May 14, 2013  

Sway Live Interview for the Point Blank Youth Foundation – 15.04.13

Point Blank believes in the power of music as a tool for social change. Since the change in government at the last election and the ever-present recession, the funding that was previously made available for hard-to-reach youth activities has been dramatically cut. Some say this policy was connected to the ensuing riots of 2011. Point Blank subscribes to the belief that prevention is better than cure and we have committed to funding activities in this area ourselves, directing whatever resources we can spare to disenfranchised youth. Now more than ever, we believe these types of activities are needed to engage and inspire young people hence the inauguration of our Youth Foundation.

For this special PBYF interview we were pleased to have the company of one of the UK’s most successful rappers in recent times, a man with a brilliantly clever lyrical flow and, of course, a lot to say for himself both on the mic as a performer and when he’s off the stage too, none other than Sway!

As somebody who has found success through working independently, setting up his own label Dcypha Recordings in 2004, we thought Sway would be a great candidate for our Youth Foundation series. His inspired move to start up his own label nine years ago set him on the path to success and, in the years since Dcypha was launched, he has not only been nominated for the Mercury Music Prize, but he has also sold in excess of 100,000 albums, picked up numerous awards and found himself working with producers across the pond in America – the land which many British artists find so difficult to conquer.

A Bit Of Background…

In 2004 the UK’s urban scene took a new direction pioneered by then 22 year old rapper Sway. With a plan to make himself heard and respected as a producer, writer and namely an artist he independently promoted and released his mixtapes “This Is My Promo” Vol. 1 & 2. These releases proceeded to change the rules of the game as they earned him awards and accolades even before the release of his debut album. Off the back of these early endeavours Sway went up against US heavyweights 50 Cent and The Game in the 2005 Mobo’s as Best Hip-Hop Newcomer still without a having released an album.

By 2006 his debut “This Is My Demo” was one of the most eagerly awaited albums of the year and lived up to expectations which The Independent described as; “not just the best British rap albums in years, but simply the best rap album in years, full stop”. Self producing more than fifty percent of the album Sway also worked alongside emerging talents such as Al Shux who later went on to produce ‘Empire State Of Mind’ for Jay Z. Together they forged a sound to match Sway’s lyrical ingenuity. Sway’s debut album is considered a landmark for British “urban” and hip-hop music receiving widespread acclaim. The record received further mainstream endorsement when it was selected as one of the Mercury Music Prize ‘Albums Of The Year’ – one of the most respected accolades in UK music which honours only 12 albums each year.

From the release of this album came sell out tours in the USA, Europe and Africa, award show performances and collaborations with top artists across the globe including Akon, Kaiser Chiefs, Lemar, Gyedu Blay Ambolley, Craig David, Lupe Fiasco, Chamillionaire, Ian Brown, Madness, Ali Campbell (UB40) and Jamelia. Having an ability to identify raw talent Sway still took time to work with unknown artists such as Mr Hudson and Chipmunk helping to facilitate label deals and provide them with early direction. In 2007 Sway’s accolades started to reach beyond the UK winning the BET (Black Entertainment Television) award for Best International Artist, the first time a UK artist had been entered, let alone won. The award was driven by a public vote, and was testament to the fact his lyrical prowess and achievements had by no means gone unnoticed outside of the UK.

In the run up to his second album Sway had become one of the UK’s most sought after rappers. When “The Signature LP” dropped late 2008 the strong ties he had forged with Akon were made official with their collaborative single “Silver & Gold”. The video’s viewings topping 5 million on YouTube soon after it’s release. This album was even more ambitious than his debut demonstrating his abilities as a producer, even drafting in a 22 piece orchestra, live musicians and guest appearances including Sting’s daughter Coco, fellow MOBO award winner 2face Idibia and Lemar. Though much of the album was born out of tougher times – due to loss of loved ones who passed away during its creation – it still kept true his signature style of witty wordplay and razor-sharp punch lines whilst demonstrating an air of maturity like no other urban artist had yet achieved.

