Hip Hop is a young man’s game. No one can question that fact. Hip Hop and Rap are one of the cornerstones of American (now international) culture, and you can’t help but realize that when it comes to beat making and rhyming, with a few notable exceptions, the genres are always bent on finding the newest, hottest, and youngest up and comers in the game.
That being said, check THIS VIDEO out and tell me this kid ain’t golden?
16 year-old lyrical whiz Astro rides this classic beat on a fucking surfboard! After 4 or 5 listens, I just had to get in touch with this him to talk about when he got started, where he’s from, and what he’s got coming down the pike for 2013.
Take note: Young bro keeps going like this, he’ll be a legend by the time he’s 21. You’ve been told.
G- What’s up Astro, and thank you for taking the time to speak with Live High Five today! You’re 16 years old… How long have you been spittin,’ and when did you first get started in the Hip Hop game?
Astro- I’ve been spitting since I was about 6. I didn’t really start taking it serious until I was 11. (I) started do shows and competing in contests wherever I could get in.
G- So tell me a bit about where you are from… How is the Hip Hop scene and how are the responses at your shows? Any clubs or spots you’d like to shout out for Live High Five?
Astro- I’m from Brooklyn, NY. (I) grew up in Brownsville, but now I live in Bed-Stuy.
The hip-hop scene is crazy all over NYC. I’ll be headlining a showcase called Faces in the Crowd at the legendary S.O.B.s here in NYC on March 26th.
G- Dig that. It’s on Varick St., folks… Make sure to go check it.
Do you currently have, or are you working on, any releases right now? When will you be heading back to the studio or on the road? Labels, mixtapes, EPs, collaborations? Anything currently in the works?
Astro- My mixtape, Deadbeats and Lazy Lyrics, is currently available on Datpiff. I dropped a video called “He Fell Off” and will be releasing 3 more videos from the mixtape over the next few weeks.
I just started recording for my next mixtape. (I) will probably release that May.
G- Can’t slow down in Hip Hop, I guess… TAKE NO DAYS OFF!
To speak a bit more on your musical upbringing, tell us… what was your first concert? Can you tell us how old you were, where it took place, and why it was or was not important for you?
Astro – My first concert was at Madison Square Garden when I was 12. Chris Brown was headlining. Even though it was mostly R&B, it made me work even harder seeing all those people in the stands.
G- Nice. Now, can you tell us a bit about your tunes? Where did you find the inspiration to write your new material?
Astro- Most of my songs have a 90’s feel to them. I watch of movies from the 80’s and 90’s, and I love that era. I just want to make music that brings back that vibe.
G- Coming up during that time myself, there was a special feel to it back then. Hip Hop really had a lot of possibilities and room for growth during that time.
So, what rappers or groups in particular influence your style? Who do you typically like to listen to, and are there any acts you think we should know about?
Astro- Old school artists. Tribe Called Quest, Big Daddy Kane, Rakim are just a few artists that influenced me. Definitely Biggie, Pac and Jay as well.
I listen to all types of music; Jazz, Funk and R&B. The older, the better.
G- You knocked out all the heavy hitters with that one. So, what should your fans, both old and new, expect of the performances when you guys hit the road? What should some of the first time listeners expect to see when you take the stage?
Astro- Real Hip-Hop. My fans will feel what a 90’s hip-hop concert felt like.
G- Nice! Do you have a favorite song you have ever written? If you could give one track to someone who’d never heard your jams before, what song would you offer up and why??
Astro – “He Fell Off.” Lyrically, (it’s) one of the best records I’ve ever recorded, and the beat is sick. (It’s) just me doing what I do best… Lyrically defeating haters and doubters.
G- The Hip Hop and Rap game has a lot of heavyweights and legends, but are there any bands or artists that you hope to share a bill with in the future? If you could pick out 3 artists that you’d like to collaborate or tour with in the future, who would you pick to record/tour with?
Astro- I definitely want to work with Jay Z, Kanye and Nas.
G- If you keep going the way you’re going right now, and they’ll be wanting to tour with you, bro!
So, hit us with the craziest or most memorable show that you have played to date? Where was it and what was it like?
Astro- Summer 2012, Lyricist Lounge 20th anniversary in Prospect Park. About 5,000 people showed up, Ghostface performed and it was in Brooklyn, so that made it perfect.
G- Nice… Bet that shit was hot!
Lastly, as a young guy yourself, you’re doing an incredible job getting your name out there and making things happen for yourself… What advice can you give some of the other young, up and coming rappers and artists everywhere who want to make it in music, on the road, and as a professional musician?
Astro- Stay true to yourself. Don’t do what’s hot for the moment, find your niche and work hard at owning it.