IN DEPTH: Wish Master
Brunch, Bars and Boom Bap To The Future.
After listening to Wish Master’s debut album Boom Bap To The Future, I headed out to meet him at The Social in Bristol for a spot of breakfast and a chat about his new release. Here’s how it went down!
Ben: Thanks for the interview first off!
Wish: Safe man.
Ben: How you doing?
Wish: I’m doing well man. It’s been a busy year from the get go bruv.
Ben: How did the year start?
Wish:The year started like... I was sat on a project waiting to get the visuals finished yeah, but I already knew I was going to put it out in April, so I was basically working towards that point in time. I was ahead of myself, which made a change, because I’m normally behind like chasing everything, so I felt like I had a good start to the year man.
B: Nice man, I suppose getting the label together would help plan ahead a bit?
W: Yeah definitely, you got to be ahead of yourself and know the direction your going. Whereas, I think if you're an artist you can just kinda just go with it and see where it takes you. If you're not organised as a label you'll go under quickly man because it's stressful as well, stressful still.
B: Congratulations for keeping it swimming bro. Any big things happen last year for you?
W: Something that happened is I got picked by the BBC last year to do the live lounge - BBC Introducing and that. Did a Live Lounge in Maida Vale studios, it was amazing to actually go there. I swear the guy tried to put me off bruv! He was only joking tho but like, bruv literally, I’m just about to do my freestyle and just before my freestyle he’s like, “yeah I just thought i'd let you know, maybe it might inspire you, but you know, like Jay-Z’s been in here, Rihanna’s been in here and you know that chair that you’re sat on? Yeah well... thingy from the Beatles sat on that.” I was like really?
B: No pressure!
W: No pressure at all, you get me! But it was still sick anyway.
B: Can you remember the first time we met?
W: Yeah yeah, at The Plough?
B: Yeah, the End Of The Weak Competition. How was that for you?
W: To be honest, I didn't even actually know that the competition was going on. My mate was like, “yo there’s a hip hop night come down.” Went down, found out it was a competition and I just thought that I might as well just enter. “I’m here now init! I’m here, I’m an artist!”
B: You won the regional didn't you?
W: Yeah yeah I won that, I won that. That was sick. Then obviously went to Hootananny, Brixton, and done that competition but I didn't win - Gee Bag won. You know what, I suppose I didn’t win the competition, but I won in other ways - I made good connections, links and stuff. I’m grateful to represent my city and like actually push the music forward and let people see that Bristol’s got stuff going on here. Yeah, good opportunities still.
B: How does the city treat you?
W: The city? It treats me quite well coz I’m born here anyway, so I’ve got a lot of foundational ties to the city, a lot of community ties to the city. So yeah man, it treats me quite well.
B: What makes the Bristol scene - 'The Bristol Scene'? It’s got its ups and its downs...?
W: Yeah man that’s what I was gunna say to you, it’s a gift and a curse at the same time. What it really has got is a lot of creatives with ideas and things that are thriving, but what it lacks is structure. There’s no structure in the industry. What I’ve seen is literally people doing music who have friends who just wanna bring their friends in. They don’t see it as a culture of something that they need to protect. It’s just something like, “I do it, my mate’s doing it, let’s just get them on,” instead of actually looking for the people who are serious about it because they’re there. But I noticed that even on events and line ups it’s the same names over and over again, you know what I mean? I don't feel like anyone is actually looking for talent, so shout outs to people like Krazy from Wordlife who actually make platforms for people and give people opportunities. They got the radio show on Ujima, they got a different person on it every Tuesday. I’ve seen him bring through so many people and he does his Wordlife events as well. Shout outs to Krazy man!
B: You’ve recently released Boom Bap To The Future, is there anything to the name? Back to the future is obviously a film, is it a play on words or...?
W: It is a play on words? Obviously! As in like... remember that boom bap hip hop was an era in the 90’s? The golden era of hip hop. I feel like that was the best era of hip hop. Obviously we’re not in the 90’s now, so I wanted to still carry that ethos, but with like a futuristic spin on it. Hence, Boom Bap To The Future. Know what I mean?
B: What motivated you to start it? Was it just the next project?
W: Nah basically, to be honest, I got to shout out my boy Vard. Sometimes it takes someone from an external view to actually show you what’s happening. I didn't know I was sat on that project. Me and Vard were working with Baileys Brown doing sessions for like five or six months. We go there, we get the sample picked or we search for the sample. He makes the beats right there and then and we work it until everything is fresh. So because we was doing it so much, I’m not even calculating anything, Vard came round one day and was like, “Yo bro. The projects there you know?” He said to basically put it down for a bit and I put it down for a year. When I picked it back up he started watching Back To The Future about twenty times in one week to look for some skits and samples to actually give the album a feel. Cuz I feel like albums are meant to be like films bruv. It’s meant to have that kind of feel to it, whereas like now I don’t think albums have that, because people turn them out too quick.
B: And with the streaming industry as well, you don't even have to buy it anymore you can just press play on a platform.
W: You see the thing is, we’re kind of lucky init, this is actually the hip hop era now, because the fans are old skool. They like to actually have something in their hand; a cd, or a tape, or a vinyl, so that’s the reason why I done Boom Bap To The Future. I printed it on vinyl, I had to bring it back man.
