Rapper and songwriter Bakes has been in the independent music game since he first pursued his hip-hop career while attending college. As he wrote and recorded right out of his college apartment, Bakes captured the attention of the San Diego music scene and went on to perform as an opening act for A$AP Ferg. An artist who has evolved into a “self-contained” musician with an emphasis on lyrical wit, Bakes talents go beyond music production and writing with visual skills of his own showcased within his image and music videos.
From the Ground Up was Bakes’s first project released this year. The 14-song album details his life experiences and how powerful optimism and manifestation can be. Since the release of this album, Bakes has also put out a few singles including “Changed,” a moody lo-fi track that is accompanied by a visualizer. His most recent project is an EP called Illusions, with a music video of the same name releasing on Friday, November 5.
With more projects up his sleeve, Bakes will also be dropping a merch collection soon. While we anticipate the release of these projects, you can listen to his music on Spotify and Apple Music. The rapper discusses how his career has come full circle and his evolution as an artist below.
Connect with Bakes through the following links:
- Instagram: @yaboybakes_
- TikTok: @yaboybakesmusic
- Twitter: @yaboybakes_
- Youtube: @YaBoyBakesMusic
How would you say your music has come full circle ever since you decided to pursue being a hip-hop artist?
When I started making music, I was trying to find my sound and identity as an artist. As I’ve grown, both in the music industry and as a person, it’s reflected in my songwriting and artistry. I feel that I’m now the most polished, seasoned, and mature version of myself so my lyrical content is representing what I always wanted to convey: witty, positive, intelligent, motivational, and thought-provoking music.
As a songwriter, what inspires you to write?
I’m always writing down concepts, chorus ideas, and raps/ bars as they come to me, but I draw inspiration from the instrumental for writing an actual song. If the music feels good and invokes an emotion I want to elaborate on, I’ll start piecing together lyrics. I write to share ideas and bring value to listeners through what I’ve learned and experienced myself.
How would you describe your sound when you’re producing music?
I’m categorized as a lyrical rapper, but my sound goes beyond just clever wordplay. I focus on positive messaging, including having an entrepreneurial mindset and manifesting your reality, and mix it with my own lifestyle to produce songs that are true to who I am.
You’re in charge of a lot of the visuals you create for yourself. Can you walk me through the process of how you plan that out and how you make your visuals match your vibe?
I’ve worked with one director for several music videos, as well as other directors for other videos, and it’s always a collaborative effort. I like to give the director/ videographer the song I want to shoot and let them come up with a conceptual idea for the visual. Since I only work with people whose vision I trust, I let them take the lead while contributing my ideas along the way, resulting in a teamwork production.
Describe your most recent music video?
My new music video (Releasing November 5th) is titled “Illusion”; the visual is inspired by the movie The Matrix. The song is about perceiving reality, and the cinematic video shows the character realizing the simulation.
What are some recurring themes in your music?
Overall, I aim to uplift people with my music, and my themes reside on the positive side. I explore different topics of life with an optimistic outlook, combining lessons learned with an observant viewpoint. I find a balance between expressing myself and giving the listener something to relate to. I write a lot about manifesting your dreams, providing knowledge of how it’s done as I’m actively doing it myself. I also write about tapping into your purpose, finding your path, and bettering yourself.
How did being raised in the Bay Area affect your music background?
Growing up in the Bay Area gave me an eclectic taste in music. The Bay Area hip-hop scene was huge with the Hyphy movement and underground music having a big reach, the sound definitely influenced me. I was also really into East Coast rappers and other lyrical artists, plus I listened to rock bands like Linkin Park so I grew to appreciate all genres, and incorporate what I like into my own work.
MEET THE ARTIST MEL THE PROPHET
Hello Mel The Prophet, Thanks for coming to Honk Magazine to talk about your career.
Tell us a little more about when you first got into music?
Mel the Prophet- I first got into music in 2016. I used to freestyle with my friends and I was becoming really good and around that time I went to a NIpsey Hussle concert and an epiphany and was inspired to speak about my truth over music to inspire people how I was inspired by Nipsey
If you could describe your sound/style in one word, what would it be and why?
