We caught up with Akuu, ahead of his new album, Dopamine, to get inside the mind of the man. Let’s go:
What city are you from? I’m from a small town named Medford in Southern Oregon.
How is the Hip-Hop scene in Medford? The Hip-Hop scene in Medford is bare bones. There are a couple good artist here and there, but the majority of upcoming artist in my city lack dedication and critical thinking. The ones that are doing big things don’t like to work with newer artist in town, so the atmosphere is cut-throat
How did you get started? I started making music when I was 15. What was originally a way to express my childhood trauma eventually turned into something bigger. I made it my mission to express what others can’t or won’t say in the hopes of making impact.
Would you say making rap music has improved your mental health? At first, music was the only thing that improved my mental health. After so many years though, I despised music. I was so mad at myself and everyone who let me down as I came up. However, I eventually started learning Japanese and it brought the joy of music back into my life through another culture.
Name your biggest influence….. My biggest influence is Tech N9ne. The legacy he created with Strange Music will forever go down in history as the greatest independent musical success story in my opinion.
What is the one thing about Tech N9ne and strange makes them as great as they are? The way Tech N9ne blends Rock and Hip-Hop together is perfection to me. He doesn’t care about what others think, he just makes the type of music thay he wants to make.
If you can, put your style into words…. My style is somewhat of an emotional-staccato. I don’t sugar coat the details, and I am willing to think outside the box to blend different genres or even languages.
Describe your “Come-Up” so far…. The first five years of my career were very strong. I shook the underground music scene in my city, and took a magnitude of big steps in the right direction. I eventually got burnt out, and took a break for a few years. Now I am back and pushing hard with my movement again
What’s your biggest challenge as an artist? The biggest challenge any artist faces is trying to be satisfied with their own work.
Describe your song making process… It starts with a beat. The instrumental sets the emotion for the song. Then I visualize a story in my mind. Using my flow to help guide what the lyrics should be.
What legacy will you leave? I don’t do this for personal gain. I do this to create something bigger than just music. I want to leave a legacy that will help people deal with their life, even long after I am gone
What is your dream collab, album or single? Most of my idols are getting older now, so I have low hopes of getting collabs. If I have to pick though, I would say a collab with Joyner Lucas would be a dream come true.
Plug your new single/project…. Just released my first album in years on, “Dopamine“.