Sway’s prolific abilities have earned him worldwide respect and this has enabled him to form a strong alliance with Giorgio Tuinfort, the producer who masterminded Gwen Stefani’s “Sweet Escape” as well as becoming Akon’s main in house producer. This recognition by major US rap talent has also stretched to artists Kanye West and Pharrell Williams. Sway has also worked with other US production talent such as Emile Haynie who has produced for Eminem and Kanye West.

To date Sway has received twelve major awards including three Urban Music Awards, sold over 100,000 albums, and released seven mixtapes, of which “The Delivery 1 & 2” are his most recent, paving the way for his long awaited third studio album “The Deliverance” which will follow in early 2011. The first Delivery Mixtape was hailed by The Times as “a mixtape of album standards” and had more than 10,000 downloads in the first week. Sway has just released the second in the series in the lead up to his new album, set to be an awe inspiring record demonstrating the showmanship and versatility that his fans have come to expect and that Sway truly deserves the title of the UK’s No.1 Lyricist as well as a producer and writer of the highest international standards.

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Transcription:

Luke:   Welcome to the Point Blank Youth Foundation Broadcast. A very special series where we ask major artists to come in and talk to you. The young people of the vibrant borough of Hackney. So this is an exclusive interactive broadcast designed to help engage and inspire you guys, where we welcome none other than international recording artist and ambassador for UK youth, Sway.

 

Sway:  How are you doing?

 

Luke:   Good man, good. Just  before we get started, you might be asking what the Youth Foundation Project is all about. Well, here at Point Blank we believe in music as a power for social change and since the recession there have been government cuts that have led to less funding around for youth projects, and youth activities. So we stepped in and decided to play a part in this ourselves, and bring projects like this to you guys at home. So, without further ado, let’s get into it. Welcome along Sway, quick round of applause in the studio. There we go.  How are you doing man, you good?

 

Sway:  I’m good man, how are you?

 

Luke:   I’m very well, very well. The first thing I wanted to ask about is really how things started out for you, you’ve had a really expansive career from This is my Demo mixtapes that you self released right the way up to winning a BET award, for example. How did it all start, how did you originally get into music?

 

Sway:  Well, basically I’ve always had a love for music since I was a very young, well, since I was a baby basically. I was born in London and I spent an early part of my childhood in Ghana. So probably the first three years of my childhood was spent in Ghana, West Africa. So when I came back, I couldn’t actually speak any English, because I spent my early development of talking speaking Tree [sounds like 00:02:04], which is a Ghanian dialect, and that kind of lasted a while in school. When I first got to school I was a bit slow on English and stuff. So I had to make an extra effort. That’s why I excelled pretty early when it came to words and literature. Because I had to make an effort to keep up and ended up doing more.

 

That combined with my love for music had me really initially, I was a bit of a joker in school and I used to just take the pee a bit and then I used to take  songs, school songs and change the words to make ’em rude to make other kids laugh. At that point, I didn’t actually realise  that early on, I didn’t realize that I was actually developing the skills for rapping or building a rap career until I got to secondary school. And I started taking that kind of mentality of being able to be a bit humorous and at the same time  take something and flip it around spontaneously and I took that to the battle rapping scene and ended up doing pretty well.

 

Luke:   So lyrics were the first thing for you? That was the first…?

 

Sway:  It was totally separate worlds for me. I mean I appreciated music, a lot. But I wasn’t really keen on being a rapper. I just appreciated music and I appreciated rap, but it was only when I started using the equipment and learning on the equipment, that maybe I could place my raps to my own music, and start making my own songs. This was in secondary school, so around about the age of the 14.

 

Luke:   And at that time, obviously kind of developing in music, do you have specific influences that you were drawing from, were there people that were around you inspiring you, or being in London, what was that initial inspiration?