B: Has the album achieved what you wanted it to?
W: Too be honest yeah. I didn't even put too much expectation on it. It was just my most honest piece of work current to date basically. I think it gives you quite an overall view of me, the person I am, the kind of thought process I have and I hope it gives you a bit about where I’m from and why I am the way I am basically, you get me? That was what it was. I didn’t necessarily put it out to do well. I always actually felt like they wouldn’t get it till later. You know those ones? Couple projects down the line they’ll be like, “yo this is a classic bruv!” Sometimes you gotta pass it and go back to it and be like “oh shit!” So yeah, I just hope it will stand the test of time. When I was making it, it was to withstand that test of time.
B: Well, boombap to the future man!
W: Boom bap to the future, init.
B: Honesty is something mentioned there and it’s something that I noticed when listening to the album. Just a shout out to the fans who haven't listened to it yet - if you want a raw organic album which is truth telling and heavily punch line based, it's definitely an album to go to.
W: Serious. I even appreciate you noticing that, it means a lot to me. I feel like music’s being abused at the moment. It’s not actually being used for what it’s supposed to be used for. Music’s meant to be made to uplift people and give people food for thought and also, for people to have a connection. Even if they can't relate to the whole song, there should be something in the song that they can take from it like, “yeah he understands what I’m going through.” I feel like now it’s about bitches, money, girls, this and that you know what I mean? It’s like a facade—
Waitress: One veggie breakfast and one with hash browns. Watch out, the plates are hot.
The plates were definitely hot as we tucked into our breakfasts. Wish asked for salt and pepper and a bit of ketchup with his meal. After a few hungry bites and a full mouth, I tried to pick up where we left off...
B: Umm... yes. Artistry, not hierarchy... Are there any tracks on the album that are close to your heart? Some that mean more to you than others maybe?
W: Yeah! That one you pointed out (Motive). I wasn’t actually in the best place at the time I wrote it. I actually wasn’t gunna put it on there. I felt like it was a bit too raw and I was like, “nah, like put it on there, this is you. They need to know that you’re not always happy, you don’t always feel good and everything’s not always easy and you gotta let them know.” I didn’t want it to be too hard, so I didn’t want too many of those tracks, but I felt like it was important to at least have one of those.
B: Would you mind talking about it a little bit? What’s it about?
W: So it's actually about me. Me going through some stuff in life and basically getting caught up in it all. I’m from St. Paul’s and growing up yeah, when we were younger, all we used to see were dealers out on the line making money doing their thing and we got caught up and believed that was what we had to be to be successful ourselves. We placed the values on tings that was not really value. But that's what we knew! We only know what we’re taught. So those times I was on road, it kinda actually got the better of me and actually messed me up and I could eventually take a step right back and start from scratch - that’s when I kinda started the businesses. I thought like, I need to do some thing that’s gunna be able to be self sustainable and be able to last and this road thing isn’t gunna last. My friends were getting locked up and it was just bare road dramas and politics and I just don’t wanna be a part of it bruv. It was just about my thought process of reevaluating and realising that basically, me on road doing that is the same as running a business - it is running a business but how can I apply those skills into something positive in something that I actually want to do? So that’s what it’s about. It’s like a metaphor for life still, the transformation.
B: The album could be a representation of that journey with it’s honesty, old school vibe, and vulnerability?
W: Yeah man. As an artist you need to show that. That’s how the listener is gunna feel a connection to you. You can’t relate to someone that you feel can’t understand you. How can you relate to them? They don’t understand you. That’s what music’s about, common grounds of connection.
B: Big love from Wordplay Magazine for coming for this interview Wish. Do you want to thank anybody who helped with the album?
W: Shout out to everybody who put this album together. Greg Blackman, he’s the illustratorH he actually drew the front cover by hand and that. Chris Lucas, Mario Mangata, SektionRed, my boy Joseph Goldman, he shot the video for Science. I talk about it all the time, it’s amazing. Imagine being sat on something so sick that you know that once everyone sees it they’re gunna be blown away! Until it’s here I can't say anything. I’m just like, “yeah mate don’t worry, its coming its coming!”
B: What does OR (Offical Recordings) have in store for us now and also for the future?
W: I got a few projects in the pipeline coming man. Got a ting coming with Illinformed, I don’t know when. Working with a producer from Greece as well called Madeness Key. Vard’s just dropped his project, Dreams LP. It’s working bruv, its working.
See for music, what with artists and that - what I’ve come to realise is, it’s the process. You could have an amazing artist and that, but you have to have the drive to actually get a project. It takes a lot to get a project out from recording, mixing and mastering, getting the videos, doing the promo campaign, it's a lot init? But for some people they’re just good at music, see what I’m saying? It takes a lot to get it there and I really do got a lot of respect for people who take it all the way and finish the product bruv.
Thanks for Jess as well for hooking this up, Jess Daly, love always. And shouts to Lisa, Lisa Murasarki!
B: Cheers Jess! And yeah, big ups bro, it was good to see you.
Words by: Ben Evans