MesAyah is a rapper and Hip-Hop artist from Oslo, Norway. When we first heard MesAyah’s music we were really keen to interview him on Essential Pop so that we could share his experience and tracks with you. Read on to find out about what MesAyah’s musical background is, who inspires him and what he’s currently working on.
Q: If you could use a tagline of less than 20 words to describe your music and who you are what would it be?
“Nas meets Peter Gabriel for conversations about life, I make Hip progressive music combined with improv hop illutions”
Q: What is your musical background?
I started rapping back in 05´, had been doing a lot of different styles of poetry up until then, but wanted to evolve my written style into performances instead. So I started up slowly building my name from scratch, and now I find myself in 2011 with four releases up my sleeve, three EP´s and a mixtape. The latest one a Paradise of Paradigms is maybe the most experimental release I´ve had so far, but at the same the most musical one as well. That release is a beginning of the path I am taking now, to create experimental, lyrical music with melodies and harmonies that make the listener wanting to crave more of it.
Q: How was 2010 for you?
When I look back at 2010 I realize that I have accomplished a lot more than I first thought. It felt like a really dry year for me when it came to creating music. But looking at it now it´s the year where a lot of my dreams came through. It just happened in portions with a lot of breaks in between so 2010 and then seen as a whole was amazing. To begin with I experienced something that I didn’t think was possible for me yet, I was able to get over to The U.S and play live, not only on one stage, but on two different stages in Fort Collins, Colorado, one of them an half hour long jamming session with a huge Jazz-ensemble, and the other one at the music store Café. I can´t wait to get back to America and play some more live-gigs. My second big dream coming through was the making of my first music video for the track, Perfect World. This track is about a girl being abused sexually by her father and friends, and the video ended up being broadcasted on TV early 2011 and is also a part of “The Perfect World Fundraiser” where I have started collecting money for the Norwegian organization SMI ( Supportcenter against Incest) You can read more about it on my website. http://www.mesayah.com.
And last off course the process and making of the latest EP “a paradise of paradigms” which was a collaboration with the Norwegian producer Paul Bernard from Bergen Norway.
Q: Who inspires you musically?
I have a lot of inspiration, and not just in the Hip-hop genre, sometimes I feel more inspired from other genres like Progressive rock, grunge and classical music than hip-hop. But to mentions some artist I have to mention these; Sage francis because he has created a genre of his own inside the Hip-Hop genre, bringing in such a variety into his music, then it´s Peter Gabriel for writing amazing lyrics and being a role-model for me when it comes to write as much as you can into only one sentence by writing on different levels. Phil Collins has been a inspiration for me when it comes to the artistic aspect of being and artist, the entertainer and master of ceremony in one. I must also mention Atmosphere, B.Dolan, Aesop Rock, Brother Ali, P.O.S and The Canadian rapper Shad
Q: Is there anyone you would like to collaborate or gig with?
Yes, my favorite collaboration track would be a mash-up Track with MesAyah featuring Sage Francis, Aesop Rock, Slug and Brother Ali called The journey of Li(f)e vs Death produced by El-P using samples from Bo Hansson – Lord of the Rings (1976).
When it comes to who I want to do a gig with, it would be Rhymesayers new wonderkid Grieves because we match really well when it comes to the same vibe in our music.
Q: What is your creative process for creating a track?
My creative process starts with finding my message, what do I want to write about and then let my producers now that this is what I am looking for. Then I start to freewrite to the topic to see what comes out at first and then I start building on that. Then I hopefully receive the beat from one of my producers and a can start building it, first I build it up with pure lyrics, writing on two different levels, I want my lyrics to be just as good written as they are performed, I want to give my listeners more than just the listen, If they find my rhymebook somewhere or if I have misplaced some notes of mine, they will be able to feel what I am saying without me saying it as well. When I have the lyrics down, I start working on the artistic parts of it, how to perform it, off course it is a little bit of this in the writing process as well, but I don´t want to ruin my flow of words by concentrating on to much at once. So that is basically how I create my tracks, some take forever to create and some feel like they just fall into your lap.
Q: What’s more important, melody or lyrics?
I don´t think any of them can survive without each other, but it also depends on what kind of music you make. But basically it comes down to this. You can have killer lyrics but without the melody and the ability to perform them well, people will not listen to it. And you can have the sickest melody in the world, but if you don´t have anything to say, people will not listen to it for more than maybe a couple of weeks at best, and then your song is forgotten forever.
Q: Where are you based?
I am based in Oslo, Norway
Q: What are you currently working on?
I am currently working on my first full-length album, It has the Work title “I for an I and the truth for the truth” and will be a combined album and book. I can´t revile to much, but it will change the genre of hip-hop and combine different genres together. I am working on releasing it Spring/summer 2012. Other than that I am trying to show up regularly in features with other artists through 2011, currently with The up and coming rappers of Philly Moves from Ottawa.
Q: Is there anything else you’d like to let our readers know about?
I want you all to know that you are great, every single one of you. You all have the ability to be free in mind and spirit. You are your own true God with the ability to create the life you want for yourself no matter what life you want to live. You are not dependent on anyone to do so. If you want something, you will achieve it, just believe in yourself and your own abilities.
“Freedom is not to be free, freedom is something everyone else tells you to achieve, to be free is something you are from the moment you breathe”.
Editor’s Note: MesAyah moulds profound lyrics with catchy hip-hop beats. Definitely one of Essential Pop’s artists to watch for 2011 and beyond.
If you’d like to learn more about or contact MesAyah just follow the links below: