I got to chop it up with Xiro, a young artist and rapper from the UK. Xiro grew up listening to Queen and 90’s hip-hop. He takes inspiration from musicians such as 2NE1, Kanye West, Madonna, and XXXtentacion. He first started painting at 11 and rapping at 13. Xiro paints the people that inspire him and focuses heavily on color, contrast, and patterns. He tries to tell a story in everything he does, writing music about the darker times in his life and his struggle with depression and anxiety. Let’s gain some perspective on a young multimedia artist from across the pond.
Being a painter and a lyricist you are a multimedia artist. I find this impressive, what
inspires you to create?
Everything. Anything. I could be listening to music or out on a walk hearing cars drive past and I could be inspired. I could be reading and see a word and an entire painting or song could come from it.
You have a keen sense of storytelling in your lyrics, it’s like you are painting a picture
with your words. Where do you draw such vivid lyrics from?
My life and experiences. Dreams I’ve had, nightmares I’ve had, just existing in the world. A lot of it comes from my struggle with depression and anxiety.
Your beat selection has a dark ominous vibe, who is your favorite producer to work with?
I don’t tend to work with a specific producer, if I like it I’ll use it. I use beats from everyone.
Do you ever mess with composing beats?
I’ve made a couple of beats myself but I’m still learning so I haven’t released anything yet. I’m working on something I produced myself right now, so that should be coming up soon.
What is the craziest experience you ever had?
I almost died once, I think that counts as pretty crazy.
I love your newest track “I Want the Chaos”. Can you tell us the meaning behind your lyrics here?
It’s just about the bad habits and patterns I fall into. I seem to crave/thrive in a chaotic mindset. You know, I feel if I don’t feel some type of insane darkness then I’m empty. I prefer the chaos.
As an independent artist, do you plan to cultivate your own collective or label, or do you plan on remaining solo?
Probably stay solo, at least for now. It’d be cool to join a collective though, just to have some more friends.
What are the hardest obstacles in your life you’ve overcome?
probably my anxiety, which I’m still not over. It still holds me back a lot just day-to-day, but I’m slowly adjusting back into normal life.
Do you find it important to reflect this in your lyrics?
Yes, I think so. Sometimes I just need to get it out of my system but I also feel very alone with it so if I share it I could find others like me.
Hip Hop has many facets and subgenres, do you feel these labels and distinctions matter? If so, in what sub-genre would you categorize your music?
I suppose they matter a little bit, I know some people really hate to fit into a box but I don’t mind. I don’t know what subgenre I would put myself into though, I honestly don’t know enough about it to categorize my music.
Do you feel the impact of social media has helped the independent musician more so now than in the past?
Yeah, it definitely has, now you can make it big without being signed to a huge label.
Do your paintings bring up ideas for lyrics or vice versa?
100% yeah, all the time. Some songs will come from a painting. Most of the time my cover art is a painting I’ve made and it’s part of the story.
Have you ever done, or do you plan to, create a live painting while bumping your music?
I think a live painting would be dope, I’ll definitely do it in the future.
Were you raised by, with, or around other artists or poets?
Not really, no. My nan has lots of instruments in her home, whenever I went round I would mess about on the piano, ukulele, recorder, etc. All of it. I wasn’t around any painters though.
Is there an art and music scene in your area, if so what is it like, and who are the key players?
I don’t think there’s anything in my area, there’s nothing anybody talks about anyway, if there is, I haven’t heard about it.
What piece of advice would you give to a young artist?
As a very young artist, myself I’m not sure I can give advice. I would just say practice. People are so cocky, thinking they are the best and they completely ignore all the things they are lacking in. Just don’t be like that.
What future projects are you currently working on?
I’m currently working on 2 albums. I probably shouldn’t work on 2 at once but I’ve got all the time in the world so I can take my time to perfect them both. I’m also currently working on a series of ‘self-portraits’. In total there will be around 20 of them.
Did you find yourself to be more creative during quarantine? Or was your creative flow the same as ever?
I think my creative flow was the same, the only difference was I had more time to execute my ideas.
Do you commission custom art to musicians for Album Covers?
Sometimes yeah, I don’t think I’m very good at it though. I did one recently.
I think you would be great at it Xiro! Awesome interview, Is there anything you wish to add on?
Keep an eye or three on my Soundcloud & Youtube. Also, follow me on IG.
Leave a comment here and let us know what you think about XIRO! We also got plenty of videos dropping and in creation, as I type this, that fact still stands true as you read this. This is because Earworm Entertainment Artist Collective does not slack. We are creators born to create. We are consistently creating something new beyond the music! lookout for new shows, videos, art, and music from my Earworm Family! Also, never forget the Schezworm Sauce!