Interview With The Force That Is DA REAL3ST

by Lucy Lerner

17th February, 2022

The master of reinvention is back with a bang with debut Mixtape Love Or Rivalry and an elixir of sounds. DA REAL3ST has his finger on the pulse of what people want to listen to particularly with his silky hooks, and honest lyricism that allows his character to shine. A variety of influences peep through the 15 track project, but it’s DA REAL3ST’s triumphant bars and wordplay that blaze brightly. Each deftly crafted track hits the spot for whatever mood you’re in and are incredibly re-playable. Personal favourites include HAY HAY, NO FEMALES (featuring NoFaceJay), BET (featuring Sona), PARTYNEXTDOOR and the emotionally seductive LUV LULLABY.

We caught up with the UK based artist to find out more about what makes him DA REAL3ST rapper out there.

How would you describe your sound to new listeners?
My sound is universal, from melodies to lyricism and being able to fuse different genres to create either a soulful or monstrous track.

Tell us about your latest Mixtape Love Or Rivalry
Love Or Rivalry is an opening to what I can offer at the table. A fusion of love and hate stories all connecting to give what I would call a chapter of me musically.

Do you have a track or lyric from the Mixtape that is particularly personal to you and why?
‘Typical ways’ is a track very personal to me because it highlights as a young black man what it’s like in society today to a certain extent. It also highlights the potential that there is in what people would label “the gutter” or minority communities.

Do you have a process for writing music or do you write when inspiration strikes?
It depends on the mood of a track, sometimes I can go in the studio and create from scratch other times a track may come from something in my life that’s inspired me or brought to the forefront an emotion. 

Who or what is inspiring you at the moment?
I’m inspired by my late mother, who always had the willingness to work hard. Even though she is no longer with us I want to make sure she’s remembered forever.

Is there a particular message you would like to get across through your music?
I just want to inspire the youth by showing them you can be anything you want to be but you really have to work for it.

How do you think your music has evolved since you first started?
I feel my verses are deeper, the content is deeper, the lyricism has improved, the production has improved and the overall package is way more appealing.

What have been the biggest highlights in your music career to date?
Unsigned stars winner
Playlisted across all Office stores in the UK
Dropping my mixtape

Did the past year and COVID hinder or inspire your creative talent?
Covid inspired me to write more and learn more so it was far from a hindrance musically.

Is there anywhere in the world you would love to travel to and perform?
I would love to perform at Rolling Loud in LA, I think that would be lit.

Artists coming out of the UK are ever-evolving. Which UK artists you are listening to?
I don’t listen to many artists and when I do they tend to be from overseas. UK wise I wanna big up Central Cee and Jnr Choir both different and unique artists.

What do you find are the biggest challenges of being in the music industry right now?
The biggest challenge would probably be building a solid fan base. There is so much music and even more microwaved artists than ever before so I can imagine fans easily getting brainwashed. You just need to look out for us serious artists who aren’t playing games but are devoted to the art like UK artist Dave for instance.

What’s a typical day for DA REAL3ST?
A typical day for DA REAL3ST consists of getting up, fresh and ready to get creative in all ways possible till financial freedom is reached. Hahaha! Seriously! 

What are the three things you cannot live without and why?

What can we expect from DA REAL3ST in 2022?
Expect another project from DA REAL3ST. More fly things, more movies, more soul and more of me socially.

Love Or Rivalry is out now

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