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Doobie Talks Headlining His First Tour, Success, And Authenticity

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The first half of Doobie’s ‘Faithfully Faded tour‘ had come to a gratifying end by the time I got around to speaking with him. After 6 weeks of sold-out crowds, 14 major cities, and a multitude of thrilling stage dives, Doobie’s first of many future headlining tours had finally concluded. It was time to let loose in Miami.

The tour ended in Minneapolis at the legendary First Avenue — a classic venue open since 1970 that has hosted some of the nation’s most prominent artists. Legendary performers include The Allman Brothers, Rod Stewart, U2, The Ramones — and Prince: whose pathway to fame has been largely attributed to incredible performances at First Avenue. Doobie performed a 75-minute set, 23 songs. When I read this, I was impressed. J. Cole usually does 10-17 songs and Lil Uzi Vert hovers around 10-18. But 23 songs in a little over an hour? Holy shit, this guy must have been speechless the next morning — literally. 

“The energy was amazing,” Doobie asserted. He also expressed this to me about the entire adventure.

“Tour is definitely very stressful, but this tour, it was my first ever headlining tour as a solo artist. I’ve been on plenty of tours with other people, never headlining. So that was dope – we got a greater turnout than expected, so that made it super dope. But — now that it’s over — the crazy thing is at the end of August, we are actually going back on tour, second part of the tour, because it was so good.”

Doobie’s music is undeniably entering the mainstream, as his recent music videos have been attaining millions of views (notably “When The Drugs Don’t Work” at over 18M!). In November 2017, he received the annual Youtube Artist On The Rise award, along with Trippie Redd and others. So he’s doing well — very well. But he wasn’t always, and he has grown considerably as a person since his career took off. For a while — he told me — he was unhappy, and because of his preceding economic situation — creating music felt like a task rather than a pleasant endeavor.

“Is this what is meant for me?”

“I’ve got a stronger team now and I am – for the first time in my life, happy when I’m making music. Before, it was just like I’m going through a bunch of shit so I gotta make a song to get over it. You know, and now it’s like, I’m fucking finally happy while making music, you know what I’m sayin’. Before, it was just like pain – it was just releasing. For a time period, I would just ask myself: like man, I’m still depressed all the time like, is this what is meant for me? Now I’m finally happy, super excited. I’m in a good place mentally.”

Doobie grew up in Columbus, Ohio. He didn’t have money growing up and had a predilection for creating music at a young age. He grew up listening to a mix of rock and rap: namely, Metallica, Alice In Chains, Nirvana, Eminem, and 2Pac. Doobie told me that he is primarily inspired by heavy metal and that he began rapping when he was just 8-years-old. When he was a teenager, he taught himself how to make beats because he was too broke to pay for studio time. Not many rappers can effectively produce and rap, so this two-way skill set is undeniably advantageous: from both a business and professional standpoint.

“As I was getting older, I started getting real serious about it and my thing was I was broke, like you feel me. So, when I started getting serious with my raps, like damn I need beats, I can’t just rap on people’s beats and shit, I need a studio, I need somebody to record, like how the fuck do I do this shit? Like I would just look up producers and things, long story short I could never afford studio time, I could never afford a beat, none of that shit, so one day I just decided I’m just gonna fucking teach myself how to do it.

Growing up in Ohio, I can imagine that it was challenging trying to pursue a rap career. And because of his environmental upbringing, he is a mix of rock and rap. Columbus is known for certain things: diverse cuisine, beautiful outdoor parks, and most of all, Buckeye football. But hip-hop? Besides Doobie, the most famous Columbus hip-hop artists are Bow Wow and Blueprint, who aren’t all that relevant anymore. A significant reason Doobie has a varied and enthralling sound is that, because of his youth in Colombus and exposure to rock and punk, his music is multi-faceted. Sure — he is a rapper. Although, his guitar melodies and singing vocals meshed with hip-hop beats make him uncommon and sort of refreshing in a rap landscape that sounds rather homogenous right now.

