NYC native Radamiz came into the OAK studio to shoot some photos and answer a couple of questions. Listen to his latest song and check out the interview/photos below.

What role does NYC/Brooklyn play on your creative development as an artist?

R: It’s my DNA, it’s my scope through how I look at the world, so by default it influences everything I can pick up. No matter how many new words I pick up, I’ll still speak English with a Brooklyn accent. It’s embedded. As I grow though, I’ve learned how to use it to my advantage and do something new with it where before it was just a box/stereotype.

What influences outside of music, do you look to for inspiration to bring back into your work?

R: Well, everything is source material. If I read a book on Taoism, watch “Pulp Fiction” for the 25th time, listen to some Alan Watts lectures, smoke a blunt with a homie in Soho in broad daylight and kiss my mom good night at the end of it all, then all that is inspiration. I’ve learned to walk a lot too, aimlessly, and use it meditatively, especially when I have a beat I already have in my head that I love. My music has to move. My shit gotta love the world and add something to the world, speak with the world. I treat it as such. Does that make sense?

In what ways does your personal style express the same energy thats within your songs?

R: Hmmm… That’s a good one. Do you think it does? I guess for me, when I think about my favorite visuals, I always remember what they had on too, so all of it by default adds to the experience. Every detail is important. I want a Snow Beach piece because of the “Can It All Be So Simple” video. I wanted a green bottom Yankee hat because of little C in “A Bronx Tale”. I guess my personal style reflects sometimes the dna of the music i make. I’ll wear a pullover hoodie and a black beanie on my wedding day if I could.

Favorite genre outside of Hip Hop/Rap? Why?

R: All the traditional music in languages I don’t know. That shit keeps me sharp. I’m a jazz guy sometimes, i play a lot of Sade and Marvin and Curtis Mayfield and what not too. Bon Ivers last album was ill. Frank Ocean is basically a rapper so I can’t say him. My favorite song ever is “Blue in Green” by Miles Davis. Dominican music like típico and bachata hit home too, mood and nostalgic wise. The music sounds like the country and I aspire to have my music be that environmental too. Let it be a space.

If you could re-do the soundtrack to any movie, which movie would you choose and why?

R: None of them honestly, I don’t even know if I have the musical range to be that nice. I like Quentin Tarantino’s film scores a lot. And Spike Lee is fire. I don’t know if I’d do as good of a job but I’d love to do “City of God” or a film in that realm. I love films that know themselves, aren’t afraid of expressing every part of themselves. “La Haine” would be fun too. Throw a lot of intense Cuban ballads in there.

When was the firs time you realized you wanted to take music seriously and pursue that career path?

R: Every day bro. Every day. One of the most clear moments was in college. All I was doing my sophomore year was spending all my money the day I got my paycheck on clothes, smoke and bullshit. NYU took the forefront and music was becoming a hobby and that was killing me. Then one day I got healed by God. I asked and was answered. That’s honest. Other than that and other key moments, I realize every time someone reaches out and tells me I’ve affected them with my music, that I spoke for them. That’s how I’m reminded my mission isn’t a lonely one and get the extra battery I need to keep going.

If you weren’t making music, what would you be doing?

R: Im not making music right now, I’m just answering your questions. So right now I’m a question answerer. I’m never not an artist, I just move off inspiration and creative urges. If tomorrow I become more passionate about planning weddings or being a car salesman, then that’s what I’ll do. It just so happens that I’ve never been passionate about being anything more than an artist in my life. So that’s what I’ll keep doing.

Interview: Vincent Narvaez
Photography: Elvin Tavarez