Today I listened to the final version of my next album. It has taken a lot to get to this point. Creatively all the musical pieces have come together. I will be releasing it in Spring 2016 and it has Side A & Side B because I recorded a lot of tracks and I don't believe projects should have 24 tracks on them anymore, so I split it into two different sides. Side B will be released in Autumn/Winter 2016 (or whenever lol!). I feel so grateful. I have such a feeling of completion.
I've been thinking about the last proper album I dropped in 2012 "Delayed But Not Denied" and wow I have lived a bit since then. (I've also been thinking about if albums really matter in this day and age but that is a whole other conversation) I mean I have toured Paris, Amsterdam, New York, Dublin and done shows and school workshops all over the place since then. I've been a radio presenter for 3 years and walked away from 2 successful radio shows. I've also grown as a beat maker and grown in every other way possible. I mean projects that I have released in between (Made Em On My Phone, Made Em On My Phone (Outtakes), PLTFRM SE7EN [Side A] & The Frustrated Artist Mixtape) all in a way give snapshots of the journey of growth I have been going through (i'm still going through it) and when I listen back to those projects I hear myself growing and stretching after being so disappointed with experience of "Delayed But Not Denied" you can read about all about that here
As you grow your interests change and what you consider important is different. I used to want to get a big record deal and "blow" but the music industry is different now. We are in the era of niches becoming more important and we now have a shrunken mainstream. What I mean by that is fewer artists can blow in the mainstream with record sales because music sales numbers are down generally at the same time the mainstream is more singles driven and artists with the whole package and a major label backing them will thrive more. You can occupy a niche and live a great life as an artist. You can even make an impact on the mainstream if you grow and expand from your niche. If you increase and expand in a great way you can do what Lecrae did in the US possibly. I know some can't even imagine that because perception is everything, if your name isn't buzzing everywhere on all major media platforms to many you are a NOBODY. If your name IS buzzing everywhere to many you have "MADE IT" but reality could be you aren't as successful as people think you are.
I'm not too interested in going that mainstream route because I have seen what the industry really is like and I have people close to me who have pulled back the veil and shown me what is behind the curtain and it is not what I thought it was at all. I am happy to be an independent artist with creative freedom doing things on his own terms even if it means I remain "underground" and unknown as far as the "mainstream" realm of music is concerned. I'm cool with that at this stage because I am making progress as a working artist without smashing any charts. I am concerned about getting better artistically and catering to my core supporters while still opening the door to other people people "discovering" my work and what I am about. "I cater to my core but I leave open the door, I stay accessible, on point like decimals and give you more" is what I said on this track. I'm concerned with just living my life and creating great moments. I'm concerned with growing as a human being in every way possible and hopefully I can express that artistically. It's not an easy thing to communicate for others to connect with but every project I do, every song I write, every poem I compose is me attempting to do that. That's the challenge and the fun of being an artist I guess.
I did an acoustic set at the Lanre + Speical Guests event at the Omnibus in Clapham Common. I did my songs live with my friend Phil Mayers on guitar, I actually sang them not rapped them. The songs I did on the night were, Invincible Joy, FreeDome, Shining On, Doesn't Really Matter at all (unreleased), I'm different and Party Starter (unreleased) you can check out a clip of me singing "Party Starter" below. I haven't recorded it yet. I have produced the beat and all that though. I will include it on one of the sides of my upcoming album. A lot of people don't know I sing. I don't really hype myself as a singer or present myself mainly as that and I think it is because I personally know amazing singers that make me think "wow I CANNOT sing" I am actually shy about my singing too. If you have seen me live you know I sing a little bit though. I am going to do a set acoustic recordings in the future
All I will say is don't let the stress of life keep you from expressing yourself creatively. It really feeds your soul when you get creative and it doesn't even have to be in a "big" way. It doesn't have to be a "career" There are so many ideas of fame and success that keeps people from just creating for the love of it and as corny as that sounds even to me right now, I think it is a beautiful thing to do. I remember that old question about the tree falling in the forest and if it makes a sound. Well a tree doesn't have ears and I do and the day I knew I would make music even it meant no one ever would listen to me is the day I knew I was meant to do it.
Karl Nova Music