In my interview, Doobie prided himself on his authenticity. He expressed to me, not only his uneasiness with rappers who glorify experiences they don’t actually live — but his annoyance with people who think that, because he is white, he is just another Post Malone or Mac Miller.

“Everyone thinks that I’m just this corny little white boy, everybody thinks that I want to be like Post Malone. I get it all the time, you’re just this one of these, you’re just that one of these. I think the misconception is that I’m not no pretty boy.”

One thing critical to know about Doobie, I feel, is that, while he may acknowledge certain erroneous misconceptions about him, he doesn’t give two shits about what you think. In his music, he heavily alludes to various drug-induced experiences, but also more existential ideas like love and depression. On “Talking To Spirits” he says

The devil keeps calling, I Let it ring
I needed you more than you’ll ever think
You need me more than you’ll ever know
And I love you more than I’ll ever show

and

Bumpin my favorite Alice In Chains song
I blow my fucking brains off
That’s those Kurt Cobain thoughts
In my home that’s yellow taped off
Sniff that gas, then I take off

Clearly, his art is a reflection of his reality. His lyrics, as shown above, are tremendously un-scripted and genuine. And they’re deep. So I asked Doobie to tell me a little bit about his creative process.

“I don’t like making songs that are specifically about 1 thing. I feel like my process is just a free realm of thinking. It’s just, like when you think in your mind and your walking down the street and you probably have so many things that come to your mind, and your tryna like grasp onto a certain thing. Well me, I just allow myself to attach to every thought. I don’t pick and choose my thoughts. I just let them all flow and just write them down”. 

Take whatever you want from what he said above, but I think the most noteworthy quality about his lyrics, his tone, about the way he emphasizes autonomous thinking, is that it all comes from a natural — real — place. I feel like a lot of artists are fake today; they vocalize impersonal things, act in an inauthentic and scripted way, and put on an artificial demeanor in order to achieve higher success. Doobie is as original as it gets.

Image result for Doobie rapper

At the end of my conversation with him, I asked him to give 1 tip to new and emerging artists.

“Don’t fucking give up.”

“A tip for every artist I have is, the best advice I can give to someone who wants to make music and make revenue off of music and just be able to support their family and chase their dream is just to not give up. That’s the easiest way I can put it, I can’t tell you to go record a bunch of songs, I can’t tell you to go do this, or drop a mixtape this day, nothing, no, the best advice is to just don’t fucking give up, because when you give up you don’t know how far you could go. When you keep going, the sky’s the limit.”Image result for Doobie ohio

Doobie will be going on the second half of his tour in the fall. While tickets have not been released yet, stay tuned to Hypefresh and be active on his website and social media for the most up-to-date information!

Hypefresh USA

Hanifah Samad Brings Her Free Spirit To Design & Lifestyle With Fason De Viv

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 The fashion industry of Philadelphia has some of the most creative minds in the country. Hypefresh Magazine recently got to meet one of them. Hanifah Samad, CEO and founder of Fason De Viv, recently graced us with her presence as she visited our office to have a sit down with us. Fason De Viv, which means lifestyle in Haitian creole, is a fashion brand based in Philadelphia which curates and produces women’s clothing as well as sells home, beauty, and wellness products.

Hanifah was born in Port-Au-Prince, Haiti. At age four, she immigrated to America and settled in Philadelphia. Hanifah was first exposed to the fashion industry through her own curiosity. She often wondered how retail worked and imagined herself as a retailer. This eventually led her to study retail and how to be a good buyer. As she started learning more about retail and merchandising, she started to gain an appreciation for the industry.

“As a buyer, I started to fall in love, not just with fashion, but just with clothes in general, like fabrics, and style, and cuts and things like that.”

