“I’ve questioned whether I do this for attention or fame and money. I ask myself this every so often to try to keep myself in check.”
The Kid is all about expressing love. For collaboration, for spending time with friends, and for special people in his life. With animation, storytelling, teaching, and sometimes all three, his agenda aims for the heart.
A full-time high school teacher, The Kid’s interests are mostly major—John Mayer, Kayne. In his own trek as a musician, in 2016 he landed a relatively big feature with Atlanta artist Rome Fortune, and from there went on to work with the likes of Cyhi The Prynce, Mick Jenkins, Kemba, and Michael Christmas, among others. His Boston ties are extensive—Gio Dee, Dutch Rebelle, the list goes on …
For The Kid & Friends, the protagonist leaned on engineer and producer Mertz at The Bridge Sound & Stage in Cambridge. The Arcitype of STL GLD also got involved, and the rest is 2020 history. We spoke earlier this year about his timely collaborative tapestry’s talented lineup.
Time management must be key for you, between being a teacher, chasing your dreams, even driving Lyft at one point …
Before I was a teacher, when I was working in offices until five or six and not getting home until seven or eight, it was brutal. But I would always have the drive to work on beats before I go to bed. Sometimes until three or four in the morning.
It’s a tough balance having to drive Lyft and never wanting to miss an opportunity to hang with friends and family. It’s a little easier being a teacher; I’m not driving anymore but I needed to when I was, just to even get by with bills and daily expenses. I told myself I’m not going to let my dreams go ahead of spending time with my family and friends—I honestly think that’s the most important part of life. I missed some hangouts and events from time to time … but in general I would put my work on hold and hang out whenever something was going on and then I’d just work on it again when I got home.
What’s motivating you to keep pushing forward?
I’ve questioned whether I do this for attention or fame and money. I ask myself this every so often to try to keep myself in check. … I’ve concluded that what motivates me is: 1—deep and pure passion for creating, I simply love to do it and it doesn’t feel like work; 2—the opportunity and possibility to create things that bring sincere joy to people.
As a teacher, with everything going on related to COVID-19, you have seen our education system shift up close. What are some new challenges you see and or new techniques you like that were put into place?
There’s a lot of challenges. I’m technically a shop teacher and so all the hands-on shop classes are very difficult to teach without being in the shop. For example, it’s pretty much impossible to teach kids how to use a wide set printer, or a paper cutter when they aren’t able to come into the shop and use these machines.
Another big challenge is getting student engagement during the virtual classes. Some students and classes are better than others, but overall it can be difficult to get through to a class when most or all of the students have their cameras turned off and I’m asking questions with little or no responses haha.
There’s also the social challenge of not seeing your teachers or students … and building relationships with everyone. Building relationships with classmates and teachers are super important and so that can be difficult virtually as well
As a musician, who are some individuals or projects that currently inspire you or sparks your creative flow?
Pharrell, Justin Timberlake, Timbaland. Young Thug inspires me with what he can do with his vocals and Rihanna.
What was it like connecting and working with some of the local artists in the Boston area and even taking a step further to develop a relationship with them?
It’s been amazing. One of the things I wanted to do with this album is to show how insanely talented some artists in Boston are. Daddio Smoov and Blanco Black are my friends from home who I noticed right off the bat … have real talent. I know how insanely hard it is to gain a fanbase, and for people to take you seriously as a local artist, and so I wanted to give them a platform to share what they can do. Working with the other Boston artists—Dutch ReBelle, Gio Dee, and Michael Christmas has been amazing as well. I didn’t know them and just cold emailed/DM’d/somehow got in contact with them asking if they’d like to feature on my album. … They were all great and responsive, which is a massive challenge usually being an unknown and independent musician.
I also consider mixing and mastering an art form, and Mertz from the Bridge I can’t say enough about [how] he’s really responsive for making each song shine and sounding crisp. And the Arcitype worked his magic on the mastering. They both did an amazing job.