Based out of Raleigh, Gnarley Nick grew up involved skateboarding, punk rock, and urban lifestyles which greatly influence the unique flavor of rugged, dirty south hip-hop he brings to the table. Nick released his first hip-hop project in 2011 and has since been consistently releasing songs, videos, and growing as an artist.
We connected with the emcee for an exclusive interview to discuss his new video “Dive Barz”, as well as his upcoming EP, find out how his involvement as a skater and in punk rock is reflected in his music, and much more.
After reading our Q&A with Gnarley Nick, connect with him on his social media and prepare yourself for his upcoming EP. While you’re waiting for it, check out his last release, the self-titled project “Gnarley Nick”.
Describe your creative process when it comes to song development. Also, what do you look for in the beats that you choose to write to?
It varies a lot. I might take a few months to write a song and I might push one out in an hour. It kinda depends. I can tell if I like a beat immediately though. I don't search out anything in particular; i just know when I hear something that It’s for me.
I try to mix it up a lot to so I can mesh with any experiment sound. Other than that I write from experience so I gotta get out and live to get inspiration.
Would you say that your past involvement as a skater and in punk rock is reflected at all in your Hip-Hop music?
Most definitely. Skateboarding and punk rock both played a huge role in molding my life and outlook so it definitely is a huge influence to my approach to rap. I always felt like all three go hand in hand with each other.
Salute to you on the release of your single/video "Dive Barz". Tell us about your inspiration to write the song and the decision to shoot the video in a cemetery. Also, who directed the visual?
The inspiration is my background and upbringing, where i fit in, and where I'm headed. I've been grindin' hard for a while and now its time to take things to the next level. I chose to shoot it in the cemetery to resemble the death of the old and moving on to the new chapter. Hood Crucial directed the video. Shout out to Hood.
Tell us about your upcoming EP; what will it be called and can we expect "Dive Barz" to be featured on it?
Yes, “Dive Barz” is on the upcoming EP. The EP itself is actually called “Dive Barz” as well. It's 5 songs, all which vary pretty differently in sound. I’m finishing it up now and will be ready to release in the Spring.
I'm sure we can agree that Raleigh doesn't have a real music culture and has a long way to go before it can become another Atlanta in terms of infrastructure to support a local music industry. What do you think can be done to jump start the local scene here in Raleigh to change the culture?
I think Raleigh has a pretty cool scene but could definitely be better. More venues that support underground artists. Less competition and cliques. And fuck all that pay to perform type shit. Local shows shouldn't be more than $7 either. I love this city though and all the many musicians and artist killin' it here.