Eyezon is a California based artist originally from South Africa who coined the phrase "AfriCali", which is a genre and culture that blends Afrobeat truth consciousness with California street swagger, morphed with Hip-Hop. We connected with Eyezon to find out more about AfriCali, his new video "The Times are Changing", and what's next for him musically for the last half of 2016.
Where are you from originally and what led you to your current location in California?
I was born in Germany where my mother was exiled and raised in Lesotho and Johannesburg and surrounding areas, moving from aunt to aunt after my grandmother passed.
For those who don't know what does 'AfriCali' mean?
AfriCali is a music culture I came about after the label I was on with K'naan went under and faulty in their business practice.
When did you start rapping and who are some of your musical influences?
I started rapping in school in South Africa with kids who have carried and built up the Hip-Hop torch in SA when I was young. Tumi and the Volumes, K.O. and etc.
We're really big fans of your new track and video 'The Times are Changing"; how did that song/video come together and who produced it?
The Times are Changing was produced by 'JB from Nebraska' whom I met via file sharing on Okayplayer, and etc.
What's next for you? Is an EP or full length album in development?
I am finishing off the AfriCali genre and culture of music in the live music field mixing African music and everything we've learned in California music to make that unique blend of culture www.Africali.com.
I am also finishing one of my last installments in the Hip Hop genre as Eyezon since that's what got us this far with a few of my favorite producers whom convinced me to focus on rap music again. Hip-Hop has changed a lot. It's not about the word play anymore. Kids say stupid things and sell millions where when I put out my records, in coming here, you had to have your smarts. I mean Nas, Blackstar, Reasonable Doubt and etc were monumental statures to elevate to.
Connect with Eyezon: Website