 Hanifah has been buying clothes for six years and designing her own for three years. When she makes a purchase a buyer, she thinks about the brands that she carries. She looks at her own brand’s message and asks herself why she is buying this product. As a designer, she just has fun. She loves using prints and colors in her designs. If she cannot find a certain style of clothing that she wants to buy, then she will just craft it herself.

   

Hanifah’s culture has greatly impacted Fason De Viv. When Hanifah first started, her brand name was the A-list look. The concept behind it was to give shoppers a celebrity look without spending celebrity money. In 2016, Hanifah took her first trip back to Haiti. She went to a market place on her visit. She observed how the market had many different businesses which all operated in one large curated marketplace. Reconnecting with her culture inspired her to  re-imagined her business as a brand which curated other black own brands. She re-branded A-list as Fason De Viv and has been using the business model of the Haitian marketplace since her visit. The concept of Haiti being an independent black country has also deeply affected Hanifah.  

 

   “I’m apart of this independent country. You know what I’m saying, it fits with the brand. Because, as an independent brand, and carrying independent brands, and buying from independent brands, and I want to support independent brands. It goes back to my home where, I was born. Even the history of my parents too and how they met. The Haitian culture, and the Haitian history of independence is black country. It’s something that just deep core. It just fits who I am.”

 

Hanifah is also inspired by black women in general. “As black women, we have some much vibrate energy behind us when it comes to our style.” She cites Kelis as a major influence on her. Hanifah is galvanized by how Kelis’s style is always different. “She’s really like a unicorn, you never know with Kelis.”

 According to Hanifah, a Fason De Viv item is a “piece that’s in your closet that when you feel like making a statement, you can just grab.” She sees her clothes as pieces that will last longer in a person wardrobe. She compared her clothing to vintage clothes, in terms of how long her clothes last. Hanifah thinks outside the box when she is designing and buying clothes. She does not want to simply follow any sort of trend. She wants to create something new and fresh constantly.

‘“The woman that has that piece that would just be like, oh let me add this funky blazer to this basic piece.”

 

Hanifah says that Fason De Viv is a brand which teaches women that if you feel good, you look good.  “The woman who wears Fason De Viv, she knows who she is, she knows her history.” Her brand is for women who are comfortable with expressing themselves, especially with fashion. Fason De Viv is for women who are know what they want and are educated about themselves and the world.

“The woman who shops Fason De Viv, is supporting other entrepreneurs. She is conscious, educated, strong, beautiful, and powerful.”

For Hanifah, fashion is her form of expression and art-form. Every woman that she dresses is her canvas. She enjoys empowering women through her styles. “When I dress someone, for whatever she needs to be dressed for whatever it is, even if it’s taking the kids to the park, or yoga, that is her happy space,  because of what she’s wearing.” She takes pride in putting people together. “Layers is art because it’s like color. You’re layering art. Like paint on a canvas.”

Fason De Viv has had a retail space for six years and an online presence for two years. While Hanifah is enjoy having her company online, she still appreciates having a physical space for it. Currently she is looking for a new retail space for Fason De Viv. Though, she’s fought a lot of good space, she has not found one that she can say “this is the space.” She is also looking to expand the brands which she curates from and her staff.

Hanifah is most proud of how her buyer skills have developed. She has learned a lot as a buyer. When Hanifah got in the fashion and wellness scene, she hardly saw any black owned brands. She went out of her way to find black owned products which she could sell through Fason De Viv. Hanifah created a network of black owned brands in an industry where they are scarce. “My buying skills got better, and my partnerships and collaborations got better. And I think that’s important when it comes to my brand.”

Fason De Viv has taught Hanifah how to live an authentic lifestyle. It is who she is. Through her brand, she has learned patience, and how powerful that she is. “My brand taught me how to be a better woman.” It has taught her various things, ranging from how to manage money to how she wants to carry herself. Fason De Viv taught her who she is.