Mel the Prophet- If I could describe my music in one word it would be, [ UNIQUE ] because , my music comes from real experiences while being witty and aggressive with intention to motivate the listener to view themselves and the world in a different perspective.
What would you say to any aspiring recording artists who look up to your work?
Mel the Prophet- What I would say to aspiring artists who look up to my work is always be a learner and humble but always be honest with who you are before doing music, no matter what!
What quote or mantra do you live by?
Mel the Prophet- The mantra I live by is, if no one existed on the earth but you, how would you feel and what would you do and who would you be? ,,, now feel, do and be that with everyone existing on earth!
What is your hobby outside of music?
Mel the Prophet- My hobby outside of music is working out, reading and learning new ways to help others become more self aware.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
Mel the Prophet- Where I see myself in 5 years is living on a ranch with multiple acres being a household name in music and the mental health industry providing value in creative ways to those who need help.
Do you have anything new or upcoming we can expect to see from you?
Mel the Prophet- What I have upcoming is a musical project, “SELF HELP” the self awareness guide and I’m also working on a RnB album
What is the inspiration behind your latest song?
Mel the Prophet- The inspiration behind my latest song, “Help 1 Self” (Mental Health Anthem) was experiencing the pandemic when a lot of people became afraid and aware of the fact their mental health was at stake.
What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started” and why. Please share a story or example for each.
Mel the Prophet- The 5 things I wish someone told me when I first started:
Expect no support from the people you want or expect support from. I was always a good person and a person who was “friends” with many people, not just around me or in my community but all around and thought I was going to get support from them because I was doing something good.
INVEST IN YOURSELF: Even though I did invest in myself, I was expecting others to invest in me because of the ideas I had and how beneficial they would be for others.
FOCUS ON THE BIGGER PICTURE: As much as I thought I was focusing on the bigger picture, I actually wasn’t. I was rushing the process to become what I knew I am and I would attempt to force myself and my vision onto people without trusting the process of just doing the work day in and day out.
KNOW WHEN TO SAY NO!: Being a good person can be tiring when you’re attempting to help anyone and everyone. Some people do not align with your mission or purpose. I would give my hand out to anyone who asked for it and then be in a situation where the person or people would just attempt to take advantage of my kindness.
FULFILL YOUR PURPOSE and not your ego
Which tips would you recommend to your colleagues in your industry to help them to thrive and not “burn out”?
Mel the Prophet- Some tips for my colleagues not to burn out:
1: SOLITUDE (spend time with yourself and your own thoughts).
2: Spend time in nature without technology . Nature is the essence of our being, being able to breathe in the air and listen to the natural habit of nature is a key element to self awareness to redirect your energy.
3: SLEEP WELL + REST.
4: Spend time with family and people you love doing things that are fun and not just work all the time .. finding the balance.
How can our readers follow you online?
Mel the Prophet- Readers can find me on ALL social media platforms, Instagram, Twitter, Youtube,Tik Tok under @meltheprophet or Mel the Prophet my direct website is www.help1self.com
BAINS. shares new single “Feel Awful”
Vancouver, Canada artist BAINS. has shared a new single called “Feel Awful”. The second single from his upcoming album Punch Drunk, this self-produced offering contains emotive sonics and relatable lyricism- making for an evocative and memorable listen.
BAINS. comes through with captivating lyrics that find the artist at a low point, ruminating over past mistakes and time lost. Also themed around his love/ hate relationship with alcohol, the honesty of this single’s subject matter shines through and impacts the listener directly.
Production-wise, “Feel Awful” is engagingly dynamic, with bouncy percussion and grooving bass dropping in mid-way through the first verse and crescendoing in the chorus to create a gripping effect. Drawing the listener into the song’s atmosphere as it builds, the production here is sharply-crafted and vivid.
The latest from BAINS., “Feel Awful” combines hip-hop, alternative R&B, and alt-pop influences into a vibrant and refreshingly personal medley.
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