 

Sway:  I’ve always a strong musical background. My mom and dad are both into music, all different kinds, from reggae to high life music, which originated from West Africa, to Madness. We had everything in my household. I was heavily exposed to the TV, and MTV, and I’ve always been one of the biggest Michael Jackson fans, and I think it was my fifth birthday I was bought a Michael Jackson Thriller album, for my birthday by one of my aunties. And I’ll never forget that because up to this date, it’s still one of my favorite albums. And that album really did spearhead my career into music, because I’ve always used Michael Jackson as a role model in the way that he is able to merge so many different genres and just become one kind of thing. People who were into rock music and into Michael Jackson could appreciate him, jazz could appreciate him, it wasn’t just rap, or it wasn’t just rock, or it wasn’t just Brit pop, it wouldn’t be Brit pop, it wasn’t just pop. It was different kinds of genres. I’d always looked up to Michael Jackson.

 

But my influences, to be honest with you, when it comes to my raps, it stems from anywhere, absolutely anywhere, I could take any kind of subject matter, and that was one of my strengths, throughout my mixed tapes, was the fact that we were coming from a scene of people who felt the need to always rap about, maybe, the street life, maybe gang culture, or violence. And I didn’t really feel like I had to be forced to rap about those things, because there are so many other things that you could pick, and in turn, actually my subject matter is what made me unique. ‘Cause at that time, people were coming from more like the street angle and talking about these kind of things, I had a record about credit cards, because I saw that kind of situation happening to a lot of people around me. I was 18, and a lot of people around me were getting credit cards and were getting themselves into masses of debt and I decided that I was going to make a record, later down the line which kind of played on that. And I called it Flo Flashiden [sounds like 00:06:19], it was all about me getting a credit card, over spending it and getting myself into masses of debt.

 

Luke:   I think you know, for me, definitely, something that is a massive appeal with your music is that element that you talked about with Michael Jackson, the fact that it’s relatable. For me, for someone in the inner city, for someone much younger than me, older than me, is that something that’s a conscious decision or is  important to you?

 

Sway:  It’s very conscious because I like people to understand what I’m trying to convey. It’s all great being able to rap, and it’s all great being able to make music, but if nobody gets it, then there’s no blessing in it, no satisfaction in it, so sometimes you can’t have a conversation about things, you just want to have a conversation.

 

You have to figure out what the general conversation is, and have your opinion or your take, or your angle on that. Then people can participate and people are much more open minded to it. So it was a very conscious decision for me to say, ‘You know what, I’m not really going to shy away from certain issues that might be seen as uncool to rap about for the sake of being uncool.’ If people are going to deem me as a cool artist, they are going to do that anyway from the way I present myself , or from the way that I rap, and from my history of how I managed to become a rapper. I wasn’t raised, I was born and raised in the council estate environment, but it didn’t have to be me, everything about my raps didn’t have to be about, ‘Oh we’re from a council estate and there’s this and there’s this problem and that problem,’ you know, there’s other problems, but there’s also other great things that you could talk about…

 

Luke:   Yeah, community, everything.

 

Sway:  Being from those environments, of course, yeah, I mean, it’s like I went to a school called High Gate Wood, which is a pretty cool school, in the sense that where it was located, it was located in an area called Crouch End. And Crouch End is a really affluent area, there’s a lot of people with money, living in Crouch End. At the same time, it was right near Wood Green, which is, no disrespect to Wood Green, it’s not as affluent as Crouch End. And then you’ve got Hornsea which is kind of in the middle. Then you’ve got Muswell Hill, where the house prices start from half a million and up. I managed to have all of those influences, I saw it wasn’t just a dead end environment for me. It wasn’t like I looked out my window and that’s all you see, because you look out your window and yeah, you might see another council estate, but on the other side of that you houses that are worth half a million and up. So there’s always a mentality that ‘We don’t have to be stuck here, we can make it to that side, because it’s just only over there.’ That’s why I decided not to engulf myself in the whole stereotypical kind of street music route.

 

Luke:   Yeah, most definitely, we’ve actually got one of your slightly earlier tracks I think, ‘Up Your Speed’?

 

Sway:  Yeah.

