Q: What is your name/stage name? A: Backwood Brad
Q: Where are you from? A: I’m originally from Indiana, but I grew up as a military brat and have lived all over.
Q: What are some of your biggest musical influences? A: My biggest musical influences come from anime, comics, manga, and cartoons. Some of the rappers that have influenced me include Joe Budden, Royce da 5’9, Ransom, Nas, and Redman.
Q: How would you describe your musical style and sound? A: I’m a technical rapper who primarily raps over boom-bap beats. My sound can be described as 90s Hip-Hop meets J.Cole while eating at a restaurant in the south with Rakim playing on the radio.
Q: Can you walk us through your creative process? A: I have synesthesia, which means I see colors when I hear music. My creative process often involves matching words to the colors I see, and I change the words until they match the colors.
Q: What message or themes do you try to convey through your music? A: My message is heavily focused on the changes that we desire to make as humans but are often too scared to take the first step towards making them. I reference “The Dao” or “The Way” to represent these changes, often using fictional characters from my favorite anime/comics/manga/cartoons to represent the storyline mixed with the message I’m covering.
Q: Can you tell us about your latest project/album/single and the inspiration behind it? A: My latest album is called “The Sage,” and it was inspired by “Naruto.” It’s about my journey trying to achieve superior enlightenment in hopes of becoming a sage myself someday. It covers a wide range of content for many listeners.
Q: Can you speak to any collaborations or features you’ve worked on? A: I’ve recently collaborated with a number of producers including Emilio Myles, Johnny Xodus, Blank Thought, Thicc Criss, Skip The Kid, Kelso, Dope Sean, PSK, and many more. I’ve also worked with rap features such as Emilio Myles, Eleven The Artist, Young G Ball, Kyle Neff, and many more.
Q: How do you stay inspired and motivated as an artist? A: Life honestly keeps me motivated. With my style and the things I write about, it’s easy to stay inspired. Anime is also a big inspiration for me, and I continue to think of new ways to bring it to life with my words.
Q: How do you use social media and online platforms to promote your music and engage with your fans? A: I schedule posts to drop weekly on Facebook and Instagram and engage with my fans as much as I can. I also release new YouTube videos weekly and check them as often as possible. Twitter is where I mainly socialize.
Q: How do you maintain authenticity and individuality in your music? A: Maintaining authenticity and individuality is easy for me because anime and The Dao are two of my main concepts I refer to when making music. I’ve been an anime fan since I was 9-10 years old when I got into Pokémon, and I’ve been studying Daoism for over 10 years.
Q: How do you balance your personal life with your music career? A: I use patience and martial arts to help me balance my personal life with my music career. The discipline I’ve learned from martial arts has helped me stay focused and maintain balance.
Q: Can you describe any milestones or turning points in your career? A: The turning point for me was when I decided to be myself and not try to live
Keep up with Backwood Brad on Instagram @realbackwoodbrad