitter: @comeupgangmusic.
HipHopCanada: Anything else we should know about you? Please give us any final thoughts.
Akay Audemar: Not a lot of people know that I am of Jamaican and Sierra Leone descent. I am not only a rapper, I love all music in general, and there will be singing and reggae to expect on a lot of my new projects.