For advice to other brands, Hanifah would to say to take it one day at a time. It is okay if you want to change your brand name. It is okay if you are stuck. Just take it one day at a time, and be patient.

 If you are interested in Hanifah’s brand, you feel free to shop Fason De Viv. You can also follow them on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

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Interviews & Features

Kev Rodgers: South Jersey’s Next Major Music Marvel

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Kev Rodgers: an emerging music producer/rapper hailing out of Collingswood, South Jersey.

Click here to watch this video exclusive if you’re on Apple News.

Kev Rodgers is quickly making a name for himself, having produced for many emerging South Jersey and Philly artists. A few being Mir Fontaine, Shawn Smith, and Ish Williams. As of recent, he’s co-produced one of the biggest Rap records in 2018 for Jaden Smith, titled “ICON” which amassed over 100 million streams on music streaming platforms. Alongside accomplishing a whopping 85 Million views via YouTube, achieving a certified RIAA certified gold award.

This time around, Kev Rodgers is ready to make his mark on the rap game with his latest personal release of The Rare One Story LP; his third entry into his portfolio.

Hypefresh staff traveled over to South Jersey for the day of his album release party (via Taste Creators in Philadelphia, PA) to ask questions about the project, diving deeper into Kev’s mind about the process and inspiration dedicated to making the LP.

In a day that went down in history for the young music marvel, The Rare One Story LP serves as a major milestone marker in his career to accommodate all his other achievements. Check out this full-length feature above and enjoy the vibes.

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Hip-Hop

Meet LUKA: The Refreshingly Cold Artist the Music Industry Needed

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Of all the tons of artists that fill the music industry, it’s like hitting the “refresh” button when you find one that’s, in their own way, unique. LUKA, a 23-year-old singer/songwriter/producer, is just the type of artist that refreshes your playlist. He recently just released his first debut single called “I Have Something.” Growing up, he moved from place to place, sampling the sounds of his environment, thus, enabling him to blend those sounds into a style of his own. Today, he stands as a signed artist to Heard Well, and ceaselessly fuses rap, hip-hop and R&B together.

Check out the exclusive interview we got from LUKA, below.

HYPEFRESH: Inquiring minds would like to know. Who is LUKA?

LUKA: Luka is a bold and sexy muthalova, that speaks the truth, makes HITS and an inspiration for others 👍🏻🔥😎

HYPEFRESH: Can you describe what it was like growing up?

LUKA: My upbringing was wild to say the least haha. I grew up with 2 brothers. Our parents emigrated from Georgia (Not ATL but all the way in Europe, Tbilisi, Georgia). We had a lot of hard times..being my parents came to America with nothing and started from scratch there were a lot of trails and tribulations and a lot of moving that took place. Over all, I gotta say I enjoyed my childhood. I was always doing things that made me happy. Energetic, always doing the most & expressing myself.

HYPEFRESH: When did you first get involved in music?

LUKA: I started writing and recording real early like 8th grade. I used a microphone off a computer headset for the first couple months wanting to record so bad and get something done with music. As time went by I got better equipment and I started making beats and developed my skills. I stayed up til 3-4am everyday and would sleep on my desks in school, now we’re here baby

HYPEFRESH: The music industry is competitive. Where do you think you fit in at? Why?

LUKA: I don’t care to “fit in” if you like LUKA you like him, if you don’t relate that’s okay too. Music is fun and that’s all it ever has to be for me.

HYPEFRESH: Do you ever get “Tired” of switching between singing and rapping? How do you balance the two flows when making a song?

LUKA: I love the fusion of both. I’ll make a track rapping the whole time and in the same session i’ll create another record singing the whole time..it’s all what God wants to bless me with that day 🌟.

HYPEFRESH: The “Timex” on your wrist is nice, but we know you want a Rollie one day. Can you talk in detail about some of the new songs/albums you’re working on to bring you closer to that goal?

