Major thanks to Phoenix based rap artist and entrepreneur N.O.K. who connected with DCWS for an exclusive interview to discuss his very DOPE new single/video “Never Know”, the mixtape it is featured on, “A-Town Chronicles, Vol 1”, his label Byrdee Entertainment and personal shoe line, Nicholas Alan.
After reading our Q&A with N.O.K., be sure to stream and share the “A-Town Chronicles, Col 1” mixtape, check out his personal shoe line, and connect with him on his website and social media!
Your flow, cadence and ear for production sounds very East coast; are you originally from NYC? If so, what led you to Phoenix?
I was born in New Hampshire in a city called Portsmouth about outside of Boston. My mother was originally born in Harlem, NY where I eventually moved back to with her at a young age. We eventually moved back to Portsmouth after my parents reconciled and a few years later they moved me and siblings to Phoenix in 1994. Lot of moving.
Your new single/video "Never Know" appears on your mixtape "A-Town Chronicles, Vol 1". Tell us about this project, who are the featured artists and which producers are involved?
“A-Town Chronicles” was really a ode to the city that helped form me somewhat. I wanted this to be my biggest album push so I ended up putting some of my favorite tracks from previous projects that may have not been heard before.
I recorded some new exclusives to add to the project and "Never Know" was actually one of the last songs I recorded for this project. Features include my cousin Embrae Le Veen, Termanology (from Boston) Chilee Powdah and a number of talented artist that I had the opportunity to work with from the city. Producers include 84 music1, DJ Pain1, Dreamlife, and a lot of talented beat makers.
You have collaborated and shared the stage with rap legends, appeared in numerous publications and on-air radio shows including the Adam Corrola show; but what would you say has been your biggest accomplishment musically thus far?
Biggest accomplishments would probably be continuing to have the ability to put out music when I want and how I want and remaining independent. Just grateful for that.
With the "A-Town Chronicles, Vol 1" mixtape now released, what's next? What are some of your goals for the remainder of 2019?
My plan is to tour next month, push the new project as well as my other ventures which include my new shoe line "Nicholas Alan".
I will be dropping a follow up to this project (Volume 2) around the holidays and I guarantee it will be my best work yet.
The film company that I started will continue to produce visuals, as well as a feature film being in the works. I will try and incorporate the music into the film in some fashion. It will be fun.
If you had to pick one song from the new mixtape to be the most effective representation of who you are as an artist, which song would you select?
That would be hard; I wrote them all in different moods and at different times. they all represent me well and different views and moods about certain subjects. That's a hard question; I really like each song for different reasons almost equally.
You're not just a talented emcee, but an entrepreneur and label executive as well. Tell us about your label Byrdee Entertainment LLC and your personal shoe line Nicholas Alan.
First off, thank you. My label has been in the process of making music way before I ever had it registered but I had it official in late 2017. I film my own visuals, write my own music, market, promote, and all mostly on my own.
My new shoe is just a addition to the hustle. I got to create a style I like and and put my likeness on it; it was kind of surreal when I first got the prototypes. I teach stock trading classes and financial education when I have the time under my company Blak Villa that I created a few years ago. I plan on doing a lot more in this next year.
The keyword is independence and promoting independence. There are a lot of opportunities and ways to shine nowadays; just have to take advantage.
Nicholas Alan Shoe: aliveshoes.com/nicholas-alan