TripleHQ Exclusive Interview w. La Nefera | @lanefera |

img_9068 Hip Hop Headquarters sits down with Dominican emcee La Nefera:

What song of yours do you recommend people listen to first and why?

That would be “A Lo Hecho Pecho”. It is the first track on my album so you won’t miss the chance to listen to it. It was also the last track I wrote for this project because it rounds off all the subjects, thoughts and feelings I put in the other tracks. ‘A lo hecho pecho’ is a Spanish expression that means: ‘what’s done is done’. Some people interprets this like we don’t care about what already happened and look forward, but for me there is a deeper meaning in those words. It’s more like: face up to the consequences of any mistake or failure you’ve made, take heart to it and push out your chest (“pecho”) and never hide. It means also to learn from your experiences and do it better in the future. And this is the most important message I want to give other people. It’s really significant to be conscious of what you do and reflecting yourself for growing as person.

What’s your process for writing songs? 

I mostly start to listen to a beat and when it inspires me it is like I am watching a movie in my head. It begins with a mood the melody sparks in me. It has to touch me emotionally. There must be this strong feeling that reminds me of something I experienced. Before I can write I have to see this short sequence of something I already lived or am interested in. That’s why I always say that music is very intimate for me. It’s like I am giving and exposing my feelings, live experiences and thoughts and this makes me vulnerable. So when people don’t like my sound I have to try really hard to not take it personal.

How do you feel about the direction hip hop is going in?

Basically I am an open minded person. I enjoy different kind of music depending on my mood. So if I go dancing I want to listen to different kind of music then I would when I am angry or sad. That’s why I support diversity in lyrics and rhythms. But I admit it is sobering that there is so much nonsense music getting popular when the world gives you so much stuff to write and discuss. But this is a problem that affects the whole music industry and not only hip hop. People like to be entertained and this is ok too, but this should not be the only thing you listen to. I am personally affected in this respect when I realize that when I want to go my way producing the kind of music I want to, then I would have to mostly pay for the realization of my music projects because it is hard to find people supporting non-commercial music these days. So I hope there would be more people supporting artists doing their own thing, not fitting their work with what is trendy or what the media is telling you is good. For me the problem is not how music is changing rhythmically, rather that people are getting just consumers and not actors. It’s not about living, shaping and sharing a culture. It’s more like hanging on Facebook or Youtube and consuming an excessive amount of videos and music and not really trying to understand or feel it.

How do you feel your career is different as a rapper who does not rap in English? What are the advantages and disadvantages?

Ii think the biggest difference is that English rap has the longer tradition so you will find more people and media supporting your work because they understand you. But as a Spanish speaking rapper you will be the exotic one so people will remember you better because there isn’t anyone like you.

Particularly, what is the experience like since you’re living in Switzerland, where Spanish is not widely understood either?

Making music means to me to be touched and to touch other people emotionally because that’s the way we feel alive. So the language won’t be a barrier because it’s only one of the elements you use to communicate with another person. So as musician you use the melody, the voice, your appearance and charisma to trigger emotions in another person. When you understand my text you will see the movie I have in my head, but it’s significant how people interpret my music in view of their life experiences. So I am always touched when somebody comes to me and tells me that me and my music make her/him feel strong.

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