 

Luke:   So let’s get a quick listen to that, and also, for you guys watching at home, don’t forget, it is your chance to ask any questions you’ve got for Sway. So get posting in the integrated chat room and we’ll fire those over in just a sec.

 

[music]:

 

Luke:   Yeah, so we just heard, ‘Up Your Speed’, I think that’s from 2005, right, right, yeah?

 

Sway:  Yeah, correct, yeah.

 

Luke:   What was the kind of inspiration behind that …?

 

Sway:  At the time I joined the Def Jam street team, which was street team run by DJ Semtex, and I was  a street team kid basically, hopping out of vans and hanging up boards for other artists, American artists, UK artists, and hoping that we don’t get caught by the police. It was actually illegal at the time and fly posting and stuff. But the reason why I did this was that I wanted to meet more people in the music industry, and so we’d have to deliver new CDs to DJs the day it came out. So we’d have to the radio stations and meet DJ’s. And I wanted to meet them and see who was who. Because I knew I wanted to embark on my own career.

 

So while we were doing that, we were going all around the country, we were going to different places, like Birmingham, Manchester, all the major cities, and some of the smaller cities as well, like Wellingborough, we found ourselves in Wellingborough. And everywhere we’d go, we’d hear, at that time, US hip-hop was dominating within the UK scene. If you talked about rap and hip-hop music, it was mainly US rappers that you looked to. And I thought that we never had a record that represented all these places that I’m going to. We don’t have a record that is talking about London, Newcastle, Manchester, and we were on the road at the time and we were literally in the Def Jam van, and that’s where I came up with the concept of ‘Up Your Speed’. It was a play on the word up your street, it was for us, and I mentioned Hereford, I mentioned Wellingborough, I mentioned Manchester, and nobody had heard some of these names in a rap song before. And I also sampled the Fleetwood Mac record, the record that is well know for being the formula one, I sampled that, I remixed it obviously,just to get familiarity, that it was something that was coming from our side of the pond. I recorded the record and the record took off more than I could have possibly imagined. Simply because it was different and I was really proud of that record, and I it’s there for people to see. It’s part of UK rap music history, a lot of times when people talk about that era of music, they use ‘Up Your Speed’ as an example of how the times were changing.

 

Luke:   Yeah, most definitely, for me that is a kind of point really. It kinds of leads me on to my next thing as well, I was going to ask, for lots of the guys watching at home, who are looking to break into music, into the creative industries in general. You talked about overcoming those initial obstacles. What advice do you have for those guys to break and to be seen and be heard really.

 

Sway:  I’d say that you have to understand, be honest with yourself, be honest with  where you’re at. Be honest with who you are, be honest with the level of your ability. Some artists are, some people are great singers, incredible singers, or incredible rappers, but don’t get anywhere. And there’s some people who are not so good, but get really far, I wouldn’t say not so good, not as good as those incredible rappers,and that’s all because of the mentality that they have. Some people know that, look I’m not Maria Carey, so I stay within my comfort zone when I’m singing. I stay in my range.

 

Luke:   Don’t go for those high notes.

 

Sway:  Not to over-expose myself, and other people do the opposite where, they don’t want to be seen as trying too hard, and so they don’t try hard enough, and so they don’t get there. You’ve got to find a balance, you’ve got to be honest with yourself, Okay. What’s my selling point? You can’t listen to your friends all the time, your friends are always going to tell you that you’re great at everything. Most friends will not want to hurt your feelings. So when you’re coming up, they’ll tell you, ‘This song’s alright, blah, blah, blah.’

 

You have to put yourself in the firing line, go out there to live shows. When people start talking in the middle of your set, you know you’re doing something wrong. You’re not holding their attention, you find new ways to engage them. You have to put yourself in the deep end and I feel like I’ve been in the game since 2003 to now. So ten years. I’ve watched and seen a lot of people come, a lot of people go, and a lot of people manage to maintain. And the people who have managed to maintain and the people who are still being brought up in the conversations from that era, are the people who were honest with themselves. They understood what their niche was,  they understood what their selling points were, and they put themselves in situations out of their comfort zone, and that’s how they managed to expand.