LUKA: Y’all put questions together very creatively I fuck with it haha. I’m working on music everyday and I have hits waiting to be released. Definitely got a project coming, no release date/title or anything right now but it’s coming and it’s hot. Timex is a dope one 😉

HYPEFRESH: Can you describe your music, and what it means to you?

LUKA: I love music. I love being able to create a vision and see it so clear using sound. I love the fact that this shit helps kids (EVERYONE) feel less alone. I love being inspired and inspiring. I love bringing people together and make it okay to be ourselves for 2 hours at a show or every time they listen to their favorite songs.

HYPEFRESH: Out of all the songs you’ve released, which one best describes your life at the moment?

LUKA: “Papi Chulo.”

HYPEFRESH: What are some challenges you’ve faced as an emerging artist? What’s been the most gratifying moment so far?

LUKA: Pretty much everything you can think of, finances, ppl not realizing you’re dope, having to move around and balancing “real life” (lol) and music but all that shit is just a result of taking it and yourself way too serious. This music shit is silly, it’s a fun hobby that we’re incredibly fortunate and lucky to be paid for. No matter the problems that come with music, it’s fucking music & it’s all love and fun. When it’s not that it’s pointless. The most gratifying thing is seeing a fan and getting aware with them and reminding them that they have the power to do absolutely anything they yearn to do.

HYPEFRESH: Can you describe the feeling of growing a fan base? How are you evolving as an artist, so that you don’t “Cheat” your fans out of good music?

LUKA: It’s gotta be natural. Always. With everything in life but growing a fan base is literally you being yourself and exposing that. When you try to do this or that or be like someone or do some weird ass marketing tactics it never works. I’m evolving delightfully and man oh man this new shit is bonkers! They know when I say it’s coming (“it” being something legendary) that I will deliver.

HYPEFRESH: How would you describe your fans?

LUKA: Iconic, energetic, full of love.

HYPEFRESH: In three ways, can you describe what makes you a “Papi Chulo” or “Daddy AF”?

LUKA: We all got it in us. Allowance to be myself, be true to myself & let the rest fall into place as it will. Plus you can’t pay to look this good man! C’mon baby! 😎

HYPEFRESH: If you had “10000 hours” in a day, how would you spend it?

LUKA: lol that’s a long ass day. I would do the same thing man! Who says time was real and that we aren’t living a 10,000 day already…???

HYPEFRESH: If it weren’t for music, what would you be doing?

LUKA: I’d be a pornstar.

HYPEFRESH: Besides “Shia Lebouef”, is there an idol that inspires your artistry? Who is it, and why?

LUKA: Timbo, Pharrell, Scott Storch, Eminem, Will Smith, Missy Elliot, MJ, Daft Punk. Just a feweth

HYPEFRESH: We all want to see you “Make It Bruh”. Where do you see yourself in 5-10 years?

LUKA: At the peak of peace within myself, family with a bunch a chunky babies, Forbes, owning my own charting record label along with owning a plethora of other big businesses and continue constantly investing all of myself in helping people.

HYPEFRESH: People love getting advice from others who have been “There Before”, can you share any good tips that you’ve learned along the way?

LUKA: Always help others and do things for your and their hearts fulfillment. If it ain’t that it ain’t shit! Love + peace is truly living! & always refer to HYPEFRESH for all your daily insights on all things poppin!

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hypefresh is a music discovery platform made for independent tastemakers, Gen-Z culture and contemporary styles. Aiming to re-define perspectives through curated content, engagement to our prime audience is priority With a highly dedicated millenial team, hypefresh is becoming a premiere outlet for subcultures, independent and mainstream artists, videographers, photographers and more.It’s our mission to reshape the perception of millennial/Gen-Z culture using unique blends of perspectives through multimedia, creating a one-stop destination for creativity and inspiration.Therefore, Hypefresh will focus solely on conflict in these areas of brand development, lack of media related resources and information, ethics, and consultation.