We sat down with Lexington, Kentucky’s breakout star, Swavé for an exclusive interview on the release of his Hour on Hour EP. Growing up in a small town provided him the motivation needed to dream big and work hard towards creating his own way of life. Although he’s experienced quite a few setbacks throughout the creation of Hour on Hour, he’s thankful for the journey because of the mental strength he was able to develop.
How do you feel that your baby is finally out in the world right now?
It’s just a real moment because we’ve been working hard making sure everything was done right, quality wise. It just feels good because of the reviews and feedback we’ve been getting from it, it’s crazy the whole city is going wild. And it’s just you know, we expect it, but we’re remaining humble and stay working. It feels good because we’ve put so much effort into it. So it’s like to get good feedback, it’s a blessing.
What was the inspiration behind Hour on Hour?
Hour on hour was really inspired by me, just the life I was living. I was working 9-5 jobs then hustling outside of those hours.
Living in a poverty-stricken area where you know a lot of drugs is moving, a lot of illegal activities is going on, it’s easy to dab into those worlds and become a product of your environment.
And I kind of shied away from it. I worked jobs and then you know used my money from that to put into music and make sure my music was just getting better. That’s where Hour on Hour came from because I would have all my schedules like super strict. Like when I get off work, I’d be going straight to the studio. Everything was accounted for, every hour on the hour was working towards my goal.
That’s amazing! I saw it took about 3 years to develop your project, can you talk about that process?
That process was a long one because when I had started doing music I didn’t know anything about the music industry, like what was the standard and what I needed to do to make sure I had the best product. And I was just trying to do it by myself. You know, you lose and then you gain when it does happen like that. To be honest, there were times when I’ll be focused and then I wasn’t focused and then I’d be focused again. Then I’m like I’m not doing what God’s path is telling me to do. Like I’m just trying to do it on my own, my own terms and not really what I’m supposed to be doing. That’s really what took so long. I also had a lot of different people telling me they can be my manager, they can sign me to a label, they can take me to this place, you know, invest in me and none of that ever worked.
I was just kind of lost for a minute and then like a year ago I just really got super, super serious and after that I wasn’t taking no for an answer.
I started learning the business, started learning how to navigate, what I’m supposed to be doing. Like I grew a lot in one year it’s crazy, my whole mindset is different and it’s a blessing. Honestly, it just worked out for the better.
That’s really important, especially because one thing I always try to tell people is that when you have a certain passion and there’s something that you’re working on, you need to understand it’s not going to happen overnight. If it does, then great. However, more than likely it won’t happen overnight but that’s okay. Just like you showed, it’s vital for you to never give up, to never give up on your dreams and just keep pushing forward. You did that and look, you’ve created a beautiful body of music.
Thank you, I really appreciate it.
I know you said you’ve grown a lot throughout this process. How would you say you’ve changed mentally throughout this journey, especially within the past year?
Mentally, I put everything in and really humbled myself. Most importantly, I learned patience. I learned that my vulnerability and flaws are okay for me to embrace those. You know it’s okay for me not to be at one level and that me not have to catch up to other people or be in the same position they in even though I know I’m just as good.
I had to learn that everybody’s path is different and that my path might not be the same, even though I felt like I should be already there. But it’s not how it works, you understand everything happens for a reason.
I look at things way differently, I’m not worried about what people are going to think or really worry about like what society is going to try to make me. I just have to be myself and just remain who I am and everything else will play its part. I had to sit down myself look in the mirror you know read more books and pray to get close to God. That made me open my mind to a whole other different level and really put my mindset in a place for me to take advantage of the gift that I have.
Is there anything, in particular inspiring you lately that you think will play a part in your future projects?
I’m just inspired by people who are chasing dreams and that you know started from nothing and try to turn into something you know. I’m seeing it happen to other people, it’s beautiful. I love when it happens to others other than myself. That inspires me to keep doing what I’m doing and make my music even better. Nobody from my hometown ever made it out to do something like this big. I’m here to put my hometown on the map like it’s a small city, and I’m trying to be the one. I feel like I’m the chosen one so I’m going to take this energy and show the true colors of what we about and show the world. I’m inspired by all of that.
I can appreciate that. So one thing I usually ask every single person I interview is if they had one message to get across to a large group of people what would it be and why?
Really going back to just staying true to yourself and believing in yourself and don’t get caught up in like society’s versions of what you should be. You know with social media and all of that where you know you think that you have to look a certain way, you have to talk a certain way, that you have to you know walk a certain way. And just being yourself is really going to take you way further because what makes us all great is that we are different. You know what I’m saying, me and you are different. But it’s a good thing because we can probably learn so much from each other and that’s how I think. That’s how the world supposed to work, you know everybody shouldn’t be the same. I don’t want to be around the people that are exactly the same, you know what I’m saying. If you’re always with people who are the same as you, nobody is really going to advance, right?
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