 

Artists, a lot of artists, a lot of great people sit behind the TV, or sit behind the laptop and say, ‘I’m better than Sway, I’m better than K and Omp [sounds like 00:15:43], I’m better than Dizzy, I’m better than all these guys’. That mentality is not going to get you anywhere.

 

Prove it, if you’re better, let the actions speak, go out there, go to live shows, because you might be shocked, you might think you’re better than all these people because you’re doing incredible things in your bedroom and there’s no criticism, so there’s no obstacle. But when you go out to a live show and everybody goes to the bar when you’re on stage, then you know, ‘Look, I need to go back and fix, I need to talk about things that these people are interested in.’ So honesty is the best part.

 

Luke:   Excellent advice. Most definitely, and you’ve got a couple of questions actually. From B6, the guys at B6 School have asked, ‘What advice would Sway give to anyone who wants to make money from their music?’

 

Sway:  Money’s a tricky subject when you talk about doing things you love. If money’s your incentive, then do something else. From a creative point of view, because you make money from doing what you love, and you make money from hard work, you give. Money is just kind of a reward for all the hard work you put in. If people were just like, ‘I can rap, I’ve seen rappers drive fast cars and wear big jewellery and get all the girls in the club and buys loads of bottles, and I’m rapping for that reason’, do something else, play the lottery, you’ve got a better chance.

 

Luke:   Yeah, that’s true.

 

Sway:  Do something else. But if you’re saying, ‘This is my life, I want to sell my creative ability to the masses, in order to maintain a living.’ You end up probably surpassing your goal, because you’re more concerned with supplying for the people.

 

Luke:   Creating a piece of art.

 

Sway:  Your fan base, there’s artists that don’t go platinum, but they sell loads of small units over a long period of time which sustains their healthy lifestyle. In terms of making money you just have to, that comes with the hard work and dedication. If your main incentive is to make money then, I think, my personal advice is that the entertainment world, is no – well, the music, creative process is not. Maybe Big Brother or something like that if you want to make money.

 

Luke:   I think what ties into that is the fact that, if you’re honest with your work, like you said, a little bit earlier, you put in the work, the money will follow.

 

Sway:  It’s just common sense. You give to get, and you’ve got to give something genuine to get something genuine. People can have one hit wonders, you can have people that come together, and the energy’s right and the chemistry’s right, the timing’s right, everything’s right, and people will just buy into that record.  But, because there hasn’t been a long span of thought process that’s gone behind it. It’s very hard to replicate. So you have one hit wonders, if you want to be a one hit wonder, jump in every single studio and see what happens. It’s like the lottery. It can happen, but it’s not likely. But when you sit back, and you plan, and you have a strategy for how you want to move forward and you understand where you’re at and you understand who your market are, then you can last in this game for a long time.

 

Luke:   Cool, we got a couple more questions, Clapton Girls’ Technology College have asked, I think we might have kind of got into this one slightly earlier. ‘Do you write your own music, and how have you progressed in your career?’

 

Sway:  I write my own rap lyrics, sometimes when I feature with artists, I do write their parts as well. I have helped other artists write their raps as well. I think it’s important as an artist, for me personally as an artist to have a strong influence in what you say. Because at the end of the day, people don’t see the writers, they see you as the artist, so if you’re saying something you don’t agree with, it stays with you. And once you put a record out there, to the public, you can’t get it back, and you can’t explain to every single person that…

 

Luke:   You can’t give everyone context.

 

Sway:  Yeah, like, ‘I never wrote that line, or John wrote that line, and Peter wrote that line’, you don’t have that time. So you have to know that whatever is being written for me, or whatever I’m apart of, I have to represent, or I have to be able to explain why I felt this way. Or why I chose that subject matter at the time.

 

In terms of my career, I’ve been very fortunate, like I’ve said, coming out in the game, my first album was 2006 and I’ve had a very interesting progression. I came out of a time period where rappers and urban artists weren’t charting left right and center. Urban music wasn’t known as the pop of UK music scene. So a lot of people, past, well my era was really my first album, that my demo was the pinnacle of where UK hip-hop could go at the time, it was really like, we’d done really well marketing music, prize mobile [sounds like 00:21:21], etc. but after that time came, came people charting, people getting top 40’s, top 30’s, top 20’s, top 10’s, number 1 records.

 

And by my third album, this campaign now, I remember before I released ‘Still Speedin’, people were kind of like, cause I hadn’t released something for a while, people were kind of like, ‘Sway, the games changed quite a lot since you’re last project, and it’s nice to know that you’ve managed to maintain, and you’ve done so many collaborations, and you’re still out there earning a living and doing shows, but now people are expecting a chart position’. You release a record and people are expecting it to sell, and so I was pretty nervous about that. Because people were putting that, but then I just thought that, if I just continue to do what I love, then surely it can connect with people. If it doesn’t, maybe you have to bow out gracefully and say, ‘Time to move onto something else’ and fortunate for me, we were hoping for a top 40 record with Still Speedin’, and we got a top 20 record.

 

So that kind of built up the momentum for the Sway campaign again and again. Right after that we released Level Up. We were hoping that, you know, ‘We got a top 20 record, it would be great to get another top 20’, we do things in stages. A lot of people say, aim for the best and it’s nice to say, I want to get a number one, but there’s so many different factors that come into play with getting a number one record other than the fact that the song has to be great. You can’t put that pressure on yourself, because if you put that pressure on yourself and you get a number 2 record, or a number 3, or top 10, then it could be seen as a failure when that is a massive achievement in the bigger scheme of things, and so we put the second single out, and that went top 10.

 

And so it kind of proved my theory right, that if you just really follow your heart, and always be true to what you want to do, at the same time understand the change in the climate, the change in the sound, but always maintain to be yourself. Then you can continue to progress in this game. So if I release another two albums, I’ll be happy, I’ve made a healthy career for myself.

 

Luke:   I think as well there’s something in that, at that stage, you’re kind of in a similar dilemma to someone starting out, ‘I want to stay true to myself, but this is on trend, or this is what’s getting a number one at the moment. Do I go down that route or do I want to stay true.’ I think the fact that it pays off is amazing advice for the guys watching out there. Let’s have a quick look and see if we’ve got any more questions coming through. Let’s have a look, ah, here’s a good one. Rasheen has asked ‘Which song of yours is your favourite?’

 

Sway:  Oh wow. Actually, my favourite song, and I know this is going to sound like a plug, but, my favorite song is not released yet, it’s called The Deliverance song.

 

Luke:   It’s off the new album.

 

Sway:  The album is called The Deliverance. So this is the title track from that song. And why it’s my favourite song is because it was, I wrote it in complete, in a state of, what’s the word, flow.

 

Luke:   Okay. just in the zone.

 

Sway:  Yeah, I had put on the headphones, I knew I wanted to do. The concept was I wanted to take one word and manipulate that word to create a story. So doing loads of different things and placing letters in all different places. I was like, this is going to take a while, I didn’t know how to approach it, and I had the beat, the beat was exactly what I wanted it to be. I put on the headphones and an hour later, it was done. I, me, consciously, never played a big role, in that writing process. I could’ve been dreaming for all I know, now when I listen back to it, it all came together and I don’t know whether that’s years of rhyming experience, or just a eureka moment. But I just love the record so much, because of the way that it wasn’t over thought, it was just delivered so. That is probably one of my best songs.

 

Luke:   That sounds like a good one to choose, the fact that it’s straight from the gut, from the heart, that there’s hardly much of a thought process, obviously the original concept, but then the actual way it came together.

 

Sway:  The actual recording process was great. My favorite verse, it changes all the time, but my favorite verse would probably be, the one From the Edge Here [sounds like 00:26:28] EP Nightmares. I only do because I listen back to that and I pick out little things that I said that I don’t remember thinking about at the time. So I listen back as a stranger, as opposed to the artist.

 

Luke:   Yeah, that’s cool. Let’s have a look. We’ve got another one, who has asked, what do you think about the current state of grime, and what are your thoughts on the trap [sounds like ] movement?

 

Sway:  I think that the trap movement, the grime movement, it’s all the same family, it’s all the same thing, I mean, I understand the use of labels, when sounds follow a specific route they need to be able to put them in the right places and have the right people search for them in the right way. But to me, it’s all hip-hop.

 

Grime, this is something that people from the grime scene have argued quite a lot and quite strongly about, I’ve always seen grime as a form of hip-hop. A lot of grime people have said, ‘No, it’s not hip-hop, it’s ours.’ But then you look at what hip-hop is, essentially, it’s a diverse style of beats that have been influenced from other genres, be it jazz, be it dance, be it afro-beat, whatever, with rappers on it. That’s why in my earlier days coming out, people didn’t know whether to call me a grime MC or a hip-hop artist, because I would go from one to the other, and now there’s so many rappers, I think the whole rap scene is in that name now. You can’t predict what a rap artist from this country is come out with next, in terms of the sound. It could be a dance record.

 

Luke:   Which is a good thing.

 

Sway:  It’s an incredible thing. In terms of all the labels, and some people say grimes dead, well, I mean, grimes always been alive, it was alive it even had the title, it could have been described has hip-hop at the time.

 

Luke:   Okay. Cool, as we’re kind of approaching the end of the session, let’s see the guys from B6 College have asked, when you refer to, when we have asked questions you have referred to we, do you have a team, managers, producers, etc.?

 

Sway:  Yeah, I have a team of people, Disciple Productions is the label I founded, and I run that with a few people. We signed an artist at the moment, we have two artists that we’re focusing on predominately at the moment . One called Tigger Da Author, one called They Call Me Raptor.

 

And we collectively, as a team, released my first two mix tapes, and my first album in conjunction with others. It’s important to have a team of people that believe in you. A movement is a movement. A movement means there’s more than one person that believes in what you’re doing. It’s great to be an individual and say, ‘Yeah, listen to what I’ve got, blah, blah, blah.’ When two people say it, ears prick up, when three people say it, four people say it, you know what I mean? My team doesn’t just consist of the people who are around me, my families, the people who follow me on twitter, they’re a part of my team. Because I might put out something, I don’t have an ego so big that everything I put out has to be loved. I might put out something and people might say, ‘Ah, Sway, go back to your old style, we like that more.’

 

That’s their opinion and I take that on board, but if I really genuinely believe in the direction I’m taking, I’ll stick with that, because I know that maybe it would open a few more doors. But they’re my team none the less. My fans A&R my projects, all of them, from the mixed tape days to now, my fans A&R my projects, as opposed to one person who says, ‘Take that out, or take that out, take that out.’ I like to throw it out there and try new things and see how people take to it.

 

Luke:   Cool man, as we are approaching the end of the session, can you tell us what you got coming up, the album, etc.

 

Sway:  Yeah, I got the album Deliverance, that’ll be out this year. I mean for me personally, I’d say it’s my best album yet because of the kind of experience and things I’ve gone through in life that have made me who I am today. I mean I’m proud of my approach with this album. The album is called Deliverance because it’s all about setting your mind free. It’s all about freedom of the mind, and not feeling that you have to conform, or feeling like you have to be attached to any kind of thing in particular, but being free to make your own choices in life.

 

Still Speedin’s on there, Charge is on there, Level Up is on there. I have a good few features of people that I’ve wanted to work with for a while.

 

Luke:   Okay. Cool well, you guys at home, make sure you check out the album, and Sway, many thanks for coming down man.

 

Sway:  No problem man, thank you for having me.

 

Luke:   No problem at all. So yeah, that’s it, another session of the Point Blank Youth Foundation, we’ll be back again very soon with another session like this, and obviously, keep locked to our Facebook and the blog as well. That’s it from us, thanks for watching, and we’ll see you guys very, very soon. Cheers.

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